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Perceived stress at transition to workplace: a qualitative interview study exploring final-year medical students’ needs

Authors Moczko T, Bugaj T, Herzog W, Nikendei C

Received 10 August 2015

Accepted for publication 2 November 2015

Published 14 January 2016 Volume 2016:7 Pages 15—27

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/AMEP.S94105

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Maria Olenick

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Anwarul Azim Majumder


Video abstract presented by Tobias Moczko

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Tobias R Moczko,1,2,* Till J Bugaj,1,* Wolfgang Herzog,1 Christoph Nikendei1

1Department for General Internal and Psychosomatic Medicine, University Hospital of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, 2School of Medicine, Faculty of Health, Witten/Herdecke University, Witten, Germany

*These authors contributed equally to this work

Objectives: This study was designed to explore final-year medical students’ stressors and coping strategies at the transition to the clinical workplace.
Methods: In this qualitative study, semi-standardized interviews with eight final-year medical students (five male, three female; aged 25.9±1.4 years) were conducted during their internal medicine rotation. After verbatim transcription, a qualitative content analysis of students’ impressions of stress provoking and easing factors during final-year education was performed.
Results: Students’ statements regarding burdens and dealing with stress were classified into four main categories: A) perceived stressors and provoking factors, B) stress-induced consequences, C) personal and external resources for preventing and dealing with stress, and D) final-year students’ suggestions for workplace improvement.
Conclusion: Final-year medical students perceived different types of stress during their transition to medical wards, and reported both negative consequences and coping resources concerning perceived stress. As supervision, feedback, and coping strategies played an important role in the students’ perception of stress, final-year medical education curricula development should focus on these specifically.

Keywords: undergraduate medical education, stress prevention, final-year medical education, workplace learning, qualitative research

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