Quality Improvement Experiential Student Training (QuEST) Program

QuEST is a year-long co-curricular program initiated at the Mississauga Academy of Medicine & Trillium Health Partners (THP) by a group of U of T MD Program students in 2021. Complementing the existing curriculum in the MD Program, this co-curricular quality improvement and patient safety (QIPS) training program comprises several components:

  • Asynchronous learning modules
  • Synchronous learning - Seminar series, featuring QIPS experts from THP, the Toronto Academic Health Sciences Network (TAHSN), and beyond
  • Experiential learning - Longitudinal QIPS projects, aligned with THP institutional or departmental priorities and led by THP physicians
  • Consolidating and demonstrating learning - Capstone assignments and scholarly outputs

QuEST is a great way to learn about the world of QIPS, gain hands-on experience in leading projects in a supervised, clinical setting and also have opportunities to engage in scholarly products. Applications for projects open in the Fall each year.

For more information, please feel welcome to email the following members of the QuEST team:

Benefits for Students

  • Hands-on QIPS Experience
  • Scholarly Work Opportunities
  • Mentorship Opportunities
  • Opportunity to Impact & Improve Patient Care
  • Certificate Upon Completion of Requirements

Benefits for Supervisors

  • Community of Learning & Practice
  • Ongoing Faculty Development & Peer Coaching
  • Increase Hospital & Institutional Capacity for QIPS
  • Scholarly Work Opportunities
  • Mentorship Opportunities
I wanted to learn the fundamentals of QI work, and my goal at the end of the program was to feel comfortable enough to play an integral part of a quality improvement project where I have some leadership role. I feel confident that I have not only met that but exceeded it. I believe I can lead smaller level QI projects completely independently.
2022-23 QuEST Participant

Notable Achievements

100% Scholarship Production in Year 1
Every student had an accepted poster, abstract, or manuscript by the end of the calendar year.
Multiple Awards and Recognition for Students and THP Professional Staff
Advancing Impactful Projects
Recognition by Accreditation Canada for QuEST as a strength of Quality at Trillium Health Partners

QuEST Student Resource Package

Click here to download the QuEST Student Resource Package.

The QuEST Student Resource Package includes links to guides and articles about QIPS, scholarly communication, as well as opportunities to present/publish from within U of T and other organizations. QuEST program participants can request the attachments described in the package by contacting the QuEST Administrator (mam.researchprojects@utoronto.ca).

Frequently Asked Questions

How can becoming a QuEST supervisor benefit my team?

QuEST students can take on specific deliverables within your project, thereby providing your project with an extra resource to do the work. Part of their QuEST work includes completing a scholarly output (ranging from presentations to publications), so they would be able to advance any scholarly learning for the project as well. These students are also trained in QI methodology and would be a valuable addition to the project team.

What commitment is required from my project team?

The student will require a physician mentor. In addition, the student will need to work with the project director/key resource to be assigned specific deliverables and ensure these deliverables are complete.

How long does a QuEST student engage in their project?

Students are typically onboarded by October each academic year and engage with their projects, the seminars and their capstone until May of the following year. Some projects will not take the full academic year, allowing students to spend more time on scholarly outputs during their official QuEST time. Many students choose to continue working with their supervisors after the QuEST Program has concluded in May.

How do I apply to be a supervisor in the QuEST Program?

Please contact the QuEST Faculty Chair or Program Administrator for details (contact info listed above).

As a QuEST supervisor, how can this benefit my career?

Certain QIPS activities may be claimed for Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Section 3 credits with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

Additionally, letters of support will be issued to supervisors in recognition of their contributions to QIPS and Education.

How does the match process work?

New in 2023-24, QuEST will be implementing a match process using the Gale-Shapley algorithm, which is used in the United States for the Residency Matching Service, assigning supervisors and students based on ranked preference lists from each party.

Supervisors will rank student applicants based on their submitted materials such as their CV. Students will rank projects based on project descriptions provided by email.

We will endeavour to match students to their top options and connect interested students to other opportunities in the event we reach capacity.