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Year 1/2 Electives

There are no electives required during years 1 and 2. However, students have the opportunity to take several courses approved for senior elective credit. Please note that these courses cannot be taken during years 3 and 4 for 4th year elective credit.

Students may take as many electives in years 1 and 2, in any combination, as they wish. However, a maximum of only 3 months of 4th year elective credit will be awarded as a result of year 1/2 electives. A minimum of one, 4-week clinical elective will be required of all students in their 4th year regardless of the amount of elective credit accrued in years 1 and 2.

Students participating in preclinical electives including CAPP, Medical Spanish, Primary Care Track, and approved Law School Courses must earn a minimum grade of "C" in all medical school coursework in order to register for or continue with the elective. Students not meeting this standard will not be permitted to register or be withdrawn from the course or program upon confirmation of a "D" or "F" in a course. No partial credit will be awarded to students required to withdraw.

Critical Issues in Health Care (PREV 645)

Course Director

Diane Hoffmann, JD

Medical Spanish (SPAN 547)

Course Director

Sandra Quezada, MD

Homeland Security-Bioterrorism (CIPP 905)

Course Director

Michael Greenberg, JD

A maximum of two months senior elective credit will be awarded for any combination of the 4 elective courses listed above.  

Combined Accelerated Program in Psychiatry (PSYH 548)

The Combined Accelerated Program in Psychiatry (CAPP) was initiated in 1970 by the Department of Psychiatry as a major effort to explore new approaches to medical education. This behavioral science-psychiatry track allows selected students to enroll in basic psychiatric specialty training, beginning in and concurrent with the Freshman year and continuing through the four years of medical school. In addition to participating in the psychiatry program, students are required to fulfill all of the requirements of a standard four-year medical curriculum. In admitting students to the program, there is no requirement for any pledge of a career interest in psychiatry.

Students are selected from among applicants with an interest in the social and behavioral aspects of medicine. Twelve students are admitted to the program per year. The track provides, from the first month of the Freshman year, an unfolding progression of combined didactic and clinical experiences in the behavioral sciences and in clinical psychiatry. Most teaching occurs in the 12-member group, seminar-style, and is conducted by senior faculty members. Completion of this four-year program provides two months of Senior-year elective credit and enables the student to graduate from medical school with a foundation of knowledge and skills that is envisioned to be at least equivalent to that provided by one year of traditional residency training in psychiatry. Only about 1/3 of the CAPP students go into Psychiatry.

Course Director

Ann Hackman, MD   

A maximum of two months senior elective credit will be awarded to students participating in CAPP.


Course Directors

Richard Colgan, M.D.
(410) 328-3525

Linda Lewin, M.D.
(410) 328-6662

Nikkita Southall, M.D.
(410) 328-2388

Role of Personal Genomes in Medicine –  MEDC 540


Successful completion of Year 1 curriculum


School of Medicine

Description and Goals:

This course will expose trainees to the use of personal genetic and genomic information in clinical medicine.  It will cover principles of advanced medical genetics and genomics, complex disorders, laboratory design and execution, as well as ethical, legal, and social issues associated with decision-making, consent, and individualized genomic testing. The laboratory component will afford hands-on experience to allow an appreciation of genomic testing and bioinformatics.  This will include exposure to DNA extraction and quantitation, microarray technology using a drug metabolism panel (on their own or an anonymous sample of DNA);   and an opportunity to see ‘next-generation’ DNA sequencing using a panel for cancer and/or other common adult conditions.  The data will be used to discuss how identification of specific mutations can impact the choice of treatment for cancer patients, but also challenge students to investigate how information about an individual’s genome will profoundly change how a physician may manage health and disease in the near future.
Number of Students: 5-20 (rising MSII students but MSIV may also be interested, but appropriate for both.)
Time of Year Available:  Summer (June/July)
Hours: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (with assignments, lab experience, etc.)

Faculty Responsible:

Miriam G. Blitzer, PhD
Professor and Head, Division of Human Genetics, Pediatrics
(410) 706-4065 

Administrative Contact:

Rhea Cosentino
Program Manager, Program in Personalized and Genomic Medicine

Humanism Symposium (MSPR 500)

The Humanism Symposium is an elective course that will offer medical students and SOM faculty the opportunity to examine the full range of what it means to be a humanistic physician. The course will be co-led by Dr. Narayan (Surgery), Dr. Southall (Medicine) and Dr. Talbott (Psychiatry), with assistance from a small group of dedicated Junior and Senior students. The Symposium will meet for 2.5 hours once per week for a total of 16 sessions spanning from November to April. It will address topics across specialties, from medical ethics, to cultural differences and spirituality, to physician self-care. Over the six months, students will co-lead article discussions, share reflections on pieces of art, music and/or writing, participate in rousing discussions and complete a culminating creative project. We hope that this course will allow students to explore the joys and challenges of medicine, and also strengthen their sense of empathy and duty as they face the rigors of medical school. For the faculty who lead classes or participate in sessions, we hope it will serve as a reminder of the compassion that the practice of medicine demands.

Course Director

Dr. Mayur Narayan, course director
(410) 328-3051  

Co-Course Directors

Dr. Nikkita Southall, co-course director
Dr. John Talbott, co-course director
Elizabeth Allan, MS-3, student leader
Ekta Taneja, MS-3, student leader


Last Revision: April 11, 2013