Journal Club

Periodic literature review, critique, and reflection regarding the feasibility of incorporating new information into daily practice is an integral part of lifelong learning and practice based learning and improvement. We believe that one of the ways in which this can be learned is by active involvement of residents in journal club. A two year journal club curriculum based on the articles from the Evidence Based Reviews in Surgery from the ACS has been developed which includes topics such as:

Year 1

  • Causation – Risk Factors
  • Guidelines
  • Meta-analysis
  • Quality of Life
  • Decision Analysis
  • Economic Analysis

Year 2

  • Administrative Data.  Small Area Variation
  • Treatment Effectiveness
  • Diagnostic Tests
  • Decision Aid
  • Number Needed to Treat. Confident Intervals

The key goal of Journal Club is to ensure residents direct experience in the most current literature and to evaluate critically current information in a didactic format. As we progress in our program, the senior resident, in association with the assigned faculty member, will select articles to be presented that are relevant to the residents level of experience and research interest, provide information regarding new techniques and therapies, or address modifications of practice management.  

This educational experience provides the resident with practice in using information technology, appraising and selecting scientific information, evaluating the quality of the information, while discussing how the information can be applied to the quality of the individual and the department patient care activities.

Objectives for Journal Club for the resident are:  

  • Review the relevant literature
  • Select journal articles justifying to the faculty supervisor their relevance
  • Present the key information in a concise manner
  • Discuss the scientific validity and conclusions of the article and the implications for surgery practice.
  • Teach how to assess different types of articles, studies and research

The faculty and resident attendees will:  

  • Critique the resident presentation
  • Provide additional comments regarding his/her opinion of the scientific validity of the data
  • Discuss the impact on practice individually and for our department.  

Following their presentation, the residents are required to write a self-assessment of their Journal Club experience where relevant learning points are articulated and documented. This process serves to reinforce important learning points of Journal Club and allows for self-reflection of the discussed literature on their practice of surgery. These evaluations are discussed at the time of the semiannual resident evaluation with the Program Director.