The attitude of final year medical students to orthopaedics in a Nigerian medical school
Aim: To determine the attitude of final year medical students to the clinical posting and lectures in Orthopaedics and to find out the improvements they desire to make it more interesting.
Material/Methods: A descriptive, cross sectional study was carried out among one hundred and eighty two final year medical students of the University of Benin comprising one hundred and twenty (65.9%) males and sixty two (34.1%) females aged 19-30 years.
A total survey was done using a self –administered questionnaire that inquired their age, gender, marital status and religion. There were also questions on whether they would like to specialize in Orthopaedics, their attitudes in terms of ranking of Orthopaedics in their preference to other specialties, critical study of the specialty, active participation at lectures and the possession of recommended textbooks. The questionnaire also sought the changes the students desired to improve their postings. The data was analyzed using the statistical package for social sciences (SPSS 16.0).Frequency tables were generated and chi-square test was used to evaluate statistical association among these variables. Statistical significance was established at p-values less than 0.05.
Results: Forty four (24.2%) students would like to specialize in Orthopaedics. There was a statistically significant difference between male and female students (p=0.025) in their choice of Orthopaedics as a career. Majority (67%) of the students found the posting and lectures interesting. Most of the students had good attitude to certain aspects of the training while at the same time they displayed a poor attitude to other aspects of the training. In addition most of the students desire an improvement in the lecturer and student interaction during the clinical posting and lectures.
Conclusion: Most of the final year medical students have a mix of good attitude in some aspects and poor attitude to other aspects of the clinical posting and lectures in Orthopaedics. They also desire an improvement in the lecturer and student interaction through organization of group discussions with lecturers that will further stimulate their interest in the specialty
Keywords: Attitude, medical students, Orthopaedics