First 100 Weeks
The First 100 Weeks is an integrated curriculum with seven courses inclusive of both scientific and clinical content.
The first six courses have three components: (1) Mechanisms of Health, Disease, and Intervention, (2) Structure, and (3) Patient, Physician, and Society.
Mechanisms of Health, Disease, and Intervention includes normal and abnormal molecular, cellular, and organ physiology, as well as pharmacology and therapeutics. Structure integrates normal and abnormal anatomy, embryology, histology, pathology, imaging, physical diagnosis and ultrasound. Patient, Physician, and Society has two components: (1) a longitudinal, community practice-based clinical experience, known as the Initial Clinical Experience (ICE); and (2) classroom sessions focusing on non-biological sciences and core clinical skills.
Each week of the curriculum is defined by a scientific theme and anchored by two hybrid problem-based/ case-based learning cases known by the acronym PEARLS (Patient-Centered Explorations in Active Reasoning, Learning, and Synthesis). During Structure sessions, faculty preceptors challenge students to apply their understanding of biomedical science in solving clinical problems by linking structure and function. In ICE, students complement their classroom learning with direct patient care. Each week also includes specific concept framing sessions, opportunities for review and reinforcement, and ample self-directed learning time.
The First 100 Weeks ends with a period in which the students prepare for the USMLE Step 1, followed by the seventh course, Transitions, a course in preparation for the Second 100 Weeks. In addition, there is sufficient time in the First 100 Weeks for personalized experiences, including opportunities during the first summer, for in-depth pursuit of individual interests, such as research, community service work, or international health.