Subject preference for future specialization among undergraduate medical students and their perception towards community medicine as a career option: a cross sectional study

Bitan Sengupta, Rituparna Das, Shampa Das


Background: India is currently in need of large number of public health specialists to combat the double burden of communicable and non-communicable diseases. But it was seen that medical students are less interested in a career as a public health specialists. This study aimed to assess the preferences of subjects for future specialization among medical students and to understand their attitude towards Community Medicine as a future career.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was done among 200 MBBS students selected by stratified random sampling at Agartala Govt. Medical College of Tripura during April to May 2018. Data were analyzed using SPSS (version 25.0).

Results: Medicine was the most preferred subject (35%) for specialization followed by obstetrics and gynecology (16%) and surgery (15%). About 4% of the participants opted Community Medicine for future specialization. Lack of personal satisfaction, lack of future career prospective and lack of opportunity to earn name and money ranked top most cause for not choosing Community Medicine as a career.

Conclusions: Preference of Community Medicine for future specialization was very limited among medical students. Interest on Community Medicine as a career among MBBS students can be improved by proper counseling and modification of curriculum.


MBBS students, Future specialization, Community medicine

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