University of Calgary - Neurology - Pediatric - Calgary

2022 R-1 Main Residency Match - first iteration
CMG Stream for CMG

Last approved on October 15, 2021

Summary of changes

Approximate Quota:


Accreditation status : Accredited

Provincial Criteria

Dr. Colleen Curtis
Pediatric Neurology 
Alberta Children's Hospital  
28 Oki Dr. NW
Calgary AB , Alberta, T3B 6A8
(403) 955-2481
(403) 955-2922
Pediatric Neurology UofC

Program Contacts

Amber Sando
Education Coordinator

Important Information

Competence by Design (CBD)

Competence by Design (CBD) is the national Royal College education initiative. Similarly to all of the residency programs across the country, Pediatric Neurology at the University of Calgary has made the transition to CBD July 1, 2020. The successful candidate will be the third to join in our full CBD curriculum. In addition to curriculum and rotation changes to meet CBD requirements, the resident will also be paired with an academic advisor who meets with the resident regularly for mentorship and progress monitoring and support. Resident progression through the stages of training is determined by the Competence Committee. With extensive faculty and resident engagement and education, our transition to the CBD model has been smooth and resident feedback is largely positive. We are committed to ensuring resident success.

General Instructions

Program application language: English

Supporting Documentation

Canadian citizenship
CaRMS partners with third-party organizations to verify your citizenship or permanent resident status. If your status is verified by one of these organizations, you will not need to provide citizenship documents in your application. If your citizenship status is not verified, you must provide one of the documents listed below.
Submit one of the following documents to verify your Canadian citizenship:
• Canadian Birth Certificate or Act of Birth
• Certificate of Canadian Citizenship
• Confirmation of Permanent Residence in Canada
• Passport page showing Canadian Citizenship
• Canadian Permanent Resident Card (both sides of card)
Language proficiency
Submit one of the following documents to verify your language proficiency:

IELTS is required by CPSA for candidates from medical schools in Quebec except for candidates from McGill.  Please check CPSA for ELP updates.

Reference documents
Number requested: 3

Three (3) letters of reference are required.


Additional documents
Personal Letter 

The letter should include; the reason(s) why you have chosen to pursue a career in Pediatric Neurology, why you think our Program and the University of Calgary are a good fit for you, your personal strengths and weaknesses, and your interests outside of medicine.

Please limit your letter to 1000 words.

Medical Student Performance Record 

Medical School Transcript 


Custom Résumé / CV 

Review Process

Applications submitted after file review has opened on January 31, 2022

Supporting documents (excluding letters of reference) that arrive after file review has opened  on  January 31, 2022

Letters of reference that arrive after the unmasking date on January 31, 2022

All applications are reviewed by a panel of faculty, residents and other members of the Pediatric Neurology allied health team. This review includes all aspects of each file.

The review committee then makes recommendations of which candidates to offer interviews. Every attempt is made to interview all candidates receiving this recommendation. The Program Director then notifies the candidates through the CaRMS website.

At the formal interview, each candidate will meet with multiple interviewers as well as an informal meeting with the residents.

After completion of the interviews a discussion is held with all members of the Committee and a ranking is developed that is then submitted to CaRMS.



  • March 18, 2022
Program will notify all applicants through CaRMS Online and will send email invitations directly to applicants selected for an interview.
Interview date will be March 18, 2022.

The program interviews approximately 10 candidates each year.

The interview will be conducted virtually for all invited candidates. It will be largely comprised of structured case scenarios with interviewing teams as well as a general interview with the program director and pediatric neurology residents. An informal group meeting with the residents will be offered for all interviewees. 

Selection Criteria

The Pediatric Neurology Program at the University of Calgary seeks individuals with a strong academic record, proven interest in neurology and clinical neurosciences and demonstrated interest in pediatrics.

References should attest to integrity, energy, executive ability in planning and completing tasks, and exemplary interpersonal skills. Maturity, empathy, sensitivity and strong communication skills are highly valued.  

Candidates with an interest in basic, translational, or clinical research are also encouraged to apply

Program goals

The University of Calgary Pediatric Neurology Residency Training Program is dedicated to educate residents in Neurology with expertise in pediatric neurological concerns.  Upon completion of training in Pediatric Neurology, a resident is expected to be an expert in the prevention, diagnosis, and management of patients with diseases of the nervous system, and to integrate all of the CanMEDS roles to provide the highest standards of competency, ethical behavior, and patient-centered medical care.  

The core values of the Section of Neurology are aligned with those of Alberta health Services and the Departments of Pediatrics, and Clinical Neurosciences We strive for excellence using evidence-based practice in patient care and advocacy. The program fosters learning through an atmosphere of collegiality, mutual respect, and collaboration. We are committed to advancing the quality of care and well-being of children impacted by neurological conditions and supporting their families and communities.

We emphasize the pursuit of excellence in clinical and academic Neurology and instill intellectual curiosity for the academic and community leaders of tomorrow.   We model healthy lifestyles and strive to create a level of interest and passion that will stimulate our residents to continue their life-long professional development.  Our program aims to serve both the present and future requirements of our patients, communities, and discipline. 

Selection process goals

Successful applicants to the Pediatric Neurology Program at the University of Calgary will be those that demonstrate in the application and interviews a keen interest in neurology and clinical neurosciences and their application to the pediatric care setting.

In line with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada CanMEDS framework, applicants who have a strong academic record in both undergraduate and/or graduate, and medical school, as well as those who can demonstrate excellence in scholarship, advocacy, and leadership skills, will be considered highly. Applicants are expected to have strong written and verbal communication skills, be proficient at working in team settings, and display continued and ongoing professionalism in all settings.

Individuals with a breadth of medical and non-medical experiences, who can demonstrate resilience and maturity, and who are able to manage personal health and wellness are considered strong applicants.

File review process

Review team composition : The application review team consists of the Program Director, faculty members and residents.

Average number of applications received by our program in the last five years : 0 - 50

Average percentage of applicants offered interviews : 26 - 50 %
On average, 10 candidates are selected for interview.

Evaluation criteria :
File component Criteria
CV Previous professional and academic experience.
Electives Interest in clinical neuroscience, breadth of experiences.
Examinations We do not evaluate this file component.
Extra-curricular Resilience
Leadership skills Leadership experience
MSPRs Academic record.
Personal letters Interest in Pediatric Neurology in Calgary. Written communication skills.
Reference documents Qualities and assets expected of a good clinician in training.
Research/Publications Interest and experience in research.
Transcripts Academic record.

Elective criteria

Elective experiences were severely limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will not be considering electives in file review to ensure file review is fair and equitable for all candidates.
We do not require applicants to have done onsite electives.

Interview process

Interview format :

We do not re-schedule interviews for applicants after we have completed the scheduling process.

Interview evaluation criteria :
Interview components Criteria
Collaboration skills Demonstrates ability to work in a team setting.
Collegiality Excellent interpersonal skills.
Communication skills Verbal and nonverbal communication skills.
Health advocacy Recognizes role of advocacy in medicine
Interest in the discipline Interest in clinical neurosciences.
Interest in the program Interest in Pediatric Neurology in Calgary.
Leadership skills Demonstrates leadership abilities.
Professionalism Demonstrates professional behaviors.
Scholarly activities Demonstrates interest in academic endeavors.
Other interview component(s) The interview day includes an unstructured meeting with the resident group to address questions which are traditionally discussed during the site tour and interview day meals.

Information gathered outside of CaRMS application

Specifically, we may consider:

Ranking process

The behavior(s) exhibited below during the interview process may prevent an applicant from being ranked by our program :

Program Highlights

The Pediatric Neurology Residency training Program at the Alberta Children's Hospital and the University of Calgary, offers a diverse and exciting educational experience. We have a strong commitment to clinical care, teaching and research.

The ratio of faculty to residents is better that 1:1.

Residents are exposed to a wide variety of neurological disorders, both common and rare, through a combination of out-patient clinics and in-patient services or consults (General Pediatrics Ward, Emergency Department, Neonatal Intensive Care and Pediatric Intensive Care). While on service residents will be exposed to several roles including that of a consultant neurologist for inpatient referrals as well as those from the outpatient program, as well as the primary care physician for patients admitted directly under the Neurology service (this typically consists of 3-5 patients).

Residents on-service also manage our Urgent Clinic, which typically sees 2-3 patients per day, and serves to expedite Neurology referrals from the Community of the Emergency Department.

A strong and vibrant collaborative relationship exists between many disciplines with overlapping involvement in children and youth with neurological disorders. These include; Neurosurgery, Physiatry, Metabolics, Genetics, Neuroradiology, Developmental Pediatrics and General Pediatrics, to name a few. We also have a very close relationship with the Adult Neurology program, and the residents from both programs share part of their protected academic half-day. 

Weekly Rounds. To facilitate academic enhancement residents have the opportunity to participate and attend several weekly formal clinical and research rounds. These include, but are not limited to; pediatric neurology, city wide clinical neurosciences (combined neurology/neurosurgery/neuropathology/neuroradiology) rounds, EEG/neurophysiology seminars, seizure conferences, brain injury rounds, stroke rounds, neuroradiology teaching seminars and developmental neuroscience grand rounds.

Resident Educational Longitudnal Clinic. Junior Pediatric Neurology residents (PGY1 and PGY2) are assigned to a faculty preceptor and attend clinics during their core pediatric rotations, when possible. Senior Pediatric Neurology residents (PGY3-PGY5) have their own weekly longitudinal clinic designed to foster independence and a sense of ownership for patient care.

Program Curriculum

This residency program is for 5 years.

Program length of training does not exceed the Royal College or College of Family Physicians of Canada standard.

Pediatric Neurology



To contribute to the success of Canadian physicians and the delivery of high-quality patient care, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada has embarked upon an initiative to introduce competency-based medical education (CBME) in Canadian postgraduate specialty training and in professional practice in Canada. This initiative, called Competence by Design (CBD), aims to enhance patient care by aligning medical education and lifelong learning with evolving patient needs and empowering learners to more fully engage in their education process.

CBD will use time as a framework rather than the basis for progression. It is not anticipated that the duration of training will change for the majority of trainees. Residency programs will be broken down into stages, and each stage will have a series of milestones based on required competencies. These milestones will create more targeted learning outcomes and involve more frequent, formative assessments within the clinical workplace to ensure residents are developing and receiving feedback on the skills they need.


Transition to Discipline will occur in Pediatric Neurology rotations and will prepare residents for success in residency.

Foundations will include approximately 18 months of pediatric rotations including General Pediatric Inpatient Service (4 blocks), Neonatal Intensive Care (1 block), Cardiology (1 block), Emergency Medicine (1 block), Neurology (5 blocks), Medical Genetics (1 block), PICU (1 block), Mental Health (1 block), Infectious Disease (1 block), Research/Critical Appraisal (1 block) and Pediatric Oncology (1 block).

Residents will then progress to Core rotations designed to provide a graded experience. The trainee will complete six blocks in adult neurology, and twelve blocks in clinical pediatric neurology in clinics, consultation, inpatient and neurocritical care services and rotations in pediatric physical medicine and rehabilitation, metabolics, pediatric palliative care, neuropathology, pediatric neurosurgery, Electroencephalography (EEG), Electromyography (EMG), and pediatric neuroradiology. The remaining blocks can be spent in electives related to clinical rotations and/or research, or as discussed with the Program Director and approved by the Residency Training Committee (PNRTC). As they progress through the stage, residents develop their team leadership skills through supervision of core junior Pediatric or Adult Neurology residents as well as rotating pediatric residents on service. The actual scheduling of rotations can be adjusted based on individual career plans and goals after discussion with the Program Director and approval by the PNRTC

Transition to Practice will occur in the final year and will consist of six blocks in pediatric neurology and six blocks in electives. Elective choices include EEG-Epilepsy, Neuromuscular-EMG, Neuro-Ophthalmology, Psychiatry, Movement Disorders, Headache, Stroke, Neuro-oncology, Research and Metabolic Disorders. 

The trainee will attend a 1/2 day pediatric neurology clinic throughout their PGY-1 and PGY-2 years (when possible) with an attending pediatric neurologist. In the PGY-3 through PGY-5 years residents develop their own longitudinal clinic where independence and responsibility for patient care is emphasized. Residents are assigned one faculty to supervise the resident clinic throughout their senior years.

The trainee will be supported to attend one national or international educational meeting in Pediatrics (American Academy, etc.) or Neurology (American Academy, Canadian Neurological Congress, etc.) every year, starting with PGY-1. 

Electives at outside institutions (outside Calgary) are encouraged and must meet Royal College standards for goals and objectives, and be approved by the Director and the Committee in good time.


The trainee is required to prepare a research proposal under the mentorship of one or more neurologists during their Research Block in PGY-1 and submit it to PNRTC. The resident may request additional research blocks during PGY3-5, in discussion with their research supervisor and program director.

Seminars and Rounds

There are almost daily rounds of excellent educational value in our program. The main rounds include the following:

Monday: Developmental Neuroscience Rounds - a mix of clinical and basic science from local and guest speakers on all topics related to Pediatric Neuroscience.

Tuesday: Pediatric Neuroradiology Case Rounds and Pedatric Neurology Clinical Case Rounds - these rounds relate to clinical cases seen on the inpatient services as well as cases seen in outpatient clinics. The focus of these rounds is resident education and mastery of clinical evaluation.

Tuesday: Neurology Academic Half-day - a mixture of general neurology as well as a newly developed curriculum specific to Pediatric Neurology.

Wednesday: General Pediatric Grand Rounds - a diverse set of educational rounds from general pediatrics as well as most subspecialties.  

Wednesday: Weekly tutorial (1-2 hours) during Pediatric Neurology Rotation - led by Pediatric Neurology Residents.

Friday: City-wide Neurosciences Grand Rounds - this two hour weekly session features resident led case presentations from Neurology, Neurosurgery and Physiatry followed by a formal lecture from invited speakers.

A multitude of Pediatric and Adult Neurology sub-specialty rounds are also available each week and include those from the following programs; brain injury, epilepsy, stroke, neuromuscular, multiple sclerosis, and neuropathology.


Training Sites

Alberta Children's Hospital

Alberta Children's Hospital Research Institute

Foothills Hospital

Peter Lougheed Hospital

Rockyview Hospital

South Health Campus


Electronic resources: Children's Hospital Library, Foothills Hospital Library, clinic area and residents' room have computers on-line. All residents are also part of the University of Calgary and have electronic access to databases through the University.

Additional Information

Quick Facts

We have 11 full-time Pediatric Neurologists with clinical and research interests in pediatric epilepsy, headaches, brain injury, neurocritical care, neuromuscular disease, neuropathology, neuroembryology, demyelination and autoimmune disorders and cerebrovascular disease.

Residents may do electives in other provinces as well as internationally, upon approval.

In Pediatric Neurology, the resident attends 2 to 3 half-day clinics per week. About 20 inpatient consultations per week are shared amongst the residents (usually there are one to two other residents from pediatrics and/or adult neurology). In Adult Neurology, there are clinic rotations and inpatient rotations with variable numbers of consultations, but generally of higher volume than the pediatric neurology rotations.

At this point, no mandatory rural rotations are required as part of this training program. However, interested residents may have an opportunity to do a rotation with a community Pediatric Neurologist to gain experience into this important career path.

Summary of changes

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