Having a clear vision for advocacy training will help build plans for a successful training experience.
What is already going on in my program?
Collaborate with your residency program director to both develop and refine your curriculum.
Map out where learning objectives for Community Health and Advocacy are being met across the entire residency program.
Focus on small, realistic steps to implementing a curriculum as well as achievable goals.
What structure and components do I want/not want? (Track? Required individual project?)
Determine what rotation structure will work best for your program: block, longitudinal, track or combination/overlap. Consider how the Individualized Curriculum for residents might be integrated into your program.
Connect with colleagues across institutions to learn some of the pros and cons of each approach or component. Engage your team if you identify possible changes or additions you think would be beneficial to training.
Getting out into the community and engaging with families outside of clinical responsibilities offers a different and possibly transformative experience for trainees.
What level of resident proficiency is expected?
Develop goals and objectives aligning with realistic, learner-centered, meaningful and achievable learning activities (anticipate that these activities will continuously evolve).
Align your objectives with your curriculum, and think about what level of proficiency you expect residents to achieve.
Where are there existing opportunities in the overall residency curriculum to build in advocacy training?
Consider additional opportunities for engagement in community health and advocacy, such as resident special interest groups, a resident leadership academy, participation in your state advocacy day.
Build community health topics into Grand Rounds, resident lectures and morning report.
Other rotations, such as Adolescent and Developmental-Behavioral, may reinforce or offer new opportunities for advocacy training.
What opportunities exist for reflective learning?
Provide resources and opportunities for self-directed learning. Use complementary means of evaluation, including reflective writing, regular and planned resident feedback sessions or debriefing with faculty, pre/post surveys. Peer or group discussions around these experiences can also be valuable.
Overall, give residents a chance to reflect upon their experiences beyond the clinic walls.