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Table 2 The methodological characteristics of the medical education articles

From: The impact of rural outreach programs on medical students’ future rural intentions and working locations: a systematic review

Characteristic Ref Number Frequency of Papers (Total papers = 62)
Location
 United States [50,51,52,53,54,55, 60,61,62, 64, 65, 72, 75,76,77, 93,94,95] 18
 Australia [12, 35,36,37,38,39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47,48,49, 63, 67,68,69,70,71, 73, 78,79,80,81, 84,85,86,87,88,89,90, 92] 35
 New Zealand [82, 91] 2
 Thailand [74] 1
 Canada [56, 58, 59, 66, 83] 5
 Africa [57] 1
Program Classification Type (note programs can be in multi-classifications if they are comparison programs
 Rural Clinical Placement Programs (RCP) [35,36,37,38, 44, 46, 56, 58, 59, 64,65,66, 68, 71, 73,74,75, 81,82,83,84, 86, 89,90,91, 93, 95] 27
 Rural Clinical Placement Programs with specific rural, academic teaching emphasis (RCP + Edu) [12, 50,51,52,53,54,55, 61, 62, 76, 80, 94] 12
 Rural Clinical Schools Program (RCSP) [39,40,41,42,43,44,45, 47,48,49, 57, 58, 60, 63, 64, 67, 69, 70, 72, 77,78,79, 85, 87, 88, 92] 26
Single/multi-institution
 Single medical school [12, 36, 39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47, 49,50,51,52,53,54,55,56, 60,61,62,63, 68, 69, 72, 73, 76, 78, 80,81,82,83,84,85,86,87,88,89, 93,94,95] 42
 More than one medical School [35, 37, 38, 48, 57,58,59, 64,65,66,67, 70, 71, 74, 75, 77, 79, 90,91,92] 20
Length of Rural Clinical Placement (RCP)(note a program may have multiple durations)
 Less than 4 weeks [35, 38, 46, 76, 80, 95] 6
 4 weeks and up to 12 weeks [12, 38, 44, 46, 50,51,52, 54, 58, 66, 91] 11
 More than 12 weeks but less than 24 [38, 46, 52, 53, 58, 62, 94] 7
 6 to 12 months [36,37,38, 46, 55, 58, 61, 68, 73, 75, 82, 84, 86, 89, 93, 94] 16
 2 years plus [46, 56, 74, 75, 81, 83] 6
 Unclassifiable/no set Placement length [38, 64, 65, 90, 71] 5
Length of time in an RCSP evaluated program (note a program may be looking at multiple durations)
 Less than 4 weeks [45, 92] 2
 4 weeks and up to one 12 weeks [70, 88, 92] 3
 More than 1 term (12 weeks) and up to 1 year [40,41,42, 44, 48, 49, 58, 63, 67, 69, 78, 79, 88, 92] 14
 More than a year in a RCS [40, 42, 43, 49, 57, 60, 69, 72, 77, 79, 85, 87] 12
 Specific placement length not reported [47, 64] 2
Objective of Intervention (simplified to rural intention or long-term follow-up for each study)
  Increase intention to practice rurally [12, 35, 37, 38, 42, 45, 70, 80, 81, 85, 88,89,90,91,92] 15
 Follow up to identify if a rural clinical intervention impacted on rural workforce participation [36, 39, 41, 43, 44, 46, 49, 51, 53,54,55,56,57,58,59,60,61,62,63,64,65,66,67, 69, 71,72,73,74,75, 77,78,79, 83, 84, 86, 87, 94, 95] 38
 Intention and follow up for actual rural location [40, 47, 48, 50, 52, 68, 76, 82, 93] 9
Timing of the Evaluation
 Pre-and post-intervention Survey [12, 37, 38, 42, 45, 73, 80, 81, 85, 90] 10
 Post intervention survey Only (no follow up tracking) [70, 88, 89, 91, 92] 5
 Pre, post and follow-up post-graduation tracking [40, 47, 50, 52, 68, 71, 74, 76, 93] 9
 Post survey and post follow up tracking [35, 36, 39, 44, 48, 56, 73, 82, 86] 9
 Graduate Follow up Tracking only [41, 43, 46, 49, 51, 53,54,55, 57,58,59,60,61,62,63,64,65,66,67, 69, 72, 75, 77,78,79, 83, 84, 87, 94, 95] 30
Comparison/Control Groups
 Studies using a control [36, 50, 52,53,54,55, 57,58,59,60, 62, 63, 65, 66, 69, 72, 74, 77,78,79, 81, 83, 93, 95] 24
 No control/comparison group [12, 35, 37, 40, 42, 45, 48, 67, 70, 80, 84,85,86, 88, 89, 94] 16
 Comparison groups but no non-intervention control group [38, 39, 43, 44, 46, 56, 64, 68, 71, 73, 75, 82, 87, 90,91,92] 16
 Comparison groups which include a control group [41, 47, 49, 51, 61, 76] 6
  Random allocation of students to intervention 0
Volunteer Status for participation in the Rural Program/School/Immersion
 Volunteer Program [35,36,37, 39,40,41,42,43, 46,47,48,49,50,51,52, 54,55,56, 58,59,60,61,62,63,64, 66,67,68,69,70,71,72,73, 76,77,78,79, 81,82,83,84,85,86,87,88,89,90,91,92,93,94,95] 52
 Non-Volunteer [12, 45, 53, 57, 74, 80] 6
 N/A/multiple programs/unknown [38, 44, 65, 75] 4
Data Collection Method (studies may use more than one method)
Questionnaire/Survey [12, 35, 38,39,40, 42,43,44,45, 47,48,49,50, 52, 56, 58, 59, 61, 64, 67,68,69,70,71, 73, 76, 79,80,81,82, 84,85,86,87,88,89,90,91,92, 95] 40
 Interviews [37, 40, 61, 62, 82, 84, 92, 95] 8
 Medical Schools Outcomes Database (MSOD) (National) [38, 43, 48, 68, 70, 71, 90] 7
 MUSOM Alumni Association database, Residency, Match Program, The American Board of Medical Specialties [51, 52, 55] 3
 Alumni Records (Local) [35, 40, 44, 46, 49, 50, 52, 53, 55, 57, 60, 62, 63, 66, 69, 72, 74, 76, 78, 79, 83, 86, 93,94,95] 25
 Other databases (Local) [40, 46, 51, 53, 55, 59, 60, 62, 65, 74, 76, 82,83,84, 93, 94] 16
 AHPRA (National) [41, 43, 63, 69, 78, 79] 6
 Internet/email/Phone [35, 39, 40, 43, 51, 52, 64, 69, 74, 76, 82, 84, 86, 88, 94, 95] 16
 American association Masterfile (AMA) (National) [50, 54, 55, 60, 61, 65, 72, 75,76,77] 10
 Focus Groups [37, 80, 89] 3
Methods of Quantitative Analysis
 Accounted for rural confounders/impacting factors through statistical analysis [12, 36, 38,39,40,41,42, 44, 45, 47,48,49, 51,52,53, 55, 56, 58,59,60,61,62,63,64,65,66, 68,69,70,71,72,73,74,75,76,77,78,79, 81,82,83,84,85, 87,88,89,90,91, 93, 95] 50
 Did not include rural confounders/impacting factors in statistical calculations (i.e. did not adjust) Inferential statistics, unadjusted) [35, 37, 43, 46, 50, 54, 57, 67, 80, 86, 92, 94] 12
Sample Size (Includes both intervention/control/comparison group if applicable)
 Less than 100 [37, 50, 73, 80,81,82, 84,85,86,87,88,89, 92, 93] 14
 100–500 [12, 35, 39, 40, 42, 44, 45, 47,48,49, 54, 56,57,58,59, 62, 67, 68, 70, 83, 90, 91, 94, 95] 24
 500+ [36, 38, 41, 43, 46, 51,52,53, 55, 60, 61, 63,64,65,66, 69, 71, 72, 74,75,76,77,78,79] 24
Consent or Participant Rate (Depending on the study/type of study and reporting)
 Below 50% [35, 47, 58, 59, 69, 71, 73, 79, 81, 88, 91] 11
 50–80% [39, 40, 44, 45, 48, 49, 51, 56, 64, 67, 68, 70, 80, 82, 84,85,86] 17
 81–100% [12, 36, 38, 41,42,43, 46, 50, 52,53,54,55, 57, 60,61,62,63, 65, 66, 72, 74,75,76,77,78, 83, 87, 89, 92,93,94,95] 32
 Not reported [37, 90] 2