Learning Experiences

Residents of the Dean McGee Eye Institute (DMEI)/University of Oklahoma (OU) Department of Ophthalmology benefit from participation in a number of learning experiences that greatly enhance their knowledge of the field of ophthalmology.

Grand Rounds

Presented on Monday mornings by our residents and fellows, the Grand Rounds discussion is presided over by our Chair, Dr. Gregory L. Skuta. Grand Rounds consists of the presentation of two case studies from the diversity of pathology seen at the Eye Institute or OUHSC. Each case is presented chronologically from presenting symptoms, history of present illness, to past medical and ocular history along with photos of clinical findings and diagnostic imaging. Often, diagnostic and therapeutic dilemmas are presented for which additional expertise is requested. Using the Socratic model of teaching, questions are raised throughout the process, culminating in the formulation of a differential diagnosis and the proposal of a diagnostic and therapeutic plan. Attended by the majority of the faculty, this forum allows for the input of each of the subspecialties at DMEI, providing a comprehensive ophthalmologic approach to patient care.

In addition to formal Grand Rounds, we also use this time for visiting professors, both from across campus as well as experts from throughout the world. 

Didactic Conferences  

Residents benefit from participation in didactic conferences through which they learn about the major subspecialties within the field of ophthalmology, enhance their skills, and gain experience in evaluating cases. Click here to learn more about the didactic conferences provided.

Didactic Lectures

Didactic lectures are held every Monday, Thursday, and Friday at 7 a.m. when other conferences or learning experiences are not scheduled. Given by the faculty, these lectures cover the content of the Basic and Clinical Science Course and prepare the residents for the Ophthalmic Knowledge Assessment Program (OKAP) exam and Boards. Additional lecture content includes research design and interpretation, biostatistics, medical ethics, the business of medicine, global ophthalmology, financial and practice management, federal regulations, and American Board of Ophthalmology (ABO) certification and maintenance of certification (MOC).

Journal Club

Journal Club, held several times annually, takes place at a local restaurant and involves the participation of multiple DMEI faculty from various disciplines. Community physicians are also invited to attend. Each meeting is led by a different subspecialty department and consists of a review and critique of several recent or landmark articles pertinent to the field. This serves not only an educational purpose, but is also an opportunity for the residents to learn from and get to know local physicians in the community.

Distinguished Visiting Lecturer Series

Multiple times throughout the year, the Eye Institute invites distinguished clinical faculty and physician-scientists in the various disciplines of ophthalmology from across the country to come and present to our physician group and to interact directly with our residents. Click here to see a list of upcoming and recent visiting lecturers.

Tullos O. Coston Lecture

Tullos O. Coston, MD, was integral to the founding of the Dean McGee Eye Institute and a lectureship was established in his honor. Held during the Annual Resident and Alumni Meeting, distinguished ophthalmologists have been giving this lecture since 1980. Click here to learn more about the annual Tullos O. Coston Lecture.

Walter J. Stark Memorial Lecture

Serving as DMEI Administrator from 1978 until 1991, Walter J. Stark oversaw the initial growth of the Eye Institute and helped build its capacity in patient care, education, and vision research. The lectureship established in his honor has brought leading voices in ophthalmology to DMEI since 1992. Learn more about the Walter J. Stark Memorial Lecture by clicking here.

First Year Anatomy Dissection

Led by oculoplastics attending, Annie Moreau, MD, FACS, this eight-week course provides PGY-2 (Postgraduate Year Two) residents the opportunity to witness first-hand the delicate and complicated anatomy of the eye through organized anatomical dissection. Residents are excused from clinical duties during this eight-week course. This unique program benefits our graduates throughout their careers.

Refractive Course

All residents at DMEI are provided with optional VISX certification training on keratorefractive surgery that is provided during their PGY-3 year at a rotating refractive course. Attendance at the course is funded by the Department of Ophthalmology and at the individual discretion of each resident. They also have the special opportunity to perform refractive procedures such as LASIK/PRK at a markedly reduced rate ensuring an opportunity to use these skills.

Microsurgical Training Facility/Wet Lab

A generous donation from the Sarkeys Foundation helped remodel and equip DMEI’s microsurgical training facility, including a fully stocked wet lab, Eyesi® surgical simulator, two different types of phaco machines, and two operating microscopes. Click here to read more about the microsurgical training facility.

Extramural Cataract Courses

All PGY-4 residents at DMEI have the opportunity to attend Alcon’s cataract education conference in Fort Worth, TX. This course includes didactic lectures by prominent ophthalmologists as well as hands-on practice in the Alcon wet lab. During this wet lab portion, practicing ophthalmologists give tips on managing complications and difficult cases in a one-on-one setting. We have also been invited to participate in a similar course run by Bausch and Lomb and this is an option for residents as well. In addition, those residents wanting a more advanced cataract course experience may attend “Cataract Surgery, Telling It Like It Is!” This course is put on by Dr. Robert Osher during PGY-4. This course may be attended at no cost to the resident in lieu of attending the VISX or other refractive surgery course.

Great Debates in Ophthalmology

In this activity, teams of ophthalmology residents and basic science graduate students are mentored by clinical and research faculty to present formal arguments on either side of a controversial topic in treatment or research. The entire OU vision research community is invited to attend, and the audience votes for a winner. Afterward, a social reception is held.

A few of the recent debates have centered on the following topics:

  • Are antibiotics needed after strabismus surgery?
  • Do corticosteroids have a role in treatment of diabetic macular edema?
  • Does neuroprotection work in humans?

Shark Tank

In 2019 our residents participated in the first DMEI “Shark Tank” competition, with three different teams providing pitches for novel entrepreneurial concepts in ophthalmology. Like Journal Club, the event was held at a local restaurant and attended by DMEI faculty as well as community physicians.