Analysing motivation to do medicine cross-culturally: the international motivation to do medicine scale

M. Ángeles Pastor, Sofia López-Roig, Salvador Sánchez, Jo Hart, Marie Johnston, Diane Dixon

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Vaglum, Wiers-Jensen & Ekeberg (1999) developed an instrument to assess motivation to study medicine. This instrument has been applied in different countries but it has not been studied cross-culturally. Our aims were to develop a Motivation to do Medicine Scale for use in international studies and to compare motivations of UK and Spanish medical students (UK: n= 375; Spain: n= 149). A cross-sectional and cross-cultural study was conducted. The Vaglum et al. (1999) Motivation to do Medicine Scale (MMS) was used. The original MMS factor structure was not supported by the Confirmatory Factor Analysis. Exploratory Factor Analyses within each country identified four factors: 'People', 'Status', 'Natural Science' and 'Research'. Students scored higher on the 'People' and 'Natural Science' than on the other factors. The UK sample scored higher than the Spanish sample on the 'Research' factor and there were greater difference between genders in Spain for both 'People' and 'Research' factors. The scale is suitable for use in cross-cultural studies of medical students' motivation. It can be used to investigate differences between countries and may be used to examine changes in motivation over time or over medical disciplines.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-9
Number of pages6
JournalEscritos de Psicología - Psychological Writings
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • motivation
  • medical students
  • cross-cultural study
  • psychology


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