Undergraduate Medical Education: First Year

The first year curriculum runs from August through May, and is devoted to the basic scientific foundations of medicine and an introduction to clinical medicine. It consists primarily of basic science activities in the General Education Building and clinical activities in the Robert Kaplan Clinical Skills Center. Approximately twenty hours weekly are devoted to scheduled activities.

Fall Semester

1.1 Structural Basis of Normal Body Function COM 1011 10
1.2 Molecular Basis of Normal Body Function COM 1012 8
4.1 Principles of Clinical Medicine I COM 1041 4

Spring Semester

2.1 Common Mechanisms of Diseases COM 1021 9
4.2 Principles of Clinical Medicine II COM 1042 4
5.1 Organ Systems - Pathogenesis/Diagnosis/Treatment: Hematological, Cardiovascular, Renal COM 1051 9

M1 Course Descriptions

COM 1011 - Structural Basis of Normal Body Function (10 credit hours), preclinical course. Fall term of year one. Complete dissection of the human body and virtual microscopy of tissue sections will provide students with knowledge of normal gross and tissue anatomy. Laboratory sessions will be supplemented with lectures, study guides, and the study of cross sections. Human embryology is included in the program. The course will provide a foundation for subsequent understanding of the physiology and pathophysiology of organ systems and common diseases.

COM 1012 - Molecular Basis of Normal Body Function (8 credit hours), preclinical course. Fall term of year one. This integrated course will provide students the molecular biology, genetics, cell structure, and biochemistry of normal body function with an emphasis on clinical applications. Instruction includes live and pre-recorded lectures, team-based learning sessions, and clinical basic science conferences. Along with COM 1011, the course will provide a foundation for subsequent understanding of the physiology and pathophysiology of organ systems and common diseases.

COM 1021 - Common Mechanisms of Disease (9 credit hours), preclinical course. Spring term of year one. This course will cover fundamental information on mechanisms common to multiple diseases, to include basic aspects of cell injury, repair/regeneration, inflammation, immunopathology, neoplasia, nutrition, underlying genetic causes, and addictive life styles. It will also expose students to basic aspects of pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and pharmacotherapeutics; basic microbial structure, classification, physiology, and genetics; the immune response to infections; and fundamentals of laboratory diagnosis in the practice of medicine. Instruction includes live and pre-recorded lectures, small group sessions, team-based learning sessions, laboratory exercises, and clinical pathophysiology conferences. The course will provide a foundation for subsequent understanding of the causes, response, diagnosis, and pharmacologic treatment of common diseases as well as the pathology and pathophysiology of organ systems.

COM 1041 - Principles of Clinical Medicine I (4 credit hours; 1 term), preclinical course. Fall term of year one. This course covers a variety of topics including HIPAA and OSHA regulations, developing patient rapport, the doctor/patient relationship, the biopsychosocial model of medicine, professionalism, communication and interviewing skills, history taking, nutritional assessment, and performing and documenting a physical exam. All topics are thoroughly integrated into concurrent foundation courses.

COM 1042 - Principles of Clinical Medicine II (4 credit hours, 1 term), preclinical course. Spring term of year one. This course covers a variety of topics including patient rapport skills, the doctor/patient relationship, the biopsychosocial model of medicine, professionalism, communication and interviewing skills, history taking, performing and documenting the physical exam, tobacco and weight loss counseling, drug dependence, challenging patient encounters, preventive services, diagnostic testing properties, and basic biostatistics. All topics are thoroughly integrated with concurrent foundation courses.

COM 1051 - Hematological, Cardiovascular, Renal (9 credit hours), Pathogenesis, Diagnosis, and Treatment. Preclinical course. Spring term of year one. This course will provide a fully integrated presentation by multiple basic and clinical faculty on diseases of the Hematological, Cardiovascular, and Renal organ systems. The physiology, pathophysiology, pathology, pharmacology, and infections underlying these systems will be covered. Instruction includes live and pre-recorded lectures, small group sessions, team-based learning sessions, and clinical pathophysiology conferences. The course will provide a foundation of integrated basic and clinical sciences needed by students as they enter the clerkship phase of training.

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Contact Us

Office of Medical Education

910 Madison Avenue, Rm 1002
Memphis, Tennessee 38163
Phone: 901-448-5506
Fax: 901-448-1488

Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education
Clint W. Snyder, PhD, MBA

Executive Dean:
David M. Stern, M.D.