The Clinical Core Curriculum (Phase III & IV)* consists of required interdepartmental clerkships, Sub-internships, and Phase IV Electives. Phase III provides intensive clinical experiences in the hospital, ambulatory clinics, emergency room, labor and delivery suite, and operating rooms.
During the clinical core, students participate in history-taking, physical examination and assessment, development of a differential diagnosis, diagnostic decision-making, interpretation of laboratory results, treatment planning, transitions of care, and re-evaluation of patient status after treatment is initiated. These activities and others provide medical students with opportunities to develop skills in: lifelong self-directed learning, critical analysis of evidence, and clinical problem solving.
*All Phase III clerkships must be completed at University of Colorado School of Medicine and course approved sites, including the AHEC (Area Health Education Centers) system.
Students at the University of Colorado have the option to participate in either the traditional model of block clerkships in which students focus are a particular course for a set period of time and then learn new content in their next course, or students can choose to enroll in a Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship (LIC) in which all course work is integrated throughout the clerkship year. The CUSOM also offers some hybrid options.
|Course Title||Length of Course|
|Colorado Springs Branch Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship||1 Year|
|Community and Primary Care (traditional block rotation)||8 Weeks|
|Denver Health Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship||I Year|
|Emergency Care (traditional block rotation) ||2 Weeks|
|Fort Collins Branch Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship||1 Year|
|Hospitalized Adult Care (traditional block rotation)||8 Weeks|
|Infant, Child and Adolescent Care (traditional block rotation)||6 Weeks|
|Neurologic Care (traditional block rotation) ||2 Weeks|
|OBGYN (traditional block rotation)||4 Weeks|
|Peri-Operative Care (traditional block rotation)||8 Weeks|
|Psychiatric Care (traditional block rotation)||4 Weeks|
|Colorado Community Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship in rural communities (hybrid LIC)||6 Months|
|VA Sequential Training Program (Hybrid block and longitudinal program)||6 Months|
The main benefit of this LIC model is that our students experience the benefits of patient and preceptor continuity. Students have the opportunity to follow patients longitudinally across health care systems to experience a patient-centered perspective on health care. For example, students may follow a pregnant patient, help in the delivery of her baby, and then follow up in clinic with both the mother and newborn for postpartum care and well-child check-ups.
This is a required, interdisciplinary, 8-week clerkship during which you will be immersed in the primary care setting. This clerkship provides students with the opportunity to work with volunteer primary care physicians located mainly in urban and suburban communities in the Denver metro area, as well as along the I-25 corridor. If students so choose, they can apply to complete their experience in rural primary care locations across the state of Colorado. Students will be integrated into the primary care teams of the volunteer faculty’s practices. Students will get the opportunity to experience a broad scope of care of patients and their families in the context of the unique communities in which they live, and will be provided hands-on core learning experiences. This curriculum is designed to emphasize ambulatory clinical skills, common core conditions, patient-centered care, critical appraisal and application of national screening guidelines, and interprofessional collaboration. We hope that you find the clerkship to be a rewarding experience!
The students will spend their time at a primary care office in the Denver metropolitan area or a family medicine practice setting in a rural Colorado location.
The Denver Health Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship (DH-LIC) provides an alternative to the traditional block rotations offered in Phase III to CU medical students.
Students spend their 3rd year at Denver Health working with the same preceptor in each specialty all year providing longitudinal teaching, mentorship and evaluation. Students develop a cohort of patients from all specialties that they follow through primary care, subspecialty clinics, inpatient, and emergency settings throughout their year in the program.
The Emergency Care Clerkship is a two-week curriculum during the third year at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Our vision is to exposure you to the pre-hospital and emergency medicine environment to allow you to better understand the challenges
for patients and providers to provide outstanding clinical care to patients who are in need of acute medical care.
During this clerkship, students will become familiar with the recognition and initial stabilization of a patient who requires urgent or emergent health care. Specific areas of focus will include recognition of patients needing emergent intervention from shock states, altered mental status, toxicologic ingestions, and trauma. There will also be experiences related to prehospital care, splinting, disaster scenarios, simulation exercises with both adult and pediatric patients, and exposure to clinical care within interprofessional teams. The course is graded on a Pass/Fail basis.
University of Colorado Hospital, Aurora CO
General emergency department with mostly adult pathophysiology, teaching service present on most weekdays
The Children’s Hospital, Aurora CO
Pediatric emergency department with mostly pediatric pathophysiology, teaching service present on most weekdays
Saint Mary's Medical Center, Grand Junction CO
General emergency department for patients with minor illness and accidents to major trauma and cardiac arrest.
Kelley Roswell, MD
Phone: (720) 270-1362
Todd Guth, MD
Phone: (303) 815-8835
Phone: (720) 848-6863
Phone: (720) 848-6793
During your 8 weeks of Hospitalized Adult Care (HAC), you will be expected to gain the basic knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to provide medical care for hospitalized adult patients. You will learn to hone and refine your history taking, physical exam, and presentation skills while becoming an integral member of the patient care team. Direct patient care under the guidance and supervision of your intern, resident, and/or attending is the most important aspect of this rotation. The more responsibility you take for your patients, the more you will learn. Reading background articles pertaining to your patients, asking questions when you don't understand something, and knowing your patients better than anyone else on your team will help to ensure your success during your time on HAC.
If you have any questions or concerns before, during, or after your HAC experience, please contact us. We are here to assist you. Our goal is to give you the best possible learning experience to help you further develop the skills and knowledge you need to become an excellent physician. We look forward to seeing you!
The 6-week Infant, Child and Adolescent Care Clerkship (ICAC) will provide clinical and educational experiences to allow students to achieve defined competencies in the medical care of children, ranging in age from newborn to adolescence. All students will have experiences in newborn, outpatient and inpatient/urgent care settings. They will be exposed to well child care and development, acute care and the management of hospitalized patients and those with chronic diseases.
In order to experience the entire spectrum of pediatrics, students will be exposed to a combination of pediatric inpatient/urgent care and outpatient sites and newborn nursery. Sites are available across the Denver metro area and in rural areas through the Area Health Education Center (AHEC).
Neurologic Care will help you learn about the function of the human nervous system, disorders to which it is susceptible, diagnostic tests, treatments, and prognosis.
Students will rotate at one of the following hospitals:
6 weeks before the start of the rotation, the student will receive an email from the course coordinator requesting site preference. We strive to match students to their top choices, space provided.
At all OB/GYN sites (University, Denver Health, Saint Joseph’s and AHEC locations), your clinical experience includes outpatient clinic, inpatient floor work, OR time, consultation services, and night work. The nights experience may include time on Labor and Delivery, cross-coverage of OB/GYN inpatients, OR time and consultation services. The variety of settings will provide many unique clinical and educational opportunities.
The eight week Operative/Peri-Operative Care (OPC) Clerkship is a clinical experience that introduces students to basic principles of surgery, anesthesia, and other perioperative related problems. Its curriculum is defined by learning objectives and encompasses inpatient-hospital and outpatient-office experiences. Students gain experience in both clinical anesthesiology, general surgery, and sub-specialty surgery while studying surgical disease processes and therapeutic procedures in the perioperative setting. The course focuses on the assessment and perioperative management of patients undergoing routine surgery from initial referral to discharge. During the clerkship, students evaluate and follow patients, function as members of the patient-care team providing pre- and post-operative evaluation and management, and participate in surgical and anesthetic procedures.
The course includes four weeks of general surgery at one hospital and two 2-week surgical subspecialty rotations.
Sites for surgical subspecialties vary and are assigned by the surgical subspecialty personnel.
Three days of the course are spent at the medical school for orientation, simulations, tests, and other required sessions.
Approximately six weeks before the course starts, students will be notified of the available sites for their section and may submit requests. Requests received by the deadline are considered when making site assignments. A lottery system is used in case of multiple requests for the same site(s) or surgical subspecialties.
Contact InformationCo-Block Directors
Since our founding in 1923, our department has always been dedicated to the education of our medical students. We recognize that, no matter what specialty you ultimately enter, most of you will practice psychiatry one way or another. Our core psychiatry curriculum will provide you with the clinical understanding and tools for this reality. Our Psychiatry Care Clerkship provides supervised clinical experiences, didactics and reflective writing small groups in which to hone your skills, expand knowledge in psychiatry and thoughtfully consider difficult or challenging experiences. Psychiatry grows each year in the effective treatments that it offers patients, while it retains its essential interest in the individuality of their lives. You will become part of both the growth and the tradition of education in our field. We look forward to working with you.
Please note: The School of Medicine’s Curriculum is currently undergoing reform. Please visit this page for more information on how curriculum will look for the 2025 student class and beyond.