Exploring Advanced Degrees

  • Jacob A. GreenbergEmail author
Part of the Success in Academic Surgery book series (SIAS)


For many years, the majority of surgical residents in academic residency programs across the country have pursued a traditional path towards a career in academic surgery by committing to at least 2 years of research in the basic sciences during their training. While this model continues to be applicable today, the current generation of surgical residents has significantly more options for academic pursuits than their predecessors. Health services, outcomes, translational, and education research have all grown in popularity, and it is increasingly clear that one can be successful in academic surgery by pursuing research in these and a number of other fields. While the skills needed to perform research in the basic sciences can often be learned in the laboratory, the same is not entirely true for health services or education research. Research in these areas requires a different skill set, often employing a mix of both qualitative and quantitative research methods, which are not easily learned outside of a classroom setting. This has led an ever-increasing number of today’s residents to pursue additional degrees that may aid in their research efforts. This chapter will explore the role of advanced degrees as they pertain to pursuing a career in education research.


Advanced Degree Academic Residency Program Academic Surgery Quantitative Research Methods Traditional Path 
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Further Reading

  1. Capella J, Kasten SJ, Steinemann S, Torbeck L. Guide for research in surgical education. Woodbury: Cine-Med; 2010.Google Scholar
  2. Knowles MS, Holton III EF, Swanson RA. The adult learner. Oxford: Elsevier; 2005.Google Scholar
  3. Searchable list of Graduate School Programs. Accessed on 5 Sep 2013

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SurgeryUniversity of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public HealthMadisonUSA

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