Crest

University of Calgary - Neurosurgery - Calgary

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

Last approved on October 15, 2021

Summary of changes

Approximate Quota:

 2 

Accreditation status : Accredited

Provincial Criteria


Dr. Jay Riva-Cambrin
Clinical Neurosciences 
Foothills Hospital  
1403 - 29 St. N.W.
Calgary, Alberta, T2N 2T9
(403)944-4496
Neurosurgery Residency
Division of Neurosurgery

Program Contacts

Dr. Jay Riva-Cambrin
Residency Program Director
jay.rivacambrin@ucalgary.ca
403-944-4496

Melissa Robertson
Program Administrator
melissa.robertson@ucalgary.ca
403-944-1259


Important Information

Neurosurgery is now entering our third year of CBD training involving all incoming R1 residents.   Training objectives are currently being revised to incorporate the set milestones developed by the Royal College. 


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.
Required
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
Required
Submit one of the following documents to verify your language proficiency:
• IELTS

IELTS is required by CPSA for candidates from medical schools in Quebec except for candidates from McGill.  Please check CPSA https://cpsa.ca/ for ELP updates.

Reference documents
Required
Number requested: 3
Additional documents
Required
Medical School Transcript 

Personal Letter 

please limit your personal letter to one page

Custom Résumé / CV 

Abstract/Publications 

Photo 
[Note: Photograph is used as memory aid only]

Medical Student Performance Record 


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



Interviews

Dates:

  • March 17, 2022
  • March 18, 2022
Calgary interviews will be carried out the afternoon of March 17 and all day March 18.  Interviews will be conducted in two groups - either March 17 or 18 via Zoom.  All applicants will be invited to attend the virtual Neurosurgery rounds on March 18.  It is anticipated that all applicants would have had the opportunity to join and participate in our resident teaching sessions at some point prior to these interviews.  

Program will notify all applicants through CaRMS Online and will send email invitations directly to applicants selected for an interview.
The program director prescreens the applications, then candidates are contacted by email to arrange interviews spanning 1-1/2 days. The group of interviewees will be invited to attend Neurosurgery Rounds from 0700-0800 and possibly, city-wide Neuroscience Rounds from 0800-1000 via Zoom.  The format of the virtual interviews will be provided when candidates are selected for interview.  


Selection Criteria

Selection is based on past experience in neurosurgery, a strong academic record, commitment to academic activities including teaching and research, excellent communication and interpersonal skills, and ability to cope with stress.  

Program goals

It is the purpose of this Residency Training Program to provide its residents with a world-class education and experience in the principles and practice of Neurological Surgery.  At the end of their residency, Royal College candidates in Neurosurgery should be proficient in all aspects of regular cranial, spinal and peripheral nerve Neuorsurgical practices and be faniliar with all aspects of sub-specialized Neurosurgical care. 

Selection process goals

Residents must demonstrate the knowledge, skills and attitudes relating to gender, culture and ethnicity pertinent to Neurosurgery. In addition, all residents must demonstrate an ability to incorporate gender, cultural and ethnic perspectives in research methodology, data presentation and analysis.  On completion of the educational program, the graduate physician will be competent to function as a consultant in Neurosurgery. 

File review process

Review team composition : Applications are reviewed by the Program Director and 2-3 faculty members of the Residency Program Committee. Input will be obtained from the residents for those candidates that have participated in any of our virtual teaching sessions during the academic year.

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

Average percentage of applicants offered interviews : 76 - 100 %

Evaluation criteria :
File component Criteria
CV completeness and up to date
Electives 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.
Examinations We do not evaluate this file component.
Extra-curricular we do not evaluate this file component
Leadership skills we do not evaluate this file component
MSPRs grades and awards
Personal letters a genuine interest in neurosurgery
Reference documents performance on electives, intelligence and personality
Research/Publications strengths, numbers, and affiliation to neurosurgery
Transcripts brief review to ensure there are no "red flags"

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.
As COVID has precluded any external onsite electives, applicants were encouraged to participate in our weekly resident education sessions during their originally scheduled electives.

As COVID has restricted onsite electives, all clerks that were previously scheduled were given the opporthunity to join in with our residents for their weekly educational sessions as well as informal discussions with them.  Based on the limitations of this process, all applications will be considered on an equal basis.    

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 each candidate is evaluated on an individual basis
Collegiality each candidate is evaluated on an individual basis
Communication skills each candidate is evaluated on an individual basis
Health advocacy each candidate is evaluated on an individual basis
Interest in the discipline important to ensure the candidate is committed
Interest in the program important to ensure the candidate is committed
Leadership skills each candidate is evaluated on an individual basis
Professionalism each candidate is evaluated on an individual basis
Scholarly activities not a major concern however important for research pursuits
Other interview component(s) As all interviews will be held virtually, the format is still being considered. Applicants will be advised of the process at the time of interview selections.

Information gathered outside of CaRMS application

We do not consider any information gathered outside of the CaRMS application and local interview processes.

Ranking process

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


Program Highlights

Our neurosurgical residents enjoy a congenial association amongst themselves and attending staff.  There are 2-3 resident functions throughout the year at which residents and their spouses/significant others can attend for a bit of relaxation.  Past events have included bowling, hiking, skiing, and go karting to name a few in addition to our annual resident retreat.  


Program Curriculum

This residency program is for 6 years.

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

PGY-1

In addition to introductory rotations on Neurosurgery, this year is also comprised of 5 blocks on Internal Medicine, and General Surgery to further solidify a core medical / surgical background and prepare the resident for their Surgical Foundations Examination.  In addition, an additional block is provided for an "elective" subsequent to discussions with the program director.   The new Royal College Competency by Design training for Neurosurgery came into effect July 1, 2018 and will gradually replace the previous CanMEDS training format.



PGY-2

Another 6 blocks of Neurosurgery along with 3 blocks of Neurology and 4 blocks of ICU experience serve to complete this final year of "core" training.  



PGY-3 to 6

This period will include 25 blocks of neurosurgery, 6 blocks of pediatric neurosurgery and 2 blocks of endovascular neurosurgery with graduated responsibility for patient care and surgical procedures, 3 blocks in neuropathology, 3 blocks in neuroradiology and 13 blocks (1 year) of research.



Research

A 13-block research rotation is mandatory. This time interval is considered a minimum, and may be extended as necessary. Collaboration with clinician scientists and scientists of the Hotchkiss Brain Institute is encouraged. Research time may be used for clinical or basic science projects. Alternatively candidates are encouraged to pursue Master's or PhD pathways in Neuroscience and Medical Education. Funding is generally available through residency stipend, Alberta Heritage for Medical Research, and Canadian Institute of Health Research.



Academic Activity

Seminars in basic science, neuropathology, neuroradiology and neuroscience occur weekly. Educational time is protected to foster academic development of the resident.  Residents are expected to participate in research and publish in peer review journals each year of their residency.  Peer-reviewed presentation at national meetings is strongly encouraged and heavily supported by the Division.



not applicable


Training Sites

Resources

-Alberta Children's Hospital

-Foothills Hospital

- some rotations are carried out at the Peter Lougheed, South Health Campus and Rockyview Hospitals

-The ratio of residents to faculty is 17 faculty: 17 residents

-Residents are provided with access to electronic medical resources and on-line journals 24/7

-There are no mandatory rural rotations

-Opportunities for interprovincial and international electives exist within the program


Additional Information

Highlights -

  • all adult neurosurgery at one institution
  • comprehensive complex ortho/neuro spine program
  • intra-operative MRI/robotic arm program
  • close proximity and collaboration with Alberta Children's Hospital
  • designated Level 1 trauma facility
  • all subspecialty interests including epilepsy, functional, cerebrovascular and peripheral nerve

 

 


Summary of changes

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