Clinical Education

The Residency Education & Training Committee includes: chief residents, faculty members, directors of each clinical training site, director of residency education and representatives of the Divisions of Clinical Psychology and Social Work. Our clinical education is structured to allow the resident sufficient flexibility to meet graduation requirements as well as to pursue individual needs and interests. Because the resident’s education is paramount, individual interests are actively encouraged and supported. Constant monitoring ensures that educational needs are not usurped by service needs. Didactics and supervision time are protected.

In addition to intensive clinical supervision, a PGY faculty coordinator is responsible for working with residents during each of the training program's four years. The coordinator is familiar with all aspects of the curriculum and rotations in that year and attempts to maximize each resident's learning experiences. To obtain feedback on education and to prepare residents for boards, the program administers a written PRITE examination annually. Also, on each rotation, residents receive formal clinical interview observation and critique. These are all treated as learning opportunities and have contributed to a high success rate on subsequent specialty examinations.

PGY-1 sample rotation schedule

Each block is 4 weeks long, making 13 blocks per year.

~3 blocks 2 blocks 1 block 2 blocks 1 block ~3 blocks
Inpatient Psychiatry, at VCUHS Neurology Emergency Medicine Inpatient Medicine or Pediatrics Inpatient Psychiatry
Night Float
Inpatient Psychiatry
+/- Substance Abuse, at VAMC


During intern year, PGY-1s spend 6 months rotating off-service on Internal Medicine, Emergency Medicine and Neurology. Residents with an interest in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry have the option of doing one to three blocks of Pediatrics instead of Internal Medicine. The other 6-months are spent on inpatient psychiatry at VCU Medical Center and the McGuire VA Medical Center.

The VCU Inpatient Psychiatry Rotations are split into specific teams, according to the patient's presentation on admission. These teams include Mood Disorders, Schizophrenia, Geriatrics, Med/Psych, and STAT. Residents will rotate through each team for at least 1 block over the course of their PGY-1 and 2 years.

More detailed information about the various Inpatient Psychiatry Teams.


PGY-2 sample rotation schedule

Each block is 4 weeks long, making 13 blocks per year.

2-3 blocks 5+ blocks 3-4 blocks 1-1.5 blocks 1-1.5 blocks
Inpatient Psychiatry +/- Substance Abuse, at VAMC Subspecialty Rotations Inpatient Psychiatry, at VCUHS ER Psychiatry Night Float

Night Float

Outpatient Psychotherapy Clinic (~4 hours/week)


The PGY-2 schedule is very flexible and residents are able to submit requests so that their schedule can be tailored to their specific interests. They are able to request extra time on any given rotation. 

Throughout the year, PGY-2s see outpatients for psychotherapy. They will complete their rotation through each VCU Medical Center inpatient team, so that by the end of PGY-2 they will have rotated through every team. Residents also rotate through each of the subspecialty rotations for a minimum of 1 block.

Subspecialty rotations include:

PGY-3 sample schedule

All rotations done during the PGY-3 year are done on an outpatient basis. Each half day represents another "clinic." The General Psychiatry clinic and one psychotherapy clinic stay at the same time throughout the year. The other clinics change every 3-6 months.


Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
AM General Psychiatry Didactics Emergency Psychiatry Psychotherapy Psychotherapy & Case Conference
PM Subspecialty Psychotherapy or Subspecialty Didactics Child & Adolescent Grand Rounds & Residents' Meeting & Psychotherapy


  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Borderline Personality Disorders        
  • Forensic Psychiatry
  • Geriatric Psychiatry
  • Mental Health in Primary Care
  • Neuropsychiatry
  • PTSD
Psychotherapy Modalities include:
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (optional)
  • Family/Couples Therapy
  • Group Therapy
  • Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
  • Psychotherapy w/ Psychopharmacology
  • Supportive Psychotherapy

More detailed information about Psychotherapy Training and Outpatient Psychiatry.

PGY-4 sample schedule

4 months 4 months 4 months
Electives (20 hours/week) Consultation & Liaison Psychiatry Community Psychiatry
& 10 hours/week of Electives
Outpatient Psychotherapy Clinic (~17 hours/week)

The PGY-4 year is divided into three blocks and includes continual outpatient psychotherapy. Our Electives Catalogue details the extensive list of available electives. As senior residents on the Consultation & Liaison service, PGY-4s rotate at both VCUHS and VAMC. The community psychiatry experience is through select local community service boards, which are Virginia's resource for public mental health care.

Psychotherapy Modalities include:
  • Supportive Psychotherapy
  • Psychotherapy w/ Psychopharmacology
  • Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Couples/Family Therapy

More detailed information about Consultation & Liaison Psychiatry & Outpatient Psychiatry

PGY-4 Electives

(Click here for full descriptions)

Addiction Medicine Community Psychiatry Elective
Introduction to Functional
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Palliative Care
Adolescent Mental Health
& Substance Use Research
Couples Therapy: An Object
Relations Perspective
Managed Behavioral Healthcare
Private Practice
Advanced Assessment and
Pharmacotherapy of Psychotic
and Mood Disorders
Consultation Liaison
Psychiatry (Psychosomatic
Marital and Family
Therapy Training
and Supervision
Genetics Research
Advanced Training in Family Therapy Consultation/Liaison Research
Medical and Psychiatric Ethics Psychiatry in Long-Term Care
Anxiety Disorders Domestic Violence
Assessment and Engagement
Medical Regulation Psychiatric Day Hospital
Center for Craniofacial Care Electroconvulsive Therapy
& Other Brain Stimulation
Medical Student
Teaching Elective
Research and Treatment of Schizophrenic Disorders
Center for Human-Animal Interaction Emergency Psychiatry
Mood Disorders Inpatient
Junior Attending
Senior Supervising
Resident (SSR)
Child and Adolescent
Psychiatry Consultation - Liaison
Forensic Psychiatry in a
Maximum Security Setting
Movement Disorders Psychiatry Spit for Science: The VCU Student Survey
Clinical Service in a Private Practice-
outpatient, inpatient and research setting
General Psychiatry
Outpatient Junior
Outpatient Geriatric Psychiatry Toxicology
Clinical Trials in Psychiatry HIV Psychiatry Clinic Outpatient

College Psychiatry In-Depth Experience in
Geriatric Psychiatry
Inpatient Junior Attending,
Geropsychiatry, Schizophrenia
or STAT/CSU Team