The department is used for undergraduate teaching by the Yale University School of Medicine. During their laboratory experience residents participate in the neuroanatomy course as lecturer and laboratory supervisor. In this course the neurosurgery resident acts both as teacher and student. This role has been extremely well received and according to the medical student reviews accounts for much of the enthusiasm for neurosurgery. One to 4 students will be on the clinical service at one time
Third year medical students have a four week Clinical Neurosciences Rotation with a choice of adult neurology, pediatric neurology, neurosurgery or outpatient experience. The student who chooses neurosurgery works closely with the residents and attendings as an integral member of the team. Fourth year medical students may elect a subinternship in neurosurgery and similarly be an integral part of the service. There is a surgical intern on the neurosurgery service at YNHH at essentially all times. The residents have responsibility for teaching these students and interns. These interactions with students are an important guide to mentoring for the residents. There is a noon conference each Friday where the medical students present selected educational cases. The residents prepare the students and question them during the conference. Similarly, students present at other general conferences and chief’s rounds.
Each year a number of students complete their medical school thesis in the Department and a number of others will do shorter projects as well.
Residents teaching residents is an important aspect to neurosurgical education. The faculty makes every effort possible to assure this is well supervised and appropriate. Some of the best-received teaching conferences are those were resident present topics to their peers. Additionally, the residents have an opportunity to teach general surgery, neurology, and pediatric house staff about surgical diseases of the nervous system.