BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) has mandated implementation of six new competencies in resident training in the United States. An implementation strategy is proposed to teach and assess cataract surgical competence. PATIENTS AND METHODS: An intradepartmental Task Force for the ACGME competencies reviewed the literature for assessment tools to develop an implementation matrix for assessing surgical competence. RESULTS: "Good practices" (gleaned from the literature) were adapted for the institution's needs and tested, including (1) written and explicit goals or objectives for each stage of training; (2) substitution of a criterion-referenced (Dreyfus model) scoring rubric for a norm-referenced, peer-benchmarked global evaluation; (3) use of formative rather than summative feedback; (4) incorporation of deliberate practice (Ericsson model); and (5) portfolio-based documentation of sentinel event markers and remediation. CONCLUSION: An implementation matrix for teaching and assessing surgical competence might be useful for local compliance with the ACGME mandate.
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