An electronic survey of 728 members of the American Society of Parasitologists (ASP) was conducted to determine perceptions about parasitology education and to gain insight into the current state of academic parasitology. Two hundred and seventy-five ASP members responded for a return rate of 37.7%. Most respondents perceived that fewer parasitology courses were being offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels. When asked about their perceptions concerning changes in the overall quality of instruction in parasitology, 27.4% indicated a decrease, 19.9% indicated an increase, and 25.5% indicated no change. There has been an apparent steady increase in the number of female parasitologists. In the >60 age group, women comprised 8.2% of respondents, whereas in the 30 yr or younger age group, women comprised 54.5%. Thirty-eight and 16 ASP members actively involved in undergraduate and graduate teaching, respectively, requested specific surveys addressing parasitology education. These surveys revealed no significant differences in the number of parasitology courses taught in 1980, 1990, and 2001 at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Survey responses of 12 of the 20 veterinary schools in the United States and Canada revealed that 61.4 contact hours in parasitology are required of veterinary students. This reflects no significant change from 1990. Of 41 medical schools responding to a survey, 51.3% do not require a course in parasitology and 35.6% offer no parasitology course. The average 12.3 contact hours in parasitology required for graduation from medical school is significantly lower than the average 14.5 hr required in 1990.
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