The primary objective for the PGY-I year is the acquisition of knowledge, skills, and professionalism necessary to practice as a physician. This is a year in which a resident's professional identity shifts from student to physician, and navigating this transition successfully is the primary aim. The PGY-I year curriculum provides a foundation of knowledge and skills in internal medicine, emergency medicine, and neurology, as well as a basic introduction to psychiatry. Starting this year, there is now a PGY-1 Psychiatry didactics curriculum where residents meet with GW Psychiatry faculty to learn the basic skills of Psychiatry early on.
Residents completing the PGY-II year acquire an extensive knowledge of psychiatric disorders that includes all major DSM-V diagnostic categories for children, adolescents, and adults. They gain competence in pharmacological treatments through an intensive year-long weekly seminar in clinical neurosciences and psychopharmacology. They learn how to conduct family meetings for hospitalized patients that emphasize psychoeducation, relapse prevention, and the countering of stigma against psychiatric illness. They learn skills for supportive group therapy with inpatients. They complete the first level of training in long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy through seminars, weekly supervision, and psychotherapy cases.
The PGY-III year is devoted to outpatient psychiatry. Residents gain competence in long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy through a sequence of seminars, weekly supervisions with two different psychodynamic supervisors, and psychodynamic psychotherapy cases. In addition, they learn how to conduct focal psychotherapies utilizing a range of models for brief psychotherapy, each with seminars, supervisions, and assigned cases. Aside from outpatient psychotherapy practice, PGY-III residents have the opportunity to work interdisciplinarily in a range of community clinics and psychosomatic clinics.
Residents in the PGY-IV year focus on their special career interests while continuing supervised outpatient therapies. The PGY-IV year is broadly flexible in order to best facilitate each resident's career trajectory. Residents who enter a child and adolescent psychiatry residency or other approved PGY-IV fellowship can do so with all general psychiatry residency requirements completed by the end of the PGY-III year.