Vocational career paths of graduate entry medical students at Flinders University: a comparison of rural, remote and tertiary tracks

Med J Aust. 2008 Feb 4;188(3):177-8. doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2008.tb01567.x.


Objective: To provide data on the career trajectories of medical students from rural and remote workforce programs at Flinders University (the Parallel Rural Community Curriculum [PRCC] and the Northern Territory Clinical School [NTCS]), comparing them with students at the urban Flinders Medical Centre (FMC).

Design: Retrospective postal survey of all 150 graduates who undertook their Year 3 study in the period 1998-2000.

Outcome measure: Associations with career preference, assessed using univariate analyses and multivariate regression.

Results: PRCC and NTCS graduates were more likely to choose rural career paths than graduates from FMC. The odds ratios were 19.1 (95% CI, 3.4-106.3; P < 0.001) and 4.3 (95% CI, 1.2-14.8; P = 0.026), respectively, after adjusting for age and rural background. There was no difference in the specialty choices of graduates of the three programs.

Conclusion: This study provides evidence that clinical attachments designed to increase the rural and remote medical workforce do fulfil this objective.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Australia
  • Career Choice*
  • Curriculum
  • Education, Medical, Graduate / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rural Health
  • Rural Health Services*
  • Students, Medical*
  • Urban Population
  • Vocational Education*
  • Workforce