Medical School Goals and Objectives
Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine
• To impart the essential knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that will lead to success in graduate medical education training and clinical practice.
• To matriculate and retain the best-qualified applicants for careers in medicine.
• To diversify the student body to reflect the society in which we live.
• To assist students in obtaining financial aid and identifying resources to meet their financial obligations.
• To identify student applicants with qualities that will lead them to choose a career in primary-care disciplines, and provide a curriculum and environment that will stimulate students to choose careers in primary-care medicine.
• To provide an appropriate academic environment that encourages students to match their interests and talents with societal needs in making career choices.
• To help meet the national need for more clinician/investigators by identifying and assisting students who have the aptitude and motivation for a combined M.D./Ph.D. program, by promoting the M.D./Ph.D. program, and by encouraging extramural financial support for this research-training program.
• To develop the students’ appreciation for the scientific method in biological research and its application to the critical thinking process.
• To support excellence in faculty development and postgraduate residency training programs which enhances the educational environment for the medical students.
• To sensitize students to the importance of ameliorating pain and suffering, and promoting the well being of patients.
• To encourage students to volunteer in community-service activities and provide a forum for these students to share their experiences with other members of the institution.
• To foster the development of the students’ humanistic behaviors and attitudes.
• To meet the standards for accreditation by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.
Medical School Objectives
Physicians must demonstrate altruism
Graduates will demonstrate an understanding of the following characteristic that will enhance their effectiveness as physicians:
• Compassion for patients
• Sensitivity and commitment to patients’ or families’ feelings, needs, or wishes that are in keeping with ethical practice regardless of one’s own preferences
• A commitment to advocate at all times for patients’ interests over one’s own interests, market forces, societal pressures, administrative exigencies, or financial gain
• A commitment to advocate for patients within the healthcare system Integrity
• A commitment to provide care to patients who are unable to pay and to advocate for access to health care for underserved individuals and populations
• The ability to assist patients or families with ethical decisions when requested based on a knowledge of ethical decision making and major ethical dilemmas in medicine including those that arise at the beginning and end of life and those that arise with new technologies and advances
Physicians must be knowledgeable
Graduates will demonstrate:
• Knowledge of the normal structure, function and development of the human body
• Knowledge of the molecular, biochemical, and cellular mechanisms, as well as the integrated operation of organs and systems regulating homeostasis and organs and systems underlying the pathology of disease
• Knowledge of the therapeutic principles underlying the prevention and treatment of disease
• Knowledge of the processes to gather and organize information relevant to clinical problems
• Knowledge of scientific methods to investigate the causation of disease and evaluate efficacy of traditional and non-traditional therapies
• Knowledge of the important non-biological determinants of poor health and of the economic, psychological, social, and cultural factors that contribute to the development and/or continuation of disease
• Knowledge of the appropriate modalities to relieve pain and suffering
• Knowledge for promoting, maintaining and improving the health care of the individual and the population
• Knowledge of the neural mechanisms underlying perception, motivation, memory, and other key behavioral functions
• Knowledge of how human genetic content, information flow, inheritance, and variation serve as a context for disease
• An understanding for the need to engage in lifelong learning
Physicians must be skillful
Graduates will demonstrate the ability to:
• Perform an appropriate history (complete or focused) and physical examination of patients
• Formulate an appropriate diagnostic and therapeutic plan for specific patients
• Perform diagnostic and therapeutic procedures
• Interpret the results of common laboratory and radiology tests
• Effectively communicate with colleagues and consultants, members of the health-care team, patients, and their families
• Incorporate quantitative and qualitative methods to carry out biomedical research projects
• Critically evaluate the medical and scientific literature to make appropriate patient-care decisions
Physicians must demonstrate professionalism
Graduates will demonstrate:
• Responsibility in treating patients and interacting with other health-care professionals
• Truthfulness in representing actions and information
• Exemplary standards of ethical conduct
• Realization of self-limitations and strives for self-improvement
• Decision-making based on behalf of the patient and independent of self-interest
• Attitudes, character and spirit of the medical profession
• A capability to effectively function in environments that are emotionally charged and filled with uncertainty
• The ability to effectively function as a member of the health-care team