Psychiatry Residency Scholarly Activity Requirements

Scholarly activity is an important component of your overall training experience, advancing your knowledge of basic research principles, including how research is conducted, evaluated, explained to patients, and applied to patient care.

A Longitudinal Scholarly Experience

All residents are expected to participate in a variety of scholarly activities aimed at enhancing their exposure to, and experience of, the four components of scholarship—Discovery (advancing knowledge), Integration (synthesizing knowledge), Application (applying existing knowledge), and Teaching (disseminating current medical knowledge).

Starting from PGY-1, all residents participate in the Scholarly Project/Research Seminar—discussing research methods, receiving advice on bringing their scholarly projects to fruition, and presenting their own research projects.

Our curriculum continues to support you in your scholarly endeavors by providing a variety of training experiences throughout your four years of residency:

  • During clinical rotations, such as case presentations with literature review, in-services, and supervision sessions
  • In didactic sessions, including Introduction to Evidence-based Psychiatry and Critical Readings in Psychiatry, as well as attending, and presenting at, Grand Rounds
  • Through your individual efforts, such as journal reading and online learning activities

Your scholarly activities culminate in a final scholarly project.

Final Scholarly Project

You are expected to develop and execute a scholarly project of significant scope to contribute to your learning, and to share your learning with the residency program and the department. You are allotted 10% of your working time on a weekly basis in PGY-3 and PGY-4 years to be used for scholarly activities and your final scholarly project.

Typical Types of Scholarly Projects

Empirical Research Projects

  • These projects involve design, execution, analysis and presentation of data.
  • This type of project could be used to collect new data or perform a secondary analysis of existing data.
  • Development of a protocol to be evaluated in terms of ethical principles by Baystate's Institutional Review Board (IRB) would likely be required.

Study of Studies

  • These types of studies aim to generate new knowledge and perspectives on existing published literature by integrating and evaluating multiple studies that investigate a particular topic.
  • There are two main types of these studies:
    • Critical literature review tends to be a more qualitative evaluation of existing literature (but potentially quantitative as well). It focuses on highlighting what is known and agreed upon about a particular topic, as well as clarifying what is not known and gaps in knowledge. Systematic methodological and results reviews are generally performed in these kinds of projects.
    • Meta-analyses are quantitative in nature and aim to evaluate the quality and consistency of studies using similar methodologies to evaluate similar questions.

Choosing a Mentor

You will find skilled and supportive mentors for scholarly projects among the Department of Psychiatry faculty.

Many of our faculty are principal or co-investigators on research grants in such diverse areas as renal palliative care, treatment of adolescent depression, access to psychiatric care, medical education, alcohol withdrawal, ADHD, motivational interviewing and mindfulness. Take a look at our departmental publications.

Suggested Time Line


  • Define an area of interest for your final project and discuss with Program Director.
  • Identify faculty mentor(s)
  • Submit proposal for allotted scholarly activity time in PGY-3 to residency faculty for review.
  • Revise as needed based on faculty feedback and finalize scholarly activity proposal


  • Complete initial literature review for project
  • Meet regularly with faculty mentor(s) to support and guide completion of project
  • Complete PGY-3 deliverable:
    • For empirical research project, complete IRB protocol submission or grant application
    • For study of studies, submit abstract proposal for regional or national meeting
  • Complete proposal for use of scholarly activity time in PGY-4


  • Submit final project manuscript for review by residency faculty
  • Revise as needed based on faculty feedback and finalize manuscript
  • Present your completed project in Resident Grand Rounds at the end of the academic year
  • We encourage you to present your results at a national meeting and/or for publication.

Back to Top