Virtual curriculum delivery in the COVID-19 era: the pediatric surgery boot camp v2.0

Robert Baird, Pramod Puligandla, Steven Lopushinsky, Christopher Blackmore, Sanjay Krishnaswami, Benedict Nwomeh, Cynthia Downard, Todd Ponsky, Muhammad O. Ghani, Harold N. Lovvorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: We evaluated the impact of a virtual Pediatric Surgery Bootcamp curriculum on resource utilization, learner engagement, knowledge retention, and stakeholder satisfaction. Methods: A virtual curriculum was developed around Pediatric Surgery Milestones. GlobalCastMD delivered pre-recorded and live content over a single 10-h day with a concluding social hour. Metrics of learner engagement, faculty interaction, knowledge retention, and satisfaction were collected and analyzed during and after the course. Results: Of 56 PS residencies, 31 registered (55.4%; 8/8 Canadian and 23/48 US; p = 0.006), including 42 learners overall. The virtual BC budget was $15,500 (USD), 54% of the anticipated in-person course. Pre- and post-tests were administered, revealing significant knowledge improvement (48.6% [286/589] vs 66.9% [89/133] p < 0.0002). Learner surveys (n = 14) suggested the virtual BC facilitated fellowship transition (85%) and strengthened peer-group camaraderie (69%), but in-person events were still favored (77%). Program Directors (PD) were surveyed, and respondents (n = 22) also favored in-person events (61%). PDs not registering their learners (n = 7) perceived insufficient value-added and concern for excessive participants. Conclusions: The virtual bootcamp format reduced overall expenses, interfered less with schedules, achieved more inclusive reach, and facilitated content archiving. Despite these advantages, learners and program directors still favored in-person education. Level of evidence: III.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1385-1390
Number of pages6
JournalPediatric Surgery International
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2022


  • Boot camp
  • COVID-19
  • Pediatric surgery
  • Virtual curriculum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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