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Professional Development Curriculum

Several other curricular topics are integrated within the Foundations of Doctoring Curriculum, including Clinical Reasoning, Threads, IHI Open School Modules and the Clinical Interlude. 

Clinical reasoning curriculum

Clinical reasoning or “how to think like a physician” is a complex skill that is learned and developed throughout a physician’s medical career.  Although medical students have historically learned clinical reasoning through the process of going through medical school and refined these skills once in residency and out into practice, there is a push in undergraduate medical education to teach clinical reasoning more explicitly.  Within FDC communication, physical examination, preceptor, and didactic sessions, fundamental concepts of clinical reasoning will be introduced and reinforced through opportunities to practice clinical reasoning skills using both application and reflective exercises.  Sessions focusing on the creation of written notes and oral presentations will highlight the importance of using clinical reasoning skills to create hypothesis-driven histories and physicals that support prioritized assessments and diagnostic and therapeutic plans for patients. Supplemen​tal readings for these educational sessions will be used to help reinforce clinical reasoning concepts and skills.  Clinical reasoning knowledge, behaviors, and techniques can and should be used and applied in problem based learning sessions, preceptor sessions, and other clinical experiences to develop one’s abilities to “think like a doctor.”


As in the Essentials Core Blocks, Threads content is integrated into FDC curricular time.  In Phase I, there are sessions in the Humanities, Ethics and Professionalism (HEP), Medicine and Society (M&S), and Culturally Effective Medicine (CEM) threads.    

IHI Open School

Over the course of Phase I and II, you are required to complete multiple Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) Open School on-line courses.  Completion of select courses results in their Basic Certification and you must complete this Basic Certification prior to the end of Phase II.  This content is also considered part of the Medicine & Society thread.  Required modules will be reviewed during orientation.

Clinical Interlude

In December after the Essentials Core block curricula has concluded, you will spend 1 week exploring the clinical environment both on campus and in the hospital setting.  Your full participation in this week is required and is part of the FDC grade.