Undergraduate Student Electives

In psychiatry we need time to set up an elective as we need to check schedules of physicians in the area(s) of interest(s) you have listed. The more areas of interests (child, forensics, geriatric, adult, CL, etc.) you provide the more physicians can be asked. There are 4 possible sites (CHEO, TOH-Civic Campus, TOH-General Campus, The Royal) where your elective could take place.

 

Specific for uOttawa MS1 and MS2 electives, we need the following information.

  1. How many hours you are looking to cover.
  2. Dates and times you can physically meet your preceptor at his/her site.
     

Non-Ottawa University students looking to book a 4th year elective, please apply through the AFMC portal
 

For all inquiries, please contact:

Alex Sinha
Undergraduate Education Coordinator
Undergraduate Education Program
Department of Psychiatry
Room 5458 - 1145 Carling Avenue, Ottawa, ON, K1Z 7K4
613-722-6521 ext. 6811
psyugme@uottawa.ca
 

If you are an international medical student, physician assistant student or a licensed physician and looking to do an observership/internship please contact the specific Hospital’s Medical Affairs Office:

Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre:
Debra Monroe
(613) 722-6521 x 6937
Debra.Munroe@theroyal.ca

The Ottawa Hospital – Civic & General:
Jessica Chamberlain
(613)798-5555 x 10655
medicalaffairs@toh.ca

Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario
Jennifer Milleson
(613) 737-7600 x 2243
mso@cheo.on.ca

Adult Psychiatry

Elective: Introduction to Dual Diagnosis and Neuro-developmental Disorders (Community Mental Health Program)

Objectives:

  • The focus of this elective placement will be to get a basic knowledge of the common mental illnesses and Intellectual disability.
  • The student will get to sit in with outpatient clinics, community multi professional assessments
  • They will be expected to observe functional and behavioural assessments and other discipline assessments with the team.
  • Understanding around Capacity and Mental Health Act Forms use in adults with Intellectual Disability
  • To learn about Interface between Intellectual disability mental health and social welfare issues around housing and finances.
Description: The student will be able to observe assessments around mental health focused on DSM5 , ADHD and ASD spectrum disorders, Functional and Behavioural assessments and Cognitive assessments. There will also be a good opportunity to learn basic psycho pharmacology and physical health related issues in adults with Intellectual disability. The students will also get to learn more about the interface between Intellectual disability and Epilepsy ( both classification and medications). Finally the students will get to do case based discussions, presentations , and Quality assurance and research work depending on interest and time availability.
  • Supervisor(s): Moshieve Febin Edwin MD (primary), Tim Moran MD (secondary)
  • Location: Community Mental Health Program, The Royal (Carlingwood – 2121 Carling, 2nd floor)
  • Duration: as requested by student
  • No. of Students: 2-3 max
  • Available to: 4th year students

Elective: Community Rehabilitation Psychiatry

Objectives: To expose students to a multidisciplinary mental health treatment and rehabilitation service provided in the community to a population with psychiatric disabilities and multiple psychosocial challenges. To review with the student psychosocial rehabilitation principles and how the consumer movement has influenced the development of recovery principles in mental health services.

Description: Be aware that this elective is based within the community itself, working very closely within a multidisciplinary team, and working with under-privileged clients in varied community settings.

Student will be exposed to a wide range of treatment interventions (both pharmacological and psychotherapeutic), functional assessments, rehabilitation interventions and advocacy work. Student will have the opportunity to participate in skills teaching classes/groups offered to the clients. He/she will be expected to attend and participate in clinical team meetings. Student will have the opportunity to be exposed to a wide range of housing situations, community resources and tribunals related to the mental health act or legal system. Student may choose to devote the entire elective period to working with the community team or may divide their time between community-based and hospital-based teams.

  • Supervisor(s): Dr. Chantal Whelan
  • Location: Carlington Assertive Community Treatment Team, Carlington CHS, 900 Merivale Road. Ottawa K1Z 5Z8
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1
  • Available to: 4th year students

Elective: Acute General Inpatient Psychiatry

Objectives: To provide the student with the opportunity to participate in diagnostic interviewing and in the management of acute psychiatric illnesses. During this rotation, students will manage many disorders including mood disorders, psychotic disorders and personality disorders.

Description: The student will work closely with the junior resident on the team, both being under the immediate supervision of the attending. An evidence-based approach is fundamental. With an average length of stay of 14 days, rapid resolution of symptoms is sought. The student will be encouraged to participate in interviewing patients and to participate actively in diagnostic formulations and treatment plans. In addition to learning about psychopharmacology and ECT, the student will learn some empathic listening skills in order to develop a therapeutic relationship.

  • Supervisor(s): Drs. Veronica McCarthy, John Moise, Laura Campbell,  Eric Mikhail, and Irina Lepatadu.
  • Location: The Ottawa Hospital (Civic and General campus)
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 2-3
  • Available to: 1st, 2nd and 4th year students 

Elective: Emergency Room Psychiatry

Objectives: The medical student will join a team including nursing, social work, residents from various disciplines, and psychiatric staff, in the assessment and management of patients referred to a specialized Emergency Psychiatry service.

Description: The student will be fully integrated into the Psychiatric Emergency service, initially observing patient assessments, but soon moving on to doing patient assessments. Over the four weeks the medical student will improve their interviewing skills, and advance their ability to integrate the information into practical treatment plans. Diagnostic skills will advance also, and there is ample opportunity for supervision by residents and by psychiatric staff. Understanding the Mental Health Act, management of suicidal patients, and Crisis Intervention are examples of areas emphasized in this rotation. There are opportunities to become involved with our Mobile Crisis Team, adding a community focused dimension to the experience.

  • Supervisor(s): Drs. Catherine Mann, Mark Kaluzienski, Doug Wilkins, Heidi King, Nathalie Côté.
  • Location: The Ottawa Hospital (Civic and General campus)
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1-2
  • Available to: 4th year students

Elective: Mood and Anxiety

Objective: The medical student will join a team including nursing, social work, pharmacy, dietitian, occupational therapy, recreational therapy, psychiatric residents, and psychiatric staff, in the assessment and management of patients admitted to a specialized mood and anxiety disorders inpatient unit with the possibility of participating in the assessment and management of patients referred to the mood and anxiety disorders outpatient unit if there is interest and availability.

Description: The student will be fully integrated into the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program. Depending on their individual comfort and experience with performing a psychiatric evaluation, students may initially observe patient assessments but will be expected to quickly move on to doing patient assessments independently, with support and supervision from residents and staff. Students will improve their interviewing skills and advance their ability to integrate the information into practical treatment plans. Diagnostic and formulation skills will improve in supervision and discussions with the multidisciplinary team. Students will gain an understanding of an approach to the complex psychiatric patient with treatment-resistant mood disorder and/or unclear diagnosis. Teamwork is important in this rotation, as the unit runs collaboratively. Depending on availability, there may be an opportunity to observe the administration of intranasal or IV ketamine, rTMS, and ECT. There will be multiple opportunities to participate in rounds, team meetings, journal club, and psychopharmacological reviews, as well as to attend and participate in various therapeutic and psychoeducational groups offered on the ward or in the outpatient department.

  • Supervisor: Drs. Katerina. Nikolitch, Ebad Habibollahzadeh and Amol Vaze.
  • Duration: 2-4 weeks
  • Location: The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre
  • Number of students: 2-3
  • Available to: 4th year students

Elective: Consult Liaison

Objectives: The medical student will join a team of residents and psychiatric staff, in the assessment and management of patients referred to a specialized Consult Liaison service.

Description: Students will be fully integrated into the Consult Liaison service. They will develop astute psychiatric consultant and shared care skills for patients admitted to medical, obstetric, oncology, rehabilitation and surgical units. Students will refine their psychiatric diagnostic skills and apply psychiatric treatment guidelines in the context of medical illness and polypharmacy. There is additional emphasis on understanding the mental health act, capacity and safety assessments.

  • Supervisor(s): Drs. Lyndal Petit, Jasmine Gandhi and Simon Hatcher (General Campus); Drs. Doug Wilkins and Gary Kay (Civic Campus).
  • Location: The Ottawa Hospital (Civic and General campus)
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1
  • Available to: 4th year students

Elective: Schizophrenia

Objectives: The medical student will join a team including nursing, social work, occupational therapist, dietitian, recreational therapist, psychologist, pharmacist psychiatric residents and psychiatric staff, in the assessment and management of patients referred to a specialized schizophrenia program.

Description: The Schizophrenia Program utilizes a team approach. Each member of the team has a wide range of experience dealing specifically with schizophrenia and related disorders. Students will have opportunity to interact with patients and various team members during their admission and in outpatient setting. They will also learn the role of each team member in providing individualized and comprehensive care for patients. The student will initially observe patient assessments, but soon moving on to doing patient assessments. Over the three- four weeks the medical student will improve their interviewing skills, and advance their ability to integrate the information into practical treatment plans. Diagnostic skills will advance also, and there is ample opportunity for supervision by residents and by psychiatric staff. Understanding the Mental Health Act, developing competence in basic risk assessment, introduction to pharmacological and psychological treatment of persons with complex psychotic illness and a recovery model of treatment in schizophrenia are examples of areas emphasized in this rotation.

  • Supervisor(s): Drs. David Atwood, Alain Labelle, Tabitha Rogers, Alex Baines, Olabisi Owoeye and Naista Zhand.
  • Location: The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1-2
  • Available to: 2nd and 4th year students
Child Psychiatry

Elective: Pediatric BNCL

Objectives:

  • Behavioral Neuroscience and Consultation Liaison

Description: Provides mental health consultation, neuropsychological assessment and time-limited interventions for CHEO inpatients and outpatients who have both medical and mental health issues, impacting on their adjustment, treatment or recovery.  BNCL team members offer different perspectives with backgrounds from psychiatry, psychology, and nursing. Children and youth from 0-18 years who present with both medical and mental health issues that impact on their adjustment and medical management can be referred to the BNCL Team.

Benefits for students interested in taking this elective: All age range and variety of diagnoses

  • Supervisor (Faculty lead): Drs. Sophia Hrycko, and Sinthu Suntharalingam
  • Location: CHEO main site 6th floor 6 West
  • Duration: 2-4 weeks
  • Number of Students: 1 per physician
  • Offered to (year of students): 3rd and 4th year students
  • Availability: All year round except Blackout dates, Christmas holiday shutdown, and 1 week in August

Elective: Pediatric Inpatient General

Objectives: Working with a 19 bed unit, youth’s age 17 or less and working with a multidisciplinary team.

Description: 19-bed unit ( 4 des on 6 North, 15 beds on 6 east, offers crisis management, behavioral stabilization, medication review and diagnostic clarification. These patients are admitted from the Emergency Services or Crisis from Outpatient services.

Benefits for students interested in taking this elective: All age range and variety of diagnoses

  • Supervisor (Faculty lead) : Dr. Addo Boafo, Dr. Fred Stocker, Dr. Erinna Brown
  • Location: CHEO main site 6th floor 6 East inpatient unit
  • Duration: 2 weeks
  • Number of students: 1 per physician
  • Offered to (year of students): 3rd and 4th year students
  • Availability: All year round except Blackout dates, Christmas holiday shutdown and 1 week in August

Elective: Pediatric Outpatient Services

Objectives: Outpatient psychiatry rotation offers the opportunity to work with children and adolescents with a wide range of problems including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, trauma and stress related disorders, ADHD, behavior disorders, autism spectrum and early psychosis.

Description: Emphasis is on developing the student’s ability t diagnose developing a biopsychosocial formulation, make comprehensive recommendations and provide treatment for children and teens within their family context. Various modalities of treatment include psychopharmacology, CBT, DBT, parent skill development, family therapy, and groups. We use the Choice and Partnership Approach (CAPA). Residents learn to do Choice appointments in which patient and family needs and goals are identified and to work in partnership with the patient/family toward the goals.

Benefits for students interested in taking this elective: All age range and variety of diagnoses

  • Supervisor (Faculty lead): Dr. Erin Kelly, Dr. Dhiraj Aggarwal, Dr. Hazen Gandy, Dr. Katherine Matheson ( maternity) Dr. Lara Postl, Dr. Helene Cadotte, Dr. Mike Cheng, Dr. Marjorie Robb, Dr. Olivia Macleod, Dr. Rishi Kapur
  • Location: CHEO main site 6th floor and 9-1661 Montreal Road
  • Duration: 2 weeks
  • Number of students: 1 per physician
  • Offered to (year of students): 3rd and 4th year students
  • Availability: All year round except Blackout dates, Christmas holiday shutdown and 1 week in August

Elective: Urgent Care

Objectives: Outpatient consultation Services for urgent/crisis referrals

Description: Mental Health assessments are provided to children and youth (under 18 years) on an urgent basis who present with a significant level of risk of harm to self or others or have experienced an acute change in mental status, particularly related to psychosis. Assessments are conducted by psychologists and psychiatrists and provide diagnostic clarification, an evaluation of risk, and treatment recommendations. Psychiatrists are additionally able to provide medication review. There is limited capacity for follow-up.

  1. Current suicidal/homicidal ideation
  2. Recent suicide attempt/gesture (medically stable)
  3. Acute change in mental status, particularly as a result of psychosis
  4. Ability to engage in safety planning
  5. Lack of existing clinical support
  6. History of suicide attempts

Benefits for students interested in taking this elective: All age range and variety of diagnoses

  • Supervisor (Faculty lead): Dr. Anton Baksh
  • Location: CHEO main site 6th floor 6 West
  • Duration: 2-4 weeks
  • Number of students: 1 per physician
  • Offered to (year of students): 3rd and 4th year students
  • Availability: All year round except Blackout dates, Christmas holiday shutdown and 1 week in August

Elective: The Royal – School Based Day Treatment/Adolescent high School setting

Objectives: Treatment Program for Adolescents who require the support of a multidisciplinary team to reintegrate to school and full functioning.This rotation would be combined with outpatient clinics that have a focus on adolescent substance use disorders concurrent with mental health concerns

Description: Brookfield is a school-based day treatment program for High School aged students with a variety of diagnoses.

Benefits for students interested in taking this elective: 16 to 18 years age range and variety of diagnoses.

  • Supervisor (Faculty lead): Dr. Robert Milin (only during 10 month school year)
  • Location: Brookfield High School 
  • Duration: 2 weeks
  • Number of Students: 1 per physician
  • Offered to (year of students): 3rd and 4th year students
  • Availability: Only during the school year, Christmas Holidays, march Break and Summer vacation are blackout times.

Elective: The Royal – YIPU/YPHU - Inpatient and outpatient

Objectives: Treatment Program for Adolescents who require the support of a multidisciplinary team to reintegrate to school and full functioning. Participation in group therapy available. The emphasis is on developing the student’s ability to diagnose, develop a biopsychosocial formulation, make comprehensive recommendations, and provide treatment for children and teens within their family context.

Description:

  • 8-bed unit for adolescents 16 to 18 years old.
  • Stabilization and Treatment (focus on “major” psychiatric disorders/first onset psychosis).
  • Outpatient psychiatry rotation offers the opportunity to work with adolescents with a wide range of problems  including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, trauma and stress-related disorders, ADHD, behavior disorders, autism spectrum, early psychosis, etc
  • Various modalities of treatment include psychopharmacology, CBT, DBT, family therapy, and groups. We use the Choice and Partnership Approach (CAPA). Residents learn to do Choice appointments in which patient and family needs and goals are identified and to work in partnership with the patient/family towards the goals.

Benefits for students interested in taking this elective: 16 to 18 years age range and variety of diagnoses

  • Supervisor (Faculty lead): Drs. Khalid Bazaid, Smita Thatte, Gail Beck, and Robert Milin (only in summer time)
  • Location: The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre, Main Campus
  • Duration: 2 weeks
  • Number of students: 1 per physician
  • Offered to (year of students): 3rd and 4th year students
  • Availability: All year round except Blackout dates Christmas holiday shutdown and 1 week in August

Elective: Pediatric - Eating Disorders

Objectives: To observe & participate inpatient EDP psychiatric assessments of EDP children and youth. To observe & participate inpatient therapy and care. To learn to perform a mental and physical status exam with confidence and to gain a basic understanding of EDP patients and it’s program

Description: A 6-bed unit (on 6 North), offers a supportive and therapeutic environment to help guide patient and family to make positive changes towards recovery. The team will help patient understand eating disorders, understand why they take the patients so seriously and to guide and care for them. You will work closely with the treatment team ( Physician, Psychiatrist, dietitian , Registered Nurses and CYC’s)

Benefits for students interested in taking this elective: All age range and variety of diagnoses

  • Supervisors: Drs. Clare Roscoe, Leanna Isserlin
  • Location: CHEO main site 6th floor 6 North office
  • Duration: 2-4 weeks
  • Number of Students: 1 per physician
  • Offered to (year of students): 3rd and 4th year students
  • Availability: All year round except Blackout dates, Christmas holiday shutdown, and 1 week in August

 

Forensic Psychiatry

Elective: Family Court Clinic

Objectives: To educate the student in regards to various legislation involving children, including the Children's Law Reform Act (CLRA), Child and Family Service Act (CFSA), and Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA); to educate and inform the student in regards to issues of child abuse, including neglect, incest, physical abuse, juvenile delinquency, etc.; to provide information in regards to sexual behaviours assessments and incest treatment; to teach the student how to do a proper legal report; and to teach the student issues involving court appearances and expert testimony.

Description:The student would observe court assessments involving children performed by the psychiatrist and other members of the multi-disciplinary team. These would primarily include custody and access cases (Children's Law Reform Act), child welfare assessments (Child and Family Service Act), and young offenders (Youth Criminal Justice Act).

  • Supervisor(s): Dr. Gregory Motayne, Dr. Floyd Wood
  • Location: The Royal (Family Court Clinic)
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1
  • Available to: 1st, 2nd and 4th year students

Elective: Forensic Psychiatry

Objectives: To introduce students to the problems of assessing and treating the mentally abnormal offender.

Description: The Forensic Program assesses and treats the mentally abnormal offender on both an in-patient and out-patient basis. All ranges of both offence and psychiatric illness are seen within this program on referral by all levels of court, judges, Crown Attorneys, defence counsel, Federal and Provincial probation, etc. Treatment is offered following assessment where appropriate and reports are prepared for courts and lawyers upon request. The student would be exposed to the assessment and treatment processes, including how to take a proper forensic history and, in addition, would be able to attend at court and detention centres with the supervising psychiatrist. A very basic session would be given in the preparation of reports.

  • Supervisor(s): Various
  • Location: Forensic Program, The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre
  • No. of Students: 1 student only (3rd year CORE students take priority)
  • Available to: 1st, 2ndand 4th year students

Elective: Forensic Psychiatry-Brockville

Objectives: To familiarize the medical students with Forensic Psychiatric Practice including assessment, acute care, rehabilitative treatment of individuals with severe mental disorders (including personality disorders) who have come in conflict with law. This elective can be tailored to the student's interest.

MCSCS security clearance is required for this elective.

Description: This elective is best suited for a student who is interested acquiring skills in the assessment and treatment of individuals with major mental disorders who have come in conflict with law. It will provide the student the opportunity to develop skills in the court ordered assessment (fitness, criminal responsibility, capacity, etc) and treatment of acute and chronic mental disorder (with or with co-morbid axis II psychopathology). Students will also be provided the opportunity to acquire basic skills in risk assessment (clinical and actuarial) and familiarization with the provincial and federal mental health legislation.

The student would be exposed to the assessment and treatment processes, including how to take a proper forensic history and, in addition, would be able to attend at court and detention centres with the supervising psychiatrist. A very basic session would be given in the preparation of reports. A student can also choose to participate in clinical research projects, as they are available. Areas of interest include risk assessment, dysfunctional anger, criminal responsibility and psychopathy, mental disorder and violent behavior.

  • Supervisor(s): Drs. Anthony Adiele, Sanjiv Gulati, Colin Cameron, Jean-Marie Ribeyre and Jonathan Gray
  • Location: Brockville Mental Health Centre, Brockville, Ontario
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1 (a vehicle is an asset for this elective)
  • Available to: 4th year students

Elective: Sexual Behaviours Clinic

Objectives: To provide an introduction into state of the art assessment and treatment of criminal and non-criminal paraphilic sexual disorders.

Description: The SBC at the Royal Ottawa Hospital is primarily an out-patient clinic that conducts approximately 250 new assessments per year on men and women with problematic sexual behaviors and interests. Referrals come from family doctors, medical specialists, probation and parole, Crown and Defence attorneys, the Courts, and increasingly, via self-referral. In addition to individual psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy, the SBC also runs several groups for sex offenders; men with problematic sexual behaviors with and without and intellectual disability; and for spouses of sex offenders. Assessment and therapy is available in French or English languages. The SBC regularly hosts international experts in Forensic psychiatry who come to the clinic to learn the latest techniques and to share their experiences.

Students may expect to participate in a multidisciplinary team providing evidence-based, research driven diagnosis and management of out-patients with a variety of sexual problems. Those students with an interest in research, neuropsychiatry, intellectual disability, and/or forensic psychiatry are especially encouraged to apply. Those who are able to converse with patients in the English and/or French languages are equally welcome. Due to the high profile nature of many of the patients seen in the SBC, students may also expect to learn about the criminal justice system and ways of dealing with the media. Work on the assessment and treat of so-called "dangerous" and "long-term" offenders can also be arranged.

  • Supervisor(s): Drs. Paul Fedoroff, and Dominique Bourget (Bilingual and French speaking only)
  • Location: Forensic Program, The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre
  • Duration: 1-4 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1
  • Available to: 4th year students
Geriatric Psychiatry

​​​​​​Elective: Geriatric Psychiatry

Objectives: Under the close supervision, 1) To learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage common psychiatric disorders in the elderly, 2) To improve interview skills, 3) To work collaboratively with multidisciplinary team members.

Description: Under the supervision of the staff psychiatrist, the student will interview geriatric patients under his/her care and follow them throughout their rotation, participating actively in treatment decisions and completing necessary documentation (e.g. admission note, consultation note, follow up note, discharge note) in a timely manner. The student will be encouraged to liaise with patient's family/care givers when appropriate. The student will be asked to participate in a multidisciplinary team meeting and work collaboratively with other team members. Depending on availability, the student may have an opportunity to participate in electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).

  • Setting: One of combination of the following settings - Inpatient, Outpatient, Day hospital or Long-term care home depending on the availability
  • Supervisor(s): One or more of geriatric psychiatrists at ROMHC
  • Location: The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre
  • Duration: 1-2 Weeks
  • No. of Students: 1
  • Available to: 1st, 2nd, and 4th year students
Back to top