Aim: To assess the need of medical students for a research assistance program
Design and methods: This study was conducted at a medical college in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. A cross-sectional study was conducted utilizing an online questionnaire consisting of three parts: student demographics, students’ research proficiency, and problems faced when conducting research. Analysis: Data from the collected information was analyzed and all values of p<0.05, 95% confidence intervals for odds ratio that did not cross 1.00 were considered to indicate statistical significance.
Results: Students who participated in this study were 228 (response rate=57%). 60.5% (n=138) were male, and 28% (n=64) were in their first year of medicine. The majority were working on at least one to two researches, 81.1% (n=185), with 5.3% (n=12) having a study published. 83% of participants reported to be skillful at data collection and data entry. Devising a research idea was measures most difficult (49%). More female students were able to write a research proposal (n=57; 63.3%. p=0.022), and seniors were more capable in research than freshmen (p<0.001).
Conclusion: Results demonstrated that students are active and well acquainted with research activities; 81.1% (n=185). In order to enhance research performance, we recommend offering the opportunity to share efforts with senior students or professionals to be appraised, be provided with information regarding supervisors’ research interests, and creating online platforms for improved knowledge transfer and communication between the parties involved.