Strides in Development of Medical Education

Document Type : Letter to editor

Authors

Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Pharmacy Management, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria

Abstract

In Nigeria, like most African countries, Academic pharmacy is the least appealing area of practice for most graduates(1). Apart from being known to be the least lucrative area of practice in terms of remuneration, many aspects of this career path seem to be shrouded in so much mystery. A vital aspect of an academic pharmacy career which many students are not privy to is research and publishing. While there are various exposures to and simulations of most areas of pharmacy practice in undergraduate pharmacy education, none exists for a career path in academic pharmacy. Although it is widely known that academic pharmacy is the least appealing career path for many students, (1) no effort is being made to make it an attractive option for students as the lecturers are not very inviting. Academic pharmacy in Nigeria comprises teaching and research components in university settings and purely research in few available research institutes. One may argue that the final year project is enough exposure to research at the undergraduate level, and typically it is expected that graduands interested in research should pursue a post-graduate degree to learn more about research. However, the low levels of pharmacist graduates who come back for postgraduate degrees and perhaps, more importantly, pursue a career in research point to the ineffectiveness of this limited exposure to foster research interest. Also, in most cases, the students are not given the freedom to explore and pursue their research interests and are usually mandated to do the final year project in a particular area, with a designated supervisor, and of course on a designated topic assigned by the supervisor. This makes the project research more like a didactic learning experience and the students graduate acquiring little or no research skills. 

Keywords


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