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MEDICAL EDUCATION
Year : 2008  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 85-89

Does academic performance in the premedical year predict the performance of the medical student in subsequent years?


King Saud University, King Fahd Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Abdulrahman M Al-Mazrou
King Saud University, King Fahad Medical City, P.O. Box 59046, Riyadh 11525
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


PMID: 23012172

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Background: Student admission into the College of Medicine at King Saud University (KSU) is dependent on the achievement of a grade point average (GPA) of 3.5 /5 by the end of the premedical year. This study was undertaken to ascertain whether pre-selected medical students who achieve a relatively low GPA (≤3.75/5) in the premedical year are at risk of having academic difficulties in subsequent years. Method: A cross-sectional study of all students admitted to the College of Medicine at KSU during 5 academic years (1994 to 1998) was conducted in 2004. The likelihood of completing the program by 2004 and the dropout frequency were compared in the two groups based on their GPA in the premedical year: High GPA (>3.75) and Low GPA (≤3.75). Results: During the study period, 739 students were admitted to the college. Of these, 619 (84%) were in High GPA group, and 120 (16%) in the Low GPA group. Of the students with High GPA, 545 (88%) out of 619 graduated compared with 79 (66%) of 120 in the Low GPA group (OR 3.822 [95% CI: 2.44, 5.99]: P<0.0001). Overall, 28 students (3.8%) dropped out, but there was a significantly greater frequency of dropping out in the Low GPA group (10/120; 8.3%) compared with the High GPA group (18/619; 2.9%: OR 3.035 [95% CI: 1.37, 6.75], P=0.01). Conclusion: Our results support the prerequisite of a minimum GPA in the premedical year before proceeding to the higher levels. The GPA of premedical year is a useful predictor of students who need close monitoring and academic support. The use of GPA in the premedical year for admission into medical colleges should help optimize the use of resources and reduce student wastage.


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Journal of Family and Community Medicine | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Online since 05th September, 2010