Challenges of Medical Education at Islamic Azad University, Iran, from Faculty Perspective: A Qualitative Content Analysis


Soleiman Ahmady 1 , Mohammadali Hosseini 2 , Seyed Mehran Homam 3 , Arezo Farajpour 4 , * , Mohammad Ghitaghi 5 , Maryam Hosseini-Abardeh 4

1 Ph.D. in Medical Education, Associate Professor, Department of Medical Education, School of Medical Education Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran, Iran

2 Ph.D. in Higher Education Management, Associate Professor, Department of Rehabilitation Management, University of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation Sciences, Tehran, Iran, Iran

3 Assistant Professor of Neurology, Mashhad Branch, Islamic Azad University, Mashhad, Iran, Iran

4 Ph.D. Candidate in Medical Education, Department of Medical Education, School of Education of Medical Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran, Iran

5 General Practitioner, Islamic Azad University, Mashhad Branch, Mashhad, Iran, Iran

How to Cite: Ahmady S , Hosseini M, Homam S M , Farajpour A , Ghitaghi M , et al. Challenges of Medical Education at Islamic Azad University, Iran, from Faculty Perspective: A Qualitative Content Analysis, Strides Dev Med Educ. 2016 ; 13(2):e57943.


Strides in Development of Medical Education: 13 (2); e57943
Published Online: June 15, 2016
Article Type: Research Article
Received: July 11, 2017
Accepted: October 18, 2015




Background & Objective: Medical education is one of the most important challenges facing Iranian medical authorities. Meanwhile, Islamic Azad University as a non-governmental authority for medical education has its own challenges and problems. This study aimed to assess faculties’ perception to identify the challenges in this area to improve the achievement of educational goals and the quality of health care.

Methods: In this qualitative study in 2014, the conventional content analysis was done for 10 semi-structured interviews with the faculty member of Islamic Azad University with experience, interest and authority in medical school. After implementation of interviews, reviews were done several times. The open coding system was used to generate initial categories for analysis.

Results: Analysis of data obtained from interviews with participants resulted seven themes including the public system abandoned the university, despite the general acceptance, ignoring students’ positive and negative characteristics, problems of clinical faculty, challenges of research area, challenges in clinical education, problems related to the field of interaction with the Ministry of Health and Medical Education, and improving strategies. Each theme consisted of several sub-categories and described the specific aspects of the challenges in this area.

Conclusion: It is expected that the Ministry of Health and Medical Education in the Stewardship of Health and Medical Education, consider the clinical education in Islamic Azad universities in terms of planning and policy-making. Islamic Azad University officials also should consider strategies within the organization.


Challenges Clinical education Education Medical Islamic Azad University

© 2016, Medical Education Development Center. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License ( which permits copy and redistribute the material just in noncommercial usages, provided the original work is properly cited.




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