The University of Colorado has developed an innovative and highly learner-centered formal residency curriculum. We ensure a broad-based education for all housestaff yet provide multiple different curricular combinations to allow residents to tailor their training based on personal career goals.  

A Matrix of Options:

Each training track (Categorical, Primary Care, Hospitalist, and PSTP) has its own curricular content. At the beginning of the second year, every resident also selects one of five pathways (Global Health, Health Equity/Health Disparity, Medical Education, Medical Leaders, and Research and Investigation). With 4 different training tracks and 5 different career pathways, there are 20 potential formal curricular combinations available to our residents.

The matrix below demonstrates how by choosing a track and pathway, residents are able to individualize their residency training into 1 of 20 curricular combinations with each box color representing one of those combinations. 


In addition to selecting a track and pathway, every resident attends a formal conference curriculum, morning reports, and our Journal Club Classics.  

conference room with presentationThe formal residency curriculum is given during a series of Wednesday Education Sessions held across the second and third years. Residents attending these sessions are excused from clinical responsibilities in order to focus on the educational opportunities at hand. We have steadily moved away from traditional lecture-based content to small interactive group and case-based learning. We also incorporate on-line learning modules across a variety of subjects and from two separate commercial platforms. Workshops in point of care ultrasound, clinical reasoning, neurology cases, and more help round out the material covered. Intern Wednesday Education Sessions occur during each clinic week and on electives and consist of Chief Medical Resident and faculty led discussions on a variety of topics including resident wellness and resiliency, implicit bias training, ambulatory topics, and critical appraisal of the medical literature.

Medical Grand Rounds is held at noon on Wednesdays at University Hospital and is broadcast to other training sites. UCD faculty and guest speakers discuss a broad range of subjects from clinical practice to basic science.

​Morbidity and Mortality conferences are held at noon on one to two Fridays per month at each institution. Topics are reviewed in a case-based format with invited faculty. A systems-based approach with emphasis on quality improvement is employed.

Intern Lecture Series - This group of lectures is provided for new interns at the beginning of each academic year and covers practical and important topics including procedures, cross-cover, acute MI, acute GI bleed, respiratory failure, and others. Fellows specializing in various associated fields give these lectures at each hospital site, using an interactive and case-based format.

The program has evolved from a Journal Club Classics curriculum to a more up to date and applicable curriculum to the digital age as landmark trials are now readily available through multiple different aps and rapid online searches. During the first year, journal club focuses on developing critical appraisal skills across the traditional breadth of types of studies – articles on therapy, diagnosis, prognosis, etc. Each intern presents the results of their critical appraisal during Wednesday Education Sessions.  During the second and third year, journal club focuses on developing effective clinical questions, how to best conduct a search across the various databases available at the point of care, and then to present the article or articles that best answer that question.
physicians and residentsIn order to improve workflow, all hospital sites have transitioned from a morning report to an hour-long noon conference, where lunch is served to all residents and medical students.  Noon conference is led daily by the chief resident at each training hospital with faculty participation.  A case-based format is used to highlight diagnostic dilemmas and clinical decision making.  Examples of recent interesting cases include Ehlrichiosis, Brucellosis Endocarditis from boar-hunting, and Brugada syndrome in a syncopated skydiver.