In Undergraduate Medical Education, we have a diverse and dedicated teaching faculty committed to teaching our medical students, and to executing the challenge or delivering a curriculum and clinical rotations in English and French.

The Department of Psychiatry is deeply involved in the education of medical students at the University of Ottawa, through both didactic learning such as the Year 2, Unit 3 Psychiatry Block, as well as through various clinical rotations. In addition, Faculty members from the Department of Psychiatry participate in other teaching activities such as cased based learning and are involved in the mentorship program.

During 3rd year clerkship, students spend three(3) weeks of their six-week rotation in an adult psychiatry setting at either the General or Civic campus of the Ottawa Hospital, the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre, L'Hôpital Montfort. They also have a 1-week experience in each of Child Psychiatry and Geriatric Psychiatry. As well, students can choose to complete their adult psychiatry rotation at one of our established DME sites or in a rural setting.  The rural setting is different in that the adult rotation is four(4) weeks instead of three(3).

Throughout the 6 weeks, students work on call with residents and staff at the Ottawa Hospital to gain experience in managing patients with psychiatric emergencies. Finally, students can review the assessment, diagnosis and management of patients with major psychiatric disorders from across the life span by attending half day teaching sessions each week.

Program overview

As the only bilingual medical school in Ontario, the Department of Psychiatry has access to a full range of resources in both official languages. The Ottawa Hospital, consisting of the General and Civic sites, accounts for a combined 80 acute care beds each admitting through specialized psychiatric emergency services. Both hospitals also maintain outpatient and partial hospitalization programs, as well as providing consultation-liaison services to other inpatient services. The General site also has a well-established eating disorders (on-site) and first-episode psychosis (off- site) programs each with access to a flexible number of beds for patient admission. The Civic Site also provides dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT).

Francophone emergency and acute care admissions are provided by the Montfort Hospital. This hospital also provides outpatient, partial hospitalization, and dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) programs.

Stethoscope head lying on medical forms on clipboard closeup while medicine doctor working in background.

Child psychiatry is available at the partially bilingual Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), as well as in French at le Centre hospitalier Pierre-Janet in Gatineau. Both provide child and adolescent emergency, inpatient, and outpatient services with full multidisciplinary team access. CHEO also has multidisciplinary outpatient subspecialty teams including ADHD, Dual Disorders, Mood and Anxiety, and Neuropsychiatry.

Finally, the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group (ROHCG) is a large dedicated psychiatric facility servicing south-eastern Ontario with Ottawa and Brockville sites. Subspecialty inpatient and outpatient services include schizophrenia, mood disorders, addictions, geriatrics, child and adolescent, and forensics. There are also outpatient anxiety and sleep disorders services, as well as partial hospitalization and school programs for youth and adolescents. Additionally, ACTT (Assertive Community Treatment Team) and Mental Health Outreach teams operate from the ROHCG.

The first stage of psychiatric training is a three week period during the second year of medical school. It consists of core didactic lectures, small group case based learning, as well as protected time for elective placements in psychiatry. Entitled Psychiatry Block, the curriculum emphasizes the connections between brain, experience, and behaviour across the lifespan. The fundamentals of psychiatric diagnosis and treatment form the main learning objectives. However, considerable time is allocated to social, ethical and medico-legal issues encountered in the treatment of the mentally ill.

Stage II (clerkship) involves the acquisition of practical physician skills. The psychiatric rotation consists of 4 weeks of general adult psychiatry and 1 week each of child and geriatric psychiatry. Placements are complemented by a didactic lecture series. The 6 week rotation can be completed in French or English, as well as an option for doing a rural placement outside of Ottawa at one of our established DME sites. In addition, all students are expected to have on-call duties during their 6 week rotation for exposure to emergency psychiatry.

For more information on undergraduate psychiatry, please contact:

Khadije Sobh
Undergraduate Education Coordinator
Undergraduate Education Program
Department of Psychiatry
Room 5458 - 1145 Carling Avenue, Ottawa, ON, K1Z 7K4
613-722-6521 ext. 6811
[email protected]



The "Undergraduate Education Committee" organizes the structure and learning objectives for medical students during their Mind Block (psychiatry), as well as the psychiatry rotation during clerkship. This includes organizing lecturers, creating content for the problem based learning modules, and setting exams.

Committee members include:

  • Dr. Khalid Bazaid
    Program Director
  • Dr. Saumil Dholakia
    Anglophone Pre-Clerkship Director, Unit 3 Leader & Mind Content Expert
  • Dr. Kristine Levesque
    Francophone Clerkship Rotation Director
  • Dr. Marie-Helene Rivard
    Francophone Pre-Clerkship Director, Unit 3 Leader & Content Expert
  • Dr. Floyd Wood
    Site Education Director, Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre
  • Dr. Lyndal Petit
    Site Education Director, TOH General Campus
  • Dr. Sarah Russell
    Site Education Director, TOH Civic Campus
  • Dr. Dhiraj Aggarwal
    Site Education Director, CHEO & Education Director, Division of Child Psychiatry Anglophone Clerkship Rotation Director
  • Dr. Soojin Chun
    Education Director, Division of Geriatric Psychiatry
  • Dr. Bronwyn Thomson
    Resident Representative
  • Dr. Paul Slodovnick
    Resident Representative
  • Marijke Cowick
    Francophone Undergraduate Program Coordinator
  • Khadije Sobh
    Anglophone Undergraduate Program Coordinator

Contact information

Khadije Sobh
Undergraduate Education Coordinator
Undergraduate Education Program
Department of Psychiatry
Room 5458 - 1145 Carling Avenue, Ottawa, ON, K1Z 7K4
613-722-6521 ext. 6811
E-mail: [email protected]