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Evolution of the prevalence of pre-residency peer-reviewed publications among incoming junior residents
  1. Shearwood McClelland III1,
  2. Blair Murphy2,
  3. Jerry J Jaboin2,
  4. Richard C Zellars1
  1. 1 Department of Radiation Oncology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
  2. 2 Department of Radiation Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, Oregon, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Shearwood McClelland III, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; drwood{at}


Pre-residency peer-reviewed publications (PRP) have been associated with subsequent resident choice of academic versus private practice career. The evolution of PRP prevalence among radiation oncology resident classes has yet to be examined. A list of radiation oncology residents from the graduating classes of 2016 and 2022 were obtained, and PRP was compiled as the number of publications a resident had listed in PubMed as of the end of the calendar year of residency application. Statistical analysis was conducted using Fisher’s exact test. Analysis of 163 residents from the 2016 class compared with 195 from the 2022 class revealed that the proportion of residents with zero PRP decreased from 46.6% to 23.6% between the 2016 to 2022 classes (p<0.0001), while that of residents with one PRP increased from 17.8% to 19.0% (p>0.05) and with at least two PRP increased from 35.6% to 57.4% (p<0.0001). Residents with a PhD were more likely to have at least two PRP in each class (p<0.0001). As with the class of 2016, there remained no significant difference in PRP by gender for the class of 2022. Over the past six years, PRP has become more prevalent among incoming radiation oncology residents. Residents in the class of 2016 were 180% less likely than the class of 2022 to have at least one PRP, and 60% less likely to have at least two PRP. These findings are indicative of the increasing pressure on medical students to enter residency with a publication background.

  • radiation oncology

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  • Contributors Study concept and design: SM. Acquisition, analysis or interpretation of data: SM, BM, JJJ and RCZ. Drafting of the manuscript: SM. Critical revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content: SM, BM, JJJ and RCZ. Statistical analysis: SM. Administrative, technical or material support: SM, JJJ and RCZ. Study supervision: SM and RCZ.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests SM receives research funding from the Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.