Psychiatric OSCE performance of students with and without a previous core psychiatry clerkship

Robert M. Goisman, Robert M. Levin, Edward Krupat, Stephen R. Pelletier, Jonathan E. Alpert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective: The OSCE has been demonstrated to be a reliable and valid method by which to assess students' clinical skills. An OSCE station was used to determine whether or not students who had completed a core psychiatry clerkship demonstrated skills that were superior to those who had not taken the clerkship and which areas discriminated between clerkship completers and noncompleters. Methods: One hundred thirty-six students took a 48-item, fourth-year OSCE with one psychiatry station. Sixty-three (46%) had already completed psychiatry, and 70 (51%) had not, with three unknown. Students were to take histories, perform mental status examinations, assess dangerousness, and propose the differential diagnosis and treatment plans. Results: Nine items differed significantly between completers and noncompleters, six concerning phenomenology and mental status and three concerning differential diagnosis. There were no differences regarding history, communication skills, or recommended interventions. Conclusion: Students may learn history taking, communication, and treatment planning in many settings. However, for the mental status examination, phenomenology, and differential diagnosis, completing a psychiatry clerkship was associated with better OSCE performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)141-144
Number of pages4
JournalAcademic Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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