The Value of Qualitative Methods in Cross Cultural Education
A Case Study from a First Person Perspective
This paper presents a first-person account of using qualitative research methods to address medical residency education. The results of this project have been published. However, the study's process and its educational impact on the participants have not been well-described. The purpose of this article is to describe the background and conduct of the study itself. A family medicine residency program, the setting for this project, had recently begun accepting international medical graduates (IMGs) who had lived and received medical school education outside of the United States. The author, a faculty member in the residency and a clinical psychologist, and the physician faculty observed residents as they saw patients in the family medicine residency clinic. Concern was expressed about some of the IMG resident physicians’ knowledge base and their ability to develop rapport with patients. In providing instruction in behavioral science, the author and a psychologist colleague noted that some of the IMG residents were confused by aspects of U.S. family life and the educational system. The relationship with clinical instructors and expectations of faculty also differed from the pedagogical norms in U.S. medical education. As a result, a qualitative interview project was undertaken to understand better how these IMG residents were experiencing and interpreting faculty-learner and resident physician-patient interactions. The results were beneficial in multiple ways. First, recognizing that faculty members were interested in their experiences helped develop rapport and trust between the faculty and residents. Providing the project results to the residents helped open discussion about cultural differences in medical education and patient care. For educators who may have difficulty understanding the perspective that learners bring to their education, the process described could be of potential benefit.
Keywords:Qualitative Research, Research in Medical Education, Applied Qualitative Research
Chen, P. G. C., Curry, L. A., Bernheim, S. M., Berg, D., Gozu, A., & Nunez-Smith, M. (2011). Professional challenges of non-U.S.-born international medical graduates and recommendations for support during residency training. Academic Medicine, 86(11), 1383–1388. https://doi.org/10.1097/ACM.0B013E31823035E1
Creswell, J. W., & Baez, J. (2021). 30 Essential Skills for the Qualitative Researcher (2nd ed.) by John Creswell and Johanna Creswell Báez. In Journal of Mixed Methods Research (2nd ed.).
Harper, M., & Cole, P. (2012). Member Checking: Can Benefits Be Gained Similar to Group Therapy? The Qualitative Report, 17(2), 510–517. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2012.2139
Hayashi, P., Abib, G., Hoppen, N., & Wolff, L. D. G. (2021). Processual Validity in Qualitative Research in Healthcare. INQUIRY: The Journal of Health Care Organization, Provision, and Financing, 58. https://doi.org/10.1177/00469580211060750
Hennink, M., & Kaiser, B. N. (2022). Sample sizes for saturation in qualitative research: A systematic review of empirical tests. Social Science & Medicine, 292, 114523. https://doi.org/10.1016/J.SOCSCIMED.2021.114523
Mahood, S. C. (2011). Medical education Beware the hidden curriculum. Canadian Family Physician, 57(9). https://www.cfp.ca/content/57/9/983.short
McCracken, G. (1988). The Long Interview. In The Long Interview (Vol. 13). SAGE Publications, Inc. https://doi.org/10.4135/9781412986229
Miller, C., Searight, H. R., Grable, D., Schwartz, R., Sowell, C., & Barbarash, R. A. (1994). Comprehension and Recall of the Informational Content of the Informed Consent Document: An Evaluation of 168 Patients in a Controlled Clinical Trial. Journal of Clinical Research and Drug Development, 4(8), 237–248.
Moore, R. A., & Rhodenbaugh, E. J. (2002). The unkindest cut of all: Are international medical school graduates subjected to discrimination by general surgery residency programs? Current Surgery, 59(2), 228–236. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0149-7944(01)00644-4
Morling, B. (2020). Research Methods in Psychology: Evaluating a World of Information - Beth Morling - Google Books. W. W. Norton. https://books.google.co.in/books/about/Research_Methods_in_Psychology.html?id=2hJ-zQEACAAJ&redir_esc=y
Motulsky, S. L. (2021). Is Member Checking the Gold Standard of Quality in Qualitative Research? Qualitative Psychology, 8(3), 389–406. https://doi.org/10.1037/QUP0000215
Mulisa, F. (2022). When Does a Researcher Choose a Quantitative, Qualitative, or Mixed Research Approach? Interchange, 53(1), 113–131. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10780-021-09447-z
Ng, S. L., Baker, L., Cristancho, S., Kennedy, T. J., & Lingard, L. (2018). Qualitative Research in Medical Education. Understanding Medical Education: Evidence, Theory, and Practice, 427–441. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781119373780.CH29
Pokhrel, D., Bhattarai, S., Emgård, M., von Schickfus, M., Forsberg, B. C., & Biermann, O. (2021). Acceptability and feasibility of using vaginal menstrual cups among schoolgirls in rural Nepal: a qualitative pilot study. Reproductive Health, 18(1), 1–10. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12978-020-01036-0
Russell Searight, H., & Miller, C. K. (1996). Remembering and Interpreting Informed Consent: A Qualitative Study of Drug Trial Participants. The Journal of the American Board of Family Practice, 9(1), 14–22. https://www.jabfm.org/content/9/1/14
Searight, H. R., & Gafford, J. (2006). Behavioral Science Education and the International Medical G... : Academic Medicine. Academic Medicine, 81(2), 164–170.
Searight, H. R., Gafford, J., & Mohan, V. (2014). Training of International Medical Graduates . In M. D. Feldman, J. F. Christensen, & J. M. Satterfield (Eds.), Behavioral Medicine: A Guide for Clinical Practice (4th ed.). McGraw-Hill Education.
Searight, H. R., Gafford, J., & Mohan, V. (2020). Training of International Medical Graduates. In M. D. Feldman, J. F. Christensen, J. M. Satterfield, & R. Laponis (Eds.), Behavioral Medicine: A Guide for Clinical Practice (5th ed.).
Spradley, J. P. (2016). The Ethnographic Interview . https://www.google.co.in/books/edition/The_Ethnographic_Interview/KZ3lCwAAQBAJ?hl=en&gbpv=1&dq=The+ethnographic+interview&printsec=frontcover
Strauss, A., Corbin, J., & Corbin, J. M. (1998). Basics of Qualitative Research: Techniques and Procedures for Developing Grounded Theory. In Basics of qualitative research: Grounded theory procedures and techniques. Newbury. SAGE Publications. https://books.google.com/books/about/Basics_of_Qualitative_Research.html?id=wTwYUnHYsmMC
Streiner, D. L., & Sidani Souraya. (2010). When Research Goes Off the Rails: Why It Happens and What You Can Do About It - Google Books. The Guilford Press. https://books.google.co.in/books?id=aljkTd9unTMC&printsec=copyright&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false
Thomas, D. R. (2016). Feedback from research participants: are member checks useful in qualitative research? Qualitative Research in Psychology, 14(1), 23–41. https://doi.org/10.1080/14780887.2016.1219435
Thompson Burdine, J., Thorne, S., & Sandhu, G. (2021). Interpretive description: A flexible qualitative methodology for medical education research. Medical Education, 55(3), 336–343. https://doi.org/10.1111/MEDU.14380
Watt, R., & Collins, E. (2022). Statistics for Psychology (2nd ed.). https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/statistics-for-psychology/book278612
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2023 H. Russell Searight
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.