LIGHT’s Summer School Introducing Medical Students to Research and Academic Medicine

Last month 14 Leeds University undergraduate medical students were given an unusual opportunity to engage with hands-on research as part of a summer school organised by Dr George Ellison, from the Division of Biostatistics.

Last month 14 Leeds University undergraduate medical students were given an unusual opportunity to engage with hands-on research as part of a summer school organised by Dr George Ellison, from the Division of Biostatistics. 

George moved to Leeds University at the beginning of the last academic year, and after several undergraduates had approached him asking for advice on how they might get involved in research, he arranged a summer school with LEADERS (the MSRC’s new student academic medicine society) in collaboration with Dr Eleanor Scott (Clinical Senior Lecturer in LICAMM) drawing on diabetes and pregnancy audit data generated by her team over the past 4 years.

Through an audit of care provided by St James’ Hospital to pregnant women with pre-existing diabetes and those at risk of developing gestational diabetes, George, Eleanor and their colleagues Wendy Harrison and Dr Graham Law were able to introduce advanced analytical skills to the summer school students, giving them a better understanding of how to approach advanced statistical analyses and what a career in academic medicine might involve.

After two weeks work, the students completed four manuscripts which are being edited prior to submission for publication.

Feedback from the students involved has been enthusiastic  - despite their different levels of expertise and their very different aspirations for a future career in medicine, all felt that they had gained invaluable skills and experience in clinically-relevant research design and practice.