When students attending the American Medical Student Association Annual Convention & Exposition in February 2017 were asked to rank their preferred sources of medical information, textbooks was not the first choice for most. Or even the second choice.
About 47% of med students said they turn to Google for answers to their questions, while 32% named medical websites. Only 7% indicated they would look in their medical textbooks first before resorting to other sources.
The survey, conducted by Merck Manuals, a reference publisher for physicians and pharmacists, did involve a fairly small sample of 180 students, which included some in premedical programs as well as med-school enrollees. However, nearly all of the students agreed that growing up with access to digital technologies has shaped how they learn and gather information.