Live interactive sessions online
Throughout the preclinical phase, students attend live interactive sessions with an instructor four days a week. Lectures are offered live via the Zoom virtual classroom and recorded for students who have a scheduling conflict or who wish to listen to the lecture a second time. Live sessions are held Monday – Thursday, 8 pm to 10 pm Eastern Time (USA), and in Australia/New Zealand Tuesday – Friday, late mornings to midday.
Modules 1 and 2: e-Foundation 300-Series
Students begin the e-Foundation 300 Series blocks after completing the 12-week Introduction to Medicine medical school prep course with a post-exam score >70%. The basic sciences are grouped into one of three ten-week segments. Each ten-week segment covers the basic sciences listed below in periods ranging from two to four weeks.
100-Level e-Foundation Sciences Series
The e-Foundation Sciences 100-series consists of ten six-week classes in the basic sciences. The 100-series covers the basic sciences in much greater depth than the 300-series.
After completion of the basic science blocks, students proceed to the system-based modules, using problem-based learning (PBL) to demonstrate the practical application of the basic sciences through case-based study. Each case begins with a virtual patient presentation (or scenario) and follows patient progression through the following stages:
- Patient presentation
- History & physical examination
- Differential diagnosis
- Laboratory tests & diagnostic imaging
- Provisional diagnosis
- Short-term management
- Long-term management
Modules 3 through 11: System-Based Preclinical Study
Each system-based module, six weeks in length, combines the basic and clinical sciences in a case format. During each week of the module, several cases and supporting materials are accessed online through Moodle and fully examined as the basis for classroom discussion. Students will also participate in interactive lectures covering additional key concepts, and engage in independent study.
The system-based modules include:
Module 13: Trends and Topics in Medicine
Students are required to take three additional modules to round out their preclinical experience and prepare for the clinical rotations. Trends & Topics is a stand-alone six week course and Clinical Skills and Research Methodology may be taken concurrently with other preclinical modules. The Day-One Clinical Skills Course introduces foundational clinical skills on the first day of medical school. Along with Research Methodology, the clinical skills module spans the entire preclinical curriculum and is taken concurrently with other modules.
- Trends & Topics in Medicine: Trends & Topics in Medicine includes case studies in behavioral medicine, legal medicine, ethics, and integrative medicine, nutrition, and preventive medicine to offer the student a well-rounded exposure to current issues facing medicine.
- Research Methodology: Students learn the language and methods of research as they prepare their research project, working directly with a research adviser who will help them choose a research topic, design and conduct the study, and prepare the manuscript. Students will not be permitted to commence clinical clerkships until the research prospectus has been approved by the Director of Research.
- Clinical Skills: Throughout the preclinical curriculum, students will build upon their clinical skills, especially in history taking and physical examination. Before entering clinical rotations, students must complete a one-week Advanced Clinical Skills Course. This includes an in-person, on-site assessment of a “patient.”
Throughout the preclinical phase, each student meets regularly with an academic adviser who will help direct their studies as well as assess his/her progress. Before the system-based modules, students will be asked to select a physician mentor. Mentors do not teach case content or biomedical theory, but offer clinical experience and advice relevant to the student’s current system-based module. Learn more about Student Support.
Students are required to participate in Journal Club (JC) upon enrolling in the system-based preclinical modules, though all students and faculty are invited to attend JC sessions. Each student must present at least one article while enrolled in the system-based modules and once during the clinical phase.
Prior to graduation, all students are required to complete an original research project and to publish the results in Medical Student International, the student research journal created by OUM faculty, or a peer-reviewed journal. Students will need to identify a faculty member who is willing to oversee their research project and manuscript preparation. The research course provides 20 hours of faculty time to work with the student on the research project.
Upon completing the preclinical modules and passing their preliminary exams, OUM students become eligible to begin 72 weeks of clinical rotations. The core clinical rotations cover 56 weeks, followed by 16 additional weeks of advanced and general electives. Students are required to begin clinical rotations within six months of completing the preclinical phase.
Clinical students will have an opportunity to train in both ambulatory and in-patient hospital settings. During core rotations, students are assigned to a clinical supervisor at the clinical site to complete clerkship training. Together with the hands-on work, students complete PBL cases, directed learning activities, and supportive lectures associated with the clerkship. Students are required to view clinical lectures and take a corresponding written final examination for each core clerkship.
The core clinical modules in OUM’s MD program and their durations are:
In addition to the core clinical rotations, MD students will take 16 weeks of university-approved elective rotations in order to complete the 72-week requirement. The electives may expand further study into core subjects or introduce students to new areas to help them with career decisions. They may focus on patient management problems, exposure to the specialties, and the acquisition of additional procedural skills prior to beginning a supervised internship/residency program.
Full-Time or Part-Time?
OUM’s flexible program allows full-time students to complete the program in as few as four years, while part-time students—working healthcare professionals who have been out of university for a while—may need to take some additional basic sciences and complete the degree within five years.
Many OUM students continue to work and earn an income during the two years of preclinical years. During this time, students will study an average of 40-50 hours per week on their studies. OUM essentially becomes a second full-time job. Some students seek flexible work schedules during this time.
For full-time students, OUM’s MD program may be completed in as few as four years, as the student is able to study the requisite 80-100 hours per week that successful students in a traditional medical school need to fully absorb the material.
Flexibility allows OUM’s students to progress through the curriculum at their own pace. One of the keys to success at OUM is self-discipline and time management. OUM provides the necessary resources and support, but the student needs to secure the study time necessary to learn the material. Learn more about Student Support.