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Author Credentials

William J. Crump MD Craig H. Ziegler PhD, MA2 R. Steve Fricker MPA

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.18590/mjm.2018.vol4.iss3.7

Abstract

Purpose

While many programs assume medical students who attended rural colleges are more likely to practice in smaller towns later, there are few studies to support this assumption. This study examines aspects of medical students’ opinions about rural living and rural practice based on where they attended college.

Method

Students with rural upbringing were identified and administered a previously published rural health opinion survey. The opinion survey was administered across three academic years, from 2015 to 2017, and included a total of three scales and nine subscales for analysis. Factor analysis was used to identify the nine subscales.

Results

Respondents who attended small town colleges tended to have much stronger opinions about the positive aspects of small town living. Small town college attendees also had stronger positive opinions regarding rural practice than their larger college counterparts.

Discussion

These preliminary data indicate considering a medical school applicants’ choice of college may provide insight into their opinions about future rural practice. Additional research is needed to collect a larger dataset to examine the association of college choice with opinions about rural practice.

Conflict(s) of Interest

N/A

References with DOI

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2. Jarman BT, Cogbill, TH, Mathiason, AM, O’Heron, T. Factors correlated with surgery resident choice to practice general surgery in a rural area. J Surg. 2009;66:319-24. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsurg.2009.06.003

3. Lynch DC, Willis SE. Can a 3-day preceptorship change first-year medical students’ opinions about living and working in small towns? Fam Med. 2000;32(7):495-500.

4. Crump WJ, Ziegler CH, Martin LJ, Fricker RS, Shaw MA, Crump AM, Sawning S. Changes in rural affinity among rural medical students as they experience education in an urban setting. Marshall Journal of Medicine. 2017;3(1):57-71. https://doi.org/10.18590/mjm.2017.vol3.iss1.11

5. United States Department of Agriculture. Economic Research Service. Rural-Urban Continuum Codes. Available at: http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/rural-urban-continuum-codes.aspx. Accessed February 6, 2018.

6. Cohen J. Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Earlbaum Associates; 1988.

7. Crump WJ, Fricker RS, Ziegler CH, Wiegman DL. Increasing the rural physician workforce: a potential role for small rural medical school campuses. J Rural Health. 2016;32(3):254-9. https://doi.org/10.1111/jrh.12156

8. Shannon CK, Jackson J. Validity of medical student questionnaire data in prediction of rural practice choice and its association with service orientation. J Rural Health. 2015;31(4):373-81. https://doi.org/10.1111/jrh.12123

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