Program Overview

The University of Wisconsin Psychiatry Residency provides rigorous but humane training in general psychiatry in the highly livable city of Madison. We also offer fellowships in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Addiction Psychiatry, Geriatric Psychiatry and Sleep Medicine. We accept 10 PGY1 residents each year.

PGY1 Rotations

  • Inpatient Psychiatry at UW Hospital and the Madison VA Hospital (8 months)
  • Inpatient Family Medicine at UW Hospital (1-2 months)
  • Ambulatory Pediatrics at American Family Children’s Hospital (up to 1 month)
  • Emergency Medicine at UW Hospital (1 month)
  • Ambulatory Family Medicine (1 month for Public Health Track resident)
  • Ambulatory Medicine at the Madison VA Hospital (up to 1 month)
  • Additional VA-based Psychiatry rotations (up to 1 month)

Residents with prior residency experience take Neurology & Electives instead of Family Medicine, Pediatrics and Emergency Medicine.

PYG2 Rotations

  • Adult Outpatient Psychiatry at the Wisconsin Psychiatric Institute and Clinics (WisPIC), the primary site for long-term treatment and psychotherapy (3 half-days per week, including 1 half-day for psychotherapy)
  • Addiction Psychiatry at the Madison VA (1 half-day per week)
  • Geriatric Psychiatry at WisPIC (1 half-day per week for 6 months)
  • Emergency Psychiatry: Emergency Department at UWHC/VA (1 half-day per week for 3 months)
  • Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at WisPIC (1 half-day per week, plus seminar time)
  • Madison VA Mental Health Clinic (1 half-day day per week)
  • VA Integrated Primary Care Behavioral Health Clinic (1 half-day per week for 3 months)
  • Additional VA Outpatient experiences (1 half-day per week)

PYG3 Rotations

  • Adult Outpatient Psychiatry at WisPIC (4 half-days per week, including 1 half-day for psychotherapy)
  • Madison VA Mental Health Clinic (1 half-day per week)
  • Marital-Family Therapy clinic at WisPIC (approximately 2 hours per week for 6 months)
  • Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry at UW Hospital and Madison VA Hospital (40% time for 6 months)
  • Quality Improvement Rotation at UW, VA or WisPIC (1 half-day per week for 9 months)
  • Forensic Psychiatry at Mendota Mental Health Institute (1 half-day per week for 3 months)
  • Neurology & Neuropsychology clinics at UW and VA (50% time for 10-12 weeks)
  • Community Psychiatry: VA Neuroleptic Clinic (1 half-day per week for 3 months) and Access Community Health (1 half-day per week for 3 months)
  • Electroconvulsive Therapy at UW Hospital (3 half-days per week for 5 weeks)
  • Geriatric Psychiatry at the VA (2 half-days per week for 5 weeks)

PYG4 Rotations

  • Adult Outpatient Psychiatry at WisPIC (50% time)
  • Electives (approximately 50% time)
  • Remainder of Neurology requirement
  • Chief Residency (3 selected per year, 20% time each)

Residents on the Public Health Track will be able to spend a significant amount of time in rotations around the State of Wisconsin and use modalities such as telepsychiatry.


All of our resident seminars take place on Wednesdays from 1 or 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.  All residents meet at the same time for Journal Club, check-ins with our Chief Residents, meetings with our Program Directors, and wellness activities.  Each PGY class also has its own seminar series, with a focus on topics that are relevant to their clinical rotations.  The PGY2 class also has seminar time on Thursday mornings to allow for additional didactics in psychotherapy, child & adolescent psychiatry, and other topics.  Each PGY class has its own T-group (process group) that meets during seminar time every two weeks (PGY1s and PGY2s), every three weeks (PGY3s), and every four weeks (PGY4s).

Seminars are protected time – with residents having no clinical responsibilities during these times.

We invite our residents to attend Grand Rounds, Morbidity & Mortality conferences, and Senior Case Conferences on Fridays at noon.  Residents also attend our annual CME conference (UW Annual Update & Advances in Psychiatry Conference) and our scientific conference (the Wisconsin Symposium on Emotion).  Finally, our Chief Residents organize two retreats to cover additional educational and wellness topics.


The University of Wisconsin Psychiatry Residency Call System is comprised of 2 in-house residents with a senior resident on jeopardy for additional back-up if needed. The first 6 weeks of the year are an accompanied-call period where senior residents and faculty help transition 1st and 2nd year residents to nightfloat and call.

PGY- 1: Residents cover weekday nights (M-F 5pm-5am) on their designated nightfloat rotation blocks. Nightfloat consists of 2 separate blocks with each block being 2 weeks duration. This totals 4 weeks of nightfloat for the year. First-year residents also cover weekend days from 8am to 6pm.

PGY- 2: The second year is the main year of call within the residency. With each class having 10 residents, this averages to being on call once every 10 days. On weekdays, a second-year resident covers call from 5pm to 8am and weekends from 8am to 8am the next morning. Residents receive their post-call day off from clinical duties. The second-year residents are considered the primary resident when on call.

PGY- 3 & 4: In the 3rd and 4th years, a resident will cover outpt emergency phone calls after hours until 10pm on weekdays and 6pm on weekends. This resident is considered the “jeopardy” resident and provides emergency back-up in house if additional assistance is needed. The senior residents also cover in-house on call with the second year on weekend nights


Monday – Friday Saturday & Sunday

5 pm – 5 am



5 pm – 8 am


PGY-3/4: Jeopardy


8 am – 6 pm



8 am – 8 am



6 pm – 8am & separate resident on Jeopardy



All residents have the opportunity to participate in research throughout their residency. The Department of Psychiatry has world-class scientists that are involved in cutting edge research investigating the causes of major mental illness, their pathophysiology and new treatment strategies. The Department is especially distinguished in the areas of the basic science of human emotion, the effects of stress, sleep disorders and functional brain imaging.

The Health Emotions Research Institute, based in the Department, is a University-wide institution dedicated to exploring the links between emotions and health. Directed by Department Chair Ned Kalin, the overall aim of HealthEmotions is to develop a better understanding of the brain mechanism involved in the positive and negative emotions. Additional research efforts explore the psychosocial factors that predispose to mental illness and the brain mechanisms underlying successful psychotherapy.

The Department’s onsite research resources include molecular biology facilities, sleep laboratory, transcranial magnetic stimulation and the Lane Neuroimaging Lab. PET, microPET and EEG equipment is available at the Waisman Laboratory for Brain Imaging and Behavior. The University offers numerous other resources and opportunities for research and collaboration.