The basic science portion of the MD program is taught during the first two years and covers the fundamental body of basic medical science knowledge which is the foundation of medical practice. The learning activities of the first two years are a mix of traditional curriculum formats (lectures, labs, dissection and discussion groups) and newer educational methods—computer-aided instruction (CAI), problem-based learning (PBL), and objective structured clinical exams (OSCEs). As part of the Clinical Continuum, exposure to patients occurs as students work with physicians in the office setting during the Mentor course allowing students to integrate their basic-science knowledge with the clinical practice of medicine early in their medical training. Instruction in human behavior including a section on medical interviewing and evidence-based medicine completes the M-1 Clinical Continuum course. Academic Enrichment Electives, including Medical Spanish, Injury Prevention and Control, and Healer’s Art, among others, are available for students in their first or second year who wish to pursue interests beyond the required curriculum.
During the M-2 year, students complete the basic science curriculum and transition to advanced topics in the Clinical Continuum, including the acquisition of history and physical exam skills, clinical reasoning, ethics and health policy.