An overview of osteopathy graduates’ perceived preparedness at transition from educational environment to clinic environment one year after graduation: a cross sectional study
This study investigated perceived preparedness to practice, one year after graduation across osteopathic education institutions (OEIs) and explored possible differences between countries where osteopathy is regulated (Reg) and countries where it is not (Unreg).
Two hundred forty-five graduates from 7 OEIs in 4 European countries, already assessed in a previous study, were contacted one year after their graduation to complete the survey. Survey tools included a questionnaire to assess perceived preparedness to practice: Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) questionnaire, and a questionnaire to collect socio-demographic information and practice characteristics.
One hundred sixty-eight graduates (68.6%) completed the survey. The AAMC mean score one year after the graduation (23.19; confidence interval 22.81–23.58) was significantly higher than in the previous study (17.58; 16.90–18.26) (p < 0.001). A difference was also found between Reg (23.49; 23.03–23.95) and Unreg (22.34; 21.74–22.94) (p = 0.004). Osteopaths with a previous healthcare degree scored significantly higher on AAMC score (25.53; 24.88–26.19) than osteopaths without a previous healthcare degree (22.33; 21.97–22.69) (p < 0.001). Regulation and a previous degree were the only significant independent variables in the most predictive multivariate linear model. The model had an r2 = 0.33.
Graduates from OEIs where osteopathy is regulated felt significantly better prepared to practice than Unreg. Systematic information searches about graduates’ perception of preparedness to practice, may enable OEIs to strengthen their existing curricula to ensure their graduates are effectively prepared to practice.