Competency-Based Medical Education





In July 2017, Queen’s University will become the first institution in Canada to fully transition all of its postgraduate residency programs to a competency-based medical education (CBME) framework. This is an exciting time for you to consider coming to Queen’s as you’ll be among the first residents in the country to benefit from this innovative new way of learning.

Traditionally, residents have progressed through our postgraduate programs one year at a time. Promotion to the next year of residency has been based on the successful completion of a curriculum spread over twelve months. The concept of CBME is different. Residents will instead move through the curriculum after demonstrating their achievement of competency in a series of clearly defined learning outcomes. This ensures that our learners have mastered all of the tasks that are expected of them before starting each subsequent phase of their residency.

We’ve significantly restructured our residency programs to clearly define what’s expected of you at each stage of your learning. At any given time, you’ll know exactly what skills you need to develop in order to demonstrate that you’ve gained competence to perform specific tasks. Aligned with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada’s Competency by Design (CBD) Project, we’ve created four new phases of residency. Each phase has a different focus to enable you to gain competence in the knowledge and skills required by your specialty. We’ve also developed an innovative assessment system that will help you to improve your performance and demonstrate that you’ve become a competent medical specialist.

The future of medical education in Canada is changing and we are proud to be leading the way. I hope that you will consider joining the Queen’s community in July and becoming a part of this bold initiative.


G. Ross Walker, MD, FRCSC, FACS
Associate Dean, Postgraduate Medical Education