Medical Students' Demographic Characteristics and Their Perceptions of Faculty Role Modeling of Respect for Diversity

Jasmine Weiss, Lilanthi Balasuriya, Laura D. Cramer, Marcella Nunez-Smith, Inginia Genao, Rosana Gonzalez-Colaso, Ambrose H. Wong, Elizabeth A. Samuels, Darin Latimore, Dowin Boatright, Mona Sharifi

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16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Importance: Faculty role modeling is critical to medical students' professional development to provide culturally adept, patient-centered care. However, little is known about students' perceptions of faculty role modeling of respect for diversity. Objective: To examine whether variation exists in medical students' perceptions of faculty role modeling of respect for diversity by student demographic characteristics. Design, Setting, and Participants: This cross-sectional study analyzed data from the Association of American Medical Colleges' 2016 and 2017 Medical School Graduation Questionnaire, which was administered to graduating students at 140 accredited allopathic US medical schools. Data were analyzed from January 1 to November 1, 2020. Main Outcomes and Measures: Students' perceptions of faculty role modeling of respect for diversity by the independent variables sex, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, and age. Multivariable logistic regression was used to examine the extent to which student-reported perceptions of faculty respect for diversity varied by demographic characteristics, and logistic regression models were sequentially adjusted first for demographic characteristics and then for marital status and financial variables. Results: Of 30651 students who completed the survey, the final study sample consisted of 28778 respondents, representing 75.4% of the 38160 total US medical school graduates in 2016 and 2017. Of the respondents, 14804 (51.4%) were male participants and 1506 (5.2%) identified as lesbian, gay, or bisexual (LGB); a total of 11926 respondents (41.4%) were 26 years or younger. A total of 17159 respondents (59.6%) identified as White, 5958 (20.7%) as Asian, 1469 (5.1%) as Black/African American, 2431 (8.4%) as Hispanic/Latinx, and 87 (0.3%) as American Indian/Alaska Native/Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander individuals. Overall, 5101 students (17.7%) reported perceiving that faculty showed a lack of respect for diversity. Of those who identified as Black/African American students, 540 (36.8%) reported perceiving a lack of faculty respect for diversity compared with 2468 White students (14.4%), with an OR of perceived lack of respect of 3.24 (95% CI, 2.86-3.66) after adjusting for other demographic characteristics and covariates. American Indian/Alaska Native/Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (OR, 1.73; 95% CI, 1.03-2.92), Asian (OR, 1.62; 95% CI, 1.49-1.75), or Hispanic/Latinx (OR, 1.43; 95% CI, 1.26-1.75) students also had greater odds of perceiving a lack of faculty respect for diversity compared with White students. Female students had greater odds compared with male students (OR, 1.17; 95% CI, 1.10-1.25), and students who identified as LGB (OR, 1.96; 95% CI, 1.74-2.22) or unknown sexual orientation (OR, 1.79; 95% CI, 1.29-2.47) had greater odds compared with heterosexual students. Students aged 33 years or older had greater odds of reporting a perceived lack of respect compared with students aged 26 years or younger (OR, 1.81; 95% CI, 1.58-2.08). Conclusions and Relevance: In this cross-sectional study, female students, students belonging to racial/ethnic minority groups, and LGB students disproportionately reported perceiving a lack of respect for diversity among faculty, which has important implications for patient care, the learning environment, and the well-being of medical trainees..

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2112795
JournalJAMA network open
Volume4
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 4 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Medicine

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