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Department of

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neuroscience

Residency Program

Didactic Curriculum

Course work comprises roughly five hours per week each year of the residency. As the resident progresses, key areas in psychotherapy and psychopharmacology are revisited at increasingly sophisticated levels.

During all four years, residents attend weekly departmental Grand Rounds, which include presentations on basic science, psychiatric research, clinical work and theory, and case presentations. Following each weekly Grand Rounds, residents are given an opportunity to have lunch with the speaker, allowing for a smaller forum for discussion.

PGY 2 residents participate in a research conference, lead by the Associate Vice Chair of Translational Research and research education, during which they learn methodology and design, statistical concepts and critical literature review skills.

The department holds a monthly journal club, during which a critical review of evidence-based medicine articles are used to help attendees learn to critically review each study's methodology, results and clinical application.


First-Year Curriculum

First year residents' didactic learning focuses on initial training of the psychiatrist. Topics covered include the mental status examination, suicide evaluation, psychiatric emergencies, overview of the major DSM-5 diagnoses, introduction to psychopharmacology, addiction psychiatry, medical student teaching, law and psychiatry, neurosciences, ethics, cultural competency and an introduction to psychotherapy.


Second-Year Curriculum

Second year residents' didactic learning focuses on an in-depth study of the major psychiatric disorders and evidence based medicine approaches to evaluation and treatment. Topics covered include adult psychopathology, psychological and neuropsychological testing, human development, neurologic disorders, cultural competency, forensics, childhood psychopathology, trauma, and a review of the various psychotherapy theories and modalities of treatment.

There is a year-long research conference focusing on effective literature search, research study designs, ethics as it relates to research subjects, critical appraisal of the literature and practicing evidence-based psychiatry.

 A nine-month psychotherapy case conference provides an introduction to the theory and practice of supportive-expressive, psychodynamic and cognitive behavioral psychotherapies. Special attention is given to applications of these psychotherapy techniques for severely and acutely ill patients in the inpatient and emergency settings.


Third-Year Curriculum

Third year residents' didactic curriculum focuses on a detailed study and application of psychotherapy along with evidence based approaches to patient care in the outpatient setting. Courses include a year-long psychotherapy case conference, in which residents present and formulate individual therapy cases in a group session.

In the second half of the course, residents present videotaped therapy sessions for discussion. Cases are formulated in the biopsychosocial model and various aspects of therapy are explored including psychodynamics and treatment planning.

A year-long psychotherapy modality didactic course is also presented to explore psychoanalytic theory, human development, attachment theory, cognitive behavioral theory, family therapy, couples treatment and other modalities of therapy and issues that arise during psychotherapy. An advanced psychopharmacology seminar is presented from an outpatient perspective of managing patients longitudinally and includes discussion of the current uses of neuromodulatory treatments.

Other topics discussed throughout the year include advanced learning in ethics, forensics, community and outpatient practice, sleep disorders and addictions, as well as other pertinent topics.

Finally, third year residents participate in an experiential group process, during which members of the class participate in a group process led by a group therapist in order to learn the workings of a group therapy setting.


Fourth Year Curriculum

Fourth year residents participate in a two-month course introducing forensic psychiatry evaluations and major issues in the field while on the forensics rotation. A Transition to Practice course helps to introduce residents to different models of practice, financial considerations and developmental considerations for transition to practice.

Residents develop a monthly peer supervision forum for discussing clinical cases amongst themselves and with a faculty facilitator. An adolescent development and psychopathology course prepares them to assume care for a few adolescent patients further broadening the age range and diversity of clinical presentations that they are able to manage.

This latter experience further exposes them to the legal, family and parenting issues that are commonly seen in minors. An advanced psychotherapy conference is lead by a senior psychoanalyst. A monthly advanced psychopharmacology course is led by the department chair.



Supervision is an integral component of teaching at the University of Cincinnati. During hospital-based rotations, residents receive individual and group supervision at each clinical site.

During the outpatient clinical experiences, residents receive five hours of individual supervision in the areas of psychopharmacology and various psychotherapeutic modalities including psychodynamic, supportive and cognitive-behavioral therapies.

Family and couples therapy supervision is also available. Faculty from our department, the Cincinnati Psychoanalytic Institute and private practice are among the many supervisors available to our residents.

Psychiatry Professor with Students

More Information

Categorical Psychiatry Residency Program

Inquiries about the program should be directed to:

Residency Training Office:

Monday - Friday 8 am - 5:30 pm Eastern Standard Time 
Phone: 513-558-5190

Kristin Holhubner

Sonya Kirkland