Curriculum

M.D. students learning in a classroom at Mayo Clinic

Our curriculum for students pursuing an M.D. degree is unlike any other. It focuses on patient care and clinical experiences that will expand your classroom learning, in addition to biomedical research that will deepen your understanding of medicine.

Hands-on patient care experience

Within the first few weeks, you'll immediately be immersed in the clinical setting. Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine has the highest ratio of patients to medical students anywhere in the world, and clinical experiences are therefore abundant and easily available.

Technical skills

Technically speaking, graduates are extremely well-prepared for their next steps. Our curriculum prepares you to confidently perform more than 30 specific procedures of technical skill by the time you complete the program.

Integration between topical presentations with clinical rotations

Our curriculum mixes classroom lecture with hands-on practice and clinical observation. For example, students completing the hematology course will be in the hematology clinic that week shadowing doctors and learning firsthand the content being presented in class.

Pass/fail evaluation

During the first two years of the curriculum, grading is based on a system of pass, pass with remediation, or fail in an effort to promote collaboration and team learning and to discourage competition among peers.

Core clerkships, typically completed in Year 3, and the required medicine subinternship are graded using a system of honors, high pass, pass, pass with remediation, or fail.

We employ a full range of evaluation tools, including written examination, demonstration of skills, self-assessment exercises and faculty reviews. The advisory system and administrative procedures provide early warning for students who may experience academic difficulty. This assures that an appropriate response may be initiated by faculty and administrative staff. Among the resources available to assist students are tutoring programs and one-on-one faculty counseling.

Dedicated to community service

Throughout their training, Mayo medical students are involved in community service. During the first year, students are introduced to community organizations. During the second year, students work in community health clinics and are provided a variety of other options.

Curriculum at a glance

Subject blocks

During Year 1 and Year 2, the curriculum is organized by subject blocks. These blocks allow students to study one topic at a time for three to seven weeks. These blocks revolve around system and organ integration and address three fundamental principles: basic structure, basic functions and basic principles.

Clinical experiences

Throughout the four years, students have varied exposures to clinical experience and patient care. In Year 1 and Year 2, students work through subject blocks called basic and advanced doctoring. In Year 3 and Year 4, the majority of curriculum time is spent in clinical experiences through clinical clerkships and electives.

Throughout clinical experiences, students often work one-on-one with Mayo Clinic clinicians and researchers who are renowned experts in their field. This maximizes learning experiences and further provides unique opportunities.

Selectives

Selectives are where you can steer your education to fit your interests. They are one of the most unique features of the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine curriculum.

Selectives are one- to two-week blocks of time that enable students to experience the self-directed approach behind the design of the medical curriculum, emphasizing personal responsibility for the learning experience. In total, students have up to 23 weeks of selective time during Year 1 and Year 2 to explore all facets of medicine and science across all Mayo Clinic training sites.

Core clerkships, subinternships and rotations

During Year 3 of the M.D. Program, you'll rotate through seven core clinical clerkships. Year 4 brings subinternships and rotations. These experiences provide exposure to different specialties and patient experiences under mentorship from world-class physicians and world authorities.

Advanced degrees and educational opportunities

Collaborations

There are a variety of advanced learning programs that offer students opportunities to pursue an M.S. or a Ph.D. in a host of basic and translational sciences as well as MPH, MBA and J.D. degrees. These programs are in collaboration with Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences or renowned universities worldwide. Scholarship subsidies are available.

Science of Health Care Delivery

Through collaboration with Arizona State University (ASU), Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine has created an innovative curriculum, called the Science of Health Care Delivery, which focuses on six key topic areas throughout all four years of training.

Students will earn a certificate of completion in the Science of Health Care Delivery upon graduation and can pursue a master's degree in this area if desired.

Catalog

Review the full M.D. Program catalog.

Academics ▸ Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine ▸ M.D. Program ▸ Curriculum