MD Program Curriculum
1. Transition to Medical School
All incoming medical students are required to participate in the Transition to Medical School Curriculum. The Transition to Medical School course consists of 5 days of medical school orientation activities that introduce incoming students to the curriculum and to the community. A full calendar of events can be found on the Student Affairs website, “Orientation and Transition to Medical School”. Specific information covered during this orientation week is listed below.
Student Laptop Requirement/Student Laptop Program
The School of Medicine has a student laptop requirement. UMMS uses a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) model. This means that all incoming students can purchase a new laptop or continue to use a laptop that they have already purchased not more than three years ago. Students will use, test and download software during the Transition to Medical School program. Students are expected to bring their laptops to classes. The Minimum System Requirements can be found at: https://umassmed.service-now.com/sp/?id=kb_article&sys_id=015400ef4f2f5b4432fb7f75f110c7ad and will ensure that your laptop serves as a portal to Computer-Based Testing and all digital resources, including online courses, streaming lectures and podcasts, Virtual Microscopy slides and digital lecture notes, which can be personalized and annotated.
Students may obtain additional assistance with the Student Laptop Program by contacting Information Technology at:
Phone: IT Helpdesk at 508-856-8643
Email: via email email@example.com
Please also see: Section Five: “Patient Information Security”.
N95 Respirator Fitting /Mask FIT Testing (Patients with Respiratory Pathogens)
All entering students are required to have been cleared by Student Health Services (SHS) prior to matriculation. As part of this clearance, students must also be cleared by Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) for either N-95 respirator mask fitting or PAPR mask fitting prior to entering any clinical site. See: Section Nine: “Health Related Concerns”
2. Pre-Clerkship Years
The pre-clerkship years comprise the first two years of medical school and consist of education in the basic medical and social sciences of clinical medicine. Early clinical exposure is offered through clinical correlations and a two-year longitudinal preceptorship program (LPP). All students are required to be CPR Level C (“health care provider”) certified. All students must attend BLS Certification even if they are already certified. Successful completion of the Transition to Medical School curriculum is required prior to starting LPP1.
3. Prerequisites & Required Information for Access to Clinical Experiences
I. Basic Life Support (BLS) Current Level C Health Care provider certification.
II. Complete Annual Regulatory Training, including HIPAA Privacy & Information Security Training
Students ‘work’ in the health care industry and are affected by multiple laws and regulations that are related to privacy, information security, and identity theft. UMMS requires that all medical students complete basic HIPAA privacy and security training to fulfill the obligations for educational and/or clinical experiences. The School of Medicine’s annual regulatory training modules can be found in a required online course in BBL9. Additional information on HIPAA Compliance can be found on the Information Technology page at: http://www.umassmed.edu/it/security/compliance/hipaa-compliance/.
III. Massachusetts’ Identity Theft Law
Students must also be aware of the University’s and its associated providers’ obligation under the Massachusetts ID Theft Law. Under this law, if the University (or a clinical partner) knows or suspects that certain personal information has been improperly used or accessed, it must inform the individual of the breach, as well as various state agencies. The information which triggers this obligation is as follows:
The individual’s first name & last name or first initial and last name, PLUS any one or more of the following:
1. Social Security number
2. Driver’s license number (or state issued ID card number)
3. Financial account number
4. Debit or credit card number
Students who know or suspect that this information has been compromised, or subject to possible compromise due to a lost or stolen portable electronic device, must immediately report it to the appropriate official at their clinical site.
IV. Standard Precautions
All medical students are required to complete a required online course in BBL9 on practices recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for the prevention of blood-borne pathogens as part of the preclerkship curriculum.
V. Clearance by Student Health Service (Tuberculosis testing, vaccinations)
All medical students are required to obtain clearance by the Student Health Service (SHS) (e.g.; periodic physical exams, vaccinations, Tb testing etc.)
See: Section Nine: “Health Related Concerns”.
VI. Red Flags Rules
Students must also be aware of the “Red Flags Rule,” enacted by the Federal Trade Commission to protect consumers from identity theft (and medical identity theft). Under this law, UMMS (or a clinical partner) is responsible for investigating actual or suspected incidences of identity or medical identity theft if it knows or suspects that an individual is using or attempting to use someone’s identity to obtain services or pay for services.
Medical identity theft is one of the fastest growing types of identity theft in the United States and providers and their employees (including students) must be aware of their responsibility to spot and report “Red Flags” to the appropriate people for investigation. Examples of “Red Flags” include:
• Alerts, notices, or warnings from the credit reporting companies (Equifax, Experian, TransUnion).
• Suspicious documents - paperwork has telltale signs of identity theft. e.g. identification, SSN card, or driver’s license that looks fake or forged.
• Suspicious personal identifying information - personal information that doesn’t ring true (e.g. address, phone number or SSN that has been used by someone else.)
• Suspicious account activity. (e.g. Patient receives a bill or Explanation of Benefits for procedure patient didn’t have.)
• Notice from the patient, customer, law enforcement, or victim of identity theft.
• See FTC web site for complete list of Red Flags: New ‘Red Flag’ Requirements for Financial Institutions and Creditors Will Help Fight Identity Theft.
Students who spot a “Red Flag” must report it to the appropriate official at their clinical site. For Red Flags suspected at UMMS, Students must report to the UMMS Department of Public Safety (508-856-3296).
VII. Criminal Background Checks (CBC)/Criminal Offender Records Information Checks (CORI)
All medical students are conditionally accepted into the School of Medicine pending the receipt of a national Criminal Background Check (CBC) and the Commonwealth’s Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI). In addition, currently enrolled medical students may be scheduled for a clinical rotation at a facility that requires an update to these criminal background checks. At times the facility may choose to conduct the criminal background check while at other times they may request that the School of Medicine conduct the criminal background check. For those currently enrolled medical students:
(a) who are assigned to a clinical rotation site that has requested a criminal background check be undertaken; or
(b) for whom the School of Medicine is advised by a clinical rotation site that the student has received a positive response from a criminal background check,
the School of Medicine will initiate its own criminal background check. In either instance, the student shall provide the Office of Student Affairs with a completed and signed consent form. The student is informed that:
- a clinical rotation site requested by him/her requires that there be a satisfactory criminal background check before they will be able to participate in same;
- if the site requires UMMS to conduct the CBC, the student must agree to promptly and voluntarily provide that site with a completed and signed consent form;
- if the site conducts its own CBC, the student must agree to promptly and voluntarily provide that site with a completed and signed consent form;
- if, as a result of the CBC conducted by a clinical rotation site, the student’s criminal background check is positive, the student must agree to promptly and voluntarily provide UMMS with another completed and signed consent form so that UMMS may perform such a CBC;
- notwithstanding that he/she is currently enrolled at UMMS, the student must further acknowledge, understand, and agree that if the results of any CBC reveal that the student has a criminal history, the Committee to Review Criminal Background Checks will review and administer same consistent with this process, and that the student’s right to continued enrollment at UMMS may be jeopardized by the results of said
Please contact the Office of Student Affairs for the School's Policy for Criminal Background Checks.
VIII. Drug Testing
Students should be aware that they may be required to undergo a drug test or other similar screening tests pursuant to the Host Agency policies and practices. Testing may be required before any clinical work at some sites, either for the Longitudinal Preceptor Program or before clinical rotations. The cost of any such test will be paid for either by the student or the Host Agency. Please contact the Office of Student Affairs at 508-856- 2285 or review the Student Affairs website for additional information.
IX. Mobile Device Requirement
All CCE & AS clinical students should be aware that the medical school has a mobile device requirement. However, since many students already own mobile devices that are able to run required software, there is no standard device required. Financial Aid recipients should be aware that an allowance has been made in the financial aid packages for the purchase of hardware (please note that if you choose a device that also serves as a Smartphone, these funds should not be used towards purchase of a telephone/data plan). Please contact the Financial Aid office for more specific details. Required software can be uploaded from the library website. Please see the Mobile/Handheld Resources Guide at: http://libraryguides.umassmed.edu/c.php?g=499778&p=3422317.
Should you need further information or have questions, please contact the following:
For questions regarding access to required programs/applications: Jessica Kilham, Jessica.firstname.lastname@example.org, Lamar Soutter Library
For questions regarding the devices: UMass Help Desk, UMWHelpemail@example.com
4. Transition to Core Clinical Experiences
The Transition to Core Clinical Experiences curriculum provides hands on training and exposure to essential information and introductory skills for clinical rotations. This curriculum was significantly expanded in 2014 and features multiple case-based problem-solving exercises similar to what will be seen on the clerkships, as well as OSCEs that emphasize integration of information and problem solving. All students have the opportunity to encounter dynamic simulation cases in teams in our interprofessional Center for Experiential Learning and Simulation (iCELS). They will practice focused history and physical exam skills with standardized patients and apply knowledge from their foundational years to simulated clinical practice. There are sessions to review core clinical skills such as X-ray and EKG interpretation; an approach to multiple devices and drains that students will see during the clinical years; basic life-support recertification; and procedures such as drawing blood. Skills utilized every day on clerkships including note-writing, oral presentations, writing admitting orders and prescriptions will be reviewed and practiced in small group settings with senior medical students. There are integrated interstitial sessions on Domestic Violence and safe Opioid prescribing and management. Also featured are presentations on important health care systems topics, such as utilizing electronic medical records, infection control, quality improvement and patient privacy.
5. Core Clinical Experiences (CCE)
The Core Clinical Experiences (CCE) comprises the third-year curriculum, which consists of seven required core clinical clerkships. This phase involves a greater level of student responsibility for the care of patients always under faculty supervision. UMMS has a number of affiliated sites that students may be assigned to for their CCEs. These affiliated sites can include both local sites (sites generally within 60 miles of the University Campus) and distant sites (sites that are approximately 60 miles or more from the University campus). Students are responsible for providing their own transportation for these education experiences. Students in the clinical years must follow the holiday schedule at their clinical sites (See: Student Duty Hours Policy). Overnight call is expected of CCE students and will vary for each experience/clinical site.
Students who plan to participate in any Core Clinical Experience, regardless of when it is scheduled in the academic year, are required to attend the mandatory Transition to Core Clinical Experience curriculum. This Transition curriculum was developed to provide all rising CCE students with information and hands-on experience to help them succeed with their CCEs.
Students must fulfill “competency” performance standards on a clinical skills assessment, the CCCA, as a graduation requirement. The CCCA is typically completed at the end of the core clinical year.
Students in the CCE year are required to have and utilize a smartphone. Additional information can be found at the Lamar Soutter Library web site: http://libraryguides.umassmed.edu/mobile.
Students in the CCE year are also required to complete a web-based clinical log of patient encounters.
Students should be aware that they may be required to undergo a drug test or other similar screening tests pursuant to the Host Agency policies and practices. Testing may be required before any clinical work, either with the Longitudinal Preceptor Program or before clinical rotations. The cost of any such test will be paid for either by the student or the Host Agency. Please contact the Office of Student Affairs at 508-856-2285 or review the Student Affairs website for additional information.
Assignment to Required Core Clerkships and Advanced Studies Rotations
Initial assignments to required clinical rotations is coordinated through the Office of Student Affairs using a computer-based lottery system in OASIS. Our OASIS system is able to take into consideration a student’s preferred time frame and location.
It is always in a student’s best interest to enter all site preferences for which they would like to be considered. Not entering preferences (or entering limited preferences) does not increase the probability of a student getting a higher preference. Students should rank all available sites for every clinical experience so OASIS will know the preferred site order from highest to least desirable preferred.
While the computer tries to honor every student’s preferences, no guarantee can be made that a student’s preferences will be reflected in their OASIS assigned schedule. Students may be assigned to any of our affiliated sites for their CCE or AS experiences, unless the student has been approved for a distance exemption. Students may be placed into sites that they did not preference. For example, a student may be assigned to any site, including a “distant” site (this refers to those sites that are approximately 60 miles or more from the University Campus), even though the site was not on the students’ OASIS lottery preference list.
Please note: While every clerkship director does their best to honor the clerkship site assignments made through OASIS, there may be occasions when a re-assignment is necessary due to preceptor availability or other site-specific considerations. In these rare occasions, the clerkship director will reassign any affected student/s to another site (which may include reassignment to a “distant” site.) The clerkship director will notify the student and the Office of Student Affairs of any site reassignments.
Requesting an exemption of being assigned to a ‘distant’ site through OASIS Lottery
Students may request to be exempt from the possibility of being assigned to a ‘distant’ site for Core Clinical Experiences and Advanced Studies for the following reasons:
- The student is a parent to a small child/children who live at home with them
- The student is under a physician’s care for a condition requiring frequent medical intervention from that physician
- Other considerations of equal magnitude
See: SECTION THREE: “Changes in Core Clinical Elective Schedule”.
6. Flexible Clinical Experience (FCE)
This multidisciplinary program expands the opportunity for individual exploration in a variety of clinical and translational science fields early in the student career. The program allows for self-directed learning by allowing students to choose from a diverse offering of pre-designed electives or to design their own clinical experience. The advantages of early exposure to a medical specialty include the opportunity to foster mentorships, to nurture and develop interest in a specialty, and to provide intrinsic motivation to pursue further learning in a chosen field. The variety of electives helps the student explore a career choice.
Following a broad set of guidelines, a variety of learning methods are available to students dependent on the chosen experience, emphasizing one-on-one interaction between student and teacher. Criteria for granting credit are elective-specific minimum standards of performance as defined by sponsoring departments.
Additional information can be found here: http://www.umassmed.edu/oume/fce/
7. Clinical Competency Requirement/Comprehensive Core Clinical Assessment (CCCA)
All students must fulfill competency performance standards on a clinical skills assessment as a graduation requirement for UMMS. All students are required to complete the CCCA at the end of their core clinical year or the year prior to anticipated graduation eligibility. Any student who does not fulfill competency performance standards on the CCCA will be required to:
- complete a self-assessment as directed by CCCA faculty,
- meet with CCCA faculty to review their performance and
- is required to retake and pass the CCCA Re-Test
If the student passes the CCCA Retest, there is no mention of failing to meet CCCA competency in the MSPE.
If the student fails to meet competency on the CCCA Retest, the following will occur:
- the student and the CSAEB will be notified that they have not met competency
- the student will be required to:
- meet with the CCCA faculty to review their performance
- participate in an individualized educational plan determined by the CCCA Performance Evaluation Group.
- demonstrate competency with another assessment as determined by the CCCA Performance Evaluation Group. This will be called the “CCCA Second Retest”
- if the student meets competency on the CCCA Second Retest:
- the student will have met the CCCA graduation requirement
- the MSPE will reflect that the student did not initially meet competency on this exam, received remedial support and has since met competency upon re-examination.
If the student is not able to meet competency on the CCCA Second Retest, the following will occur:
- the student will be notified of same
- The CSAEB will be notified and will determine:
- If the student shall be presented to the Progress Board or
- If the student will need further remediation. If this is the case, the student will be referred to the CCCA Performance Evaluation Group to determine next steps.
- At no point will a student be allowed to graduate without attaining competency on a CCCA evaluation.
Timeline for CCCA
- It is the responsibility of the student to be available to take the CCCA at UMMS on the designated exam date. This will typically take place during the last month of the CCE year. If, at the time of this exam, the student has not yet completed all of the CCE Core Clerkships, the CCCA Director will designate an alternative testing date.
The CCCA Performance Evaluation Group, a standing subcommittee of the CSAEB, will vote on whether each student’s performance has achieved or not achieved competency. No faculty from the Center for Academic Achievement nor individual student’s mentor will participate in a student’s vote. The student may submit a written appeal regarding the CCCA Retest grade to the CCCA Performance Evaluation Group within 2 weeks of the grades being sent to students. All appeals will be managed by the CCCA Performance Evaluation Group.
8. Electives/Advanced Studies (AS)
Recognizing that medicine is a highly complex and diversified field and that the needs and interests of medical students are quite varied, the University of Massachusetts Medical School emphasizes a strong Electives/Advanced Studies program to complement the required areas of study. It is anticipated that each student, with the advice of their mentor, will create an individual program beneficial to their educational experience and postgraduate goals.
An elective is defined as a structured learning experience in a field of medicine or related field approved by the faculty of the University of Massachusetts Medical School, which is not specifically required as part of the medical school curriculum. To fulfill the requirements for graduation, each MD student must satisfactorily complete 24 weeks of elective time as outlined below:
In addition to the required Sub I, ECPC, ABTS, Capstone (for students admitted in AY 12-13 and after) and the Transition to Internship, every Advanced Studies student must complete *24 weeks of elective time as follows:
Required Electives by Type:
12 weeks must be Type A or B and at least 8 weeks must be A or B1.
The remaining 12 weeks can be A, B or C electives.
A maximum of 8 weeks of clinical International electives can count toward graduation credit.
A maximum of 12 weeks of Type C electives can count toward graduation.
Required Electives by Length:
Up to 8 weeks can be taken in blocks of two weeks or greater.
The remaining required electives must be in blocks of at least 4 weeks.
*Students who participated in Core Clinical Experiences during AY 2011-12 must complete an additional 8 weeks of A or B1 electives.
Electives applied toward graduation credit are normally advanced fourth-year courses that are taken after the required third-year clerkships are completed. Electives taken for credit at other times during the student’s medical school career may be considered for graduation credit with the approval of the Clinical Science Academic Evaluation Board (CSAEB). They should not interfere with required courses and all the prerequisites of the elective must be met. All electives require prior approval by the Associate Dean for Student Affairs.
UMMS does not restrict the proportion of time spent on internal versus external electives.
Students considering international electives must discuss their plans with their Learning Communities Mentor and/or their Specialty Advisor. Additional information can also be found at http://www.umassmed.edu/oume/international-medical-education/.
Elective programs offered are posted on the Student Affairs Web site: http://www.umassmed.edu/studentaffairs/electives/list.aspx.
It is the student’s responsibility to arrange their fourth-year elective schedule, obtaining all necessary paperwork and approvals, including the Proposed Educational Plan (PEP), prior to the beginning of each elective. The Office of Student Affairs is available for assistance with any questions or concerns.
Elective schedules are maintained by the Office of Student Affairs. It is the student’s responsibility to check his/her elective schedule in Peoplesoft to ensure that an accurate elective program is on file in the academic record.
It is the student’s responsibility to forward all internal and external elective confirmation correspondence to the Office of Student Affairs either in person or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The only exception is electives assigned through the lottery process. Please note, the PEP is a planning tool, not a scheduling tool. Placement of an elective on a student’s PEP does not provide confirmation that the elective was approved and added to the schedule. Electives must be added to the schedule by the student via the online Peoplesoft Online Elective (POE) system or by emailing the approval form to email@example.com, for those electives that require prior approval. Details can be found on the Student Affairs website at https://www.umassmed.edu/studentaffairs/curriculum/advanced-studies2/. If an elective is not on the schedule in Peoplesoft, the student cannot participate. Away electives must be added to the schedule in advance of the start date of the elective. Students should frequently check their Peoplesoft schedule to ensure accuracy. Peoplesoft is the ‘official’ schedule of record. For changes to Elective/Advanced Studies schedule please see: Section Three: “Attendance, Withdrawal, Rescheduling; Changes or Withdrawing from Electives/Advanced Studies Program.”
Proposed Educational Plan (PEP)
Prior to scheduling any Advanced Studies (AS) elective students should meet with their Learning Communities Mentor to discuss their Proposed Educational Plan (PEP) for Advanced Studies.
The PEP is a vehicle for students and their assigned Learning Communities Mentor to discuss the goals and objectives of the student’s Advanced Studies education. Instructions for completing the PEP form can be found on the Student Affairs website: https://www.umassmed.edu/globalassets/student-affairs/files/as/umms-student-formsinstructions/student-pep-instructions.pdf
Section A of the PEP includes the field(s) of medicine to with the student is applying.
Section B of the PEP reflects the “ideal” desired schedule.
Section C of the PEP should include any additional electives that the student may consider.
Only electives on an approved PEP (Section B or C) may be added to the student’s schedule, using either POE or the elective approval form. Students are encouraged to discuss any elective with their Learning Communities Mentor if questions/concerns arise.
All Advanced Studies Students must have an approved PEP on file by the deadline published by the Office of Student Affairs, typically March 1 annually.
Type A: Under appropriate supervision, students function as if they have PRIMARY responsibility for patient care in an acute hospital setting. This implies that the students are responsible for and direct the diagnostic and/or therapeutic plan under the direction of the attending physician and with the aid of the intern or resident. This role often is referred to as a “Subinternship.”
Criteria to be considered in the definition of a Type A are:
Block of continuous time of at least two or more weeks. Length requirements are specific to the elective.
Evaluate approximately three new patients per week.
Perform initial history and physical exams.
Write orders (co-signed by house officer).
Coordinate inpatient evaluation and follow hospital course.
Perform or observe all procedures on assigned patients.
Responsibility for “routine” work / follow up on patients.
Scrub for surgical procedures on assigned patients.
Take night call according to intern’s schedule.
Participate in morning work rounds and attending rounds.
Present assigned patients to attending physician.
Participate in teaching session regularly.
Type B1: Students must have direct contact with patients as a major feature of the elective. They are expected to obtain histories, perform physical examinations and offer diagnostic and therapeutic alternatives. Students need not have primary responsibility for patients. Such electives include the traditional consultative services in medical and surgical subspecialties as well as anesthesiology, preceptorships in primary care (medicine, pediatrics, family practice), and certain experiences in community hospitals. Advanced interventional radiology or clinical radiation oncology electives may qualify, but will require UMEDs documentation and review/approval by the Advanced Studies Curriculum Committee.
Criteria to be considered in the definition of a Type B1:
Block of continuous time of at least two or more weeks. Length requirements are specific to the elective.
Evaluate approximately 1 patient per day, on average (may require UMEDs to document patient care load).
Attend regular didactic teaching session (a minimum of 1 per week).
Follow course of patients with appropriate follow-up notes if necessary, as appropriate to the specialty.
Obtain history and perform physical examinations on assigned patients.
Formulate diagnostic and therapeutic plan.
Present patients to preceptor or attending physician.
Make regular rounds on assigned patients for hospitalized patients, as appropriate to the specialty.
Perform procedures related to a specialty as appropriate.
Review recent literature on diseases or problems encountered.
Type B2: Students must engage in the type of clinical care carried out by the clinicians practicing in this field but may not have direct patient care as a major feature of the elective. Such electives include advanced radiology electives (not the introductory radiology elective, which is a Type C), pathology electives, and some radiation oncology electives.
Criteria to be considered in the definition of a Type B2:
Block of continuous time of at least two or more weeks. Length requirements are specific to the elective.
Attend regular didactic teaching session (a minimum of one per week).
Follow course of patients as clinicians in this field do with follow-up notes as appropriate to specialty.
Obtain history and perform physical examinations on assigned patients as appropriate to specialty.
Formulate diagnostic and therapeutic plan as appropriate to specialty.
Present patients to preceptor or attending physician.
Make regular rounds on assigned patients for hospitalized patients, as appropriate to specialty.
Perform procedures related to a specialty as appropriate.
Review recent literature on diseases or problems encountered.
Type C: A Type C elective encompasses all those elective experiences in where there is limited contact with patients, as in diagnostic or therapeutic fields where major reliance is placed upon information gathering or therapy administered via sophisticated techniques such as radiology, nuclear medicine, radiation therapy, etc. It can also include electives in the basic sciences, and international language/cultural experiences. The only requirement is that there be some general relationship to the broad area of medicine and the medical sciences. In general, this elective will be in a block of continuous time of at least two or more weeks.
Student Designed Electives/Research:
In collaboration with a faculty member, students may design an individual elective tailored to a specific interest. The elective must be sponsored by a UMass faculty member (regardless of whether the elective is completed internally or externally from UMass, the sponsor must be a UMMS faculty member). An individually designed elective can be Type A, B1, B2 or C. The student and faculty member will write a description of the elective, including the goals, methods of teaching, number of patients to be seen, supervision level, Type of elective (A, B1, B2 or C), length of the elective and grading basis. This description must be signed by the UMMS faculty member who will be sponsoring the elective. The student must also submit the student designed elective form, which can be found on the Advanced Studies web page of the Student Affairs website: https://www.umassmed.edu/studentaffairs/curriculum/advanced-studies2/ .
An elective course offered by the University of Massachusetts Medical School or its affiliated hospitals. UMass offers an array of electives that can be found online at: http://www.umassmed.edu/studentaffairs/electives/list/
UMMS students are encouraged to apply for Advanced Studies electives at any of the AAMC accredited schools. External electives are elective courses given at institutions other than the University of Massachusetts Medical School or its affiliated hospitals. The AAMC offers an online Extramural Electives Compendium, which allows elective searches by Region, State or School. The online Extramural Electives Compendium can be found at: https://services.aamc.org/eec/students/.
UMMS offers many opportunities for students to take electives abroad. These electives can range from clinical rotations, language or cultural immersion, to research experiences. Electives are available in all regions of the world.
A maximum of eight clinical elective credits (eight weeks) will be granted toward graduation for international electives; up to one Type C elective credit may be earned for approved language immersion programs in addition to the clinical electives noted above.
For students not enrolled in good standing or not making satisfactory academic progress, international elective requests may require additional review by the Clinical Science Academic Evaluation Board (CSAEB) before travel is approved.
For more information, visit the UMMS International Medical Education Program (IMEP) website at http://www.umassmed.edu/oume/international-medical-education/or contact the Office of Undergraduate Medical Education at 508-856-5137 or IMEP-GHP@umassmed.edu.
*Please Note the following requirement regarding Tuberculosis Testing: Students traveling to areas endemic for tuberculosis who do clinical work are REQUIRED to have a repeat Tuberculin Skin Test performed 8-12 weeks after they return. For more specific information see Tuberculin Skin Testing Policy in the Student Health Section of this handbook or contact Student Health Services.
Elective Course Credit Guidelines:
Electives taken in excess of 24 weeks can be taken for credit and will be noted on the transcript. A minimum of 9 weeks of electives must be approved and taken for credit in any semester for students to be considered an enrolled student, receive course credit, be covered by malpractice, retain student status, etc. (See: Matriculating Student Status requirements)
No credit will be given for electives that are not approved by the Medical School. This does not imply that the experience may not be worthwhile, only that it is not under the official auspices of the University of Massachusetts Medical School. (See Matriculating Student Status Requirements)
Please Note: If a student is adding or dropping an elective, the paperwork must be completed and given to the Office of Student Affairs BEFORE the start date of the elective. See Section Three: “Attendance, Withdrawals, Rescheduling: Changes or Withdrawing from Electives/ Advanced Studies Program.”
Optional Enrichment Electives:
Optional Enrichment Courses (OEE) are elective courses offered in addition to the regular, required and elective/selective curriculum elected by the student. These courses are designed by students according to established criteria and are overseen by faculty. They are managed by the Office of Undergraduate Medical Education. New OEE’s require approval by the Longitudinal Curriculum Committee (LCC), a subcommittee of the Educational Policy Committee (EPC) in order to be so designated and appear on the transcript. Unlike regular electives, the student is not required to take any optional enrichment electives. Failure to complete course requirements results simply in the course not being listed on the student’s transcript. It is not possible to “fail” an OEE.OEE’s generally span the course of a semester and many are offered to interprofessional learners. OEE’s are scheduled during the independent study time in the schedule.
Participation in these courses is mentioned in the Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE) and appears on the transcript by course name, with two hash marks (##) in the “grades” column and a notation on the transcript as: “## Optional Enrichment Course. The student has elected this course in addition to the regular curriculum requirements.”
A list of optional enrichment electives along with a brief description of each, together with information on proposing a new OEE can be found at: https://www.umassmed.edu/oume/curriculum/optional-enrichment-elective/
9. Interstitial Curriculum
The Interstitial Curriculum consists of required third-year activities and, as with all other required courses, any changes in the schedule requires advance permission. For information on postponement of a Required Interstitial, see: Section Three: “Withdrawal, Rescheduling Required Activities: Postponement of a Required Interstitial.
10. Transition to Internship
The Transition to Internship course covers topics that interns will be expected to approach independently. These include the essential skills of such as review of EKG/CXR/abdominal imaging, promoting effective handoffs and transitions of care, “middle of the night/ urgent cases” scenarios and skills, review of therapeutics, dealing with the intensive care unit patient, and specialty skills such as code scenarios in the Simulation Center. Completion of this course is a requirement for graduation. Extended students who are on leave of absence during their final (Spring) semester before graduation must discuss with the Associate Dean for Student Affairs their plans to address completion of this requirement.
11. Capstone Scholarship and Discovery Course
For the classes entering in 2012 and beyond, completion of the Capstone Scholarship and Discovery (CSD) course is a requirement for graduation. The goal of this four-year longitudinal course is to provide students with the support to build on a personal passion that existed prior to entering the field of medicine, or to identify and develop a new one encountered after matriculation, through a mentored scholarly project in one of the School of Medicine’s core competencies (Physician as Professional, Scientist, Communicator, Clinical Problem Solver, Advocate and Person). This work is called the Capstone Project (CP). Additional information can be found at: https://www.umassmed.edu/oume/CSD/
12. Emergency Clinical Problem Solver
ECPS is a required four-week course during the advanced studies year. The course is designed to teach a general approach to emergency, critical care and urgent decision making that all physicians will be called upon to provide in the office, hospital, and community settings. Students complete a combination of acute care clinical experiences (eight 8-hour emergency department shifts), didactics, and simulation of clinical encounters and procedures. Students will be required to take leadership roles in case discussions and during simulation scenarios. Educational methods will include: case‐based learning, an asynchronous on-line curriculum, student presentations, high and low fidelity simulation with debriefing.
Fourth year medical students will integrate accumulated knowledge in order to:
- Identify an emergency (across different clinical settings) and learn a systematic approach to diagnosis, treatment, and
- Evaluate high-risk undifferentiated patients and generate a differential diagnosis using advanced clinical reasoning
- Perform patient management to include: rapid assessment of acuity, initial treatment, stabilization, and disposition. Procedural skills necessary to stabilize acutely unstable patients. Leadership, teamwork, and effective
Additional Information can be found at: http://www.umassmed.edu/studentaffairs/advanced-studies/asprogram/emergency-clinical-problem-solver/.
13. Advanced Biomedical and Translational Sciences (ABTS) (Beginning with the Class of 2014)
ABTS is a two-week course in which medical students study the molecular, cellular, and genetic basis of disease, selecting a specific area of study from a menu of 10-12 topic areas such as genetics, cancer, auto-immune/inflammatory disease, cardiovascular disease, and in-born errors of metabolism. Students participate in a structured didactic program including a small number of core lectures, interactive lectures, directed group projects and presentations (both faculty- and student-led). Other activities to strengthen core skills will include discussions/comparisons of selected papers designed to help them build their expertise in the thematic area. Students will also be responsible for examining a specific, limited problem or question of their choosing within the scope of the area in a “real world” manner. Each class will be limited to no more than 12 students. Teaching will be collaborative and individualized to the extent possible, drawing on faculty, student participants themselves, and advanced GSBS students.
Beginning with the Class of 2020 (advanced studies year 19-20), ABTS will become a one-week course.
M. Advanced Biomedical and Translational Sciences (ABTS)
A list of ABTS courses can be found here. Effective for the Class of 2020, students taking ABTS in 19-20, the course will change from 2 credits to 1 credit (as well as from 2 weeks to 1 week).