Introduction: Mentoring is a natural process, which blossoms from the desire of experienced veterans to give and the thirst of inexperienced novices to grow. Formal faculty mentoring could help the 1st year students to thrive on the complicated situations in a newer environment and excel in their career. This study was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of mentorship program in improving the academic performance of 1st MBBS students.
Methods: 148 first MBBS students of Al Azhar medical college, who were admitted for 2017-18 academic year, were included for this interventional study. Mentorship program was started in our college since January 2018 after first internal exam, wherein the students were equally divided among 6 mentors. At the end of 6 months, to assess the effectiveness of mentorship program, a post-exam was conducted and the marks were compared with the pre-program performance. Paired t test was used to compare the marks before and after the program. Furthermore, the perception of mentees on mentorship program was also assessed by a valid questionnaire (score of 1-4).
Results: The mean score of students in the exam conducted after mentorship program was significantly higher (p<0.001) than that conducted before commencing mentorship program. This increment in performance is appreciated more in girls rather than the boys. Furthermore, the mentorship program significantly (p<0.001) helped to boost the academic performance in below average students who had scored < 50% marks in pre-program assessment. The effectiveness of the mentorship program was further supported by the students' feedback. 40.5% of the students agreed and 56.8% of them strongly agreed that mentorship program was effective and beneficial to them.
Conclusion: The mentorship program obviously improves the academic performance of students, especially below average performers who need extra care and guidance.
Keywords: Academic performance; Medical education; Mentorship.
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