Phase 1 Course Descriptions

The course descriptions for the Phase 1 Foundations of Medicine curriculum is below. Click on each heading to view the blocks for that semester.
Semester 1  

M-ID 501 - Fundamentals
5 cr. hrs

This 5-week Block presents an integrated, comprehensive course that covers introductory information needed by all subsequent Blocks within Phase 1 of the curriculum.  Material included in the Fundamentals Block includes content in biochemistry and cell biology, medical genetics, embryology, basic histology, general pathology, and basic pharmacologic principles.  In addition, students are exposed to foundations of population health, clinical skills, and health systems quality. The block will utilize a combination of lectures, laboratories, team-based learning, case-based small groups, standardized patient encounters, patient-oriented problem-solving sessions, and flipped classroom activities as instructional methods.

M-ID 513 - Blood, Defenses and Invaders
6 cr. hrs

Blood, Defenses and Invaders takes an integrative approach to cover the immune system and pathogens that invade the cellular and humeral defenses. Topics include hematopoiesis, cellular interactions, antibody formation, antigen-antibody reactions, cell-mediated immunity, and the biological effects of immunological reactions. In addition, a comprehensive approach evaluating the pathogenesis, epidemiology, physical diagnosis and treatment of bacterial, viral, fungal and parasite-mediated infectious diseases is covered throughout this 6-week course. Finally, the course will elaborate on the synthesis and function of hemoglobin, red blood cell structural components, blood types including Rh types, the pathogenesis of anemia, leukemia, and a basic understanding of blood banking and transfusion medicine. Students will also investigate various components of the normal coagulation process including vasculature, platelets, pro-coagulants, and natural anticoagulation. 

M-ID 504 – Musculoskeletal and Integument
6 cr. hrs

This block focuses on the normal structure and function of the integumentary and musculoskeletal systems, and recognition of the etiology and manifestations of pathologic conditions of these two systems.  Students actively apply basic knowledge about the human body through dissection, virtual histology, small group interactions, and dynamic lectures.  This course is designed to prepare the student for real-life patient encounters, including enhancement of physical examination skills through mastery of surface anatomy.

Semester 2  

M-ID 505 - Circulatory
5 cr. hrs

The circulatory block is focused on the fundamental knowledge of cardiac and vascular histology, embryology, anatomy, and physiology, and applies that knowledge toward building a more comprehensive understanding of various cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension, dyslipidemia, atherosclerosis, ischemic heart disease, vasculitis, cardiomyopathies, heart failure, congenital cardiac disorders, valvular heart disease, pericardial diseases, cardiac dysrhythmias, arterial and venous vascular disorders, traumatic and mechanical disorders of the cardiovascular system, and heart disease caused by infectious agents.

M-ID 506 - Respiratory
4 cr. hrs

The Respiratory block emphasizes the anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, pharmacology, genetics, histopathology, and imaging of the respiratory system. This block examines the normal state and the variety of diseases that afflict the respiratory system. Students obtain knowledge of the structure and function of the entire respiratory system with comparative analysis of respiratory mechanics, gas exchange, and oxygen, as well as carbon dioxide homeostasis under normal and diseased conditions. The differentiation of important diseases is studied, including those affecting the lung parenchyma, airways, blood vessels, pleura and chest wall, including the impact of sleep-disordered breathing, and select appropriate therapy options for these diseases. Students identify changes in the nose, throat and respiratory system in gross anatomy, imaging, and histology, in addition to taking a comprehensive history and physical examination, including consideration of social and environmental factors.

M-ID 507 - Renal
3 cr. hrs

The Renal block provides a strong foundation in the basic sciences relating to the kidney as well in clinical nephrology.  The initial phase of the 3-week block focuses on providing fundamental knowledge of renal anatomy, histology, physiology, and pharmacology.  The remainder of the block emphasizes clinical nephrology emphasizing the following areas: electrolyte disorders, acid-base disorders, introduction to clinical nephrology, acute renal failure, chronic kidney disease, glomerular diseases, and hypertension. 

M-ID 508 - Neurosciences
8 cr. hrs

The Neurosciences block covers the basic science core concepts of neuroanatomy and neurophysiology that are necessary for a medical practitioner to clinically evaluate a patient with neurological and psychiatric diseases. Building upon this foundation, the pathophysiology of diseases affecting the brain and special senses and the clinical presentation of these diseases are covered. Treatment of these diseases, including pharmacological, is integrated with the clinical focus. The students learn how to use the physical examination to assess the patient with diseases affecting the nervous system and special senses.

Semester 3  

M-ID 510 - Gastrointestinal
6 cr. hrs

This 6-week block provides a strong foundation in the structure and function of gastrointestinal organs, and preclinical concepts in structure, function, and disease. The gastrointestinal system includes the esophagus, stomach, small and large intestine, liver, and pancreas. The development, anatomy, histology, and physiology of each of these major organs is addressed in detail. Additionally, the structure and function of the mouth and salivary glands is included, as well as the anterior abdominal wall. Nutrition and digestion are also covered. Disease processes of these organs and body regions are presented with a focus on the molecular and physiological mechanisms of disease, and basic approaches to medical and surgical treatment. Students are introduced to history taking and physical exam skills relevant to the organ systems and body regions of the gastrointestinal tract.

M-ID 511 -  Endocrine
3 cr. hrs

The goal of the Endocrine block is to apply knowledge of endocrine physiology to understand the pathophysiology of the endocrine system and relate this information to the diagnosis and treatment of endocrine diseases. Topics covered include endocrine cells, tissues, structure, function, as well as hormone synthesis, secretion, action, and metabolism. Included in the discussions are the hypothalamus, pituitary, thyroid, adrenal, parathyroid, metabolic bone disease, the endocrine pancreas, glucose homeostasis, diabetes, and obesity.

M-ID 512 - Genitourinary/Reproductive and Developmental (GURD)
6 cr. hrs

In this block, students apply basic science knowledge to explain the normal and pathological states of the female and male genitourinary and reproductive systems, and to relate that knowledge to the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. This block has as its foundation the anatomy of the pelvic and perineal regions, and other structures associated with reproduction, as well as the biology and endocrine regulation of reproductive processes such as gametogenesis, fertility, pregnancy, and menopause. These principles are be applied to clinical understanding of pathologies of the genitourinary and reproductive systems. This block also includes capstone coverage of embryology to review processes of human development, both normal and abnormal.

M-ID 530 - Transitions I (Multiorgan System)
2 cr. hrs

Material covered in this block revisits fundamental science content as covered in the preceding organ systems blocks. The goal of this transitional block is to provide a structured review and combine high-yield material from the prior organ systems blocks through the lens of conditions related to multi-organ disease processes as preparation for USMLE Step 1. This block uses a case-based approach to provide students a means to apply previously encountered material in a new clinical context of complex disease processes involving multi-organ systems such as infectious disease, rheumatology, and immunology. Focus is placed on formative assessment garnered through liberal use USMLE-style questions.