Innovative Curriculum

What Makes Us Distinctive: High-Tech. High-Touch.

UNLV School of Medicine will provide medical students with intensive, hands-on educational experience - one grounded in the community all four years. Students completing UNLV School of Medicine's educational program will be fully prepared to start a rewarding career in medicine.

The Power of Virtual Anatomy

UNLV School of Medicine Offers

  • Innovative and time-tested curriculum that prepares medical students for all aspects of medicine
  • One-on-one and small-group interaction with faculty all four years
  • Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification in year one
  • Problem-based learning focused on real-life clinical cases
  • Cutting-edge virtual anatomy and microscopy
  • Outpatient longitudinal integrated clerkship offering students continuity of patient care combined with full integration into the clinical team
  • Medical Spanish
  • Hospitality in health care principles integrated into the student and patient experience
  • Community service experience
  • Expertise and competency to practice in any health care setting - urban, rural, suburban, or frontier

MD Program

The UNLV School of Medicine curriculum centers on the importance of relationships in health care and will foster long-term connections between students and faculty, health care professionals, patients, families and the community. Students will learn how to provide compassionate care in teams of health professionals including physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, dentists, physical therapists, social workers, occupational therapists and others in the pursuit of the best patient outcomes and satisfaction at the lowest cost.

UNLV School of Medicine's education program emphasizes the basics of medicine — fundamental clinical skills of physical exam and diagnosis, clinical reasoning and interpretation, communication, professionalism, and ethics — while employing the most technologically advanced equipment and genomic data.

Elements of our Curriculum Plan

Immersion

The first phase of the curriculum will begin with a six-week course leading to each student becoming a certified emergency medical technician (EMT) with orientation to the community, public health and cultural awareness.

Foundations in Medical Science

Students will learn medicine using an organ system approach that integrates basic and clinical sciences. Students will learn in small groups for approximately a year and a half. They also will learn medical Spanish, virtual microscopy and virtual anatomy. All students will have the opportunity for a meaningful community service learning experience during the Foundations in Medicine Science phase.

Foundations in Clinical Science

Students will have a full year of outpatient, integrated clerkships. They will experience firsthand the specialties of family medicine, internal medicine, neurology, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, and surgery in a medical-home practice model with faculty and residents. Students will get to know their patients and community over time and develop important relationships with physicians, nurses, and other members of the health care team. Working with UNLV’s William F. Harrah Hotel College of Hotel Administration, our students will be immersed in an approach to patient care that incorporates state-of-the art hospitality.

Career Preparation and Scholarship

The third phase of the curriculum will encompass hospital sub-internships and intensive care experience rotations as well as electives and completion of a scholarly project. Again, the connection to the Nevada community will be experienced through a Nevada Community Medicine rotation. Our students will be well prepared for the transition to residency with an intensive capstone rotation tailored to their chosen field.

Certificate Programs

We are developing certificate training for medical students, health professional students and community members who want advanced education to supplement their activities. Once developed these programs will be available to health care professionals and the public if they qualify.

Research

UNLV School of Medicine will build on areas of current strength and greatest community need. Current strengths include neuroscience, cardiology, and cancer; the greatest needs are mental health and addiction. For instance, UNLV School of Medicine will develop early research programs with the Cleveland Clinic/Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, focusing on Parkinson’s, Alzheimer's and Multiple Sclerosis patient care and provide high-level clinical trial research. These findings will be useful as the UNLV School of Medicine research develops anonymous genomic profiles of patients’ sets with these diseases. This may potentially lead to new clinical trials with drugs targeting an individual’s actual genetic makeup. Such work is already taking place at UNLV. Two additional areas of strength at UNLV include radio-pharmacology and computational science with large databases. Medical research in genomics and medical imaging will utilize these strengths and will be of great value to the medical community. Another important clinical area for the development of research is orthopedics.

Health-Sciences Library

A key to future medical education is a next-generation health sciences library consisting of the highest level of technology while remaining high-touch among students, faculty and librarians. We will design this resource center so all health science students can study in teams and for members of the public to use as a resource. Students and faculty will benefit from a robust, behind-the-scenes computing infrastructure that translates collections of all formats: books, journal articles, videos, and data sets delivered digitally in a cross-platform cloud environment. We will create physical and virtual learning communities to support evidence-based, interdisciplinary discovery of the latest research information. Physical learning spaces will incorporate multimedia for exploration and discovery and for the creation of new knowledge. Library experts will be available as guides and teachers to provide research consultation in real and virtual spaces. The library’s institutional repository will capture and disseminate scholarly UNLV papers, research and conference proceedings to showcase the intellectual output of its health sciences faculty and scholars for the world to discover and use.