Instruction offered by members of the Cumming School of Medicine.
First Year Courses
The medical skills required by students learning to optimize the physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being of patients (and self). Components include Communication, Physical Examination, Clinical Correlations, Ethics, Global Health, Physicianship, and Procedural Skills. Course Hours:(172 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
This one on one experience will provide an opportunity for early exposure to the discipline of Family Medicine and provide a real patient clinical learning environment so that students can practice their expanding patient assessment skills and enable them to integrate their accumulating knowledge. Students are matched with a Family Medicine Physician and will spend 1 day per month in his/her clinical practice. Specific learning objectives relate to the practice of Family Medicine and also include specific clinical presentations that link with other concurrent courses. Course Hours:24 hours NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Students will learn about concepts of health and disease as they apply to populations, communities and individual patients. The determinants of health and the distribution of disease within and between populations will be explored. The roles of health promotion, health protection and disease prevention will be presented. Students will learn about the evolution and function of the Canadian health care system in the context of current and historic challenges and international alternatives. Basic epidemiology and biostatistics as they apply to the core concepts of the course will be covered. Community experience with individuals and social/medical agencies is a core part of this course. Course Hours:(76 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Introduction to Medicine, Blood and Gastrointestinal Course
Integrated Clinical Presentations related to the Blood and Gastro-Intestinal systems. Students will learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage patients presenting with such clinical presentations as fever, anemia, bruising and bleeding, weight loss, difficulty swallowing, abdominal pain, jaundice, diarrhea, etc. General principles of medicine as a whole will be presented, including concepts of history and physical examination taking, as well as principles of investigations such as test sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive value. This course will also introduced fundamental concepts of anatomy, histology, pathology and radiology. An approach to problems in infectious diseases and information regarding self-protection equipment and skills is provided. Course Hours:(256 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Integrated Clinical Presentations related to the Musculoskeletal System and Dermatology. Students will learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage clinical presentations such as painful limb, joint pain, fractures and dislocations, skin lesions, etc. Course Hours:(148 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Integrated Clinical Presentations related to the Cardiovascular and Respiratory systems. Students will learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage clinical presentations such as chest pain, loss of consciousness, palpitations, shock, heart murmur, shortness of breath, cough, sore throat, etc. Course Hours:(224 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
The student selects an area of medicine of particular interest for more in depth study. Studies may be done in centres other than Calgary. Students are encouraged to consider experiences in developing world nations through the International Electives Program. All experiences must be evaluated by a preceptor. Course Hours:(4 weeks) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Integrated Renal-Electrolyte and Endocrine-Metabolic Course
Integrated Clinical Presentations related to the Renal and Endocrine systems. Students will learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage clinical presentations such as acute and chronic renal failure, generalized edema, hypertension, abnormal electrolytes, neck mass, abnormalities of blood lipids, diabetes, etc. Course Hours:(224 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
The medical skills required by students learning to optimize the physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being of patients (and self). Components include Communication, Physical Examination, Clinical Correlations, Ethics, Global Health, Physicianship and Procedural Skills. Course Hours:(88 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
This one-on-one experience will provide an opportunity for early exposure to the discipline of Family Medicine and provide a real patient clinical learning environment for students to practice their expanding patient assessment skills and enable them to integrate their accumulating knowledge. This course is a continuation of Medicine 330 offered in Year 1. Students are matched with a Family Medicine Physician and will spend one day per month in his/her clinical practice. Specific learning objectives relate to the practice of Family Medicine and also include specific clinical presentations that link with other concurrent courses.
Applied Evidence Based Medicine provides an opportunity to explore in depth an area of particular interest to each student. Students under the supervision of a preceptor may complete a research project. Others may pursue a clinical experience utilizing critical appraisal skills to address questions related to prognosis, investigation and/or treatment. Alternatively, students may pursue supervised electives in such areas as History of Medicine, Pathology, Health Economics, Community Health, Palliative Care, Rehabilitation Medicine, etc. Concepts of clinical informatics and evidence based medicine (including critical appraisal) will also be presented. Course Hours:(112 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Integrated Neurosciences, Special Senses and Aging Course
Integrated Clinical Presentations related to the Neuroscience system, Special Senses and Aging. Students will learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage clinical presentations such as muscle weakness, head and spinal injuries, gait disturbance, dizziness, speech and language disturbance, seizures, acute confusion, headache, dementia, falls, dying patient, visual loss, double vision, ear pain, hearing loss, etc. Course Hours:(188 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Integrated Clinical Presentations related to Reproductive Medicine and Paediatrics. Students will learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage pregnancy, contraception, pelvic pain, infertility, breast mass, the well and unwell newborn, childhood communicable diseases (including disease such as pharyngitis, otitis media), genetics, etc. Course Hours:(188 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Students will learn how to diagnose, investigate and manage clinical presentations such as substance abuse and drug addiction, suicidal behaviour, panic and anxiety, psychosis, mood disorders, personality disorders, etc. Course Hours:(76 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Students work in small groups with a tutor and standardized patients (actors) to further improve their skills in interviewing, communication, physical examination, diagnosing and patient management. Basic science and clinical information across organ systems are integrated with an emphasis on clinical problem-solving ability. Course Hours:(30 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
Students are introduced to topics related to senior medical student responsibilities (clerk) such as writing orders, using the regional diagnostic and laboratory services, as well as more advanced ECG, radiological and procedural skills. Course Hours:(40 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
The third and final year is called the Clinical Clerkship. The total period of studies in the Clinical Clerkship constitutes 56 weeks, of which 48 weeks must be clinical studies. During this time, students work on hospital wards, in ambulatory care clinics and doctors' offices as well as in the Emergency Room. All students will spend from 6 to 10 weeks in community hospitals in Southern Alberta learning Family Medicine as well as some specialties. During the clerkship students rotate through a variety of specialties spending from 2-10 weeks in each. These specialties include: Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Surgery, Psychiatry, Paediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Anaesthesia, and Obstetrics and Gynaecology. Students also have 12 weeks of elective experience chosen from the courses listed below (Medicine 514). During this time students will apply the knowledge learned in the first 2 years and their clinical skills toward the solution of the most common clinical presentations. Students will evaluate patients and properly manage their medical problems by conducting a comprehensive medical history and thorough physical examination, formulating accurate hypotheses as to the causes and solution of their clinical problems, formulating and implementing a management plan to deal effectively with the problems. Students will demonstrate the fundamental concepts of disease prevention and health promotion for individual patients and incorporate them into treatments plans as appropriate. Students will communicate and interact effectively with patients, families, medical staff and others involved in the delivery of health services. During this time students will accept increasing responsibility in patient care as the final year advances. Students will be working with multi-disciplinary clinical teams of nurses, physiotherapists, residents and faculty. Students will develop and apply high ethical principles and standards in all aspects of medical practice and will exhibit appropriate personal and interpersonal professional behaviours. In the clerkship, as in the whole of the curriculum, it will be clear that physicians can serve patients to the highest possible standards only if they continually acquire new knowledge and skills for as long as they practice medicine.
Participation in Outreach Rotations: The clerkship program includes several community centres such as Medicine Hat, Lethbridge, Red Deer, and rural sites such as Brooks, Fort Macleod and Pincher Creek, etc. Students should expect to do from 5–10 weeks of their clinical clerkship outside the city of Calgary except in unusual circumstances.
There are two weeks set aside in January of the third year for students to attend the National Resident Interview Period for their residency application within the process of the Canadian Residency Matching Service (CaRMS).
Up to 20 students per year may have the opportunity to achieve the objectives and evaluation requirements of the above stated disciplines in the University of Calgary Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship (UCLIC) an experience consisting of:
32 weeks in a longitudinal rural preceptorship
12 weeks of urban medicine (4 weeks Internal Medicine, 4 weeks Paediatrics, 4 weeks Surgery)
12 weeks electives.
During this 6-week block the learning experience will consist of mostly clinical experience in a community setting. Common clinical problems associated with family medicine will be emphasized. The four principles of Family Medicine as identified by the College of Family Physicians of Canada will be highlighted.
During this 10-week block, clerks will develop their diagnostic and problem-solving skills by participating in a variety of clinical experiences and formal teaching rounds. The clinical experiences will consist of: a 4-week Medical Teaching Unit rotation, and three 2-week rotations on a more outpatient/consultative subspecialty, or one 4-week ICU rotation and one 2-week outpatient/consultative subspecialty. Formal teaching sessions include weekly bedside teaching, clinical Pharmacology, medical emergencies and "case of the week" rounds.
This 6-week rotation covers a wide-range of surgical problems and specialties. Subsequently, students will rotate through 1. A 3-week General Surgery rotation and a 3-week Orthopedic Surgery rotation; OR 2. A 3-week General Surgery rotation and one 2-week rotation in either Orthopedic Surgery, Plastic Surgery or Urologocial Surgery along with one 1-week selective in either Urology, Vascular Surgery, Thoracic Surgery, Neurosurgery or Trauma Surgery.
This 6-week rotation will provide clerks with a learning experience in paediatric medicine, emphasizing clinical skills and problem solving pertaining to common paediatric problems. The experience will build upon knowledge and skills (including history-taking and physical examination of newborns, infants, children, adolescents) previously gained in the first two years of the medical undergraduate curriculum, and will prepare the student for subsequent residency. The experiences shall be broad-based involving both ambulatory and hospital-based patients, and shall include newborn care, and care of children and adolescents up to the age of 18 years.
This 6-week rotation will develop the students understanding of the psychiatric patient. Five weeks of the rotation is spent in Adult Psychiatry and one-week in Child Psychiatry. An additional option will be made available to a small number of students that will offer three weeks of Adult Psychiatry and three weeks of Child Psychiatry. Students will develop clinical skills in psychiatry in order to perform a psychiatric assessment and to demonstrate the basic principles of management of psychiatric clinical presentations with integration of basic knowledge obtained from the non-clinical setting. Clerks will perform a variety of assessments including: child and adolescent behavioural and learning assessments, elderly cognitive function, risk of fall, and competency assessments, safety assessments for suicide, abuse, and mental status examinations. They will order appropriate investigations including: collateral information, diagnostic imaging, laboratory and psychological and other functional assessments, etc.
During this 6-week block clerks will receive a broad exposure to women's health and focus on details essential to the practice of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. Clerks will experience direct patient care in both outpatient and inpatient settings, spend a 5-week block at either a community hospital in Calgary or Medicine Hat Regional hospitals, or at a tertiary care hospital. Clerks will develop history taking and physical examinations skills appropriate to obstetrics and gynaecology patients and will participate in deliveries. Fetal assessment, maternal fetal medicine, colposcopy, low risk obstetrics, infertility and urogynaecology will also be covered during this rotation.
During these mandatory 12 weeks of clerkship, clerks will choose electives from the range of potential medical domains. Twelve weeks of mandatory elective time must be completed during the clerkship year with a minimum of two weeks on any one elective block.
During this 2-week rotation, students work daily with a preceptor in the hospital setting. In addition, four areas of anaesthesia will be covered: procedural skills, resuscitation, pharmacology as well as an overview of anaesthesia topics including: preoperative assessment, pain management and others. Clerks will practice intravenous cannulation, bag and mask ventilation, jaw thrust, laryngeal mask and airway insertion and airway and endotracheal intubation in a controlled setting.
Comprehensive Clinical Skills Curriculum for Clerkship
To ensure that our curriculum is comprehensive, and consistent with the curricular format of the first two years, we have identified all the “must see” clinical presentations and designed learning experiences to ensure that each of these presentations is covered in at least one of the following formats: simulation, standardized patients, or virtual patients. The curriculum will run over a 48-week period. The curriculum will include a combination of didactic, small groups and simulation learning experience, and we will evaluate learning outcomes using a combination of summative and formative evaluations. Course Hours:(120 hours) NOT INCLUDED IN GPA
During this two-week rotation, students will experience a minimum of six shifts in an urban emergency room at three teaching sites. During this rotation, students will experience the varied diagnostic and therapeutic challenges offered by emergency medicine, including the assessment and management of life threatening illness. The clerks will have access to all elements of health care delivery, including discharge planning, outpatient referrals, and direct interaction with consultants, ambulatory care and inpatient facilities, as well as diagnostic imaging. This type of integrated experience will provide the training physician with a unique and invaluable exposure to outpatient care not normally seen on the more typical inpatient rotations.