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Become a member and receive career-enhancing benefits

Our top priority is providing value to members. Your Member Services team is here to ensure you maximize your ACS member benefits, participate in College activities, and engage with your ACS colleagues. It's all here.

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Optimal Resources for Surgical Education and Training

Optimal Resources for Surgical Education and Training

Optimal Resources for Surgical Education and Training, the “Gold Book,” is the definitive guide to training surgeons of the future. The breadth and depth of the field of surgery has only expanded in recent years and this manual serves as an authoritative reference for surgical education leaders, as well as a roadmap for residency training programs to ensure educational excellence in the training of surgery residents of all specialties. Experts contributed to every chapter, creating a comprehensive overview of each aspect of surgical education. The book covers the optimal theoretical, educational, and practical resources needed to train surgical residents. This manual is written for surgical faculty and leadership, professional educators, hospital administrators, surgical residents, and anyone involved in surgical resident education and training.

Modeled after the successful 2017 “Red Book” entitled Optimal Resources for Surgical Quality and Safety, the "Gold Book" describes the necessary resources to administer a surgical training program that prepares surgeons of the future.

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Editors: David B. Hoyt, MD, FACS; Ajit K. Sachdeva, MD, FACS; Lewis M. Flint, MD, FACS; and J. David Richardson, MD, FACS
Co-Editors: Patrice Gabler Blair, MPH; Tara M. Oremland, MS; Diane S. Schneidman; Jacob R. Williams, MPH; Rachel Williams Newman, MS; and Katie F. McCauley


Price: $44.95 for single copies (up to a quantity of 9)

Bulk pricing: $39.95 per copy for 10 copies or more

Domestic orders (within U.S.): All listed prices include shipping.

International orders (outside of U.S.): Additional shipping charges may apply.

If you are an ACS member, login with your credentials to purchase through our online store. Non-ACS members may visit the store and set up an account to purchase items.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Preamble

Lead Author: J. David Richardson, MD, FACS, MAMSE
Co-Authors: Jo Buyske, MD, FACS, DABS, and Steven C. Stain, MD, FACS, MAMSE

Describes the manual’s purpose as a single, consensus-based, comprehensive resource that describes the elements of an effective surgery residency and provides guidance on how to design and implement it. It is a guidebook to help ensure that trainees acquire the knowledge and skills to independently practice upon completion of training.

Chapter 2: Educational Underpinnings and Their Application to Surgery Resident Education

Lead Author: Ajit K. Sachdeva, MD, FACS, FRCSC, FSACME, MAMSE
Co-Authors: James R. Korndorffer, Jr., MD, MHPE, FACS, MAMSE, and Roy Phitayakorn, MD, MHPE (MEd), FACS

Considers the evolution of surgery residency training within the context of applying foundational educational principles of teaching and learning to the design, implementation, and evaluation of training programs.

Chapter 3: On Optimal Oversight, Governance, and Management of Graduate Medical Education Programs in Surgery

Lead Author: E. Christopher Ellison, MD, FACS, MAMSE
Co-Authors: L.D. Britt, MD, MPH, DSc(Hon), FACS, FCCM, MAMSE, FRCSEng(Hon), FRCSEd(Hon), FWACS(Hon), FRCSI(Hon), FCS(SA)(Hon), FRCS(Glasg)(Hon); Julie A. Freischlag, MD, FACS, FRCSEd(Hon), DFSVS, MAMSE; Amy N. Hildreth, MD, FACS; Benjamin T. Jarman, MD, FACS; Jeffrey B. Matthews, MD, FACS, MAMSE; John R. Potts III, MD, FACS, MAMSE; Linda R. Archer, PhD; Molly Brittain, MEd; Katherine L. Files, MBA; and Mitchell C. Sokolosky, MD

Reviews the essential elements for successful management of residency programs in surgery, including the optimal oversight and governance of graduate medical education (GME) programs.

Chapter 4: Core Knowledge for Residency Training

Lead Author: John A. Weigelt, MD, DVM, MMA, FACS, MAMSE
Co-Authors: Daniel L. Dent, MD, FACS, and James C. Hebert, MD, FACS

Defines the curriculum to manage the program and expectations of learners, including both topics critical to master and those that will aid in the development of an optimal understanding of general surgery. The chapter also provides a variety of methods in the implementation of an effective general surgery curriculum.

Chapter 5: Curriculum: Core Professional and Doctoring Skills

Lead Author: Anna M. Ledgerwood, MD, FACS
Co-Authors: Charles E. Lucas, MD, FACS, and J. Wayne Meredith, MD, FACS, MCCM, MAMSE

Provides an overview of the qualities necessary for the maturation of the physician arranged into three broad areas, the affective domain, the cognitive domain, and the psychomotor domain.

Chapter 6: Curriculum: Technical Surgical Skills

Lead Author: Fabrizio Michelassi, MD, FACS, MAMSE, ESA(Hon), SIC(Hon)
Co-Authors: Demetrios Demetriades, MD, PhD, FACS, MAMSE; David V. Feliciano, MD, FACS, MAMSE; Ernest E. “Gene” Moore, MD, FACS, MCCM, FACN, FISS, MAMSE; Mohsen M. Shabahang, MD, PhD, FACS, MAMSE; Nathaniel J. Soper, MD, FACS, MAMSE; Dimitrios Stefanidis, MD, PhD, FACS, FASMBS, FSSH
Consultant: J. David Richardson, MD, FACS, MAMSE

Outlines the optimal resources and the ideal curriculum needed to teach residents in surgery training programs the technical surgical skills for the performance of essential general surgery procedures.

Chapter 7: Curriculum: Non-Technical Skills

Lead Author: Carlos A. Pellegrini, MD, FACS, FRCSI(Hon), FRCS(Hon), FRCSEd(Hon), FWACS(Hon), MAMSE
Co-Authors: Keith D. Lillemoe, MD, FACS, MAMSE; Mary H. McGrath, MD, MPH, FACS, MAMSE; Roy Phitayakorn, MD, MHPE (MEd), FACS; and Douglas S. Smink, MD, MPH, FACS, MAMSE

Answers questions regarding the development of the non-surgical skills necessary for surgeons including emotional intelligence, professionalism, interprofessional education, and leadership.

Chapter 8: Resident Training in Scholarship and Research

Lead Author: Kelly M. McMasters, MD, PhD, FACS
Co-Authors: Timothy J. Eberlein, MD, FACS, MAMSE; James S. Economou, MD, PhD, FACS; Mary T. Hawn, MD, MPH, FACS; and Allan D. Kirk, MD, PhD, FACS, MAMSE

Focuses on the importance of engaging residents in scientific inquiry and how to best incorporate research, investigation, publication, and other scholarship into the resident training program.

Chapter 9: Curriculum: Quality and Safety: Evaluation, Management, and Improvement

Lead Author: John F. Sweeney, MD, FACS
Co-Authors: Justin B. Dimick, MD, MPH, FACS; Clifford Y. Ko, MD, MS, MSHS, FACS, FASCRS; Susan Moffatt-Bruce, MD, PhD, FRCSC, MBA, FACS, MAMSE; and Brigitte K. Smith, MD, MHPE, FACS, FSVS

Addresses the importance of introducing surgery residents to the concept of quality improvement (QI) and patience safety. Includes teaching techniques and uses a hypothetical example to illustrate critical QI steps.

Chapter 10: Curriculum: Business and Personal Financial Resource Management

Lead Authors: K. Craig Kent, MD, FACS, MAMSE, and Mark Aeder, MD, MS, FACS
Co-Authors: William G. Cioffi, MD, FACS; Charles D. Mabry, MD, FACS; Michael F. Rotondo, MD, FACS; and Selwyn M. Vickers, MD, FACS

Addresses how programs can best educate and prepare residents for their financial future by exploring how health care is funded in the US and the unique financial position of physicians.

Chapter 11: The Surgeon as Advocate

Lead Author: Andrew L. Warshaw, MD, FACS, FRCSEd(Hon), MAMSE
Co-Authors: Patrick V. Bailey, MD, MLS, FACS; Frank G. Opelka, MD, FACS; Amy E. Liepert, MD, FACS; Christian Shalgian; and Gary L. Timmerman, MD, FACS, MAMSE

Explains why surgeon advocacy training has become essential in today’s health care environment, how research informs health policy, how government implements new policy, and what resources are available to advocates.

Chapter 12: Curriculum: Assessment and Evaluation Resources

Lead Author: John D. Mellinger, MD, FACS
Co-Authors: Thomas H. Cogbill, MD, FACS; Gerald M. Fried, MD, FACS, FRCSC, FCAHS, MCS; Paola Fata, MD; and Daniel J. Vargo, MD, FACS

Explores new strategies for assessing resident progress in their surgical technical skills, cognitive abilities, and professional competencies. Provides educators with a model for designing and implementing the educational components of general surgery residency, including competency-based medical education, and offers details on specific assessment strategies.

Chapter 13: Resources

Lead Author: Ronald J. Weigel, MD, PhD, MBA, FACS
Co-Authors: Karen J. Brasel, MD, MPH, FACS, MAMSE; Christian Miguel de Virgilio, MD, FACS; Taylor S. Riall, MD, PhD, FACS; and Patricia L. Turner, MD, MBA, FACS

Outlines the people, system, physical, and well-being resources that are necessary for creating the optimal training environment for surgery residents. This requires a coordinated effort of many individuals across the spectrum of the health care system.

Chapter 14: Faculty and Trainee Expectations

Lead Author: Melina R. Kibbe, MD, FACS, FAHA
Co-Authors: Barbara L. Bass, MD, FACS, MAMSE, and Muneera R. Kapadia, MD, MME, FACS, FASCRS

Details the expectations that span the many domains critical to educating the next generation of surgeons. This includes how to create a safe and healthy learning environment.