Otolaryngology sleep medicine curriculum objectives as determined by sleep experts

Am J Otolaryngol. 2017 Mar-Apr;38(2):139-142. doi: 10.1016/j.amjoto.2016.11.009. Epub 2016 Nov 23.


Purpose: (1) Ascertain the most important concepts and topics for otolaryngology resident education in sleep medicine and surgery, as determined by faculty who teach sleep medicine to otolaryngology residents. (2) Create learning objectives within the area of otolaryngologic sleep medicine in order to design a sleep medicine curriculum for otolaryngology residents.

Materials and methods: Two web-based surveys were sent to 163 academic otolaryngologists who teach sleep medicine. The first survey determined the topics, and their relative importance, considered most vital to learn during otolaryngology training. Using the Delphi method, the second clarified questions regarding topics determined by the first survey. Sleep medicine learning objectives for residents were ascertained from responses.

Results: The response rate of first and second surveys were 24.5% and 19%, respectively. Topics ranked most important for resident education included upper airway anatomy, polysomnogram interpretation, and understanding the range of medical and surgical therapies used to treat sleep disorders. Respondents listed surgical therapy as the most critical topic that most residents do not understand well. The second survey clarified the specific anatomic features, surgical techniques, and polysomnography data points deemed most critical for resident learning.

Conclusions: Academic otolaryngology sleep experts hold opinions regarding relative value of different topics for teaching sleep medicine, which is useful in creating a curriculum for otolaryngology residents. Otolaryngology learning objectives related to sleep medicine identified during this study are being used to create an online curriculum to supplement resident education.

Keywords: Education; Otolaryngology; Residency; Sleep.

MeSH terms

  • Curriculum*
  • Delphi Technique
  • Education, Medical, Graduate*
  • Humans
  • Internship and Residency
  • Otolaryngology / education*
  • Sleep Medicine Specialty / education*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires