Medical Residency FAQ

  1. How much protected research time are residents given?

    With our recent residency expansion to a cohort of 12 residents being approved by the ACGME, we now guarantee a minimum of 10 months of protected research time during the PGY-4 year to all residents in good clinical standing. Residents may pursue clinical, physics, or basic science research during this time. The UCLA Department of Radiation Oncology supports residents in the Holman Pathway.
  2. How are clinical rotations arranged?

    Residents work in two month blocks with site-specific attending physicians who are experts in their chosen specialty. Rotations on the Westwood campus are structured such that each resident is assigned to only one attending physician at a time in an apprenticeship format, with increasing responsibility as he/she progresses through training.
  3. Do residents rotate offsite?

    Yes. The locations of clinical rotations are:

    Primary UCLA Rotations:

    1.  Westwood: The primary site of the UCLA radiation oncology department and the location of the majority of resident rotations are located at the UCLA medical center main campus in Westwood.
    2.  Santa Monica: Some GU and Breast services are stationed at the UCLA hospital in Santa Monica. A free shuttle service does operate between the Westwood and Santa Monica locations, but it is easiest to travel by car.

    Offsite Rotations:

    1.  Greater West Los Angeles Veteran Affairs: During the second year (i.e., PGY-3 year), the resident will spend four months rotating at the VA hospital. The resident does not take call when rotating at the VA.
    2.  Children’s Hospital Los Angeles: During the third or fourth years (i.e., PGY-4 or PGY-5 years), the resident may spend one month rotating at CHLA. The resident does not take call when rotating at CHLA.
    3.  International Opportunities: A formal clinical rotation at our affiliate hospital in Brazil, the Barretos Cancer Hospital in the state of Sao Paulo, is now offered to all residents.
  4. How are didactics organized?

    Residents typically have some type of educational activity every morning and are officially protected from patient-care duties (including pages) between 8 and 9 am daily. The Radiation Oncology Clinical Didactic Lecture Series (ROCDLS) consists of formal faculty-moderated lectures on Monday and Wednesday mornings, and is divided into two-month blocks focusing on particular disease sites. Departmental chart rounds take place every Tuesday and Thursday morning, at which time residents and students are given the opportunity to present patient cases for discussion. Physics and radiobiology lectures are given on Friday mornings, on an alternating yearly schedule.
  5. What is the call schedule like?

    Call is divided into one week blocks, lasting from a given Tuesday at 8 am to the following Tuesday at 8 am. During this time, the resident takes consult requests and also answers questions from patients undergoing radiation treatment who call the clinic after normal business hours. Generally, residents take the most call in their first and last (i.e. PGY-2 and PGY-5) years, as they are on research electives or rotating offsite more frequently in the middle two years.
  6. How is vacation organized?

    Residents have four weeks of paid vacation, which is usually divided into four five day blocks (however, this is quite flexible). When the resident is on vacation, the attending physicians cover themselves. This ‘no cross-coverage’ rule for residents is firmly reinforced.
  7. Where do residents live?

    As a large coastal metropolis, Los Angeles has a relatively high cost of living. Some of the single residents have historically lived in studio or 1BR apartments in the Westwood area, while residents with families have resided in subsidized university housing, or in some of the surrounding neighborhoods (e.g., Culver City, Santa Monica, Brentwood). Housing costs vary significantly depending on the neighborhood.