Jan 30, 2010
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I'd imagine those that are becoming physician-scientists are going to need to write a lot more papers than the majority, but I was wondering just how much "paper writing" there is in med school and residency? I'm talking about things like research proposals, literature reviews etc. I mean I would think that those pursuing research during the summer would probably have to write a few things, but what about just during MS1 and 2, even clerkships for that matter? What about for residents?

Any comments would be greatly appreciated!
 

sunset823

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I'd imagine those that are becoming physician-scientists are going to need to write a lot more papers than the majority, but I was wondering just how much "paper writing" there is in med school and residency? I'm talking about things like research proposals, literature reviews etc. I mean I would think that those pursuing research during the summer would probably have to write a few things, but what about just during MS1 and 2, even clerkships for that matter? What about for residents?

Any comments would be greatly appreciated!
Granted, I'm only wrapping up M1 year right now, but so far, none. Which sucks for me, because I love to write, I thrived on blue book exams and always looked forward to 20 page papers in undergrad and grad school, and then I entered med school. In our curriculum, we do have a paper for Epidemiology and Ethics in M2, but as far as I know, that's it.

If you are smart enough to keep up with your studies and like to write, you could always try to find faculty on campus doing something you're interested in, and contribute with lit reviews, maybe a poster, etc. An opportunity like that opened up recently in the surgery dept. on my campus, to contribute to our annual school research day.
 
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starbuckscoffee

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I'd imagine those that are becoming physician-scientists are going to need to write a lot more papers than the majority, but I was wondering just how much "paper writing" there is in med school and residency? I'm talking about things like research proposals, literature reviews etc. I mean I would think that those pursuing research during the summer would probably have to write a few things, but what about just during MS1 and 2, even clerkships for that matter? What about for residents?

Any comments would be greatly appreciated!
I did research between MS1 and MS2 and ended up writing and publishing 3 first-author papers with my PI between MS2 and MS4 (1 on the actual research I did and 2 review articles). I also did several months of research during my 4th year (elective time) with a different PI and managed to publish 4 more first-author manuscripts (clinical research and reviews). I was also able to get one case report published while on an elective rotation (about an interesting patient we saw during that rotation).

Of course, I'm going into derm where publications are really needed given the competitive residency application process. You definitely don't NEED to do so many publications during med school, and it does take a lot of hard work and dedication. However, I just wanted to point out that it's definitely possible to crank out publications while in med school (provided you have a supportive mentor).
 

RxnMan

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I'd imagine those that are becoming physician-scientists are going to need to write a lot more papers than the majority, but I was wondering just how much "paper writing" there is in med school and residency? I'm talking about things like research proposals, literature reviews etc. I mean I would think that those pursuing research during the summer would probably have to write a few things, but what about just during MS1 and 2, even clerkships for that matter? What about for residents?

Any comments would be greatly appreciated!
<- Hopeful future physician-scientist

Since starting med school, I've written 2 IRB proposals, 5 project proposals, 4 posters, 3 abstracts, 4 or 5 presentations, a couple of reports to collaborators, 2 grant applications, a thesis, and a journal article. I'm starting MS4 in the fall. I'll probably write 2 articles on work I'm doing now, but those won't come out until I'm in residency.
 

jdh71

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I'd imagine those that are becoming physician-scientists are going to need to write a lot more papers than the majority, but I was wondering just how much "paper writing" there is in med school and residency? I'm talking about things like research proposals, literature reviews etc. I mean I would think that those pursuing research during the summer would probably have to write a few things, but what about just during MS1 and 2, even clerkships for that matter? What about for residents?

Any comments would be greatly appreciated!
Not much, which is a euphemism for "none".

You will need to go above and beyond to get any scholarly activities done, which means your free time, which there won't be a ton of, especially in residency.

If publishing and becoming a physician-scientist is a goal, then you will generally need to find programs structured to allow you not only mentorship but protected time. The good news is that these are not that hard to find or get into if you are genuinely interested and motivated. I was actually surprised by the number of people in med school who were NOT interested in academics.
 

DrJosephKim

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Look for opportunities to publish review articles and case reports. This type of experience can be tremendously beneficial regardless of the type of career you may pursue (academic vs. private vs. industry etc.). I have met many physicians who often look back with regret at all the missed opportunities in writing/publishing during their training.
 

tbo

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I've been fortunate to write up 2 papers, one case report during MS1 and a paper from some work over the summer between MS1 and MS2.

If you're a pre-med, find a school that has a structure for research as an earlier poster said. I think Cleveland Clinic and Yale are 2 that come specifically to mind. They require research and of course would have the opportunities to facilitate that.

I also say it's under your control to seek out opportunities regardless of where you are. All it takes is showing genuine interest and showing a work ethic that will "get things done". My advisor said he values someone that can seek out research projects on their own (or come with their own idea already thought out) and actually do the hard work of getting it done. It shows you can take an idea and make something meaningful out of it. As a student, expectations are pretty low, but as we progress to physicians, no one's going to give you an infrastructure. You'll need to be able to take your own ideas and produce something meaningful out of them (research or not). So start nurturing those skills and you'll be fine.