Self-efficacy beliefs and expectations during an Emergency Medicine Clerkship

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: Undergraduate emergency medicine (EM) training is important because all medical graduates are expected to have basic emergency knowledge and skills regardless of their future speciality. EM clerkship should provide opportunities to improve not only knowledge and skills but also the self-efficacy of learners. This study aims to evaluate the expectations, opinions, and self-efficacy beliefs of medical students during a 4-week mandatory EM clerkship. Methods: This study used a prospective longitudinal design with quantitative and qualitative survey methods. It includes final year medical students of the 2015–2016 academic year. Voluntary de-identified pre- and post-clerkship surveys included 25 statements. The post-clerkship survey included two open-ended questions asking participants to identify the best and worst three aspects of EM clerkship. Responses were analysed to determine themes or commonalities in participant comments indicative of the EM clerkship learning experiences and environment. Results: Sixty-seven out of seventy-nine (85%) students responded to both pre- and post-clerkship surveys. Medical students’ expectations of EM clerkships’ effect on knowledge and skill acquisition were high, and a 4-week mandatory EM clerkship was able to meet their expectations. Medical students had very high expectations of EM clerkships’ educational environment. In most aspects, their experiences significantly exceeded their expectations (p value < 0.001). The only exception was the duration of clerkship, which was deemed insufficient both at the beginning and at the end (p value: 0.92). The students perceived that their self-efficacy improved significantly in the majority of basic EM skills and procedures (p value < 0.001). Emergent qualitative themes in the study also supported these results. Conclusion: This study showed that a 4-week mandatory EM clerkship increased medical students' perceived self-efficacy in basic emergency management skills. The EM clerkship met students' expectations on knowledge and skill acquisition, and exceeded students’ expectations on educational environment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4
JournalInternational Journal of Emergency Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Clerkship
  • Educational environment
  • Emergency medicine
  • Medical student
  • Self-efficacy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine


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