Medical School Admissions

Curriculum

Our innovative curriculum is designed to impart all the skills, knowledge, attitudes, and abilities to produce competent physicians and scientists.

We start by focusing on the end product: the successful MD graduate. Our innovative curriculum has been thoughtfully designed to impart all the skills, knowledge, attitudes, and abilities you will need to become competent physicians and scientists, while giving feedback every step of the way. What’s more, we listen to student feedback and will make changes, if necessary, to help our students have a better learning experience.

During Years 1 and 2, students enroll in four sequential semesters of Integrated Medical Sciences (IMS) and Doctoring. The elective Scholarly Concentration Program is introduced to students during Year 1.

IMS-I provides first-year medical students with foundations of cell biology, cell physiology, biochemistry, nutrition sciences, immunology, genetics, and introductory pharmacology, all of which are integrated with gross and microscopic anatomy. IMS-I also includes general pathology, in which students are introduced to concepts underlying the mechanisms of disease.  Finally, the health systems science course considers broader concepts of health—including environmental and social issues with a focus on health disparities—as well as epidemiology.

Brain Sciences, the first course of IMS-II, integrates head and neck anatomy with neurobiology, brain and behavior, neurologic pathology, neuropathophysiology, and neuropharmacology. The second IMS-II course integrates musculoskeletal anatomy with an introduction to the fields of orthopedics, rheumatology, and dermatology. The first year ends with a course that integrates microbiology with infectious diseases and relevant pharmacology.

Students continue with a systems-based approach in Year 2, which includes the following courses: cardiovascular, renal, pulmonary, endocrinology, human reproduction, hematology, and gastroenterology. Each systems-based course includes the relevant physiology, pathophysiology, pathology, and pharmacology organized in an integrated fashion. In addition, students have self-directed learning time in the second-year schedule to accommodate participation in scholarly activities.

Medicine is both a science and an art. Science you can learn from a lecture or textbook; art is best learned through observation and practice. Though your first two years at The Warren Alpert Medical School—the preclerkship years—do include lectures and textbooks, you’ll also get plenty of hands-on experience: in the anatomy suite, in labs and other electives, and in the two-year Doctoring course.

Years 1 and 2

A strength of the medical school curriculum at AMS is the robust Doctoring program, which is aligned with the IMS curriculum whenever possible. During Years 1 and 2, you’ll be paired with a community physician mentor to learn communication and clinical skills and to gain early exposure to real patients and medical practice. In addition, the Doctoring course provides an excellent preparation for the clinical clerkships.

Years 3 and 4

The clinical curriculum spans Years 3 and 4 and includes six core clerkships as well as electives. In each rotation, you’ll immerse yourself full time for 4 to 12 weeks at a Brown-affiliated hospital or practice, though some electives offer opportunities for international work and lab research. Your clinical rotations not only give you essential, firsthand experience as a physician-in-training but also help you refine your career interests as you prepare for the match process and residency.

Research Opportunities: Nearly 90 percent of students take part in clinical or basic science research during their time at The Warren Alpert Medical School.

Research experience during medical school can serve several purposes. It can enhance learning through exposure to the process of generating and testing hypotheses. It can provide insight into data analysis and interpretation. And it can open the door to a research career.

There are many ways to structure a research experience within the context of your medical education, such as a scholarly concentration, brief independent study, a longitudinal experience, a summer project, or a second degree program (ScMMPH, or PhD).

Whatever approach you choose, you won’t have to go it alone. Faculty mentors, academic deans, and even your classmates can help you identify research opportunities, offer advice, and help you make connections in your chosen field.

Interested in teaching? Global health? How about ethics? Or technology and entrepreneurship? If so, the Scholarly Concentration Program may be for you. The Warren Alpert Medical School offers more than a dozen areas of scholarly concentration, an elective program that lets you go beyond the traditional curriculum and tailor your medical education around your personal interests.

Scholarly concentrations offer unique opportunities for rigorous independent scholarship, interdisciplinary study, and mentored relationships across all four years at The Warren Alpert Medical School. Students apply in their first year and present a scholarly project in their final year.

Scholarly Concentrations