Proposed definition of competencies for surgical neuro-oncology training

J Neurooncol. 2021 May;153(1):121-131. doi: 10.1007/s11060-021-03750-6. Epub 2021 Apr 21.


Objective: The aim of this work is to define competencies and entrustable professional activities (EPAs) to be imparted within the framework of surgical neuro-oncological residency and fellowship training as well as the education of medical students. Improved and specific training in surgical neuro-oncology promotes neuro-oncological expertise, quality of surgical neuro-oncological treatment and may also contribute to further development of neuro-oncological techniques and treatment protocols. Specific curricula for a surgical neuro-oncologic education have not yet been established.

Methods: We used a consensus-building approach to propose skills, competencies and EPAs to be imparted within the framework of surgical neuro-oncological training. We developed competencies and EPAs suitable for training in surgical neuro-oncology.

Result: In total, 70 competencies and 8 EPAs for training in surgical neuro-oncology were proposed. EPAs were defined for the management of the deteriorating patient, the management of patients with the diagnosis of a brain tumour, tumour-based resections, function-based surgical resections of brain tumours, the postoperative management of patients, the collaboration as a member of an interdisciplinary and/or -professional team and finally for the care of palliative and dying patients and their families.

Conclusions and relevance: The present work should subsequently initiate a discussion about the proposed competencies and EPAs and, together with the following discussion, contribute to the creation of new training concepts in surgical neuro-oncology.

Keywords: Competence-based learning; Competencies; EPAs; Education; Entrustable professional activities; Neuro-oncology; Surgical neuro-oncology.

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Fellowships and Scholarships
  • Humans
  • Internship and Residency
  • Surgical Oncology*