Protected block curriculum enhances learning during general surgery residency training

Travis P. Webb, John A. Weigelt, Philip N. Redlich, Rebecca C. Anderson, Karen Brasel, Deborah Simpson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Changes in medical education require a rethinking of our training paradigm. We implemented a protected block curriculum for postgraduate year (PGY)-1 and PGY-2 surgery residents. Hypothesis: A protected block curriculum promotes adult learning consistent with the 6 competencies. Design: Prospective static-group comparison with pretesting and posttesting. Setting: Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. Participants: Eight university-based surgical residents (curriculum group) and 8 residents who did not participate in the curriculum (control group). Main Outcome Measures: The curriculum occurs during protected time away from clinical activity. Predefined learning objectives and competencies were identified for PGY-1 and PGY-2 residents. Multiple choice examinations were administered to assess knowledge. The first 3 tests of the year in the PGY-2 curriculum were also given to the PGY-3 and PGY-4 and -5 residents for comparison with curriculum residents. In-training examination scores of control and curriculum residents were compared. Surgical and communication skills were assessed using checklist assessment forms. Curriculum residents evaluated the content and delivery. Results: Pretest and posttest results demonstrated acquisition of knowledge with improved aggregated mean scores from 57.5% to 71.4% for PGY-1 residents and 58.6% to 72.6% for PGY-2 residents. The average curriculum test results were 76.7% for curriculum residents, 56.9% for control residents, and 57.3% for all residents. The 2-year average in-training scores were 71.2% for curriculum and 60.3% for control residents. Assessments demonstrated improvements in communication and surgical skills. Conclusions: A protected block curriculum enhanced surgical residents' learning compared with a traditional model. Improvement in medical knowledge was easiest to measure, but performance in other Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education competency areas also demonstrated improvement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)160-166
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Surgery
Volume144
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2009
Externally publishedYes

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Internship and Residency
Curriculum
Learning
Communication
Graduate Medical Education
Accreditation
Medical Education
Checklist
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

Cite this

Protected block curriculum enhances learning during general surgery residency training. / Webb, Travis P.; Weigelt, John A.; Redlich, Philip N.; Anderson, Rebecca C.; Brasel, Karen; Simpson, Deborah.

In: Archives of Surgery, Vol. 144, No. 2, 02.2009, p. 160-166.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Webb, Travis P. ; Weigelt, John A. ; Redlich, Philip N. ; Anderson, Rebecca C. ; Brasel, Karen ; Simpson, Deborah. / Protected block curriculum enhances learning during general surgery residency training. In: Archives of Surgery. 2009 ; Vol. 144, No. 2. pp. 160-166.
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