Innovative Curriculum

The University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine (UIWSOM) Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) Program integrated curriculum stresses self-directed learning.

The University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic Medicine (UIWSOM) Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) Program curriculum stresses independent study and self-directed learning. This 4-year program begins with interactive case-based learning experiences in both large-group and small-group settings. The curriculum emphasizes conceptual knowledge acquisition, critical thinking, and clinical reasoning over rote memorization. All components of the curriculum are designed to utilize assessment to guide learning and evaluation to improve outcomes. 

 All UIWSOM educational programs are built upon and are continuously informed by these guiding principles: 

  • Reflect our mission, vision, values and Catholic Social Teaching
  • Support adult learning and educational principles
  • Synthesize the science of medical knowledge for clinical practice
  • Develop critical thinking, clinical reasoning and reflective practice
  • Integrate osteopathic principles in education and professional practice

 To this end, the UIWSOM DO curriculum was developed as an integrated curriculum designed to spiral content throughout the program and to support osteopathic medical students in their acquisition of the knowledge, skills, and abilities expected at each level of training, culminating with entry into graduate medical education (GME) programs.

Phase II builds further clinical experience for learners during the third and fourth years.

During the third year there are eight (four-week) CORE rotations and a four-week block at the end of the academic year that learners can use to prepare for the COMLEX Level 2-CE exam.  As a requirement for graduation, SOM learners must receive a passing score on COMLEX Level 2-CE by a designated date during their fourth year.

Following each CORE rotation will be Reflection, Integration, and Assessment weeks, which consist of longitudinal didactic, examinations, and clinical skills sessions. An OPP longitudinal integrated clerkship (LIC) component is part of Phase II, and this takes place throughout the third year. 

The CORE rotations during Year 3 include the following

  • Family Medicine
  • General Surgery
  • Internal Medicine
  • Pediatrics
  • Psychiatry
  • Obstetrics-Gynecology
  • Medically Underserved (Rural, Military, Correctional)
  • Hospital Medicine

During the fourth year, learners are required to complete nine (four-week) rotations.

Clinical Rotations during Year 4 include the following:

  • Emergency Medicine core rotation
  • Three selectives
  • Five electives

At the end of Phase II, learners engage in a two-week Readiness for Residency unit, during which they are assessed for the entry-level ACGME PGY1 Entrustable Professional Activities (EPAs).