Informing Choices

The Need for Career Advice in Medical Training

Jackson C, Ball JE, Hirsh W, Kidd JM |   | National Institute of Careers Education and Counselling | May 2003

How should the career support provided to doctors and medical students during their medical training be improved?

Experience elsewhere suggests that unless such support is developed to meet the specific requirements of doctors and medical students, it is unlikely to achieve all its objectives. This research study set out to find out exactly what these requirements were and how best they might be catered for.

Presenting the results of a survey of the medical career advice and guidance needs of a nationally representative sample of doctors in training and final year medical students, the research demonstrates that doctors have real problems finding their way through their career and training choices. Existing career guidance provision, reviewed as part of the research, is often fragmented and poorly resourced.

The report argues that a proactive and educational approach to career advice and guidance provision is needed. This will require a fundamental change of mindset so that medical career advice and guidance is positioned as a part of medical training.