The Work

OpTrust Educational Bundle

The Education Research Collaborative team has developed the OpTrust Educational Bundle for professional development among surgeons. This faculty and resident professional development focuses on entrustment education, goal orientated personality traits, and the validated OpTrust Measurement System as a means to objectively and accurately assess intraoperative entrustment and entrustability. The OpTrust Educational Bundle consists of comprehensive rater training, objective assessment, and educational session. It is designed to enhance faculty-resident interactions in the operating room across five domains:

    1. Types of Questions Asked.
    2. Operative Plan.
    3. Instruction.
    4. Problem Solving.
    5. Leadership by the Surgical Resident.

The OpTrust Educational bundle successfully promotes behaviors associated with entrustment during intraoperative faculty-resident interactions, and has the potential to be adopted across other procedural-based specialties to promote graduated autonomy during supervised training. Contact ERSC to learn more about OpTrust ▸

Diagram of a resident observing a surgical procedure (faculty operating, resident observing)
Diagram of resident operating in first assist role (faculty leading, resident assisting)
Diagram of resident operating with faculty in first assist role (faculty assisting, resident leading)
Diagram of a senior resident taking a junior resident through a case (senior resident leading, junior resident assisting, faculty observing)

Teaching and Learning

We strive to lead and contribute to research in surgical teaching and learning, develop curriculum and professional opportunities, and advance feedback methods.

  • Residents as Educators (RAE) Program: This program provides an interactive curriculum, an introduction to teaching approaches and methods, as well as sessions that include deliberate teaching, perioperative teaching models, and feedback.
  • Professional Development Opportunities: This includes topics such as constructive feedback, strategic questioning, qualitative research methods, curriculum development, and compassion fatigue.
  • ERSC Outreach: We work across the health professions with programs such as MEDPREP, Medical Students in Global Surgery, Department of Learning Health Sciences, and Veterinary Medicine.
Surgical team in the operating room
Student taking another student's blood pressure during Doctors of Tomorrow program

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Surgery

The Education Research Sciences Collaborative serves and welcomes all segments of the medical/surgical community to engage in forward thinking research, teaching, and assessment. We strive to provide fair and equal opportunity, treatment and access to surgical research sciences while attempting to eliminate possible barriers that have hindered participation by some groups.

Members of the ERSC are actively involved in:

Assessment and Evaluation

The ERSC encourages assessment, evaluation, and facilitates the systematic process of documenting and collecting empirical data on learner knowledge, skills, attitudes and beliefs. Through assessment and evaluation, the teacher/learner interaction can be measured and ultimately improved.

ACGME Core Competencies

  • Milestones Assessment and Evaluation Committee (MAEC): Systematically ensures that assessment instruments provide high quality data for summative reviews of residents.
  • Clinical Competency Committee (CCC): Instruments are revised (for example, to provide more detailed feedback about teaching), while others are implemented anew (such as, informed consent). As assessment and evaluation measures are enhanced, they provide increasingly more detailed information to the Clinical Competency Committee (CCC).
Trainees sitting in an auditorium
Dr. Bartlett and a resident discussing a poster at the Moses Gunn Research Conference

Surgeon and Trainee Health and Wellness

We are excited to partner with medical students, residents, and faculty to facilitate educational sessions to develop a better understanding of compassion fatigue and strategies to help counteract the effect.

Our approach is informed by the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, which gauges the physical and emotional health of people according to six quality of life categories: life evaluation, emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors, and basic needs.

2019-2020 Stats

The ERSC's work has resulted in $1,083,079 total awards. We produced 66 poster presentations, 63 publications, 33 podium presentations, and 5 international presentations, resulting in 157 citations. In addition, our group has had 17 visiting professorships.

Our group has provided mentoring for 23 residents, 17 medical students, 2 graduate students, and 12 undergraduate students. We also partner with the Doctors of Tomorrow program, which includes 254 Cass Tech High School students and 280 University of Michigan medical students.

ERSC national collaborators include:

ERSC 2019-2020 Stats
2019-2020 ERSC Mentoring Stats

Learn More

Contact Administrative Assistant Janice Vallie at or at (734) 615-7052 to find out more about our work and how to collaborate with us.