Resident training in microbiology is divided into two blocks taken during the second and fourth year of training.  Training during the second year consists of a 3 month rotation focused on mastering diagnostic microbiology.  The knowledge provides the resident with a core understanding of microbiology which is reviewed on a brief one month rotation in the fourth year for board review.

The early phase of training emphasizes diagnostic microbiology, during which time trainees are expected to master a core of tests in diagnostic bacteriology, mycology, mycobacteriology, virology and immunology.  This is most concentrated in year 2 of the program and with continued, increasing, responsibility for the resident throughout the rotation.  The microbiology rotation is conducted at Wisconsin Diagnostic Laboratories, Froedtert Hospital and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin to provide the resident with experience in both pediatric and adult microbiology.  Combined the laboratories process more than 900,000 tests annually.  Teaching on this rotation is accomplished through a combination of didactic teaching sessions, formal lectures, bench rotations, participation in multi-disciplinary conferences, and through daily rounds.  Bench rotations during the second year include:

  • Bacteriology
  • Virology
  • Molecular Virology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Mycobacteriology
  • Mycology
  • Immunology

While residency training is designed to provide broad coverage of all aspects of diagnostic microbiology, research projects available to the resident can be custom-tailored to accommodate individual trainee’s interest in virology, bacteriology, or immunology.

This experience includes close interaction and communication with the faculty microbiologists, technologists and clinical colleagues.  Trainees are expected to become competent in a wide variety of microbiological techniques, interpretation of results, and formulating recommendations for follow-up investigations of cases of special interest.  Teaching sessions consist of case discussions and residents present specific topics to faculty in an informal manner.

In addition to scheduled rotations, residents attend hospital infection control meetings, clinical pathology conference, infectious diseases case conference, infectious diseases interest rounds and the microbiology-infectious diseases research conference.

During the fourth year rotation, residents will review the core competencies of microbiology and will be expected manage the clinical microbiology service in consultation with faculty attending. This will include sole responsibility for direction and management of the clinical microbiology laboratory, interacting with the clinician staff, leading daily laboratory rounds and solving day-to-day operational problems.