Education and Conferences

All anesthesiology faculty participate in the department didactic program. The didactic program follows a three-year curriculum designed to coincide with the usual period of training in anesthesia.

Grand Rounds are conducted on Wednesday mornings. They generally consist of alternating guest lectures and Quality Improvement Case Conferences. Most of the guest speakers are from outside of the UMass community.

As the department strives to maximize the trainee's performance on the ABA's certification examinations, residents participate in weekly board review sessions conducted by Dr. Dershwitz (author of McGraw-Hill Specialty Board Review: Anesthesiology) and are required to sit for the ASA/ABA In-Training Examination (practice board exam) every year. This is also used as a gauge of progress in learning for each resident at each level of training.

Mock oral board exams are administered twice yearly by department members to help residents prepare for their oral board exams. Our pass rate for the board exams has consistently exceeded the national average for anesthesia residency programs.

Components of our didactic schedule include:

DIDACTICS: Five hour block of time on Wednesday from 0700-1200. The day will begin with Departmental Grand Rounds, followed by a mix of the following, as well as dedicated reading hours:

  • Miller Chapter Review for CA-1’s – Weekly throughout orientation period
  • Orientation Lectures – intensive lecture series July through November (daily)
  • Journal Club – monthly
  • Quality Improvement Conference – 1-2/ month
  • Practice-Based Learning Discussions – monthly
  • Written Boards Review – 2/month
  • Keywords Review -2/month
  • Grand Rounds Guest Lecture – 1-2/month
  • Resident and Faculty Presentations – 3-4/month
  • Clinical Anatomy Session in Anatomical Dissection Lab – 1/month
  • Difficult Airway Workshop – Formal sessions throughout the year, informal during daily case management.
  • Recorded Mock Oral Exams – twice a year for all levels of residents (Tuesday afternoon)
  • Senior Project Presentations – throughout academic year
  • ABG/EKG Workshops – throughout the year
  • Simulation –orientation; floor intubations; line placement; team scenarios with surgery; pediatric rotation pediatric. Many of these simulations will take place in the new state-of-the-art interprofessional Center for Experiential Learning and Simulation (iCELS)

Resident Support

  • Faculty Mentors – carefully chosen with each resident’s background and interests taken into consideration. Mandatory meetings every three months.
  • Monthly meetings with Chair, Program Director and Chief Residents
  • CA-1 Orientation Program – 6+ weeks one-on-one case management with senior resident or faculty; 2 month orientation lecture series; “junior call” during last 2 weeks of August; call commitment begins Sept. 1 if appropriate; 3 residents on call nightly (2 seniors, 1 junior until December); close supervision and feedback
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