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Am J Surg. 2008 Jan;195(1):1-4.

Comparison of resident self-assessments with trained faculty and standardized patient assessments of clinical and technical skills in a structured educational module.

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  • 1Loyola University Medical Center, Department of Surgery, Maywood, IL, USA.



This study assessed the reliability of surgical resident self-assessment in comparison with faculty and standardized patient (SP) assessments during a structured educational module focused on perioperative management of a simulated adverse event.


Seven general surgery residents participated in this module. Residents were assessed during videotaped preoperative and postoperative SP encounters and when dissecting a tumor off of a standardized inanimate vena cava model in a simulated operating room.


Preoperative and postoperative assessments by SPs correlated significantly (P < .05) with faculty assessments (r = .75 and r = .79, respectively), but not resident self-assessments. Coefficient alpha was greater than .70 for all assessments except resident preoperative self-assessments.


Faculty and SP assessments can provide reliable data useful for formative feedback. Although resident self-assessment may be useful for the formative assessment of technical skills, results suggest that in the absence of training, residents are not reliable self-assessors of preoperative and postoperative interactions with SPs.

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