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MD Program

Educaton FOW

Educational Program Objectives

The Zucker School of Medicine’s curriculum is based on eight core competencies: the six ACGME competencies and additional competencies of Population Health and Research and Scholarship.

The faculty, through careful deliberation, established educational program objectives (EPOs) based on these eight core competencies to frame the overall integrated four-year science and clinical curriculum. To measure the students’ achievement of the educational program objectives, the School uses a series of summative assessments.

Please visit the page on course specific learning objectives, required clinical skills and assessment methods, for more information.

Over the past three years, the academic leadership has been working closely with the Curriculum Committee to refine the educational program objectives (EPOs). The updated version of the EPOs will be implemented in the 2019-2020 academic year. The EPOs are the objectives that our medical program promises to teach and to assess. Please visit the new EPO page more information.

  • Medical Knowledge
    1. Integrates molecular, biochemical, and physiologic mechanisms to explain how the body maintains homeostasis.
    2. Explains the genetic, environmental, infectious, and nutritional causes of disease and their impact on how illness changes over the lifespan.
    3. Explains how diversity of presentation, depending on gender, genetics, age, and duration of illness, produces different disease states and conditions.
    4. Expresses understanding of how the scientific method is used to determine the cause, presentation, and spread of disease, and how to design and test the effectiveness of disease interventions.
    5. Explains the scientific basis, interpretation, reliability, and validity of common diagnostic and therapeutic modalities.
    6. Evaluates the indications, contraindications and cost-effectiveness of common diagnostic and therapeutic modalities for both individuals and populations.
  • Patient Care
    1. Obtains an accurate, age- and gender-appropriate clinical history and performs both comprehensive and focused psychological and physical examinations effectively, efficiently and respectfully.
    2. Performs basic clinical procedures safely and effectively while respecting patients' needs and concerns.
    3. Records, researches, presents, critiques and manages clinical information effectively.
    4. Selects, justifies, and interprets clinical tests appropriately.
    5. Approaches clinical problems by identifying the salient issues, generating a biopsychosocial differential diagnosis, and explaining the clinical reasoning that justifies the differential diagnosis.
    6. Formulates and implements appropriate patient care strategies that incorporate a comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach.
    7. Formulates and communicates a patient's current health status and prognosis that is based upon an understanding of the patient, his/her caregivers, the natural history of disease, and treatment alternatives.
    8. Selects and begins appropriate initial therapy for patients.
    9. Identifies and applies preventative, curative, and palliative measures that appropriately utilize health system resources.
  • Interpersonal Skills and Communication
    1. Engages effectively and compassionately with patients and their caregivers across a broad range of personal, clinical, and cultural circumstances.
    2. Educates patients and families as to the nature of their illness and treatment options.
    3. Works collaboratively, effectively, and respectfully with consultants and members of the health care team.
    4. Engages patients in conversations addressing behavior modification, prevention and wellness.
    5. Presents scientific and clinical information clearly and cogently, both verbally and in writing.
  • Professionalism
    1. Identifies the ethical principles that govern the doctor-patient relationship.
    2. Recognizes opportunities to apply ethical principles in resolving common ethical dilemmas.
    3. Demonstrates respect for patients' dignity, individuality, privacy, and confidentiality in all verbal, written, and electronic communications.
    4. Demonstrates honesty and integrity in all professional interactions.
    5. Examines individual decisions from the perspectives of both a patient advocate and a just steward of society's resources.
    6. Recognizes, accepts, and addresses learning needs and limitations and appropriately seeks guidance and supervision.
    7. Seeks and readily accepts feedback from others and integrates constructive criticism/ feedback effectively.
    8. Recognizes and manages the occurrence and impact of medical errors and accepts responsibility when appropriate.
    9. Performs the administrative responsibilities of being a physician.
    10. Accepts the commitment to a professional life that balances concern for self and accountability with the needs of patients, society, and the profession.
    11. Comprehends the threats to medical professionalism posed by conflicts of interest inherent in various financial, governmental, and organizational arrangements for the practice of medicine.
  • Practice-Based Learning and Improvement
    1. Retrieves, utilizes, and communicates information essential for identifying problems and making decisions that affect the care of individuals and populations.
    2. Describes and applies the principles of evidence-based medicine (EBM).
    3. Applies principles of practice-based learning through mentored self-reflection, peer evaluation, and appraisal and assimilation of scientific evidence.
    4. Values narrative, formative, summative, and reflective assessments and demonstrates that value by incorporating them into a plan for lifelong learning and continual professional improvement.
    5. Uses and applies data and benchmarks to identify patient needs and to improve patient care.
  • Systems-Based Practice
    1. Describes the various systems of care available for promoting health and preventing disease and applies this knowledge to provide comprehensive patient care and education.
    2. Considers cost effectiveness appropriately in individual patient care decisions.
    3. Advocates broadly for groups of patients and communities.
    4. Works in interprofessional teams to enhance patient safety and improve patient care quality.
    5. Identifies various approaches to the organization, financing, and delivery of health care and recognizes how these systems differ at the community, national, and global levels.
  • Research and Scholarship
    1. Accepts and values a commitment to engage in translational research and scholarship to advance healthcare.
    2. Recognizes uncertainty and uses it to develop questions relevant to health and patient care.
    3. Develops creative, testable hypotheses about mechanisms of disease and/or the relationship of social, political and economic systems to health behaviors and outcomes.
    4. Acquires information from multiple sources and applies it to address questions related to normal physiology, disease pathogenesis, public health, and health care delivery.
    5. Analyzes data critically, resists premature closure, and reformulates hypotheses as new information is obtained.
    6. Communicates results of scholarly activity effectively, and responsibly considers peer evaluation of one's work.
    7. Recognizes conflicts of interest inherent in research and displays the integrity necessary to manage those conflicts.
    8. Understands community-engaged scholarship as applied to health care equity and quality.
  • Population Health
    1. Explains the principles of epidemiology that form the scientific basis for public health practice.
    2. Describes the epidemiology of common diseases within a defined population and the systematic approaches useful in reducing the incidence and prevalence of those diseases.
    3. Recognizes the unique health care needs of diverse populations and communities, and modifies approaches to incorporate this diversity into patient care and community interventions.
    4. Describes and accepts the role of the physician in public health surveillance and public health improvement. 
    5. Identifies and applies the concept of "health determinants" at both the individual and population levels.
    6. Utilizes culturally and linguistically appropriate services in both individual patient and population health encounters.