Medical Physics Residency Curriculum
NYU Grossman School of Medicine’s two-year Medical Physics Residency curriculum provides residents with the experience, knowledge, and skills required to perform clinical procedures and emphasizes patient safety. Based on current guidelines from the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Physics Education Programs (CAMPEP) and the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM), our curriculum includes clinical rotations, didactic courses, teaching and presentations, conferences, and research.
Clinical Rotations in Medical Physics
As a resident, you spend the majority of your time in clinical rotations, during which you receive hands-on training, supervised by mentors. Mentors in each rotation evaluate your performance and help you meet training objectives. Your 22-month rotations schedule, based on specific areas within medical physics, includes the following:
- treatment planning
- linear accelerator quality assurance, acceptance testing, and commissioning
- CT simulation, including patient positioning, setup, imaging, and routine quality assurance
- high-dose rate and low-dose rate brachytherapy
- shielding and radiation protection
- special procedures, including stereotactic body radiation therapy, use of the Gamma Knife and CyberKnife, and total body irradiation
- ethics and professionalism
Didactic training includes courses in radiation biology and radiation physics. The 18-month radiation biology course is taught weekly at Mount Sinai Hospital by Barry S. Rosenstein, PhD. Residents also have the option to attend remotely. The radiation physics class is a 10-month course, and residents attend weekly lectures by expert NYU Department of Physics faculty.
Teaching and Presentation Requirements
Residents present regularly at a journal club on current topics and also lead reviews and discussions of relevant reports by the AAPM and the International Atomic Energy Agency. During your second year, you will teach two or three radiation physics class sessions under the guidance of our faculty.
Conferences and Meetings
Conference participation is considered an essential part of your training. Department conferences include new patient conferences, or chart rounds; physics and dosimetry standardization sessions; morbidity and mortality conferences; an outside speaker series; and research meetings. You are encouraged to attend meetings and symposia hosted by the Radiological and Medical Physics Society—the local chapter of the AAPM.
You are also provided with funding to attend a major professional meeting of your choice. Funding for a second national meeting may be granted if your research abstract is accepted for presentation.
Research is an integral part of the Medical Physics Residency, preparing you to be a leader in the field and a competitive candidate in job searches. As a resident, you are encouraged to take up more than one research project. Project assignments are overseen by the director and associate director of the Medical Physics Residency and should be in line with your research interests or career goals. They must also expand your clinical knowledge and understanding. Your research could involve dosimetry studies or other computer simulations, for instance, or focus on a physics-related clinical or radiobiology question that piques your interest.