Renewing focus on resident education: increased responsibility and ownership in interventional radiology rotations improves the educational experience

J Vasc Interv Radiol. 2010 Nov;21(11):1697-702. doi: 10.1016/j.jvir.2010.07.009. Epub 2010 Sep 29.


Purpose: To enhance the educational experience among residents rotating through interventional radiology (IR) by encouraging ownership and responsibility.

Materials and methods: In May 2006, the authors implemented changes in resident education in IR that included increased clinical responsibilities, structured didactics, and greater hands-on experience, including call. Residents were assigned as first assistants, ownership of cases was encouraged, and assignment to a week on the consult service was instituted to help residents better understand all aspects of IR practice. Additional faculty recruitment and program expansion ensured the same high level of training for the fellowship program. Evaluations were reviewed every year (July 1, 2007-June 30, 2009) for hands-on training, daily teaching, didactic conferences, and overall effectiveness of the clinical service. A graduated scale of 1-5 was used.

Results: In 2009, 3 years after the curricular changes were made, the quality of hands-on training, daily case reviews and consults, didactics, and overall education had markedly improved with 89%, 71%, 65%, and 82% of the residents rating these respective aspects of the training as "above expectations" (4 on a scale of 5) or "superior" (5 on a scale of 5) compared with 77%, 23%, 20%, and 60% in 2005-2006. Three years after the changes, the impact of these changes on recruitment patterns also showed improvement, with 28.6% of the class of 2010 pursuing a fellowship in IR.

Conclusions: Increasing resident ownership, responsibility, and hands-on experience improves resident education in IR, which, in turn, promotes interest in the field.

MeSH terms

  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • California
  • Career Choice
  • Clinical Competence
  • Curriculum
  • Education, Medical, Graduate*
  • Humans
  • Internship and Residency*
  • Mentors
  • Problem-Based Learning
  • Program Evaluation
  • Radiography, Interventional*
  • Radiology, Interventional / education*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Teaching / methods
  • Time Factors