“Formulation wars”: a novel formulation curriculum for residents and faculty
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Memorial University of Newfoundland
Catherine Margaret Hickey   

Memorial University of Newfoundland, Dr. L.A. Miller Centre, 100 Forest Rd., A1A 1E5 St. john's, NL, Canada
Submission date: 2016-12-07
Acceptance date: 2017-04-16
Publication date: 2017-06-28
Arch Psych Psych 2017;19(2):69–72
Biopsychosocial formulation remains an important skill for both residents and faculty. If it is not taught early and adequately, then residents fail to develop this skill. Despite a number of evidence-based teaching tools, residents continue to voice concern about when and how formulation is being taught in training programs. A survey in Canada showed that residents were dissatisfied with the current “status quo”. Structured teaching was deemed important; as was hearing supervisors formulate. Small group teaching was valued and early exposure was also considered beneficial. The purpose of our paper is to demonstrate a novel technique for teaching biopsychosocial formulation to psychiatry residents of all training levels. We detail a workshop we developed for both residents and faculty that combines faculty formulations with small and large group work. We recognize that this initial workshop was a small first step in changing the culture of formulation teaching. More studies are needed to determine exactly which teaching methods should be employed in a more robust and structured formulation curriculum.