Medical Students’ Study Habits Through a Sociocultural Lens: A Systematic Literature Review




Sociology of Medicine, Habits, Self-Directed Learning as Topic, State of the Art Review, Study Habits, Sociocultural Factors, Medical Students, Systematic Review, Learning Strategies, Academic Performance, Socioeconomic Factors, Educational Status, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, Social Support, Self Efficacy, Learning, Educational Measurement, Cognitive Processes, Educational Technology, Social Learning, Student Behavior, Health Promotion, Psychological Theory, Curriculum


This study investigates the literature on medical students' study habits and the surrounding sociocultural factors. A systematic literature review was undertaken, aiming to establish what is known, identify gaps in the literature and suggest what further research needs to be done. The review followed the PRISMA guidelines and identified 13 papers that were within the inclusion criteria. These papers were analyzed and discussed through a sociocultural lens, dividing the results into four sociocultural groupings: Personal, Behavioral, Environmental and Cognitive. The findings suggest that while sociocultural factors influence medical students' study habits, individual behaviors and attitudes predominantly guide their study decisions. The findings also suggest that there is little research into the intersection of these factors. It is recommended that the factors drawn from this systematic review be used to formulate more direct research into study habits with a magnified approach to help provide medical institutions, policymakers, and students with information to better inform their decisions and produce efficient, healthy study habits.


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The image is a extract of a table titled "Thirteen Articles Coded Using Themes from Bandura (1977) and Schunk (1989)." The table consists of three columns: Authors (Date), Summary of Findings, and Theme.  The first row lists Didarloo & Khalkhali (2014), with findings that there is a positive correlation between study skills and the students' family housing status and academic level. Poor study skills can potentially jeopardize academic performance. The theme is categorized as Environmental.  The second row cites Qaiser et al. (2020)b, summarizing that the barriers faced by medical students in achieving self-regulated learning are contextual. Institutional policies may affect the autonomy and confidence of learners. The themes are Personal, Behavioral, Environmental, and Cognitive.  The third row refers to Samarasekara (2020)c, noting that most students encountered problems when using e-learning methods, and many of these problems were related to poor economic status. The themes identified are Personal and Environmental.  The table summarizes research findings on the relationship between educational factors and learning outcomes, categorized under various themes based on psychological theories.


2024-03-23 — Updated on 2024-04-12

How to Cite

Rafiq, H. S., & Blair, E. (2024). Medical Students’ Study Habits Through a Sociocultural Lens: A Systematic Literature Review. International Journal of Medical Students, 12(1), 83–91.