Steps 1 and 2 are completed in the first two academic years. Coursework is multidisciplinary, featuring a variety of active learning pedagogies that foster critical thinking, clinical application, and integration among strands. In addition, students engage in a longitudinal clinical preceptorship in the community and participate in the Green Family Foundation NeighborhoodHELP program in collaboration with FIU students from other health professions.
Step 1 - Foundations
Step 1 spans the first semester of Academic Year 1 and focuses on studying the foundations of medicine in core basic medical sciences, including genetics, cellular biology, biochemistry, anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, immunology, microbiology, and pathology. Students also begin coursework in clinical skills, medicine and society, research, and professional development during this time. And students participate in half-day primary care clinic visits, optional emergency department shifts, medical simulations, and standardized patient experiences.
Step 2 – Organ Systems
Step 2 begins in the second semester of the first academic year and spans the entire second academic year. This step provides an in-depth study of human biology, disease, illness, and injury in a highly integrated organ-system-based approach. Pathology, physiology, anatomy, pharmacology, genetics, and human behavior are emphasized in the case-based study of the major organ systems: hematopoietic and lymphoreticular, endocrine, reproductive, musculoskeletal, skin, gastrointestinal, renal/urinary, cardiovascular, respiratory, and nervous.
Students continue to develop clinical skills by performing physical exams, forming differential diagnoses, and developing the skills to interpret and use laboratory medicine data and imaging technologies through continued clinical preceptorship visits.