While residents may accumulate teaching tips and techniques during the course of their training by observing their mentors at work, learning how to educate while balancing the needs of a busy emergency department (ED) is a difficult skill to acquire. Unfortunately, excellent clinical skills do not always equate to effective teaching skills. With training, however, even the initially reluctant teacher can begin to effectively engage learners in the ED. An elective aimed toward developing the resident as a teacher allows residents to acquire and practice skills that will be particularly helpful for those that ultimately take on academic roles with teaching requirements.
As dedicated faculty time was in limited supply, our previous Resident As Teacher elective simply offered residents time to practice teaching with junior residents and medical students without offering significant structure or substance for those who wished to enhance their skillset as educators and acquire new knowledge.