Laura Torbeck, PhD

Vice Chair of Education
Surgical Educator

Laura Torbeck, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Surgery, Vice Chair of Education, and Surgical Educator for the Department of Surgery at Indiana University School of Medicine.  She oversees the education mission for the department as it relates to student, resident, and fellow curriculum and assessment.  Laura champions faculty development initiatives for the department and directs the Research in Medical Education Working group for colleagues interested in advancing their scholarly activity.  She has been integral in the surgery Residents as Teachers courses and has presented at various GME venues across campus.  Laura is also an Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Anatomy and teaches/mentors students in the Anatomy and Cell Biology Education Track PhD program.  Her research interests include program evaluation, remediation practices and faculty development.





1.  Wiese, H. J., Torbeck, L., and Matheny, S.  (2004)  Learning how to use interpreters.

     Medical Education. 38: 556-557.


2.  Torbeck, L., Joyce, J., and Flannery, M.  (2004)  Integrating Experiential Learning in

     Complementary and Alternative Medicine.  Medical Education. 38: 1195-1196.


3.   Gonsalves, W.C., Wrightson, A.S., Love, M.M., and Torbeck, L.J.  (2005)  Practices and

     perceptions of Family Practice Residency Directors toward international medical graduate

     applicants:  A national survey.  Medical Education Online.  10: 2.     


4.  (R)Torbeck, L. and Wrightson, S.  (2005)  A method for defining competency-based

      promotion criteria for Family Medicine residents.  Academic Medicine. 80:  832-839.


5.  (R)Torbeck, L. and Canal, D.  (2006)  How to develop competency-based promotion criteria:

      Enhancing surgery resident assessment and evaluation.  American College of Surgeons

      Residency Assist Page Featured Article,


6.  Canal. D., Torbeck, L., and Djuricich, A.  (2007)  Practice-based learning and improvement:  A

     curriculum in continuous quality improvement for surgery residents.  Archives of Surgery.  142:



7.  Thurston, V.C., Wales, P.S., Bell, M.A., Torbeck, L., and Brokaw, J.J.  (2007)  The current

     status of medical genetics instruction in U.S. and Canadian medical schools.  Academic

     Medicine.  82: 441-445.


8.  Torbeck, L.  (2007)  Enhancing Program Evaluation Using the Audience Response System

      Medical Education.  41: 1088-1089.


9.   Torbeck, L., Bell, M.A., Brokaw, J.J., Kunzer, J. M., Thurston, V. C., and Wales, P. S.  (2008)

      A Professional Development Module to Optimize Interactions between Teachers and

      Learners.  Journal of the International Association of Medical Science Educators.  18: 5.


10.  Helft, P.R., Eckles, R.E., Torbeck, L.  (2009).  Ethics Education in Surgical Residency

       Programs: A Review of the Literature.  Journal of Surgical Education.  66(1): 35-42.


11.  Bell, M.A., Wales, P.S., Torbeck, L., Kunzer, J.M.; Thurston, V. C., and Brokaw, J.J.  (2011) 

       Do Personality Differences between Teachers and Learners Impact Students' Evaluations of

       a Surgery Clerkship?  Journal of Surgical Education.  68 (3) 190-193.


12.  Blanchard, R.D., Torbeck, L., Blondeau, W.  (2013)  A Snapshot of Three Common Program

        Evaluation Approaches for Medical Education.  Academic Medicine.  88: 146.






1.  Alvarez, F.J., Pearson, J.C., Harrington, D., Dewey, D., Torbeck, L., and Fyffe, R.E.W. 

     (1998) Distribution of 5-hydroxytryptamine immunoreactive boutons on alpha-motoneurons

      in the lumbar spinal cord of adult cats.  J. Comp. Neurol. 393: 69-83.


2.  (T) Torbeck, L. and Canal, D. F.  (2009)  Remediation Practices for Surgery Residents.  The

      American Journal of Surgery.  197:  397-402.


3.   (T) Zyromski, N.J.; Torbeck, L.; Canal, D.F.; Lillemoe, K.D.; and Pitt, H.A.  (2010).

      Incorporating an HPB fellowship does not diminish surgical residents' HPB experience in a

      high-volume training centre.  HPB.  12: 123-128.


4.  Brokaw, J.J., Torbeck, L., Bell, M.A., and Deal, D.W.  (2011). Impact of a competency-based

     curriculum on medical student advancement:  A ten-year analysis.  Teaching and Learning in

     Medicine.  23: 207-214. 



1.   (T,R) Guidebook for Researchers in Surgical Education.  3rd Ed.  Capella, J., Kasten, S.,

       Steinemann, S., and Torbeck, L., editors. Woodbury, CT: Cine-Med Publishing, Inc.  2010.


2.   Torbeck, L., Sidhu, R., Smink, D. and Peyre, S.  (2013).  How to Recruit, Retain and Reap the

       Rewards of working with PhD/EdD Educators in Surgery.  Journal of Surgical Education.



Department of Surgery | 545 Barnhill Drive, Emerson Hall 203, Indianapolis, In 46202 | Phone: (317) 274-5771