Development of a novel conceptual framework for curriculum design in Canadian postgraduate trauma training


  • Brett Mador University of Alberta
  • Michael Kim University of Alberta
  • Jonathan White University of Alberta
  • Ilene Harris University of Illinois
  • Ara Tekian University of Illinois



Background: Recent changes in practice patterns and training paradigms in trauma care have resulted in a critical review of postgraduate curricula. Specifically, a shift towards non-operative management of traumatic injuries, and reduced resident work-hours, has led to a significant decrease in trainees' surgical exposure to trauma. The purpose of our study is to perform an exploratory review and needs assessment of trauma curricula for general surgery residents in Canada.

Methods: Our study design includes semi-structured interviews with trauma education experts across Canada and focus groups with various stakeholder groups. We performed qualitative analysis of comments, with two independent reviewers, using inductive thematic analysis to identify themes and sub-themes.

Results: We interviewed four trauma education experts and conducted four focus groups. We formulated two main themes: institutional context and transferability of curricular components. We further broke down institutional context into sub-themes of culture, resources, trauma system, and trauma volume. We developed a new conceptual framework to guide ongoing curricular reform for trauma care within the context of general surgery training.

Conclusions: The proposed framework, developed through qualitative analysis, can be utilized in a collaborative fashion in the curricular reform process of trauma care training in Canada.


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How to Cite

Mador B, Kim M, White J, Harris I, Tekian A. Development of a novel conceptual framework for curriculum design in Canadian postgraduate trauma training. Can. Med. Ed. J [Internet]. 2020 Mar. 16 [cited 2024 Jul. 14];11(1):e62-e69. Available from:



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