Career Outcomes of the Graduates of the American Board of Internal Medicine Research Pathway, 1995–2007

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Abstract

Purpose

In 1995, the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) formalized an integrated residency curriculum including both clinical and research training (the Research Pathway), designed to develop careers of physician–scientists. Individuals who completed Pathway training between 1995 and 2007 were surveyed to determine the extent to which graduates established research-oriented careers.

Method

In 2012, the authors used a Web-based, 56-question, multiple-choice electronic survey of 813 participants in Research Pathway programs who completed their residency training between the years of 1995 and 2007. Survey questions addressed source and type of funding, research productivity, and job title/content. Descriptive and inferential analyses were performed.

Results

Forty-seven percent of solicited Pathway graduates participated in the survey. Ninety-seven percent of the respondents completed Pathway training. Ninety-one percent reported some research effort, with a group average of 58.6% of total professional effort spent in research. Seventy-two percent currently hold positions in academic medicine; 8.6% in the biomedical industry; and 2.1% in government medical service. Over 85% reported extramural research funding, with 81.4% receiving research support from federal sources. Among the variables positively correlated with the highest level of research engagement were previous graduate-level research training, any first-author publications arising from the Pathway research experience, and the receipt of extramural career development funding supporting the Pathway research.

Conclusions

On the basis of a very high level of active research engagement reported by 385 ABIM Research Pathway graduates, this special research training track appears to be effectively meeting its goal of training biomedical scientists.

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