Clinical Teaching Associates


What are Clinical Teaching Associates?

There are two types of Clinical Teaching Associates (CTAs): Male Clinical Teaching Associates (MCTAs) and Female Clinical Teaching Associates (FCTAs).

MCTAs and FCTAs are trained to teach students how to perform sensitive exams, including pelvic and breast exams on females, and urogenital exams – involving the penis, scrotum, rectum, prostate, and inguinal region – on males. CTAs use their own bodies to teach these skills.

Examinations are conducted by a small group of students overseen by a physician tutor. During these sessions, the CTA helps the students develop a comfortable, sensitive communication style and the techniques required to ensure a safe and effective exam. CTAs will participate in two or three exams per teaching session.


Frequently asked questions

CTAs are good communicators and have a high degree of comfort with their bodies, since these examinations are intimate and may at times involve mild physical discomfort. CTAs must learn related anatomy, medical terminology, exam technique, interpersonal communication skills, and how to provide effective feedback.

CTAs must be able to participate in a supportive and highly professional manner to help medical students meet their learning objectives, including all aspects of verbal and non-verbal communication, as well as clinical and medical techniques, to ensure patient comfort.

CTAs will become confident and certified through the IMP’s intensive training session, which covers anatomy, medical terminology, physician-patient communication, and physical exam skills. It involves team-building exercises, large- and small-group workshops, and hands-on curriculum practice using task trainers.

FCTA exams occur in the fall term, from September to October. We run six FCTA sessions during this time.

MCTA exams occur in the winter term, from January to April. We run two MCTA sessions during this time.

All CTAs must be flexible: sessions normally place on Thursdays, but not always. FCTAs, are scheduled for up to six sessions. MCTAs are scheduled for up to two sessions during the year.

Yes. It is important that CTAs work with male and female students on their technique and communication skills to ensure they deliver a safe and respectful examination.

Please let us know immediately. Your well-being and privacy is a top priority. IMP faculty and students are bound by the Canadian Medical Association Code of Ethics, so all participant information is kept in the strictest of confidence.

All sessions are held in the Coronation Annex at Royal Jubilee Hospital.

You will receive a stipend for participating in the exam sessions. Financial remuneration is also provided for the training sessions.