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Year 2

Mayo Clinic M.D. Program students in simulation center

The second academic year, including 15 weeks of selective opportunities, is a blend of clinical and didactic experiences. Year 2 curriculum blocks revolve around giving you opportunities to use clinical problems to study pathophysiology and revisit the sciences basic to medicine. It also reflects on an introduction to broad areas of clinical medicine and the foundational tools needed to enter your Year 3 clerkships.


You’ll also be introduced to the "organ systems approach." This approach integrates the concepts of physiology, anatomy and pathology to teach the following systems:

  • Brain and neurosciences
  • Introduction to psychiatry
  • Cardiovascular system
  • Respiratory system
  • Hematology
  • Musculoskeletal (rheumatology)
  • Renal system
  • Urinary tract system
  • Gynecology
  • Endocrine system
  • Gastrointestinal system

Advanced Doctoring course

Sessions in the second-year Advanced Doctoring course introduce students to a variety of clinical experiences. Students develop a clinical database and acquire skills of observation and physical diagnosis.

Students evaluate patients under the guidance of a preceptor in several clinical experiences: 

  • Internal medicine
  • Pediatrics
  • Surgery
  • Clinical integration with blocks (for example, seeing dialysis patients while learning about the renal system; practicing cardiac assessment skills on the Harvey manikin at the Mayo Clinic Multidisciplinary Simulation Centers during the circulation block)

Clinical clerkship preparedness

We also ensure that we build time into our curriculum devoted to preparing you for the clinical clerkships that begin in Year 3.

Topics covered include: 

  • Hospital survival skills (transitions course)
  • Study of the most common presentations in ophthalmology, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, general surgery, dermatology, family medicine, internal medicine, neurology, ECG and more
  • Musculoskeletal physical exam skills
  • Evidence-based medicine
  • Innovation in medicine
  • Procedural skills
  • Communication skills — collaboration with interdisciplinary care teams

United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE): Step 1

Six weeks near the end of the Year 2 curriculum are devoted to intensive review in preparation for Step 1 of the USMLE.