Development of a Holistic Specialty Interest Assessment Tool: A Pilot Project for a Resource Allocation Paradigm



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BACKGROUND: Current specialty matching tools quantify students' enjoyment completing highly specific tasks. However, the importance of accounting for multifaceted influences on specialty choice grows. OBJECTIVE: Our purpose was to better understand how personality and personal values affect ultimate specialty choice. METHODS: We performed a literature search to identify important drivers of specialty choice. Next, we created and administered an original specialty interest assessment tool in response to literature search. We used the Ten-Item Personality Inventory (TIPI) to measure personality and we performed multivariate logistic regressions to assess for the significance of personality and personal values in determining specialty choice among current physicians and graduating medical students. RESULTS: Two-hundred and eight non-graduating medical students, 66 graduating medical students and 819 physicians completed administered surveys. Agreeableness and conscientious were significant in choosing Primary Care (PC) and Life Style Friendly (LF) specialties. Importance of salary was a significant predictor of choice of both PC and LF specialties. CONCLUSIONS: Personality and personal values were found to be significant predictors of ultimate specialty choice.

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