Advertisement

Journal of Cancer Education

, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 174–179 | Cite as

Impact of a 2-Week Oncology Placement on Medical Students’ Perception of Cancer

  • Jonathan Mayes
  • Simon Davies
  • Andrew Harris
  • Emma Wray
  • Graham G. Dark
Article

Abstract

Statistics show that more than one in two people born after 1960 in the UK will develop cancer during their lifetime. However, a 2013 study found that only 36 % of UK medical schools offer dedicated clinical teaching in oncology. The aim of this study was to assess the views of medical students on five domains of oncology before and after their first clinical placement, to assess the impact, and to obtain students’ views on the oncology curriculum. A 28-item questionnaire was developed to compare responses before and after the students’ first 2-week clinical placement, and impact was measured as a positive or negative deviation from a baseline response. Students were asked about their career intentions and to evaluate their received teaching. Thirty-six (80 %) students responded to the questionnaire. The largest areas of change were identified in students’ confidence in breaking bad news, recognising red flag symptoms, and awareness of the complications of cancer management. Following their placement, 19 students said they would consider a career in oncology, 14 said they would not, and 2 were undecided. Students stated that Maggie’s Centre, a patient support facility, was the most useful learning experience. The evidence demonstrates that all students should experience oncology in a variety of settings to aid their learning. Student feedback and perception can help to guide and shape medical teaching.

Keywords

Undergraduate education Oncology Medical students 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors thank the students, doctors, and patients involved in providing teaching and feedback.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

References

  1. 1.
    Ahmad AS, Ormiston-Smith N, Sasieni PD (2015) Trends in the lifetime risk of developing cancer in Great Britain: comparison of risk for those born from 1930 to 1960. Br J Cancer 112(5):943–947CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Anonymous (1988) The Edinburgh Declaration. Lancet 322(8608):464–466Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Ravaud A, Hœrni B, Bécouarn Y, Lagarde P, Soubeyran P, Bonichon F (1991) A survey in general practice about undergraduate cancer education: results from Gironde (France). J Cancer Educ 6(3):153–157CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Peckham M (1989) A curriculum in oncology for medical students in Europe. Acta Oncologica (Stockholm, Sweden) 28(1):141–147CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Brincker H (1988) Undergraduate oncology education in Scandinavia. Journal of Cancer Education: the official journal of the American Association for Cancer Education. 3(2):97–101CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Tattersall MHN, Langlands AO, Smith W, Irwig L (1993) Undergraduate education about cancer. A survey of clinical oncologists and clinicians responsible for cancer teaching in Australian medical schools. Eur J Cancer 29(11):1639–1642CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Jazieh AR, Henle K, Deloney LA, Savidge M, Fulper-Smith M, Nicholas R (2001) The impact of a cancer education program on the knowledge base of participating students. Journal of Cancer Education: the official journal of the American Association for Cancer Education. 16(1):8–11Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Barton MB, Simons RG (1999) A survey of cancer curricula in Australian and New Zealand medical schools in 1997. Oncology Education Committee of the Australian Cancer Society. The Medical Journal of Australia. 170(5):225–227PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Barton MB, Tattersall MH, Butow PN, Crossing S, Jamrozik K, Jalaludin B, et al. (2003) Cancer knowledge and skills of interns in Australia and New Zealand in 2001: comparison with 1990, and between course types. The Medical Journal of Australia. 178(6):285–289PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Biswal BM, Zakaria A, Baba AA, Ja’afar R (2004) Assessment of knowledge, attitude and exposure to oncology and palliative care in undergraduate medical students. The Medical Journal of Malaysia 59(1):78–83Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Bender W, Haagedoorn E, Oldhoff J. Cancer Education in Europe according to Medical Faculty and Medical Students. Report, Second WHO/UICC Survey on Undergraduate Medical Cancer Education in Europe (1991/1992). WHO Collaborating Centre for Cancer Education; Groningen, the Netherlands 1993Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Bakemeier RF (1981) Cancer education objectives for medical schools. Med Pediatr Oncol 9(6):585–633CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Cellerino R, Graziano F, Piga A, Ghetti V (1993) The teaching of clinical oncology in Italian medical schools. A survey among teachers and students. Annals of Oncology: official journal of the European Society for Medical Oncology/ESMO 4(9):717–721CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Cave J, Woolf K, Dacre J, Potts HWW, Jones A (2007) Medical student teaching in the UK: how well are newly qualified doctors prepared for their role caring for patients with cancer in hospital? Br J Cancer 97(4):472–478CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Glaser B, Strauss A. Grounded theory: the discovery of grounded theory: de Gruyter; 1967Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Greenhalgh T, Robert G, Macfarlane F, Bate P, Kyriakidou O (2004) Diffusion of innovations in service organizations: systematic review and recommendations. The Milbank Quarterly 82(4):581–629CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Payne S, Burke D, Mansi J, Jones A, Norton A, Joffe J, et al. (2013) Discordance between cancer prevalence and training: a need for an increase in oncology education. Clinical Medicine (London, England) 13(1):50–56CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    (UICC) IUAc. Cancer education for undergraduate medical students: curricula from around the world. In: Robinson E, Sherman C, Love R, eds.; Geneva, Switzerland 1994Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Tattersall MH, Langlands AO (1993) Oncology curricula in Australia. The Medical Journal of Australia 158(4):224–225PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Zapka JG, Luckmann R, Sulsky SI, Goins KV, Bigelow C, Mazor K, et al. (2000) Cancer control knowledge, attitudes, and perceived skills among medical students. Journal of Cancer Education: the official journal of the American Association for Cancer Education 15(2):73–78Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Erikson C, Salsberg E, Forte G, Bruinooge S, Goldstein M (2007) Future supply and demand for oncologists: challenges to assuring access to oncology services. Journal of Oncology Practice/American Society of Clinical Oncology 3(2):79–86CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    (HSCIC). HSCIC. NHS Workforce statistics. December 2015, Provisional Statistics. 2015.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Slevin ML, Nichols SE, Downer SM, Wilson P, Lister TA, Arnott S, et al. (1996) Emotional support for cancer patients: what do patients really want? Br J Cancer 74(8):1275–1279CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Rehse B, Pukrop R (2003) Effects of psychosocial interventions on quality of life in adult cancer patients: meta analysis of 37 published controlled outcome studies. Patient Educ Couns 50(2):179–186CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    de Ridder D, Schreurs K (2001) Developing interventions for chronically ill patients: is coping a helpful concept? Clin Psychol Rev 21(2):205–240CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Campbell HS, Phaneuf MR, Deane K (2004) Cancer peer support programs—do they work? Patient Educ Couns 55(1):3–15CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Coles C, Felming W, Golding L (2003) Curricula for cancer: a practice focused approach. Cancer Research UK, LondonGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© American Association for Cancer Education 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Newcastle UniversityNewcastle upon TyneUK
  2. 2.Medical Oncology and Cancer Education, Northern Centre for Cancer CareFreeman HospitalNewcastle upon TyneUK

Personalised recommendations