Date of Award

January 2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


School of Public Health

First Advisor

Mayur M. Desai

Second Advisor

Dowin H. Boatright


Objective: To assess the relationship between the perceptions of student-faculty interactions and self-reported burnout scores during professional medical education. Design: Cross-sectional study. Setting: 140 accredited US medical schools by the Association of American Medical Colleges in 2016 and 2017. Participants: 26,464 of 30,651 graduating medical students who completed the Association of American Medical Colleges’ Graduation Questionnaire in 2016 and 2017 and who had complete questionnaires for all aspects of our related measures. Main outcome measures: Exploratory factor analysis was used to identify latent constructs underlying 14 measured students’ perception of faculty interaction variables and develop factor based scales. The association between factor based scales of students’ perception of faculty interactions and burnout across two dimensions, adjusted for self-reported sex, sexual orientation, and race/ethnicity was measured using multinomial logistic regression. Results: Three latent constructs representing students’ perceptions of faculty interactions were identified using exploratory factor analysis. Across the respect factor-based scale, a one category increase in subscale score was associated with lower odds of exhaustion [quintile 2 (odds ratio (OR) = 0.84 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0.83 to 0.86]), quintile 3 (OR = 0.79 [95% CI: 0.77 to 0.80]), quintile 4 (OR = 0.76 [95% CI: 0.74 to 0.77]), and quintile 5 (OR = 0.70 [95% CI: 0.68 to 0.71])] and disengagement [quintile 2 (OR = 0.82 [95% CI: 0.80 to 0.84]), quintile 3 (OR = 0.73 [95% CI: 0.71 to 0.74]), quintile 4 (OR = 0.66 [95% CI: 0.64 to 0.68]), and quintile 5 (OR = 0.60 [95% CI: 0.58 to 0.61])], our two dimensions of burnout, compared to quintile 1. Similar associations were seen in the patient and student factor-based scales. These relationships persisted after adjustment for 3 demographic variables. Conclusion: In this cross-sectional study of US medical students, those reporting more favorable interactions with medical school faculty have an associated decrease in self-reported burnout.


This thesis is restricted to Yale network users only. It will be made publicly available on 05/19/2024