Group Mentoring for Junior Medical Students—the Mentor in the Reflection Cycle

Arieh Riskin, Gila Yakov, Anath A. Flugelman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To describe the experience and perceptions of physicians involved in group mentoring of undergraduate pre-clinical medical students. Method: We conducted a cross-sectional questionnaire-based survey on perceptions of mentors regarding their motivation, personal development, reflective experience, and burnout. All the participants were mentors to undergraduate pre-clinical medical students in the course “Becoming a Physician.” This unique course focuses on various aspects of medical professionalism and aims to increase awareness and sensitivity to patients, especially of disadvantaged populations, and to promote sensitive effective communication skills. Mentors in the course are expected to serve as role models to their students. Results: Of 36 mentors, 33 (91.7%) responded. The most frequent motivations to join the course were to contribute to students’ personal, social, and professional development and to contribute to educating more compassionate physicians. The topics discussed most in the groups were the meaning of being a physician and ethical dilemmas. Mentors expressed that they gained professional growth and opportunities to reflect on the complexity of physicians’ training and work. They perceived their highest success as being able to serve as role models for their students and provide them broad perspectives. Mentors stated that they failed in trying to facilitate content learning, and were disturbed by students’ lack of punctuality. Group mentors scored relatively low on the Maslach Burnout Inventory for Physicians. Discussion: This study provides insights on the experience of mentorship of medical school students, and on mentors’ perceptions regarding their teaching experience and personal and professional development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-145
Number of pages9
JournalMedical Science Educator
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2021
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, International Association of Medical Science Educators.


  • Burnout
  • Mentor
  • Reflection
  • Undergraduate medical students

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Education


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