NYMC > School of Medicine (SOM) > SOM Academics > Undergraduate Medical Education (M.D. Program) > Curriculum


The curriculum in the M.D. program is designed to prepare physicians to practice medicine ethically and compassionately in a diverse world where technological advances and evolving regulatory issues present continual challenges and opportunities. Offering a breadth of foundational science and clinical training, the curriculum provides students a logical four-year progression of skills and knowledge. A year-to-year summary of the curriculum follows. 

First-year curriculum 

The core first-year curriculum is organized into three blocks:

Additional course requirements include Biostatistics and Epidemiology, a case-based course in Biomedical Ethics, and History of Medicine. 

Second-year curriculum

The second-year curriculum follows an organ-system model that places an emphasis on small-group discussion and problem-based, active learning, with less class time spent in large lectures. Required courses are:

Biostatistics and Epidemiology and Biomedical Ethics remain integrated into related coursework. 

Complementing their classroom learning, all first- and second-year students learn and practice basic interviewing, communication skills and physical examination techniques in NYMC’s Clinical Skills and Simulation Center, as well as work directly with actual patients in primary care settings with faculty providing direct mentorship. Through these hands-on experiences, students learn “on the job” and put theory into practice. 

Third-year curriculum 

Third-year students spend a great deal of time in clinical training opportunities throughout the region, including Westchester Medical Center, Metropolitan Hospital Center, Brookdale Hospital, and St. Joseph’s Hospital in Paterson, New Jersey. Taking a generalist approach, they undertake required clerkship rotations in the following disciplines:

Third-year students also have four weeks of elective time to be used for career exploration.

Fourth-year curriculum

The fourth-year curriculum is organized into specialty tracks to allow students to align their program of study with an area of specialty interest. General requirements for fourth year students include 33 total curriculum weeks encompassing three mandatory track requirements, five elective months (see fourth-year electives), and a one-week Transition to Residency Course. Students must complete at least 20 weeks of clinical coursework; no more than three months in a single subspecialty can be applied for credit towards graduation. Students can elect to engage in research and/or independent study for up to three months. All specialty track requirements must be completed at a NYMC-SOM affiliated institution.