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Table 2 Themes, categories, category descriptions and examples of quotes included in each category

From: To select or be selected – gendered experiences in clinical training affect medical students’ specialty preferences

THEME/category Description Quotes interested Quotes uninterested
The character of work suits me
Knowledge area and practice Area of knowledge, routine work or specific work tasks. Own talent, previous work, studies, research or personal experiences. “I felt like I had a talent for image interpretation”, “my interest in geriatrics began when I started my first job as a nursing assistant” “Endless rounds where the question is half a pill here or there”, “seems boring to attach bowels for hours”, “it was smelly and slimy”
Patient characteristics and patient contact Patient groups perceived as ungrateful or rewarding to work with. Amount of patient contact, variation and continuity. Memorable patient encounters. “I got a lot back from the patients, even though it was often burdensome”, “restoring a fractured wrist and immediately seeing results”. “large proportion of unmotivated patients”, “old patients with multi morbidity”
Values and care ideology Perceptions of whether care ideology in a specialty is in alignment with personal values, e.g. how patients are treated. Also whether the job would enable students to fulfill own work priorities, e.g. work for the underprivileged. “holistic approach to patients”, “I have travelled to underserved areas and seen the needs”. “too much time spent on craftsmanship and too little time talking to patients”
Inspiring and inclusive workplace
Workplace climate General impressions of workplace climate and attitudes; how physicians treat each other and other staff, communicate or work together. “friendly workgroup”, “staff who seemed to work as a team”, “supportive colleagues” “endless days in the operating room listening to macho jargon”, “very bad atmosphere among the physicians on the ward”
Supervision and participation Treatment of students at the clinic; reception, introduction, supervision, feedback practices, and amount of participation. “including reception”, “student out-patient clinic with engaging supervisor”, “got a lot of praise and felt good” “unpleasant treatment from male physicians”, “I was placed at the patient’s feet and saw nothing. No one bothered to explain either”
Role models Physician role models to strive after, identify with, or distance from: empathic and devoted, or cold hearted and cynical. “a talented physician that had an amazing relationship with the patients”, “the physician stayed calm in a chaotic situation” “a consultant who humiliated the patient”, “a surgery that went wrong, and the way the three surgeons involved tried to resign from responsibility”
Matches my work-life priorities
Workload Workload in relation to personal circumstances and life style. Working hours, on-call, workload and stress. How the clinic function in terms of leadership, staffing situation and overtime. “I finished at 16:00 – there were time for other things in life as well!”, “being able to control your own time” “you have to sacrifice everything else in life”. “being expected to work extra in the evening for free”, “heavy workload and unreasonable demands”
Development possibilities Opportunities for professional development or research. “A challenge to work with your own preconceptions and communication skills” “It takes years before you are somewhat autonomous”