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Specialty choices of postgraduate medical students: are they related to the kind of animal identified with oneself?

Authors:

Raman Deep Pattanayak ,

All India Institute of Medical Sciences Ansari Nagar, New Delhi, 110029, IN
About Raman Deep
Department of Psychiatry
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Manju Mehta,

All India Institute of Medical Sciences Ansari Nagar, New Delhi, 110029, IN
About Manju
Department of Psychiatry
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Rajesh Sagar

All India Institute of Medical Sciences Ansari Nagar, New Delhi, 110029, IN
About Rajesh
Department of Psychiatry
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Abstract

Background: Research has pointed to a possible role of certain personality attributes in the choice of medical specialties, but not much is known about the Indian setting. Furthermore, most personality assessments are quite lengthy and time-consuming.

 

Objective: The study aimed to explore if the specialty choices of Indian postgraduate students are related to their personality attributes, using a brief projective animal question.

 

Methods: The study was carried out as a retrospective survey (n=450) of responses to a projective question, in which students were asked to name the animal they identified themselves with the most and their reasons.

 

Results: Mean age was 25.46±1.94 years (Males: 71.8% males; females: 28.2%). Reasons for identification with the stated animal were categorized as aggressive 11.8%, autonomous 40%, nurturing 30.4% and aesthetic 17.8%. Technology-oriented specialties were associated with aggressive/ autonomous responses (p<0.01), while pre/paraclinical specialties were associated with nurturing/aesthetic responses (p<0.01). Females had twice the odds (OR: 1.86) of choosing a personoriented clinical specialty over a technology-oriented specialty.

 

Conclusion: Research in this direction is needed to assist the career counseling of medical students.
How to Cite: Pattanayak, R.D., Mehta, M. and Sagar, R., 2012. Specialty choices of postgraduate medical students: are they related to the kind of animal identified with oneself?. South-East Asian Journal of Medical Education, 6(2), pp.45–47. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/seajme.v6i2.169
Published on 29 Dec 2012.
Peer Reviewed

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