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Adv Med Educ Pract. 2020 Feb 7;11:109-112. doi: 10.2147/AMEP.S235529. eCollection 2020.

Do Medical Students in Their Fifth Year of Undergraduate Training Differ in Their Suitability to Become a "Good Doctor" Depending on Their Admission Criteria? A Pilot Study.

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Institute of Family Medicine, University Medical Centre Schleswig-Holstein, Campus Lübeck, Lübeck, Germany.
Institute of Social Medicine and Epidemiology, University of Lübeck, Lübeck, Germany.



In Germany, the pre-university grade point average (pu-GPA) has to be the main criterion for medical school applicant selection. This is also mandatory in the university-specific selection procedures (Auswahlverfahren der Hochschulen [AdH]). The admission framework has now been reworked following a judgement by the German Federal Constitutional Court. From 2020, more students will be admitted based solely on the pu-GPA and at least two selection criteria independent of the pu-GPA have to be considered in the AdH. However, the question whether an AdH (the core of the AdH at Lübeck Medical School [LMS], Germany, is a 30-mins panel interview led by two faculty members and one student) leads to better doctors as compared to pu-GPA-based selection, remains unanswered.


To compare students selected based either on their pu-GPA alone ("pu-GPA-students") or based on the result of the AdH at LMS ("AdH-students") regarding their suitability to become a good doctor.


We conducted a cross-sectional observational pilot study at LMS. Students were judged regarding their overall suitability to become a good doctor by their supervising general practitioners after a two-week internship in their last year of theoretical medical education. The scores were matched to the selection procedure and compared between the pu-GPA-students and AdH-students.


In all, 79% of the AdH-students were rated as "absolutely suitable" for the medical profession, as compared to 42% of the pu-GPA-students (p = 0.01, odds ratio 5.17, 95% confidence interval = 1.41, 18.99). We did not find any association between gender or age and the suitability rating.


Despite the small sample size, our results indicate that it could be favourable to select medical students not only based on their pu-GPA but also using additional selection criteria.


educational assessment; medical education; medical students; students selection

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