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Can J Rural Med. 2015 Summer;20(3):83-91.

Rural longitudinal integrated clerkships: changing interests and demographics of medical students.

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Distributed Learning and Rural Initiatives, and Department of Family Medicine, Cumming School of Medicine, Calgary, Alta.
Distributed Learning and Rural Initiatives, Cumming School of Medicine, Calgary, Alta.
Undergraduate Medical Education, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alta.
Medical Education Research Unit, and Department of Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine, Calgary, Alta.


in English, French


The University of Calgary Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship (UCLIC) is an integrated curriculum of at least 32 weeks' duration based in rural communities. Rural LICs have been proposed as a method to respond to the needs of underserved rural communities; therefore, assessing evolving learner interest and demographics over time is of importance to rural communities.


Three surveys were administered to first-year medical students at the University of Calgary from the classes of 2009, 2010 and 2015. The surveys assessed demographic information as well as interest in and attitudes toward pursuing a rural-based LIC.


Overall, 42% of students (76% of decided students) reported that they would consider the rural UCLIC. Between 2009 and 2010, the proportion of students who would not consider the UCLIC decreased from 25% to 8%, and thereafter was maintained at that level. Over the same period, interest among students considering Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC) specialties significantly increased. Although student attitudes about the value of the LIC were consistently positive, students remained concerned about social considerations.


There has been an increase in student willingness to consider a rural LIC, most significantly among students interested in RCPSC specialties. Career plans and demographics of students continue to influence their interest in and attitudes toward LICs.

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