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The Role of Scientific Communication Skills in Trainees' Intention to Pursue Biomedical Research Careers: A Social Cognitive Analysis.


ABSTRACT: Scientific communication (SciComm) skills are indispensable for success in biomedical research, but many trainees may not have fully considered the necessity of regular writing and speaking for research career progression. Our purpose was to investigate the relationship between SciComm skill acquisition and research trainees' intentions to remain in research careers. We used social cognitive career theory (SCCT) to test a model of the relationship of SciComm skills to SciComm-related cognitive variables in explaining career intentions. A sample of 510 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows at major academic health science centers in the Texas Medical Center, Houston, Texas, were surveyed online. Results suggested that interest in performing SciComm tasks, SciComm outcome expectations (SCOEs), and SciComm productivity predicted intention to remain in a research career, while SciComm self-efficacy did not directly predict career intention. SCOEs also predicted interest in performing SciComm tasks. As in other SCCT studies, SciComm self-efficacy predicted SCOEs. We conclude that social cognitive factors of SciComm skill acquisition and SciComm productivity significantly predict biomedical trainees' intentions to pursue research careers whether within or outside academia. While further studies are needed, these findings may lead to evidence-based interventions to help trainees remain in their chosen career paths.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC4710407 | BioStudies | 2015-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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