In 2015, we have four generations working and learning alongside in medicine: Traditionalists, Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials.

Whether real or imagined, the differences that exist between these generations (i.e. work-life balance, communication style, and tech-savviness) have important implications for the planning and delivery of medical education.

IMG_8014With the help of an international panel of discussants, the 2015 Clinician Educators Dinner Program will tackle some of the biggest questions in regards to how intergenerational differences should inform medical education.

Upon completion of this highly interactive program, participating clinician educators will be able to discuss the relevance of intergenerational differences in medical education; identify barriers created by intergenerational differences and strategies to overcome them; and discuss the way technology interacts with intergenerational concerns.

Visit the ICRE website for more information, and to register for this practical and thought-provoking program.

When: Thursday, October 22, 2015, 1830-2100 (PDT).

It’s well known that the application process for residency training programs is an important (and potentially life-changing one) for medical students, but what is it like for those responsible for reviewing and carefully scrutinizing the applications?

Find out what really goes into granting admission to residents for postgraduate medical education programs, during the ICRE 2015 Learning Track Admissions: Selecting residents!


  • If you’re a program director, education coordinator or leader interested in improving and enhancing the interview and selection process, register for the Best practices in residency applications and selection: Interview process workshop! During this session, participants will gain the tools to identify past challenges in resident applications and selection; evaluate strengths and limitations of their current interview process; and systematically design tools and processes for their own educational context. When: Friday, October 23, 13:30-15:00 (PDT).
  • Are you interested in networking with colleagues on the topic of selecting residents, and learning from the successes and challenges of your peers? Attend one of ICRE 2015’s paper sessions to gain knowledge around important research and practice as it relates to residency admissions, and be able to describe the implications of research to colleagues for application to their specific educational context. When: Friday, October 23, 10:00-10:45 and Saturday, October 24, 11:00-12:30 (PDT).

Visit the ICRE website to learn more about the dynamic workshops and sessions associated with the 15 Learning Tracks at this year’s conference, and browse the 2015 program by track or by day.

Remember to register before September 14, 2015 to take advantage of our early bird prices, and begin planning your ICRE experience today!

See you in Vancouver!

When one thinks of resident training and medical education in the 21st century, images of hospital halls, thick textbooks, and innovative technologies often come to mind; but does anyone ever picture groups of residents standing around an art gallery, learning how to look carefully at Renaissance paintings?

Though lessons in medical training have traditionally been of a more technical, scientific nature, one forward-thinking health care professional will show ICRE 2015 attendees how using the left brain during residency can produce better doctors, during: The stories of art: A reflective approach to arts-based training and professional practice.

_DSC3927This dynamic workshop, led by Joyce Zazulak, MSc, MD, CCFP, FCFP and art educator Nicole Knibb is based off of the success of the Art of Seeing visual literacy course, which she developed in collaboration with the McMaster Museum of Art in Hamilton, Canada. The Art of Seeing helps medical residents build skills of observations, communication and empathy by learning to look at art.

Dr. Zazulak recently took the time to talk to ICRE about the benefits of (and myths around) arts-based training, The Art of Seeing, and her exciting workshop taking place at ICRE 2015 on October 23 (1100-1215 PDT).

Q: How can arts-based training help turn residents into better physicians?

Because art can often have multiple meanings and possibilities for interpretation, the answers are never clear. Our own personal experiences often affect how we see and what we see in works of art. Learning to look at art translates into learning to look at (and listen to) our patients more completely and accept that we don’t always have all the answers. We hope to create new meaning to the phrase, “I am going to see my patients now!”

We created The Art of Seeing™ visual literacy course to open up more interesting and inspiring ways to develop visual competency; a clinical skill that is not easily taught. Our hope is that this will enhance resident competency in observation, reflection, and non-verbal communication, which in turn aid the development of compassion and empathy. Ultimately, this can lead to increased diagnostic accuracy.

The Art of Seeing™ takes place at the McMaster Museum of Art, and brings the residents into a completely different environment; a calm and contemplative environment away from the busy clinical setting. Each session is based in the gallery, looking at and discussing artworks in order to develop observational skills through formal analysis. Connections are continually being made to our clinical work through the use of observational and reflective writing exercises, which also occur between sessions.

Q: What is the importance and significance of art and visual literacy in the training of healthcare professionals? Why is it particularly important today?

We think the importance and significance is twofold: to improve patient care and also to promote self-care for physicians. Over the past several years, much has been written about the importance of developing reflective healthcare professionals who are able to provide compassionate, caring, and sustainable care to patients. There is mounting evidence that these traits can be taught in the art gallery.

While medical advancement is very important and necessary, the heavy reliance on advancing technology means we run the risk of the patient’s story of illness being replaced with the doctor’s story of disease. We feel our program can address this tension in healthcare care and healthcare education. These techniques are particularly interesting to the medical education community as recent research has shown that trainees’ levels of empathy reach their lowest levels during residency and finding new ways to nourish this domain of professional development is of paramount importance. Even beyond medical school and residency training, healthcare in general is at risk of developing compassion fatigue and burnout. We view the Art of Seeing™ program as one way to help protect against the cost of caring.

ART_4907[1]Q: What sorts of skills can an arts-based approach teach that more traditional approaches cannot?

Learning how to formally analyze and interpret works of art — a Humanities skill —allows for examination of human life outside of illness, to gain a wider understanding of humanity and how different individual stories, experiences, cultures and societies are reflected through visual art. Our program relies on evidence-based looking in a collaborative, problem-based learning environment. The Art of Seeing™ is an alternative way to improve observation skills with works of art rather than clinical imagery. The artwork is fresh and new, and engages learning in a different way.

Q: What are some of the biggest myths and/or misunderstandings around arts-based training in healthcare?

That art is often seen as extraneous or luxurious, overly emotional and impractical. We hope to change perspectives and suggest that visual art is a necessary (and very creative and interesting) means of communicating human experience in order to better know each other. This is particularly important because we know that medicine, like art, takes place within cultural and social context. Cultural influences and interactions with each individual’s experience of illness can affect the way medicine is practiced.

_DSC3926Q: What can participants expect from your ICRE 2015 workshop, “The stories of art: A reflective approach to arts-based training and professional practice”?

Participants will get to learn the skill of formal analysis, a rigorous way of approaching a work of art, and some art history. We’re also using works of art in a creative way to move beyond just observation and move into reflective writing. The works of art serve as the starting point to explore our personal and professional narratives of caring.

Q: How has using an arts-based training approach impacted you in your own life, and professional practice?

The personal impact of using an arts-based training approach has rejuvenated and rekindled my passion for teaching. This innovative and engaging combination of art-based visual literacy and narrative reflective writing into healthcare education are the necessary steps in nourishing the development of compassionate healthcare providers.

Dr. Joyce Zazulak is an Associate Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster University, and practices medicine at the McMaster Family Practice. She has a particular interest in the use of art and visual literacy in the training of healthcare professionals.

Congratulations to Ginette Snook, winner of the 2015 Program Administrator Award for Innovation and Excellence!

Ginette has been program administrator for the University of Ottawa’s Department of Ophthalmology since 2007, and brings over 20 years of experience in Postgraduate Medical Education to her role.

Ginette is the go-to resource for many other program administrators at the University of Ottawa, and is an invaluable peer leader and mentor. She is dedicated to finding new and unique ways to help residents navigate any challenges they may encounter during their training, and has been responsible for implementing major changes to benefit residents and improve the department overall.

Notably, Ginette has been responsible for transforming and increasing the accessibility of grand rounds from a traditional classroom didactic style to an “e-learning” opportunity. All of the University of Ottawa Eye Institute’s grand rounds are now streamed over the Internet to other campuses of the Ottawa Hospital, which has made the rounds more accessible and has increased knowledge dissemination to a larger audience.

Ginette has also implemented a new resident retreat day on an annual basis, to help contribute to the overall wellness of trainees, as well as various other social events throughout the year.

Her commitment to the program, the department, and its residents is well-recognized by her peers, who appreciate the type of enthusiasm and enjoyment she brings to her work.

The Program Administrator Award for Innovation and Excellence recognizes an individual who:

  • has demonstrated commitment to excellence and innovation with regards to the administration of the residency education program;
  • has had a lasting impact on the quality of residency education program and measurable outcomes beyond their program as witnessed through the accreditation process;
  • has evidence of effective peer leadership and mentorship ability in the Program Administrator role;
  • embodies and integrates the values of the (Administrative) CanMEDS Roles: Professionalism, Communicator, Collaborator, Manager/Leader, Health Advocate as evidenced in the evaluation process and in meeting with the standards of the Royal College; and
  • has a strong track record for promoting ethical and wellness behaviours for their residency program

Ginette will officially receive her award in Vancouver at the 2015 International Conference on Residency Education. For more information on this and other ICRE awards, visit our website.

Join us in congratulating Ginette on this exciting and well-deserved honour!

Each year at ICRE, innovative, stimulating and thought-provoking research paper abstracts are submitted that provide a forum for those who use systematic, scholarly methods to evaluate educational programs, identify new phenomena, define aspects of training, and assess competence.

Together, the Journal of Graduate Medical Education (JGME) and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada are excited to announce that after much deliberation, the JGME/Royal College Top Three Research Papers, and the JGME/Royal College Top Five Resident Papers have been selected.

Congratulations to all our nominees!

Royal College Top Three Research in Residency Education Papers

*The names of the presenting authors are underlined below*

The effect of a night float call system on resident fatigue, cognition, and motor function
Authored by: Daniel Banaszek; Justues Chang; Mark Harrison; Allyson Harrison; Stephen Mann (Queen’s University, Kingston, ON)

Real world implementation of a standardized handover program (I-PASS) on a pediatric clinical teaching unit
Authored by: Kathleen Huth; Katherine Baldwin; Kristy Parker; David Creery; Asif Doja (University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON); Mary Aglipay; Nicholas Barrowman; Katherine Moreau; Francine Hart (Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, Ottawa, ON)

Entrustment in practice, a competency based curriculum assessed
Authored by: Karsten van Loon; Fedde Scheele (Sint Lucas Andreas Hospital, Amsterdam, Netherlands); Pim Teunissen (VU Medical Centre, Amsterdam, Netherlands); Erik Driessen (Maastricht University, Maastricht, Netherlands)


JGME/Royal College Top Five Resident Papers

A blog literacy level project: Analyzing the relationship between FOAMed resource characteristics in blog posts and knowledge dissemination
Authored by: Paola Camorlinga (University of Manitoba); Sarah Luckett-Gatopoulos; Teresa Chan (McMaster University, Hamilton, ON)

Does laparoscopic simulation predict intra-operative performance? A comparison between the Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS) and LapVR evaluation metrics
Authored by: Sarah Steigerwald; Jason Park; Krista Hardy; Lawrence M. Gillman; Ashley S. Vergis (University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB)

Thinking on the front line: Understanding resident decision making in clinical practice
Authored by: Emilie H. Stevens; Cary Cuncic; Raymond Mak; Rose Hatala (University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC)

Making sense of fatigue: Implications of social constructs of fatigue in clinical training and practice
Authored by: Taryn S. Taylor; Maggie Rebel; Chris Watling; Jeff Nisker; Lorelei Lingard (Western University, London, ON); Pim Teunissen; Tim Dornan (Maastricht University, Maastricht, Netherlands)

Multi-source feedback: Everyone has a say, but who is listening?
Authored by: Brie A. Yama; Sarah B. Schwartz (The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON)


We’re thrilled to announce that these outstanding papers will be highlighted during two special sessions at ICRE 2015 in Vancouver!

The JGME/Royal College Top 3 Research Papers will be presented on Saturday, October 24, from 11:00-12:30 (PDT), and the JGME/Royal College Top 5 Resident Papers; Friday, October 23, from 15:30-17:00 (PDT).

For more information on ICRE 2015 workshops, plenaries and paper sessions, visit: http://www.royalcollege.ca/portal/page/portal/rc/events/icre/program

Don’t forget to register for ICRE 2015 before September 14 to take advantage of our early bird rates! Visit our website to complete registration today, and learn more about this year’s dynamic program! Continue Reading »

ICRE’s What Works conference track provides a unique opportunity for conference participants to hear how other medical educators are successfully integrating CanMEDS physician competencies in to their residency programs.

By sharing individual and group successes, medical educators, residents and Fellows alike can gain fresh ideas for effective educational tools and methods that they can readily adapt to their own settings. Through these dynamic presentations, we hope to demonstrate that every medical school can benefit from CanMEDS best practices!

We’re thrilled to announce that this year’s Top Five What Works paper presentations will be highlighted during a special session at ICRE 2015 in Vancouver, on Friday, October 23, from 15:30 to 17:00 (PDT).

Congratulations to our Top 5 nominees!

*The names of the presenting authors are underlined below*

An integrated approach to teaching and assessing the health advocate and collaborator roles
Authored by: Aaron Chiu; Karen Gripp (University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB); Eleanor MacDougall; Fatemeh Kojori (Manitoba Clinic, Winnipeg, MB)

Innovative resident leadership and health systems education
Authored by: Diane de Camps Meschino; Anupam Thakur (University of Toronto, Toronto, ON)

“Reviewing with the staff”: BoringEM’s creation of a robust peer review process for a learner-oriented blog to promote scholarship and collaboration
Authored by: Eve I. Purdy; Heather Murray (Queen’s University, Kingston, ON); Brent Thoma (University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK); Sarah Luckett-Gatopoulos; Teresa Chan (McMaster University, Hamilton, ON)

Authentic feedback: Can formative, situated, and longitudinal feedback benefit residents’ learning through practice?
Authored by: Stephane M. Voyer; Cary Cuncic; Deborah Butler; Rose Hatala (University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC)

InstaDoc: The novel use of Instagram to deliver education to vascular surgery residents
Authored by: Michael M. Yacob; Prasad Jetty; Ahmad Ameer (University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON)

For more information on ICRE 2015 workshops, plenaries and paper sessions, visit: http://www.royalcollege.ca/portal/page/portal/rc/events/icre/program

Don’t forget to register for ICRE 2015 before September 14 to take advantage of our early bird rates! Visit our website to complete registration today, and learn more about this year’s dynamic program!


If you’re a resident with a bright idea or cutting-edge view on how residency education can be enhanced, we have some good news for you: The deadline for the International Resident Leadership Summit (IRLS) contest has just been extended!

Resident leaders now have until July 24, 2015 at 11:59 pm (EDT) to submit their entries for a chance to win free registration to this year’s IRLS, October 23-24 in Vancouver, Canada.

icre-2013-saturday-95croppedWe’re asking residents to describe (in 400 words or less) their ideas about how to enhance the teaching and assessment of the Leader Role competencies in their program. The authors of the top three will receive free registration, and the chance to showcase their inventive ideas at IRLS 2015.

IRLS is an excellent opportunity to network and benefit from practical resident-focused workshops and plenary sessions – so don’t miss your chance to attend, on us!

Full contest rules, submission guidelines, and information on the inspiration behind the theme of this year’s contest, Changing from Manager to Leader – Perspectives from Resident Leader, are now available on the ICRE website.


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