Brief Outline of Method

Our department ensures that all residents are free of any clinical duties for a 2-hour block, once per week.  Junior residents are allocated to education on one day, and senior residents on another day.  These time slots are used purely for education and assessment.

As part of their educational program the residents receive a 2-hour didactic lecture on the Airway Management, including the Airway Management Protocol, the Fiber optic Bronchoscope, the Intubating Laryngeal Mask, and on performing a cricothyroidotomy.  On a later occasion, the residents receive a 2-hour practical training session on these skills in the Simulation Laboratory.  This paper describes only the assessment session, which occurs during a third 2-hour period.

The assessment uses checklists (FOB, ILMA, Cricothyroidotomy) in an OSCE format.  One OSCE station for each skill, therefore the assessment involves three stations.

Observers trained in the use of the checklist are used as evaluators.  We have effectively used junior residents as evaluators, described here.

Video recordings of the assessment are made.  The video recording serves multiple functions:

  • Inter-observer reliability is ensured (by reviewing the recordings)
  • Assessment security is maintained (by discouraging the assessor from helping the test candidate)
  • Feedback can be provided to the candidate
  • If the candidate demonstrates competence at the required task, then the video recording of the candidate’s performance is stored in that candidate’s electronic portfolio, both by the candidate and the Department.

All assessments are performed on mannequins.

The candidates are briefed prior to the assessment session.  They are told what to expect and where to go.  See a copy of the briefing script here.

Each OSCE station takes no more than 10 minutes.  It is our experience that if three candidates start each 30 minutes, then the assessments proceed smoothly.  In order to assess 24 candidates, we duplicate the three stations.

Click here for a timeline description.

Marking of the OSCE’s is very simple, and the assessment results are immediately available.

Click here for a description of the equipment necessary for the assessment.