Kathy submitted her PhD in Clinical Psychology today just in time for a well-deserved holiday break. The thesis is titled “An Investigation of Self-Structure, Social Identity and Norms in Medical Student Wellbeing”. She explores the unique issues for wellbeing facing medical students, what can be learned from applying the broader social psychology literature on self, identity and wellbeing, and what, in turn, can be learned from exploring this special case. Several papers have already been published from Kathy’s thesis, including:
- Our general model anddiscussion of the paradoxes faced by medical students (Medical Education, in press);
- A preliminary exploration of the role of identity and norm factors (Perspectives on Medical Education, in press); and
- Showing that the impact of education related stressors do have an impact on medical student wellbeing over and above the additional general life-stressors that they also face (Teaching and Learning in Medicine, in press).
We also have several more papers under review or in preparation. The final study from Kathy’s thesis involved 330 medical students from Australia, New Zealand, and assorted medical schools in Europe and Asia.
We were very grateful for the assistance of representatives from AMSA and NZMSA for making our study known to a wide group of medical students. The results from this study will be publicised in early 2014.
We hope that Kathy’s thesis project will lead to continued research in this important domain of medical student wellbeing as well as theoretical developments in self, identity and wellbeing domains.