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MSTP Overall Training Plan


An overview of the timetable of MSTP training is shown above. In 2014, a renewal of the CCOM medical curriculum occurred, accompanied by two major changes. First, preclinical instruction was shortened from four to three semesters. Second, the preclinical curriculum was redesigned to integrate basic science content with pathophysiology and clinical application, delivered in a “triple helix” of interwoven strands. The three helical strands are:

  1. Mechanisms of Health and Disease
  2. Medicine and Society
  3. Clinical and Professional Skills

The strands are interwoven in a helical spiral that assures not only integration of material but also affords the deliberate revisiting of material in a manner that promotes progressively deeper understanding and mastery. Instruction occurs in both lecture and small group self-directed team-learning formats. Longitudinal mentored clinical experiences start in the first week of medical school.

After the three-semester preclinical phase of training, MSTP students complete a Step 1 study block and take Step 1 of the United States Medical Licensing Exam (USMLE).

Next, they complete 12 weeks of core clinical clerkships before entering the PhD phase of training, typically beginning their thesis research in July and graduate coursework in August of Year 3.

After 3.5 to 4.5 years of PhD training, students transition back to complete ~18 months of core and elective clinical clerkships, typically graduating in the spring semester of Year 7 or Year 8.

The MSTP integrates programming and advising throughout the entire course of study to provide continuity, program identity, mentoring, and enrichment, and to emphasize intersections between science and medicine throughout the entire period of training