Shiwach & Murray (1986) have outlined why research experience is desirable for trainee psychiatrists. The majority will use their experience to gain a better understanding of publications in professional journals; however, only a minority will become full-time researchers. Although most trainees have a positive attitude to research (Davidson & Abou-Saleh, 1987; Burford, 1987) only a few manage to complete a project before the second part of the Membership examination (Kendell, 1984; Davidson & Abou-Saleh, 1987; Burford, 1987). Kendell has highlighted some of the difficulties encountered on the Edinburgh MPhil degree course. He fears that “rising standards of the College's Membership examination” might deter even some of the more determined registrars to take on an extra commitment while preparing for the MRCPsych examination.
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