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Program Overview






Psychiatry (first four blocks)

Internal Medicine


Emergency Medicine

Family Medicine





Inpatient and Outpatient General Adult Psychiatry


Child and Youth Psychiatry

Developmental Disabilities

Complex Collaborative Psychiatry including Consultation and Liaison Service, Shared Care, Addictions, and Rehabilitation of Persistent Mental Illness


Remaining RCPSC training requirements


Exam Preparation


Electives: Mood Disorders, Anxiety Disorders, Marital Therapy, Eating Disorders, Psychopharmacology, rehabilitation of the chronic mentally ill


Geriatric Psychiatry

Psychotherapy: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Interpersonal Therapy (IPT, Psychodynamic Therapy, Family, Group, and Couple Therapy, Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT)

Research Training: All Residents are involved in ongoing research projects and are mentored from initiation to completion


The postgraduate program for physicians wishing to specialize in psychiatry was developed in 1957. Since the program's first resident met the Royal College requirements for psychiatry, many of its graduates have made significant contributions to this field of medicine provincially, nationally and internationally.
The residency program develops academic and clinical psychiatrists with skills suited to contemporary best practice patterns based on evidence-based medicine. It provides training in an atmosphere of close working relationships amongst the residents and faculty. Two general hospitals and a provincial psychiatric hospital, situated in close proximity, form the institutional basis, which links the academic department at Queen's. These together with community outreach programs provide the residents with opportunity for the development of comprehensive assessment, diagnosis and management skills for the spectrum of psychiatric disorders.

The five-year residency program offers an ideal combination of clinical rotations, academic teaching, electives, and research opportunities:


Post-Graduate Year 1

This basic clinical year (PGY-1) is designed based on the Royal College Guidelines.

Our goal is to provide residents with introduction to the Department of Psychiatry and the areas of medicine relevant to a career in psychiatry. The rotations are selected to also facilitate success on the Medical Council of Canada Qualifying Examination Part II  requirements.


The PGY 1  rotation is comprised of rotations in Adult General PsychiatryGeneral Internal MedicineNeurologyFamily MedicineER MedicinePediatrics and Geriatric Medicine.


Elective time is offered in specialized psychiatry, rehabilitation medicine, research and other specialized areas of interest.

Academic Program

PGY 1 Residents attend teaching and academic activities provided by their off service rotations.  If residents are free, they are encouraged to attend the weekly Psychiatry academic program teaching (see academic program).

Core Residency Program (PGY 2 & 3)

One year general adult psychiatry, divided between inpatient and outpatient psychiatry (2 blocks of emergency psychiatry is incorporated in the outpatient blocks)

6 months Child & Youth Psychiatry, 6 months Geriatric Psychiatry

Senior Residency (PGY 4 & 5)

Mandatory rotations include 3 blocks of Consultation-Liason psychiatry, 2 blocks of shared care psychiatry, 2 blocks of addiction psychiatry, 3 blocks of chronic care psychiatry and 1 block of emergency psychiatry.

During the senior residency years, the resident assumes more leadership in the education and supervision of junior residents, while consolidating and further developing career track interest through electives and selectives, including research.

Academic Program

Our Academic Curriculum consists of didactic and clinical skills development aimed at training residents to become leading tomorrow psychiatrists.  This includes organized core didactic seminars, interviewing skills sessions, small group practices in Phenomenology, Diagnosis and Management and psychotherapy teaching which occur throughout the year.

Residents have protected time from 10:30 a.m - 4:30 p.m. one day each week during their PGY-2 to 5. Journal club occurs monthly during the academic day.

During the PGY1 year summer teaching tutorials include a number of introductory topics: History of psychiatry, Diagnosis and classification, resources, children & adolescents in the ER, adults in the ER, the Mental Health Act, etc. 

The focus in junior years is on small group teaching encompassing core topics in psychiatry including etiology, phenomenology, descriptive psychopathology, diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric disorders across the life cycle as well as interviewing and case formulation. 

Residents in their senior years PGY 4 and 5 are involved consolidating knowledge at an advanced level to prepare for the Royal College examination and to prepare to work as an independent psychiatrist.  Senior residents  prepare for their Royal College final examinations through practice long case examinations and PDMs (Phenomenology Diagnostic and Management Practice Stations).   

Senior Residents have the opportunity to attend Annual Review Courses in Psychiatry, and are relieved of clinical duties to attend.

Psychotherapy teaching includes theory of psychotherapy practice, research methodology and critical appraisal.  Residents gain proficiency in cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT), psychodynamic psychotherapy, interpersonal therapy (IPT), family, group and couple therapy.  Our program follows the Royal College Guideline requirements.

Emergency psychiatry rounds (weekly), journal club reviews under the supervision of a staff psychiatrist (monthly), and grand rounds (weekly), supplement the core academic teaching.  Individual services have formal case based teaching and specialty specific literature reviews (weekly).

Practice STACERs or Diagnostic Interview examinations are integrated into every core rotation. The STACER examinations in the senior years are integrated into the rotations of the Senior Residency. Residents have multiple opportunities to meet the STACER requirement by the early PGY5 year leaving ample time to prepare for the written and oral Royal College Exams.

Research Training Program 

The Department is dedicated to clinical research and provides residents with opportunities to be mentored by Faculty actively involved in research. The residents participate in ongoing research projects and are encouraged and mentored to initiate their own research projects. Guidance is available from departmental members for study design methodology and statistical analysis as well as preparing projects for publication in peer reviewed journals. Residents are encouraged to participate in national and international conferences to present their research.

The Clinician Investigator Program (CIP) is also available for Queen’s psychiatry residents. The CIP's mandate is to assist in the career development of clinician / investigators by providing a formalized postgraduate educational program that fulfills the existing clinical specialty training requirements of the Royal College, as well as a minimum of two years of structured rigorous research training. Up to one of the research years may also be credited to fulfill the individual's specialty requirements. It is preferred that the two years of research be sequential (i.e., R5 plus a one-year fellowship).


Elective time provides the residents an opportunity to consolidate their general psychiatry or sub-specialty training.  Our Program has applied to the Royal College for approval of Subspecialty training which will be offered in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Geriatric Psychiatry and Forensic Psychiatry.  

Electives include inpatient and outpatient general adult psychiatry, collaborative mental health care services, forensic psychiatry, research projects, psychotherapy, psychogeriatrics, psychoses, mood and disorders, consultation-liaison, eating disorders, concurrent disorders, emergency psychiatry and a growing number of other options.

Examination Preparations

PGY 5s preparing for the RCPSC are provided the opportunity to practice long case interviews (Stacers) and PDMs (Phenomenology, Diagnostic  and Management) examinations with members of the Department.  PGY5 residents have the opportunity of creating their academic half day as part of their preparation for the final Royal College examinations

The Department of Psychiatry is able to offer all modalities of psychotherapy training to meet newly adopted RCPSC requirements in psychotherapy.   Fully certified supervisors provide individual supervision in each school of therapy.  Residents commence their psychotherapy training after the first year in a longitudinal manner,  from the second to fifth years. 

Pre-requisites for Resident Psychotherapy Practice

  • Psychotherapy examination based on the review of the fundamental principles of psychotherapy, Introduction to Psychotherapy (Bateman, Brown, and Pedder) and Psychotherapy Training Electronic Resource, the  PTeR..
  • Self Awareness/Cultural Awareness Workshop
  • Case Formulation and Psychotherapy Interviewing
  • The Basic and Intermediate CBT courses
  • Two-day workshop in Psychodynamic Psychotherapy

 Psychotherapy Training

  • Individual Supportive Psychotherapy Course for PGY 2 residents
  • Individual longitudinal CBT, IPT and psychodynamic training under supervision
  • DBT, Group Psychotherapy, Motivational Interviewing, Mindfulness, and Relaxation, will be learned and practiced at the working and/or proficiency levels throughout the PGY 3, 4, and 5 years