Sanford School of Medicine M.D. Program


The Sanford School of Medicine has more than two decades experience with longitudinal, integrated clinical training (Avera Sacred Heart Yankton campus) which has become the national model of excellence. This model has been refined and extended to create a modern curriculum responsive to the findings of the Institute of Medicine and the Carnegie Foundation. It will be phased in beginning in FY 13.

Three Pillars of Medicine

The first Pillar establishes a strong foundation in basic science, blended with clinical experience in both didactic and small group settings. 

The second Pillar focuses on acquiring clinical skills, integrating learning across specialties and focusing on experiential learning. Students work closely with experienced physicians in Sioux Falls, Yankton, Rapid City or other communities in South Dakota (view a map of our clinical sites). A new Rural Track will allow students to experience medicine in a smaller community. 

The third Pillar includes advanced medical knowledge, an opportunity to delve more deeply into areas of interest through electives and an expanded opportunity to perform research. 

Several threads run throughout the curriculum, including the importance of professionalism, culture and diversity, population science, quality and outcome assessment and working in an interdisciplinary environment. 

The curriculum is designed to allow students to gain competence and then progress to excellence, creating skilled and confident physicians, who are able to practice medicine in the modern era. 

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