Program and Instructors

Anticipated selection criteria and planned didactic instruction for individuals without a degree in medical physics: We prefer the physics resident to have a Ph.D. in physics or closely related field such as engineering. We will give preference to those individuals who have additional post-doctoral experience in research, teaching or applications of physics and who have demonstrated independence and productivity. We expect a commitment from the candidates to seek certification in radiotherapy physics and to pursue a medical physics career in an academic setting. 

The formal instruction for the resident will include:

  1. The Physics of Radiation Oncology - this course is given annually to medical residents, dosimetry students and physics residents. Lectures are given by physics faculty, one hour per week from September through May. Residents are expected to show proficiency through homework problems and examinations. A physics research meeting is held each week to discuss physics work in progress in the Department. The resident will be required to attend these meetings. Additional physics topics will be presented in special lectures during the year.
  2. Radiation Biology - this course in given annually to medical and physics residents. Lectures are given by Dr Murnane. Students are expected to show proficiency by homework assignments and examinations. Advanced topics in radiobiology are presented on a monthly basis during the academic year.
  3. Clinical - Introductory clinical radiation oncology lectures are offered during July or August for first year clinical residents. The physics resident will be expected to attend these lectures at the first opportunity. In addition, the resident is encouraged to attend morning conferences that describe new patient problems and treatment techniques.
  4. Related courses such as biostatistics and cellular biophysics are available through the Graduate school at UCSF. For those without knowledge of anatomy, the resident will be recommended to take a 1-week course in radiographic anatomy offered by the University of Texas Medical Center in San Antonio or to an equivalent course offered elsewhere.
  5. The clinical medical physics residency program began in September, 1993. Bruce Hill, Ph.D. was selected as our first resident and was joined by our second resident, Greg Bednarz, Ph.D. in October, 1994. We plan to continue to have three to four residents in our program. The statistics of former and current clinical medical physics residents are given here.
  6. The Department treats about 2500 new patients per year on 6 linear accelerators at 2 separate sites. We have an active program in IMRT-IGRT treatments, with approximately 70 patients being treated with inverse-planned IMRT each day. In addition, the Department has a very active program in HDR brachytherapy, a program in Intraoperative Radiotherapy with the Mobetron (a portable electron accelerator) and with the Intrabeam device, 2 dedicated 4D-CT scanners for treatment planning, 3DCRT treatment planning programs (both conventional and inverse systems for IMRT), Gamma Knife and Cyberknife radiosurgery, clinical and research hyperthermia programs, a clinical program to treat ocular melanomas with protons, and a range of physics research projects designed to improve dose localization in cancer patients.
  7. The Department of Radiation Oncology has long experience with the use of 3-dimensional treatment planning for complex treatment volumes in CNS, head/neck and elsewhere. We are one of the original members of the multi-center 3-D RTOG prostate study. We have been performing IORT cases for many years and were the first center to use a portable electron linac for IORT in the operative suite. We use the multiple state of the art systems for delivery of dynamic intensity modulated radiotherapy. We perform many special procedures such as CSI and TBI. We have large experience with our HDR remote afterloader. We have had a Gamma Knife in the Department since 1991 that we use to treat approximately 250 patients per year with stereotactic radiosurgery. We have very strong cooperation between our Department and the Departments of Pediatrics and Neurosurgery, leading to many interesting clinical research programs. We perform clinical hyperthermia and have a strong research effort in this area.

Detailed outline of residency program   


List of the Residency Program Instructors


Physics Faculty


Other Faculty offering instruction outside the physics area:


Others from the Dept. of Radiation Oncology who will be providing instruction to the resident: