The Interdepartmental Medical Science curriculum requires a full-time commitment to rigorous coursework. Considered a "special master's" program, the Interdepartmental Medical Science program affords students the opportunity to take actual first-year medical school courses.
Six major medical school courses are taken simultaneously with Drexel University College of Medicine first-year classes. These include:
- Medical Biochemistry
- Cell Biology & Microanatomy
- Medical Physiology
- Medical Nutrition
- Medical Immunology
- Medical Neuroscience
Grades are based on the performance of the medical school class. A letter grade of "B" on tests, quizzes and assignments signifies the mean grade of the medical school class. Thus, Interdepartmental Medical Science students receiving A's and B's are performing at the top 50% of the medical school class and can therefore present themselves with strong academic credentials before a medical school admissions committee. This permits admissions committees to directly evaluate the student's competence compared with their own first-year medical school class. In addition to the medical school courses, students take a graduate-level medical ethics course each semester.
The medical school lectures are simulcast to the Center City Campus from the College of Medicine's Queen Lane Campus (located in the East Falls section of Philadelphia). The lectures are digitally recorded and are accessible via streaming video on the web. Additionally, course conferences and laboratory components for Interdepartmental Medical Science students are conducted at the Center City Campus by the medical school faculty.
A benefit of the Interdepartmental Medical Science program is that it begins in August and ends in early June. This allows students time to apply to medical schools while in the program and matriculate into medical school following completion of the program. The tuition associated with the Interdepartmental Medical Science program is less than the tuition for a typical one-year special master's program. Since many students are accepted into medical school after only one year of the program, financing one year of tuition is another significant benefit.
Please know that it is not prudent for every student admitted into the Interdepartmental Medical Science program to apply while attending the program. Some students need two years of strong academic performance, beyond their incoming coursework, prior to applying to become a competitive applicant to medical schools. During the admissions process, admission officers will counsel applicants regarding the benefits of enrolling in the one-year preparatory program or the two-year special master's program.
Program Level Outcomes
Graduates of the Interdepartmental Medical Science program will achieve seven program level outcomes that describe the skills, competencies and knowledge gained through completion of the program curriculum.
- Demonstrate an understanding for effective leadership and professionalism for future training in the health professions
- Demonstrate medical science competencies comparable to the first year medical school curriculum
- Demonstrate critical thinking and analyses skills
- Demonstrate a knowledge base and skill set necessary for success in health professional programs
- Demonstrate knowledge and awareness of multiple areas of potential synergy and/or conflict between medicine and society
- Communicate effectively
- Develop a competitive application for training in the health professions