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The Clinician–Educator Track: Training Internal Medicine Residents as Clinician–Educators

Smith, C. Christopher MD; McCormick, Ian MD; Huang, Grace C. MD

doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000000242
Innovation Reports

Problem: Although resident-as-teacher programs bring postgraduate trainees’ teaching skills to a minimum threshold, intensive, longitudinal training is lacking for residents who wish to pursue careers in medical education. The authors describe the development, implementation, and preliminary assessment of the novel track for future clinician–educators that they introduced in the internal medicine residency program at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in 2010.

Approach: Categorical medical interns with a career interest in medical education apply to participate in the clinician–educator track (CET) at the midpoint of their first postgraduate year. CET residents complete a 2.5-year curriculum in which they review foundations of medical education, design and assess new curricula, and evaluate learners and programs. They apply these skills in a variety of clinical settings and receive frequent feedback from faculty and peers. All CET residents design and implement at least one medical education research project.

Outcomes: A comprehensive evaluation plan to assess the impact of the CET on resident teaching skills, scholarly productivity, career selection, and advancement is under way. A preliminary evaluation demonstrates high satisfaction with the track among the first cohort of CET residents, who graduated in 2012. Compared with residents in the traditional resident-as-teacher program, CET residents reported higher gains in their confidence in core medical education skills.

Next Steps: Although these preliminary data are promising, data will be collected over the next several years to explore whether the additional curricular time, faculty time, and costs and potential expansion to other institutions are justified.

Dr. Smith is associate professor of medicine, senior associate director of the internal medicine residency program, and codirector, Rabkin Fellowship in Medical Education at the Shapiro Institute for Education and Research, Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts.

Dr. McCormick is instructor of medicine, Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts.

Dr. Huang is director of assessment, Shapiro Institute for Education and Research, and associate professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts.

Funding/Support: None reported.

Other disclosures: None reported.

Ethical approval: This project was reviewed and approved by the Committee on Clinical Investigations at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

Correspondence should be addressed to Dr. Smith, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Healthcare Associates—Shapiro 1, 330 Brookline Ave., Boston, MA 02215; telephone: (617) 632-8269; e-mail: csmith2@bidmc.harvard.edu.

© 2014 by the Association of American Medical Colleges