Online mentoring: Challenges and strategies

  • Sadiq Jan Islamic International Medical College
  • Usman Mehboob
Keywords: Mentoring, Online mentoring, E-mentoring, Mentors, Mentees, Challenges, Strategies


Objectives: To gain insights into the e-mentoring experience, needs of the stakeholders (mentors and mentees) challenges and strategies to overcome the challenges.

Methods: Qualitative exploratory study was conducted in Islamic International Medical College, from February 2021 to July 2021. The study duration was six months. Six ‘Semi-structured interviews’ of mentors and two ‘focus group discussions’ with mentees were conducted. A purposeful sampling technique was employed to select the respondents. Data were audio taped and transcribed verbatim. After that analysis of data was done by inductive content analysis. Data were coded line by line. Open codes were combined to form categories, which were combined to form themes through abstraction.

Results: Data was analyzed by using Atlas.ti. After analyzing data from mentors and mentees, 21 open codes sorted into 15 categories and abstracted to from five major themes. Participants talked about the problems of online sessions like; connectivity issues, impaired interaction, nonspecific goals, unaware of MS Teams use. They suggested strategies to make these sessions more practical; like workshops for training, face to face sessions before online mode, blended approach, careful selection of mentors and mentees. All were satisfied with security and witnessed anonymity and privacy.

Conclusion: Online mentoring can help students feel less lonely through social contact. E-mentoring provides flexibility to those who would usually deal with discrimination to being mentored because of their gender, ethnicity, disability or geographical location.


How to cite this:
Jan S, Mahboob U. Online mentoring: Challenges and strategies. Pak J Med Sci. 2022;38(8):2272-2277. doi:

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

How to Cite
Jan, S., & Mehboob, U. (2022). Online mentoring: Challenges and strategies. Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences, 38(8).
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