For Residents

Results From the First Annual Association of Professors of Dermatology Program Directors Survey


Author and Disclosure Information

The first annual Association of Professors of Dermatology (APD) program director (PD) survey was distributed in November 2022 and included 53 respondents from individual Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) programs. This survey included 137 in-depth questions to identify similarities and differences among programs regarding 12 broad categories: program characteristics; PD demographics; impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on residency training; available resources; quality improvement; clinical instruction; didactic instruction; research content; diversity, equity, and inclusion; wellness; evaluation systems; and graduation outcomes of postgraduate year (PGY) 4 residents. The survey provided preliminary insight to similarities and differences between programs, such as varying academic time and research resources, while also challenging norms seen in areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion. As future surveys are optimized to obtain greater response rates, these metrics can be captured in a centralized database accessible to PDs to reflect trends and identify strengths and weaknesses of dermatology residency programs.

Practice Points

  • The first annual Association of Professors of Dermatology program directors survey allows faculty to compare their programs to other dermatology residency programs across the United States.
  • The results should inspire opportunities for growth, improvement, and collaboration among dermatology residency programs.



Educational organizations across several specialties, including internal medicine and obstetrics and gynecology, have formal surveys1; however, the field of dermatology has been without one. This study aimed to establish a formal survey for dermatology program directors (PDs) and clinician-educators. Because the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and American Board of Dermatology surveys do not capture all metrics relevant to dermatology residency educators, an annual survey for our specialty may be helpful to compare dermatology-specific data among programs. Responses could provide context and perspective to faculty and residents who respond to the ACGME annual survey, as our Association of Professors of Dermatology (APD) survey asks more in-depth questions, such as how often didactics occur and who leads them. Resident commute time and faculty demographics and training also are covered. Current ad hoc surveys disseminated through listserves of various medical associations contain overlapping questions and reflect relatively low response rates; dermatology PDs may benefit from a survey with a high response rate to which they can contribute future questions and topics that reflect recent trends and current needs in graduate medical education. As future surveys are administered, the results can be captured in a centralized database accessible by dermatology PDs.


A survey of PDs from 141 ACGME-accredited dermatology residency programs was conducted by the Residency Program Director Steering Committee of the APD from November 2022 to January 2023 using a prevalidated questionnaire. Personalized survey links were created and sent individually to each PD’s email listed in the ACGME accreditation data system. All survey responses were captured anonymously, with a number assigned to keep de-identified responses separate and organized. The survey consisted of 137 survey questions addressing topics that included program characteristics, PD demographics, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on clinical rotation and educational conferences, available resident resources, quality improvement, clinical and didactic instruction, research content, diversity and inclusion, wellness, professionalism, evaluation systems, and graduate outcomes.

Data were collected using Qualtrics survey tools. After removing duplicate and incomplete surveys, data were analyzed using Qualtrics reports and Microsoft Excel for data plotting, averages, and range calculations.


One hundred forty-one personalized survey links were created and sent individually to each program’s filed email obtained from the APD listserv. Fifty-three responses were recorded after removing duplicate or incomplete surveys (38% [53/141] response rate). As of May 2023, there were 144 ACGME-accredited dermatology residency programs due to 3 newly accredited programs in 2022-2023 academic year, which were not included in our survey population.

Program Characteristics—Forty-four respondents (83%) were from a university-based program. Fifty respondents (94%) were from programs that were ACGME accredited prior to 2020, while 3 programs (6%) were American Osteopathic Association accredited prior to singular accreditation. Seventy-one percent (38/53) of respondents had 1 or more associate PDs.

PD Demographics—Eighty-seven percent (45/52) of PDs who responded to the survey graduated from a US allopathic medical school (MD), 10% (5/52) graduated from a US osteopathic medical school (DO), and 4% (2/52) graduated from an international medical school. Seventy-four percent (35/47) of respondents were White, 17% (8/47) were Asian, and 2% (1/47) were Black or African American; this data was not provided for 4 respondents. Forty-eight percent (23/48) of PDs identified as cisgender man, 48% (23/48) identified as cisgender woman, and 4% (2/48) preferred not to answer. Eighty-one percent (38/47) of PDs identified as heterosexual or straight, 15% (7/47) identified as gay or lesbian, and 4% (2/47) preferred not to answer.

Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Residency Training—Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 88% (45/51) of respondents incorporated telemedicine into the resident clinical rotation schedule. Moving forward, 75% (38/51) of respondents indicated that their programs plan to continue to incorporate telemedicine into the rotation schedule. Based on 50 responses, the average of educational conferences that became virtual at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic was 87%; based on 46 responses, the percentage of educational conferences that will remain virtual moving forward is 46%, while 90% (46/51) of respondents indicated that their programs plan to use virtual conferences in some capacity moving forward. Seventy-three percent (37/51) of respondents indicated that they plan to use virtual interviews as part of residency recruitment moving forward.


Online-Only Materials

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