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January 19, 2000

Pressure to Publish in the Premedical Years

Author Affiliations

Phil B.FontanarosaMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorMargaret A.WinkerMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorStephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Fishbein FellowIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2000;283(3):340. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-283-3-jac90010

To the Editor: Many premedical students seek experience assisting with biomedical research. For some, a summer doing research is a way of bringing career plans into greater focus. For many students, however, their minds have been made up; they want to go to medical school, and they are keenly aware that doing research on a medical school campus can help them achieve that goal.

Letters of recommendation from academic physicians and biomedical researchers are valuable currency in the competitive pursuit of gaining admission to medical school. Moreover, for a few volunteers, research can lead to coauthorship on a journal article. After research grant money, publications carry more weight in academic medical centers than virtually any other marker of accomplishment. That message is broadcast so loudly that it now resonates on the undergraduate campus.

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