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The influence of admission qualifications on the performance of first and second year medical students at the International Medical University

Author(s): Ammu Kutty Radhakrishnan | Nagarajah Lee | Mei-Ling Young

Journal: International e-Journal of Science, Medicine & Education
ISSN 2231-8194

Volume: 6;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 10;
Date: 2012;
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Keywords: pre-university | entry qualifications | examinations | criteria for entry

Background: Medical schools have long beenconcerned with establishing a suitable process ofadmission. The criteria used to select students havetraditionally focussed on high academic achievement.Method: The International Medical University (IMU)accepts students from a wide range of pre-universityentry qualifications for admission into the medicalprogramme. The criteria for the various pre-universityentry qualifications used by the IMU were agreed andaccepted by the IMU Academic Council (AC), whichconsist of deans of the IMU’s partner medical schools(PMS). In this study, the various entry qualificationswere first grouped into five categories based on theeducational pedagogy. Then, this was aligned withthe entry qualification data of all students who hadbeen admitted into the IMU medical programme forthe period of December 1993 to March 2000. Duringthis period 1,281 students were enrolled into the IMUmedical programme. The relationship between thefive groups of pre-university entry qualifications andthe students’ academic achievement in three end-ofsemester(EOS) examinations namely EOS 1, EOS 3,and EOS 5 were analysed.Results: Students with better grades in their preuniversityexaminations showed better performance intheir EOS examinations, regardless of the subjects thatthey took at the pre-university level. Cluster analysisrevealed that students who came in with certain preuniversityqualifications generally performed poorlythan the more conventional qualifications. However,after their first year in medical school, there were nosignificant differences in the clustering of the students.Conclusion: Students with better grades in their preuniversityexaminations showed better performancein their EOS examinations, regardless of the sciencesubjects that they took at the pre-university level.

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