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The Medical Curriculum

The Alpert Medical School curriculum has been designed and implemented with the intention of creating an integrated, contemporary, compassionate, and flexible program of learning for our students. Our approach to medical education is predicated on the vision that tomorrow's physician must be a lifelong learner who is scientifically and clinically enlightened, patient and service-centered, and who understands the economic underpinnings of the US health care system. Our goal is to train physicians who will provide informed and compassionate care while at the same time serving as leaders and change agents for the health care system. To achieve the latter goal, we aim to train physicians who will be leaders at all levels.

These educational goals are pursued through a curriculum with the following structure. During Years 1 and 2, students enroll in four sequential semesters of Integrated Medical Sciences (IMS-I through -IV) and Doctoring-I through -IV. The elective Scholarly Concentrations Program is introduced to students during Year 1. Year 3 allows students to explore core disciplines and related specialties through the completion of required clerkships in medicine, surgery, pediatrics, obstetrics & gynecology, psychiatry, and family medicine. The transition from the third year to the fourth year takes place in May, after which time students have the opportunity to develop a program of elective rotations aimed at finalizing a career choice, and obtaining and preparing for a residency in their chosen field.

Alpert Medical School continues to employ a competency-based curriculum that was officially launched in 1996 for the graduating MD Class of 2000. The rationale behind the competency-based curriculum stems from the need to define the outcomes of the educational process: what are the desirable qualities of a medical school graduate, and what constitutes the essential knowledge base that will enable a graduate to make a successful transition to his or her chosen medical field?

All students are expected to gain competency in the Nine Abilities (see below) and knowledge base by graduation. Each course within the core curriculum of the Medical School identifies which abilities and parts of the knowledge base it addresses. Students may also meet the competency requirements through individualized study, group independent study projects (GISPs), or alternative courses that might be arranged as part of collaborative learning opportunities.

Nine Abilities:

  1. Effective communication
  2. Basic clinical skills
  3. Using basic science in the practice of medicine
  4. Diagnosis, prevention, and treatment
  5. Lifelong learning
  6. Professionalism
  7. Community health promotion and advocacy
  8. Moral reasoning and clinical ethics
  9. Clinical decision making

For additional information regarding Alpert Medical School please visit the website at: http://brown.edu/academics/medical/ 

Tuition Regulations

Adjustments of annual tuition charges will be made for any student in the Medical School who withdraws officially or who is dismissed for academic reasons, subject to the following provisions:

- Years I & II
1. A student who leaves the Medical School prior to the beginning of the semester shall not be charged tuition for the semester.

2. A student who leaves the Medical School during either Semester I or II shall be eligible for a refund of the normal charge for that semester (50% of the annual charge for the Medical School) during the first five weeks only as follows:

First two weeks
Third week
Fourth week
Fifth week

-Years III & IV
1. The academic program for the third and fourth year of the Medical School is divided into four clerkship periods of approximately thirteen weeks each.

2. A student who leaves the Medical School during or at the end of the first clerkship period shall be refunded 75% of the total annual charge.

3. A student who leaves the Medical School during or at the end of the second clerkship shall be refunded 50% of the total annual charge.

4. A student who leaves the Medical School during or at the end of the third clerkship shall be refunded 25% of the annual charge.

5. No refund shall be made to a student who leaves the Medical School during or at the end of the fourth clerkship period.