Journal Club: Comparative Data in the MSPE

I decided to start something new on my YouTube channel.

See, every now and again, I come across a journal article that resonates with me. Maybe it shows something unexpected, or studies something important in a more authoritative way. Or maybe it just confirms my priors and I want to talk about it for 5 minutes. The point is, I’m creating a venue for myself to do so. And it’s gonna be called The Sheriff of Sodium Journal Club.

For the inaugural edition of the SoS JC, I’ll cover this paper from the Maxfield/Grimm group (the same collaboration that brought us the famous 2019 study that demonstrated how having an attractive ERAS photo was equivalent to a 10 point boost on the USMLE).

This time, they examine the Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE; a.k.a. the dean’s letter).

Overall, 70% of schools provide some measure of comparative performance at the end of the MSPE. But zero schools in the U.S. News & World Report Top 10 do.

I’ll review – and explain – the paper’s key findings, and offer my own advice for those who want to change the system.

Click to watch the inaugural edition of The Sheriff of Sodium Journal Club.

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The Lecture that Never Got to Be