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Duke-NUS Surgery Programmes

Year 2 Surgery Clerkship


​The Year-2 Surgery Clerkship is an 8-week compulsory posting for all students. The clerkship is divided into two parts: Surgery 1 and Surgery 2. Students are assigned in pairs or individually to one overall mentor every four weeks, and one senior resident (SR) mentor every 2 weeks. The SR mentor may be a faculty from a different department from the overall mentor so as to provide students with more exposure to the different departments of General Surgery.

Learning Objectives

  • Know common surgical conditions (Elective& Emergencies)

  • Take a comprehensive history, perform physical examination and come to appropriate differential diagnosis

  • Know basic ward based and surgical procedures

  • Know how the surgical unit operates – allied health / nursing etc.


Introduction to Basic Suturing and Knots Tying Workshop

An Introduction to Basic Suturing and Knots Tying Workshop will be conducted in Surgery 1. The aim of this workshop is to provide a structured introductory curriculum to equip medical students with the necessary basic suturing & knots tying skills.

Simulation Lab Workshop

A Simulation Lab Workshop will be conducted in the Surgery 2. It is a hands-on workshop on venepuncture, ABG taking, tubes and drains and urinary catheterization.

Year 4 Advanced Surgery


The Advanced Surgery Rotation is a 4-week compulsory posting for all students.

The emphasis is on:

  • Consolidating the foundations of surgical knowledge; and

  • Equipping students with appropriate skills and knowledge to be a competent and safe intern.

The student will have hands-on opportunity to put into practice the knowledge and clinical skills developed in the Year 2 surgical clerkship. The student will be attached to the various sub-specialties, including Acute Care Surgery (ACS). Attachment to each assigned team is for 2 weeks, the students will be assigned with a faculty mentor who will supervise and mentor him/her during the 2-week period. Non-gastrointestinal subspecialty attachment will include a 1-week attachment with the ACS team.

The Programme requires that the student be an integral member of the surgical team. The learning process is acquisition of knowledge through practical training, ward rounds, clinic sessions, bedside tutorials, HO Teaching Conferences and Journal Club sessions etc. The student is expected to relate well and work closely with all the team members, as well as the nursing and ancillary staff.

Learning Objectives

  • Take a comprehensive history, perform physical examination and come to appropriate differential diagnosis

  • Manage common surgical conditions/diseases

  • Evaluate and prepare patients for surgery/procedures

  • Management common surgical emergency – shock, sepsis, bleeding, etc.

  • Communicate with patients, medical and nursing and other health care professionals

Year 4 Surgery Student-in-Practice (SIP)


The SIP is a 5-week posting which is designed to build on the experiences of Medical Year 4 Advanced Surgery and exposes the students to more intensive period prior to actual clinical practice as a doctor. The overarching goal is for the student to embed and perform the duties similar to a PGY-1 doctor.

Learning Objectives

  • Participation as an essential member of the health care team.

    • Documentation (Clerking, update progress of patients, Blue letters)

    • Communication (Family discussions, urgent request for consults and request scans from radiologists for investigations)

    • Calls(2 half calls expected) (to follow HOs, depending if they are on call or not)

    • Be able to manage common surgical emergencies

    • Evaluate and prepare patients for surgery/procedures

  • Consolidation of the skills for procedures required for a PGY 1.

Year 4 ENT Core Rotation


The ENT Core Rotation is a 2-week compulsory posting for all students enabling them to obtain an adequate knowledge of ENT which will be useful for their future practice as an intern or a Family Physician.

Learning Objectives

  • Obtain a comprehensive focused history and learn various interview techniques.
  • Perform a detailed ear, nose and throat (ENT) evaluation using an otoscope, combined with a head and neck examination.

  • Diagnose common ENT conditions e.g. allergic rhinitis, otitis media and formulate a simple treatment plan.

  • Recognise ENT emergencies like epistaxis, aero-digestive foreign bodies, airway obstruction and their initial evaluation and management.

  • Interpret routine audiometric and vestibular tests and be able to explain it to patients.

  • Grasp the significance of counselling for ENT conditions requiring lifestyle changes e.g. allergic rhinitis and laryngo-pharyngeal reflux.

  • Communicate with patients and their families the necessity of outpatient follow-up or hospital admission and the rationale for each.

  • Understand the need for patient confidentiality regarding sensitive patient data and to always appear professional.