Online teaching and hands-on clinical experience

Oceania University of Medicine blends distance learning and hands-on clinical rotations to help aspiring physicians overcome distance, personal, and professional barriers to achieve their dream. OUM’s MD program is based on a full-scale, rigorous medical school curriculum, which is typically completed in four-and-a-half to five years.  

Students spend the first half of the program studying basic sciences through a computer-based curriculum delivered by faculty in real-time virtual classrooms and the latter half in hospital-based clinical rotations. OUM students have the best of all worlds – an easy to access, flexible pre-clinical study program followed by the more traditional clinical rotations arranged in hospitals in a student’s community or at OUM-affiliated hospitals and institutions. 

The advantage of the OUM approach? Logistics. The OUM program provides a medical education to those who face distance, personal, and professional challenges, especially those individuals who live in remote areas of the world without a medical school nearby. That was the school’s original mission on the island nation of Samoa, a mission that has flourished.

The online pre-clinical study allows students to maintain a full or part-time work schedule throughout the first half of medical school.

“ A few things got me through the rough patches at OUM: recognizing quality time with kids over quantity, learning that laundry and dirty dishes ‘could wait,’ that asking for help was OK, and that being at one sporting event could be just as rewarding as being at all of them…If becoming a doctor is something you have always wanted to do, then enroll at OUM and do it. The faculty and staff will support you and do everything they can to make sure you become a doctor.”

Jennifer A., MD, Class of 2012

Full-Time or Part-Time?

Flexibility allows OUM students to progress through the curriculum at their own pace. Full-time students may complete the program in as few as four years, while part-time students are likely to complete the degree within five to six years.

Many OUM students continue to work and earn an income during the two years of pre-clinical studies. During this time, students will spend an average of 40-50 hours per week on their studies. OUM essentially becomes a second full-time job, and some students seek flexible work schedules during this time.

Is this a viable way to learn basic sciences during the first two years of medical school? Absolutely. The Internet’s vast growth during the past two decades has redefined the study of medicine – for students, faculty, even patients. All students learn differently and OUM’s curriculum is intended for independent, adult, self-learners who grasp material best during intense private study, supplemented with personal interaction with online faculty, academic advisors, and classmates.