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Year by year

housestaff 2017

PGY-1 Internal Medicine Residency

Neurology Residents spend their PGY-1 year in either a preliminary internal medicine program or a transitional year. We highly encourage them to join the Duke Internal Medicine Residency Program, which offers a guaranteed internship slot to all trainees accepted for Duke Neurology. This program, one of the top residency programs in the country, provides a solid foundation in the essentials of general medicine. During this period, residents will participate in inpatient and outpatient general medicine, including critical care. PGY-1 residents in the neurology program also spend two months rounding in neurology. They are assigned a faculty advisor from within the Neurology Department to plan for their second year.

"All of the residents were been incredibly helpful and given me feedback about my notes and presentations. My fellow interns demonstrated great teamwork, resourcefulness, and a good sense of humor." - Lina Barker, MD, PGY-2 Resident

PGY-2 Junior Assistant Residency

During the second year of their residency, Duke Neurology residents (also known as JARs, or Junior Assistant Residents) start their formal training in neurology, with a focus on inpatient care and basic outpatient Neurology. Residents spend time on the stroke service, general and community neurology, and the intensive care unit in Duke Hospital. They also work in outpatient clinics in the Durham VA Medical Center, outpatient clinics at the VA, and have their own continuity clinic.

"The nice thing about the PGY-2 year is that you become comfortable calling and staffing your patients with a wide host of attendings. Going into the PGY-3/SAR year, this allows for a less formal and more familiar atmosphere with the attendings."

- Suma Das, MD, Resident 2014-2017


PGY-2 Rotation Schedule (6 adults, 2 peds)

  • Duke general neurology: 7 weeks
  • Duke stroke: 7 weeks
  • Duke consult: 7 weeks
  • VA clinic: 6 weeks
  • Neuro ICU: 8 weeks
  • Outpatient clinic: 4 weeks
  • Elective: 7 weeks
  • Night float: 4-6 weeks

PGY-3 Senior Assistant Residency

During their PGY-3 year, Senior Assistant Residents (or SARs) focus on subspecialty areas of neurology and gain additional experience leading the Consult team. Residents spend about three months each learning to perform and interpret EEGs and EMGs. They also spend about six weeks on the inpatient pediatric neurology ward. During this year, the residents are also encouraged to start their research/academic projects.

PGY-3 Rotation Schedule


  • Duke consults: 9 weeks
  • Peds neuro inpatient: 6 weeks
  • EMG: 12 weeks
  • EEG: 12 weeks
  • Night float or Night float backup: 2 weeks
  • Elective: 11 weeks


"The faculty at Duke are incredible. I’m always amazed at how brilliant yet approachable everyone is. Everyone has been incredibly helpful, even at 2 in the morning. Even though it’s been very challenging, residency has been a lot of fun so far. The other neurology residents are fantastic people and have become some of my closest friends." - Casey Farin, PGY-4 Resident

PGY-4 Chief Residency Year

In their fourth and final, or Chief Residency year, Duke Neurology residents graduate to further independence, taking on administrative responsibilities for making schedules, and supervising junior assistant residents, interns and medical students. They also triage new neurology patients and accept outside transfers. This graduated responsibility increases in the second half of the year, when chief residents function like junior attendings with an attending supervising them.

PGY-4 Rotation Schedule

  • Duke general neurology: 9 weeks
  • Duke stroke: 9 weeks
  • Peds Neuro outpatient: 6 weeks
  • VA consults: 9 weeks
  • VA clinics: 9 weeks
  • Night float backup: 2 weeks
  • Elective: 10 weeks (including 4 weeks of Psychiatry)

"The faculty at Duke treat the residents like colleagues. They are fun, approachable, knowledgeable, and teach us the necessary skills that we need to become excellent clinical neurologists." - Aaron Loochtan, DO, Resident 2014-2017