2.1: Competencies and Objectives for Medical Student Education

The following competencies and their associated educational objectives serve as a guide for curriculum development and evaluation of the success of the training program and its graduates:

1. Patient Care

Provide patient-centered care that is compassionate, appropriate, and effective for the treatment of health problems and the promotion of health

  • 1.1  Perform all medical, diagnostic, and surgical procedures considered  essential for the area of practice 
    1.2  Gather essential and accurate information  about patients and their conditions through history-taking, physical examination, and the use of laboratory data, imaging, and other tests 
    1.3  Organize and prioritize responsibilities to provide care that is safe, effective, and efficient 
    1.4  Interpret laboratory data, imaging studies, and other tests required for the area of practice
    1.5  Make informed decisions about diagnostic and therapeutic interventions based on patient information and preferences, up-to-date scientific evidence, and clinical judgment 
    1.6  Develop and carry out patient management plans 
    1.7  Counsel and educate patients and their families to empower them to participate  in their care and enable shared decision-making 
    1.8  Provide appropriate referral of patients including ensuring continuity of care throughout transitions between providers or settings,  and following up on patient progress and outcomes
    1.9  Provide health care services to patients, families, and communities aimed at preventing health problems or maintaining  health 
    1.10  Provide appropriate role modeling
    1.11  Perform supervisory responsibilities commensurate with one’s roles, abilities, and qualifications

2. Knowledge for Practice

Demonstrate knowledge of established and evolving biomedical, clinical, epidemiological and social-behavioral sciences, as well as the application of this knowledge to patient care

2.1  Demonstrate an investigatory and analytic approach to clinical situations 
2.2  Apply established and emerging bio-physical scientific principles fundamental to health care for patients and populations 
2.3  Apply established  and emerging  principles of clinical sciences to diagnostic and therapeutic decision-making,  clinical problem-solving, and other aspects of evidence-based health care 
2.4  Apply principles of epidemiological sciences to the identification of health problems, risk factors, treatment strategies, resources, and disease prevention/health promotion efforts for patients and populations
2.5  Apply principles of social-behavioral sciences to provision of patient care, including assessment of the impact of psychosocial and cultural influences on health, disease, care seeking, care compliance, and barriers to and attitudes toward care
2.6  Contribute to the creation, dissemination,  application,  and translation  of new health care knowledge and practices

3. Practice-Based Learning and Improvement 

Demonstrate the ability to investigate and evaluate one’s care of patients, to appraise and assimilate scientific evidence, and to continuously improve patient  care based on constant self-evaluation and life-long learning

3.1  Identify strengths, deficiencies, and limits in one’s knowledge and expertise 
3.2  Set learning and improvement goals 
3.3  Identify and perform learning activities that address one’s gaps in knowledge, skills, and/or attitudes 
3.4  Systematically analyze practice using quality improvement methods, and implement changes with the goal of practice improvement 
3.5  Incorporate feedback into daily practice 
3.6  Locate, appraise, and assimilate evidence from scientific studies related to patients’ health problems 
3.7  Use information technology to optimize learning 
3.8  Participate in the education of patients, families, students, trainees, peers, and other health professionals 
3.9  Obtain and utilize information about individual patients, populations of patients, or communities from which patients are drawn to improve care 
3.10  Continually identify, analyze, and implement new knowledge, guidelines, standards, technologies, products, or services that have been demonstrated to improve outcomes

4. Interpersonal and Communication Skills 

Demonstrate interpersonal and communication skills that result in the effective exchange of information and collaboration with patients, their families, and health professionals

4.1  Communicate effectively with patients, families, and the public, as appropriate, across a broad range of socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds 
4.2  Communicate effectively with colleagues within one’s profession or specialty, other health professionals, and health related agencies 
4.3  Work effectively with others as a member  or leader of a health care team or other professional group 
4.4  Act in a consultative role to other health professionals 
4.5  Maintain comprehensive, timely, and legible medical records 
4.6  Demonstrate sensitivity, honesty,  and compassion  in difficult conversations, including those about death, end of life, adverse events, bad news, disclosure of errors, and other sensitive topics
4.7  Demonstrate insight and understanding about emotions and human responses to emotions that allow one to develop and manage interpersonal interactions

5. Professionalism 

Demonstrate a commitment to carrying out professional responsibilities and an adherence to ethical principles

5.1  Demonstrate compassion, integrity, and respect for others 
5.2  Demonstrate responsiveness to patient needs that supersedes self-interest 
5.3  Demonstrate respect for patient  privacy and autonomy 
5.4  Demonstrate accountability  to patients, society, and the profession 
5.5  Demonstrate sensitivity and responsiveness  to a diverse patient population, including but not limited to diversity in gender, age, culture, race, religion, disabilities, and sexual orientation 
5.6  Demonstrate a commitment to ethical principles pertaining  to provision or withholding  of care, confidentiality, informed consent, and business practices, including compliance with relevant laws, policies, and regulations

6. Systems-Based Practice 

Demonstrate an awareness of and responsiveness  to the larger context and system of health care, as well as the ability to call effectively on other resources  in the system to provide optimal health care

6.1  Work effectively in various health care delivery settings and systems relevant to one’s clinical specialty 
6.2  Coordinate patient care within the health care system relevant to one’s clinical specialty 
6.3  Incorporate  considerations of cost awareness and risk-benefit analysis in patient and/or population-based care 
6.4  Advocate for quality patient care and optimal patient care systems 
6.5  Participate in identifying system errors and implementing potential systems solutions 
6.6  Perform administrative and practice management responsibilities commensurate with one’s role, abilities, and qualifications

7. Interprofessional Collaboration 

Demonstrate the ability to engage in an interprofessional team in a manner  that optimizes safe, effective patient- and population-centered care

7.1  Work with other health professionals to establish and maintain a climate of mutual respect,  dignity, diversity, ethical integrity, and trust 
7.2  Use the knowledge of one’s own role and the roles of other health professionals to appropriately  assess and address the health care needs of the patients and populations served 
7.3  Communicate with other health professionals in a responsive and responsible manner  that supports the maintenance of health and the treatment of disease in individual patients and populations 
7.4  Participate in different team roles to establish, develop, and continuously enhance interprofessional teams to provide patient- and population-centered care that is safe, timely, efficient, effective, and equitable

8. Personal and Professional Development 

Demonstrate the qualities required to sustain lifelong personal and professional growth

8.1  Develop the ability to use self-awareness of knowledge, skills, and emotional  limitations to engage in appropriate help-seeking  behaviors 
8.2  Demonstrate healthy coping mechanisms to respond to stress 
8.3  Manage conflict between personal and professional responsibilities 
8.4  Practice flexibility and maturity in adjusting to change with the capacity to alter one’s behavior 
8.5  Demonstrate trustworthiness that makes colleagues feel secure when one is responsible for the care of patients 
8.6  Provide leadership skills that enhance team functioning, the learning environment, and/or the health care delivery system 
8.7  Demonstrate self-confidence that puts patients, families, and members of the health care team at ease 
8.8  Recognize that ambiguity is part of clinical health care and respond by utilizing appropriate resources in dealing with uncertainty

9. Discovery

9.1  Critically analyze existing literature in a field of inquiry and formulate new investigative questions
9.2  Formulate a high-quality research question and hypothesis
9.3  Describe and employ appropriate research methods to answer a specific investigative question
9.4  Describe and apply the requirements for ethical conduct of scientific inquiry 
9.5  Communicate clearly and accurately new knowledge obtained from scientific inquiry

updated August 2020