The large faculty complement of full-time Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgeons are dedicated to the academic development of our resident group of fifteen individuals, allowing for excellent mentorship that is frequently on a one-to-one basis. It is our goal to give residents comprehensive experience in all areas of our specialty in order for them to become independent and knowledgeable clinicians and surgeons. Residents are given significant but well-supervised latitude in the management of both clinical and operative cases. Clinical, teaching and research activities are closely monitored by OTOHNS faculty with residents gaining increasing responsibility according training level and capability.
Residents benefit from the fact that most of the faculty have appointments at multiple medical centers. These benefits include exposure to the core faculty in different clinical settings, consistency and stability in surgical training, and the core faculty/resident interaction that is necessary for accurate, in-depth evaluations. All faculty participate in OTOHNS curriculum and in the resident evaluation process.
Residents receive rapid and direct feedback regarding the management of patients, both on the ward and in the operating room. Additionally, residents are formally evaluated by faculty on all aspects of resident performance at the end of each rotation. This written evaluation includes aspects from all portions of training: professional demeanor, clinical acumen and judgment, surgical technical skills, administrative abilities and research and teaching accomplishments. Global assessments are based on the six ACGME clinical competencies. Semi-annual summaries are transcribed, along with duty hour calculations, operative experience report summaries, in-training exam results, and home study course results. The Program Director and Associate Program Director review assessments and provide constructive criticism to each resident confidentially. In addition, semi-annual 360 degree evaluations are also given, which include responses from patients, nursing and administrative staff. Residents maintain a portfolio documenting their progress through the KUMC Competency Curriculum.
Resident performance on the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery home study course and the American Board of Otolaryngology in-training examination is used along with the above evaluations in the overall assessment of individual residents. The annual in-training examination helps to show how successfully each resident has integrated material from the curriculum. A high level of performance on this exam is expected from residents; currently, we require residents to score above the 50th percentile for their year of training as we feel that performance on this test is predictive of ultimate resident performance on the American Board of Otolaryngology Certification Examination. At the end of the residency, the Chairman and/or Program Director perform exit interviews of all outgoing residents.
Program evaluations are completed each year by faculty and residents; the departmental Residency Education Committee meets and discusses these assessments in order to continually improve the program.
Additionally, all residents complete confidential annual evaluations of the teaching faculty. These evaluations become a part of the faculty's permanent record and are considered important evidence of the faculty's teaching and mentoring abilities.
Each year, the department holds a winter competency conference, which usually takes place at a ski resort and is often attended by alumni. In addition to educational conferences, faculty-resident group discussions are held, and all aspects of the residency program are openly examined.