Hidden curriculum and students' development of professionalism in medical education
Medical students need to acquire not only biomedical knowledge and clinical skills, but also a professional identity to become future qualified physicians. However, much of the professionalization of medical students comes not from the formal curriculum, but the implicit hidden curriculum. This thesis is based on a content and discourse analysis of 75 articles that employ the term “hidden curriculum” or “hidden curricula” in the article title or abstract in two medical education journals Medical Education and Academic Medicine. The study tries to answer two main research questions: what the components of hidden curriculum are, and why hidden curriculum is becoming a popular discourse in medical education. The purpose of this research is to use the key concepts informed by theories developed by Bourdieu and Goffman to build a theoretical framework to understand the usage and interpretation of hidden curriculum from the medical educators’ perspective. I conclude that hidden curriculum is used in a distinct and ambiguous way in medical education literature, emphasizing institutional culture, role modeling, and socialization process. A discrepancy between the usage of hidden curriculum in medical education literature and sociological study is found. Though many innovations have been initiated in both practical pedagogy and the model of medical education, there has been little change in the legitimate knowledge in medicine, the ways in which medical education is organized, the underlying institutional hierarchy, and medical students’ learning experiences.
DegreeMaster of Arts (M.A.)
Copyright DateAugust 2015