Medical Students’ Creation of Original Poetry, Comics, and Masks to Explore Professional Identity Formation

Johanna Shapiro, Juliet McMullin, Gabriella Miotto, Tan Nguyen, Anju Hurria, Minh Anh Nguyen

Introduction. This study examines differences in students’ perceived value of three art-making modalities (poetry, comics, masks) and whether the resulting creative projects offer similar or different insights into medical students’ professional identity formation. Methods. Mixed-methods design using a student survey, student narrative comments and qualitative analysis of students’ original work. Results. Poetry and comics stimulated insight, but masks were more enjoyable and stress-reducing. All three art modalities expressed tension between personal and professional identities. Discussion. Regardless of type of art-making, students express concern about encroachments of training on personal identity but hoped that personal and professional selves could be integrated.

Keywords Medical education · Arts in medical education · Professional identity formation · Poetry in medical education · Comics in medical education · Mask-making in medical education · Medical student wellness

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