Stressors in Medical School: Relation to Curriculum Format and Year of Study

David M. Kaufman, David Mensink, Victor Day

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Background: Students have reported medical school as being stressful. Purpose: This study examined how a major curriculum revision and year of study affected stressors reported by medical students. Methods: Students in the final class of a conventional lecture-based curriculum were compared to students in the first class of a new problem-based learning (PBL) curriculum, at the end of 1st and 2nd year, on a 27-item stressor checklist. Results: There were differences between the two curricula and years in relative frequency of stressors marked by students. However, ranks of stressors were highly correlated among all groups, and the five highest ranked stressors were identical for the PBL and conventional groups. Conclusions: Curriculum differences in 1st- and 2nd-year medical school may not necessarily cause differences in the overall pattern of stressors, although frequency of some stressors may be significantly different. The results of this study validate an earlier study of 1st-year students only.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-144
Number of pages7
JournalTeaching and Learning in Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


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