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Faculty Development

Academic Success

Residents-as-Teachers (RAT) Program


The Residents-as-Teachers Program is designed to be an interactive exploration of the aspects of clinical teaching, and will predominantly consist of assigned readings, guided discussions, and learning exercises. Participating residents will gain skills in clinical teaching, conducting conferences, facilitating small group discussions, performing evaluation, providing feedback, and working with learners of all types. We plan for your participation to be a rich and rewarding learning experience. 

Why teach residents to be better teachers?

The reason that doctors go through residency training can be summarized in one word: education. Residency is a learning exercise, and it is important to make the teaching provided to residents efficient and effective.  However, residents actually learn much of what they know from each other and from residents who are senior to them in training. In fact, the average resident spends almost 20% of their time teaching, but they receive virtually no training on how to teach.
The overall goal of the R-as-T Program is to develop and improve the teaching skills of residents.  Through better teaching by residents, the program intends to significantly improve the educational experience of residents and medical students in their clinical years. In addition, the secondary goals of the R-as-T Program are to improve resident's skills as learners and critical thinkers, and help them gain an appreciation for the importance of lifelong learning. 
Instructional strategies include brief didactic presentations, guided discussions, microteaching exercises, and a facilitated project.


Teaching: Getting Oriented

  • Define a student-teacher relationship: a guided discussion based on a case.
  • Describe the role of intern as teacher
  • Define an educational contract
  • Discuss strategies for developing a learning agenda for students
  • Understand educational objectives and their usefulness
  • Discuss good and effective teaching as viewed by other residents and faculty

Teaching Medical Students by Being a Role Model

  • Understand how role modeling is a form of teaching
  • Discuss and acknowledge attitudes, knowledge, and beliefs first-year residents have regarding their roles as teachers
  • Identify strategies for negotiating the student's role as a member of the ward team
  • Discuss strategies for developing a learning agenda for students beginning their rotations

Giving Feedback: Concepts, Strategies, and Practice.

  • Develop a working definition of feedback
  • Understand the importance of setting a learning agenda for giving formative feedback
  • Build skills in giving feedback: role play exercises.
  • Analyze effective components of giving feedback
  • Develop skills in giving feedback to first year residents.
  • Develop skills in receiving feedback
  • Focus on setting goals with the learner at the beginning of the rotation and on setting a schedule for giving feedback
  • Review difficult feedback scenarios

Teaching Procedures: See One, Do One, Teach One Well.

  • Understand how to plan the demonstration of a procedure
  • Practice demonstrating a procedure, considering indications and contraindications and knowledge base
  • Give feedback on teaching a procedure

Bedside Teaching

  • Identify components of effective bedside teaching
  • Building skills in bedside teaching: role play exercises
  • Teaching during the history and physical examination
  • Patient education
  • Teaching in an outpatient setting

Effective Questioning

  • Understand the use of effective questioning as a teaching strategy for rounds
  • Review types of questions used in rounds
  • Practice and analyze how a resident may use effective questioning techniques

Small-group Discussion

  • Define basic principles of how groups form
  • Define and discuss the stages of team development
  • Analyze the roles within a team, in particular, the roles of team leader and team member
  • Develop a set of "ground-rules" for a small group to work by which will enhance the group's effectiveness while not stifling creativity.

Team Management

  • Define the role of the team leader
  • Discuss effective group management, leadership, and teaching strategies
  • Set personal goals as team leader

Case-based Teaching and Presentation Skills

  • Understand the components of effective case-based teaching
  • Practice and analyze residents' case-based teaching
  • Introduce large-group discussion and lecturing techniques
  • Discuss effective presentation styles, including structure of presentation, body positioning, and use of humor
  • Review the use of audiovisual aids and handouts

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