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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 29  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 266-270

Creating a longitudinal database in medical education: Perspectives from the pioneers

VU University Medical Center School of Medical Sciences, Institute of Education and Training, Department of Research in Education; LEARN! Research Institute for Learning and Education, Faculty of Psychology and Education, VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Correspondence Address:
Rashmi A Kusurkar
VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, Institute of Education and Training, PK KTC 5.002, Postbus 7057, 1007 MB Amsterdam
The Netherlands
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1357-6283.204214

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The Jefferson Longitudinal Study of Medical Education (JLSME) is the longest running database in medical education and covers the collection and measurement of background, learning, performance, and psychosocial variables before, during, and after medical school. Recently, our research group at VU University Medical Center School of Medical Sciences launched a longitudinal study in medical education, called the “Student Motivation and Success Study.” While setting up this study, we faced many challenges and learning about the JLSME helped us gain a fresh perspective on our work. We interviewed Drs. Joseph Gonnella and Mohammadreza Hojat, the leaders of the JLSME, and present their experiences verbatim in this article and summarize the lessons we learned as tips for others. We conclude that by establishing a longitudinal database, medical educators can test and ensure the quality of the doctors they produce, justify curricular reforms, participate in a continuing inquiry into their educational practices, and produce more generalizable research findings.

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