Our MD Program: Clinical Sciences Curriculum

AUC medical students completing clinical training

During the clinical portion of AUC's medical program, students perform as an active member of a team comprised of students, residents, and attending physicians. Under supervision, clinical students perform histories and physicals, evaluate laboratory data, analyze information to diagnose patient cases, and undertake limited procedures. Medical students complete their clinical training during semesters 6 through 9.5 over 72 weeks, undergoing clinical rotations at AUC's affiliated clinical sites in the United States and United Kingdom.

Each clinical site is staffed by a program director, faculty members and a medical education coordinator who work together to facilitate the learning experience for AUC students. Additionally, AUC’s Office of Clinical Student Services is available to assist students at any point during their clinical rotations.

Core and Elective Clinical Rotations

The clinical science curriculum are separated into core and elective rotations. Core rotations are the foundation of a student’s clinical medical education. Elective clerkships are medical subspecialties under each of the main core rotations. Students choose their electives according to their preferred area of postgraduate residency training. All AUC clinical sites in the United States offer residency programs approved by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) or are affiliated with a medical school accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME).
Students are advised to take four to eight weeks of electives in a primary field of interest. Four to six weeks of family practice is highly recommended, as this is a condition of licensure in many states. AUC’s Chief Academic Officer recommends that students also take Emergency Medicine and Neurology. Additionally, it is recommended that each student take 18–22 weeks of electives in internal medicine subspecialties. See course description section for full listing of subspecialties.

Global Health Electives

Through our clinical affiliation with Danbury Hospital, AUC students have a chance to complete a six-week clinical rotation in one of five countries: Vietnam, Russia, the Dominican Republic, Uganda, or Zimbabwe. This unique global elective opportunity can expose students to healthcare systems that greatly differ from their own, broaden their horizons, and give them a deeper understanding of how healthcare is practiced in a global sense.

Taking the USMLE Step 2

Upon successful completion of core rotations (including NBME Clinical Subject Examination for each core clerkship and the NBME Clinical Comprehensive Examination) students are eligible to take the USMLE Step 2CS and CK. Students must pass both exams to graduate. Passing Step 2 CS and CK is also a condition for ECFMG certification, which is the process that international medical graduates must follow to participate in the National Resident Matching Program for postgraduate training. They participate in the same residency match programs as U.S. medical students.

Student Support

The Office of Clinical Student Services is a critical resource for students in semesters six and beyond offering numerous services and resources designed to enhance the clinical educational experience at AUC. AUC students have access to the following:

  • Friendly advisors dedicated to helping students schedule core and elective rotations at AUC’s clinical teaching sites
  • Access to a current list of available clinical sites as well as to information about the profile of your preferred site(s), the core rotations offered, and available electives
  • Support and resources to assist students preparing for USMLE Steps 1 and 2
  • Coordinated access to an array of administrative, registration, and documentation services provided through the Offices of the Registrar, Graduate Certification, and the Clinical Dean

As a clinical student looking forward to the residency match, you'll also have access to a variety of resources, including webinars and live residency workshops.