Factors influencing career choice in ophthalmology

Can J Ophthalmol. 2006 Oct;41(5):596-9. doi: 10.1016/S0008-4182(06)80029-3.


Background: To investigate the factors influencing choice of ophthalmology as a career in medicine.

Methods: Data were extracted from the 2004 National Physician Survey, a questionnaire distributed to all physicians across Canada. Data were categorized by medical discipline, and chi2 comparative analyses were done.

Results: Intellectual stimulation emerged as the most frequently cited factor influencing career choice for ophthalmologists and nonophthalmologists alike (81% and 79%, respectively). Compared with other physicians, ophthalmologists were significantly more likely to cite flexibility (58% vs. 42%, respectively), mentorship (42% vs. 31%, respectively), and earning potential (38% vs. 26%, respectively) as important factors (p<0.001).

Interpretation: Intellectual stimulation is the principal reason physicians pursue a career in ophthalmology. Ophthalmologists cite flexibility, mentorship, and earning potential as important factors more frequently than do physicians of other disciplines.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Career Choice*
  • Data Collection
  • Education, Medical, Graduate
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internship and Residency / trends*
  • Job Satisfaction
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Motivation
  • Ophthalmology / trends*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires