The DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine at LMU (LMU-DCOM) has developed a modified systems curricular model that emphasizes basic science and foundational concepts of medicine in the first year of medical school and clinical application of those concepts in the second year. At LMU-DCOM, we combine traditional lecture-based didactic presentations and laboratory exercises along with highly interactive learning sessions, in the Team-Based Learning (TBL) format, that help students master the basic science concepts presented in lecture and lab. In TBL, students work outside of class with individual study of assigned material as preparation for in-class exercises that allow students to improve their critical thinking skills and demonstrate mastery of the topic under discussion. Students work in small teams of up to eight members to solve problems in various topics of medicine related to their current course work. The student acquires, through didactic lecture and laboratory practice, using simulated and standardized patients, basic clinical skills and procedures needed in clinical rotations and eventually as an independent physicians.
In the fall of year one, students are introduced to topics in medical biochemistry, genetics and cellular biology in the Molecular Fundamentals of Medicine I course, with these topics being reinforced through the use of TBL exercises. The Medical Gross Anatomy and Histology courses cover structure of the human body from the macro level to the cellular level. Neuroanatomy studies the structure, innervation and function of the brain. Foundations of Modern Health Care I includes presentations and discussion on the foundational skills and information necessary to understand the dynamic practice of medicine in our society.
The spring semester of year one includes Medical Physiology, in which basic principles of physiology are presented in a practical way relevant to medicine, and expand upon the biochemistry introduced in the fall semester. Medical Physiology provides students with a framework on how the human body functions normally and is a foundation for the system courses in the second year. Knowledge acquired in Medical Physiology also provides a foundation for Medical Pharmacology. Basic principles of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics provides students a basic understanding of the therapeutic principles of pharmacology and the underlying mechanisms of drug function. In Molecular Fundamentals II, the functioning of the human immune system is studied as well as the bacterial, viral and parasitic invaders that cause human morbidity and mortality in infectious disease.
The manipulative techniques that DOs employ as an additional treatment modality in their "toolkit" as physicians are taught in Osteopathic Principles and Practices (OPP). OMM is structured for progressive learning over the first two years with fundamental tenets required to perform osteopathic manipulative techniques. Essentials of Patient Care (EPC) allows students to develop basic clinical skills through a combination of didactic lectures, simulation labs and standardized patient experiences.
The students practices communication techniques and examination skills essential for a competent physician. EPC builds in knowledge and complexity over the course of the first two years, preparing students for their clinical rotations in the third and fourth years.
OMM and EPC
The manipulative techniques that DOs employ as an additional treatment modality in their "toolkit" as physicians are taught in Osteopathic Principles and Practices (OPP). OMM is structured for progressive learning over the first two years with fundamental tenets required to perform osteopathic manipulative techniques. Essentials of Patient Care (EPC) is a combination of didactic lectures, simulation labs and standardized patient experiences that help students practice techniques and examination skills essential as a competent physician. EPC builds in knowledge and compexity over the course of the first two years, preparing students for their clinical rotations in the third and fourth years.
The second year of medical school will focus on clinical application of the basic science concepts presented in year one. Students will have didactic lectures and interactive learning sessions (TBL), using an organ system approach to medicine. LMU-DCOM differs in its curriculum design by presenting the groups of systems concurrently, such as Cardiovascular, Renal and Respiratory thus aiding students in improving understanding and integration/correlation of course materials beyond a single organ system. Topics are presented with clinical considerations that integrate with practical application of basic science principles mastered in year one coursework.
Organ systems are grouped as follows:
Simultaneously, OPP and EPC course lectures and labs present clinical skills techniques and examinations that compliment the systems coursework.