Sanford School of Medicine School of Medicine

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Three-Pillar Schedule

How will the curriculum change?
  • The traditional basic science course content, anatomy, biochemistry, pathology, etc., previously two years in length, is integrated into two foundations courses and eight blocks aligned by organ systems (Pillar 1). There is less lecture and more small group. The duration is 17 months with a short summer break.
  • Traditional block clinical clerkships are now longitudinal and integrated (Pillar 2). Students will learn the gathering of patient information, diagnostic reasoning, and therapeutic management across the disciplines simultaneously while maintaining continuous relationships with patients and mentoring faculty. This experience begins with short hospital-based blocks in each discipline and a rural family medicine preceptorship.
  • What was formerly the fourth year will expand to include more opportunities for research, advanced clinical, and other activities (Pillar 3). This Physician Scholar pillar, nearly 17 months in length, will provide flexibility to best prepare students for residencies.

A detailed look at the Three-Pillar Curriculum.