Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science


Health and Rehabilitation Sciences


Dr. Shauna Burke


The purposes of this survey-based, mixed-methods study were to investigate medical students’ perceptions of: (1) the overall level of medical school training acquired in relation to childhood obesity treatment; (2) the medical school training acquired in relation to specific competencies associated with the treatment of children with obesity and their caregiver(s); and (3) additional training needed. Results showed that of the 507 students who provided complete data, approximately 60% (n = 303) disagreed or strongly disagreed that their medical training related to childhood obesity was adequate. With regard to specific competencies and additional training needed, quantitative and qualitative data revealed perceived inadequacies in areas including providing patients with motivational interviewing, weight-friendly medical practices, obesity staging, management options, and offering education and credible resources. The findings suggest that improvements may be necessary with regard to childhood obesity-related medical education in Canada, highlighting several specific competencies and areas that could be targeted.