Ask the expert: How should I conduct faculty interviews during internal reviews?

Residency Program Insider, May 11, 2010

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The internal review committee should speak with important teachers from the program, including the teaching staff from affiliated hospitals. If you think scheduling meetings with the faculty in your own facility is difficult enough, planning a meeting with the staff at affiliate organizations can be nearly impossible. If you are not able to get the faculty from both hospitals together at one time, consider having the internal review committee travel to the affiliate site for the interviews.

Sometimes, the faculty can be your toughest interview. They usually try to paint a rosy picture of the training experience so it is up to the committee to dig deep and get the tough questions answered. Avoid “yes” and “no” questions. Instead, ask the interviewees to give specific examples of how things work in the program. It is interesting to hear the faculty’s responses to questions regarding goals and objectives and the core competencies.

It is crucial that you get the faculty’s perspective on how the program director is correcting citations. Often, the faculty’s view on how well the improvements are going differs greatly from the residents’ perspectives. The internal review committee must hear both points of view and judge how far along the adjustments are and what problems need further work.

During the interview, seize this opportunity to educate the faculty about the program requirements. Not only will this give them a better understanding of the required elements of the program, but they will also gain a greater appreciation for the role of the program director. As with the residents, the committee should always asks the faculty how they can help to support their role in the program.

This week’s question and answer are from The Graduate Medical Education Committee Handbook, by Vicki Hamm. Available now for $99.

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