A Competence Committee (CC) is a key component of Competence by Design (CBD), the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada’s version of Competency-Based Medical Education. A CC is a sub-committee of the Residency Program Committee (RPC) that provides robust and transparent resident performance review. The goal of the CC is to ensure all residents achieve the requirements of the discipline through synthesis and review of qualitative and quantitative assessment data at each stage of training and to provide recommendations on future learning activities.

Why Use Competence Committees?

A CC allows for the synthesis of resident assessment data from multiple sources. This bird’s eye view of a resident’s assessment data helps to identify patterns of performance which are then collated to reveal a broad picture of a resident’s progression toward competence. The CC engages in an informed group decision-making process regarding resident progression.

Given the role of the CC, individual supervisor-resident interactions are able to remain low-stakes and focus on high-quality coaching feedback (assessment for learning).

What is an Assessment Advisor?

An assessment advisor (AA) is a faculty member who has been assigned to monitor your progress over the course of your residency training period. Think of your AA as your own personal learning coach. AA’s are responsible for aggregating your assessment data and presenting it to the CC for review (typically twice per year). AA’s will provide coaching feedback to you on a regular basis regarding your progress. AA’s are a resource to help you navigate CBD and their goal is to optimize your learning experiences.

How does a Competence Committee Actually Work?

Check out the infographic below to see the details on how the CC works:

Interested in Learning More?

Check out this link to learn more




Hauer, K., Chesluk, B., Iobst, W., Holmboe, E., Baron, R., Boscardin, C., Ten Cate, O., & O’Sullivan, P. (2015). Reviewing residents’ competence: a qualitative study of the role of clinical competency committees in performance assessment. Academic Medicine90(8), 1084-1092. https://doi.org/10.1097/acm.0000000000000736



  • Jeff Landerville

    Dr. Jeffrey Landreville is a FRCPC Emergency Physician at the University of Ottawa, Department of Emergency Medicine, with a masters degree in medical education.

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  • Warren Cheung

    Dr. Warren Cheung is a FRCPC Emergency Physician in the Department of Emergency Medicine, at the University of Ottawa, with special interests in medical education.

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