Department Leadership

The dean establishes, and closes if necessary, academic departments, programs, and divisions to meet the needs of the medical school. A division chief reports to the department chair and is appointed by the dean to head each division within a department. 

All faculty of the medical school must hold a primary faculty appointment in a department/program (or in certain circumstances, the office of the Dean) and may hold secondary appointments in other departments and programs. All faculty appointed in departments and programs report to the dean through the department chairs.

Academic Departments

Department of Biomedical Sciences

This department is responsible for the content related to the instruction of the basic sciences within the medical school curriculum. The chair and faculty work collaboratively with associate and assistant deans, other department chairs, program directors and faculty in other departments on educational curriculum development and delivery specific to the basic sciences. It is intended that the basic sciences are integrated throughout all four years of the medical school curriculum. Faculty employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities for scholarly activities and community service.

Department of Medical Education

This department is responsible for consultation and training of faculty to advance learning across the continuum of medical education to strengthen educational skills for classroom, small group and clinical teaching. Training responsibilities include contributing to faculty development for instructional design, curriculum development, evaluation and measurement, and the training of residents and medical students to develop basic skills as educators. Faculty are responsible for overseeing the medical student requirement for mentored teaching activities. Faculty employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities for scholarly activities and community service.

Department of the Medical Library

The medical library is the primary source for biomedical information for the WMed community and provides customized access to electronic resources that directly supports medical education, clinical care, research, and service. Faculty employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities for scholarly activities and community service.

Clinical Departments

The clinical departments represent each of the major disciplines involved in the clinical instruction of medical students, residents, and fellows. The faculty of clinical departments are primarily physicians and other healthcare professionals but may include nonclinical professionals. Faculty employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities for clinical services, scholarly activities, and community service.

Academic Programs

Biomedical Informatics

This program is responsible for informatics education and training of medical students, graduate students, and residents, and also research in biomedical informatics. Faculty employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities for clinical services, scholarly activities, and community service.

Medical Engineering

This program is responsible for medical engineering education and training of medical students, graduate students, and residents, and also research in medical engineering. Faculty employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities for scholarly activities and community service.

Medical Ethics, Humanities, and Law

This program is responsible for clinical ethics, medical ethics, humanities, and medical-legal training and education of medical students, graduate students, and residents, and also research in clinical ethics, medical ethics, humanities, and medical-legal issues. Faculty employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities for clinical services, scholarly activities, and community service.

Department Chairs and Program Chiefs

The overall responsibility is to provide continuing oversight of the department activities, leading the department to a position of academic and professional eminence while furthering the mission and goals of the medical school. For department chairs who are not employed by the medical school, these responsibilities are expected to require the minimum of 50 hours each year of direct engagement in education and service to the medical school. Department chairs who are employed by the medical school have additional responsibilities in the medical school for clinical care, research, and community service.

  • Academic Responsibilities

    Working in collaboration with the deans, the specific academic responsibilities include:

    • Overall responsibility for all departmental activities that are part of the medical school, supporting and accountable for excellence in education, clinical care, scholarly activity and research, and professional and community service.
    • Provide leadership in the department and at the medical school under the direction of the dean, and regularly participate in leadership meetings for the medical school, and affiliates as appropriate.
    • Communicate effectively and foster relationships with all department faculty, development of interdisciplinary activities within and beyond the medical school, and relationships between the medical school and community leaders.
    • Represent the discipline, department, and faculty in medical school activities, and advocate for the discipline and the department in a respectful and collaborative manner that most effectively meets the mission of the medical school and the department.
    • Represent the medical school and department regionally, nationally, and internationally.
    • Participate in the Chairs Council to advise the dean on policy development and implementation, and methods and actions to achieve the mission and goals of the medical school.
    • Maintain respectful, collaborative, and effective relationships with deans, other department chairs, and faculty.
    • Assure a department culture that embodies the medical school’s commitment to diversity and inclusiveness.
    • Participate in strategic planning for the medical school, and affiliates as appropriate, and lead the department process to establish, communicate, create commitment to, execute, and assess department academic goals as part of the medical school strategic plan.
    • Promote department educational, clinical, and research activities in compliance with all regulatory and accreditation standards.
    • Recruit, mentor, and develop talented academic and clinical faculty to fulfill the needs and all components of the mission of the medical school and department.
    • Serve as an advisor and mentor for new and junior faculty in the department, and assist the associate dean for Faculty Affairs with faculty development.
    • Facilitate faculty progress for promotion, review faculty progress annually to identify department faculty who are appropriate for consideration for promotion, and manage the development of faculty promotion packets and the department promotion process through submission to the medical school Appointment and Promotion Committee.
    • Assure departmental continuing professional development activities for physicians in the discipline, and professional development activities for faculty in education, research, and compliance.
    • Intervene as appropriate to remedy unsatisfactory student, resident, fellow or faculty performance.
    • Manage department staff, finances, and resources effectively and efficiently and in accordance with medical school policies.
    • Complete and communicate annual faculty evaluations in a timely manner.
    • Provide regular reports to the dean and the medical school on the activities of the department faculty, including department academic productivity as part of the medical school annual academic report.
  • Educational Responsibilities

    Working in collaboration with the associate dean for Educational Affairs, associate dean for Graduate Medical Education, and assistant deans, the specific educational responsibilities include:

    • Assure that department faculty work collaboratively with associate and assistant deans, other department chairs, program directors, and faculty on educational curriculum development and delivery specific to the discipline.
    • Assure the excellence of the content, delivery, and assessment of the instruction of clinical training and skills in the discipline and the highest possible academic learning experiences for medical students, residents, fellows, and other learners including for continuing education.
    • Assure integration of department activities and fulfilling department responsibilities for medical student and resident education.
    • Assure effective communication with medical students and residents at all department sites for the:
      • Educational goals and objectives of department clerkships and rotations.
      • Learner and curriculum assessment methods.
      • Process and methods for medical student, resident, and fellow assessment of the curriculum and instructors.
    • Assure timely evaluations and reporting of student, resident, and fellow performance and achievements.
    • Monitor and counsel students, residents, fellows, and junior faculty in their academic and career goals in the discipline.
    • Serve as an advisor and mentor for medical students interested in the discipline, assist medical students in identifying opportunities for engagement with department faculty, and assist medical students in obtaining residency positions in the discipline.
    • Serve as an advisor and mentor for residents and fellows in the department, assist residents in identifying opportunities for engagement with department faculty, and assist residents in obtaining advanced training and career positions in the discipline.
  • Clinical Responsibilities

    For clinical departments with physicians employed by the medical school, and working in collaboration with the associate dean for Clinical Affairs, the specific clinical responsibilities include:

    • Act as a physician champion for clinical programs of the medical school.
    • Provide effective leadership and oversight of the clinical activities of the employed faculty, including providing direction to the medical director of clinics involving department faculty.
    • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with the medical staff of affiliates and faculty throughout the community in order to build a cohesive and collaborative department.
    • Serve in an advisory capacity for the discipline to hospital medical staff and administration, and in leadership meetings and strategic planning as appropriate.
  • Research Responsibilities

    Working in collaboration with the associate dean for Research, the specific research responsibilities include:

    • Model active participation in research and scholarly activities.
    • Facilitate department faculty participation in research and scholarly activities including dissemination through presentations and publications.
    • Assure that department faculty are engaged in research and scholarly activities that meet the needs of medical students, residents, fellows, and the medical school.
    • Oversee a department process to review and approve research projects in the department.
    • Encourage and facilitate student, resident and fellow involvement in research.
    • Assist faculty in obtaining funding for research activities and developing collaborations within and outside the department.