Program Competencies

Generally, each of the six collegiate competencies are organized to align with the spiral nature of the New Horizons curriculum in the Carver College of Medicine.  The spiral nature of the curriculum intentionally places learning activities that revisit and build on previous experiences while preparing students for subsequent learning.  Major educational strands exist throughout the curriculum and serve to provide the expertise that promotes the skills, attitudes, and knowledge necessary for the degree.  The educational strands include:

  • Mechanisms of Health and Disease (MOHD)
  • Clinical and Professional Skills (CAPS)
  • Medicine and Society (MAS)

For more information on the New Horizons Curriculum, visit our webpage, Program Curriculum.

Interpersonal and Communication Skills

Develop Interpersonal and Communication Skills (ICS) that result in effective information exchange and collaboration with patients, their families, and other health care professionals.

  • ICS01 Presents information and ideas in an organized and clear manner to educate or inform others.
  • ICS02 Engage in effective communication with all those concerned in the patient’s healthcare, including the patients and their patient’s family.
  • ICS03 Demonstrate the ability to write appropriate clinical notes and communicate effectively with the health care team.

Medical Knowledge

Integrate Medical Knowledge (MK) to address the mechanisms of health and disease.  This involves a solid foundation in the established and evolving biomedical, clinical, epidemiological, and social-behavioral sciences that impact patient care.

  • MK01 Demonstrate knowledge of the healthy human body, explaining structure and function from conception to death through the integration of molecular, cellular, biophysical, genetic, organ system, behavioral, and psychological bases.
  • MK02 Demonstrate knowledge of how alterations of normal structure and function cause diseases and abnormal conditions of the body and correlate this knowledge with clinical, laboratory, radiologic, and epidemiologic data.
  • MK03 Integrate medical knowledge and clinical findings to diagnose common diseases and disorders and recognize the potential for variation in their presentation and prognosis.
  • MK04 Integrate the scientific foundations of medicine with clinical reasoning skills to prevent and treat diseases and conditions as they apply to individuals, including pharmacologic and other interventions that can prevent, cure, or alter the course of diseases and conditions.

Practice-Based Learning and Improvement

Develop skills for Practice-Based Learning and Improvement (PBL).  These skills are necessary to investigate and evaluate the delivery of patient care, appraise and assimilate scientific evidence, and implement continuous improvements for patient care.  Collectively this goal reflects routine self-evaluation and life-long learning.

  • PBL01 Demonstrate fundamental skills in self-directed learning, including the ability to identify knowledge and performance gaps; generate appropriate questions; use effective strategies to obtain answers to those questions; assess the validity, completeness, and relevance of the information; and apply validated knowledge to address gaps.
  • PBL02 Demonstrate a systematic, integrated, and effective evidence-based approach to problem-solving in the diagnosis and management of diseases and disorders.

Patient Care

Deliver Patient Care (PC) that is patient-centered, compassionate, appropriate, and effective for the treatment of health problems and the promotion of health.

  • PC01 Integrate knowledge of mechanisms of health and disease, and the concerns, needs, and expectations of a patient to take an appropriate history, perform a physical examination, and develop a thorough problem list.
  • PC02 Integrate foundational sciences with clinical information to develop and prioritize a differential diagnosis and appropriately order diagnostic tests to evaluate and clarify the differential.
  • PC03 Report clinical data by obtaining and communicating the clinical facts in an organized manner that demonstrates understanding and synthesis of the findings.
  • PC04 Develop appropriate and comprehensive patient care plans to promote health, prevent illness and injury, and manage the disease.
  • PC05 Counsel and educate a patient effectively.


Develop Professionalism (PR) as manifested through a commitment to carrying out professional responsibilities, adherence to ethical principles, and sensitivity to a diverse patient population.

  • PR01 Routinely demonstrates respect in interactions with peers, teachers, staff, patients, families, healthcare team members, and others regardless of differences in beliefs, lifestyles, and cultural heritage.
  • PR02 Demonstrate understanding of ethical and legal principles operating in the healthcare environment and the medical profession and adhere to these principles.
  • PR03 Accept personal responsibility for meeting the expectations of their role as appropriate to their stage of training.

Systems-Based Practice

Develop a System Based Practice (SBP) approach to patient care as manifested by actions that demonstrate an awareness of, and responsiveness to, the broader context of health care.  This includes developing skills to call on system resources to provide optimal health effectively.

  • SBP01 Understand factors that affect access to and delivery of healthcare and the patient-healthcare provider relationship, including cultural, environmental, socioeconomic, policy financing, and healthcare systems.
  • SBP02 Explain the role of all members of the healthcare team and collaborate with them to provide the highest quality of care.