M.D. Program

Program Overview

The UMKC School of Medicine offers an opportunity for medical education to students who have obtained, or will soon earn, a baccalaureate degree. This program is the M.D. Program. Students interested in the M.D. Program must apply for admission between May 1 and August 1. If selected for admission, students will begin coursework in January.

Clinical Experience and Physician Interaction

Students join a group of 10 to 12 fellow medical students, called a docent team. Early and continued contact with a team of clinical physicians, known as docents, builds student capacity for clinical judgment. Docent teams include a docent, a clinical pharmacologist, a clinical medical librarian, an Education Team Coordinator and other health care professionals.

Half a day every week for three-and-a-half years, students assist with outpatient care in continuing care clinics at two of our partner hospitals. This clinical assignment provides a continuity of patient care, as well as a wealth of clinical experience, and allows students to work with full-time, hospital-based staff, including physicians, nurses and residents.

Students practice skills through the use of state-of-the art simulators that replicate the human body and human conditions.

Two months a year for the last three years, students join their full docent team for daily ward rounds called DoRo, or docent rotation.

New students are paired with a senior partner who serves as another mentor, allowing advanced students to take additional responsibility. Peer and self-evaluations are used to augment student education and training.


Students have the opportunity to work with faculty in both clinical and research settings. Students involved in research have the opportunity to present their findings each spring at the annual Student Research Summit, and funding is available to support student research projects. The Office of Research Administration facilitates student research programs as well as coordinates supplemental research lectures and seminars.


Students at the UMKC School of Medicine have the opportunity to develop community partnerships, provide community service and reflect upon their experiences. Students participate in service-based programs, such as the Sojourner Clinic, a free outpatient clinic developed and managed by medical students, and the Kansas City Free Eye Clinic.

Core Competencies

Our curriculum utilizes experiences with patients, peers and faculty in clinical settings that develop students who are passionate about medicine. Students learn the skills and attitudes for compassion, honesty and integrity which receive the same priority as scientific  and technical skills.

To further develop these skills and attitudes, the School of Medicine uses the following core competencies as the foundation for all educational experiences, as well as the selection of new students.

Interpersonal and communication skills are crucial to a successful doctor-patient relationship. Through immediate and ongoing patient interaction, our students learn to engage with patients, families and other members of the health care team. Our graduates are able to establish a therapeutic relationship with patients, regardless of age or cultural background, and are able to communicate in an effective manner.

It is important for both medical students and graduates to have an acute sense of professional behavior during interactions with others in clinical, academic, and co-curricular activities. Students master the professional behaviors of respect, compassion and empathy, altruism, honesty, excellence and accountability. In addition, our students are tau

ght the value of moral reasoning and ethical judgment and learn to identify ethical issues in medicine, evaluate ethical choices, and recommend and defend those choices. Our graduates have the ability to recognize individual patient value systems, while integrating moral reasoning and ethical judgment in the care of patients without compromising their own ethical integrity.

The medical knowledge students gain during their four years of medical training allows our graduates to apply both basic and clinical science to understand, explain and solve complex, multi-system problems. Our students receive four years of outstanding clinical education that sets them apart from other medical school graduates, allowing our students greater opportunity to evaluate problems from multiple perspectives and to identify an appropriate and rational solution to address those problems. Additionally, our graduates are able to apply the knowledge, skills and concepts from all scientific perspectives to overall patient care.

By acquiring practice-based learning and improvement skills, including how to access and evaluate medical information, students learn how to provide effective up-to-date patient care. Learning how to use evidence-based medicine and skills related to patient safety and continuing quality improvement furthers students’ development into graduates competent in practice-based learning.

Through systems-based practice, our graduates are able to actively incorporate psychological, social, cultural and economic factors that influence both individual patients and communities. Our graduates have an increased awareness of the role diversity plays in the context of health care, and use this awareness to benefit patients and serve as better health advocates.

Through a variety of teaching and learning strategies, students acquire the attitudes, knowledge and skills required for patient care through time-honored data gathering methods of history-taking and the physical examination, appropriate use and interpretation of tests, identification and in some instances administration of needed procedures, formulation of diagnoses and companion management plans using clinical reasoning and problem-solving skills and provision of patient education. They learn how to care for the full range of patient problems – acute, chronic, emergent, preventative, rehabilitative – in inpatient, outpatient and continuing care settings.


M.D. students enter the medical program and enroll in the Human Structure Function series in January and remain in the program for 48 consecutive months. Three distinct curriculum plans have been devised, which allow M.D. students to proceed through the curriculum along one of three possible tracks. Two tracks provide the M.D. students with five months of time during which they do not formally enroll. The first track allows M.D. students to elect the five-month leave of absence immediately following completion of USMLE Step 1, and the second track provides for a five-month leave of absence midway through the clinical clerkship sequence. The third track allows M.D. students to complete their 48 months of continuous enrollment in December, and does not provide any break during the program other than one month of vacation time per year of enrollment.

Year 1

Fundamentals of Medical Practice IV, Human Structure Function I, II, III, IV, History of Medicine, Clinical Correlations, Medical Microbiology, Medical Neurosciences, Clinical Skills, Intro to Pharmacology (Self-Paced), Continuing Care Clinic (half-day weekly).

Year 2

Pathology I (General/Clinical), Pathology II (Anatomic/Systemic), CUES (Communication, Understanding, Education, and Self-awareness), Pharmacology, Behavioral Sciences in Medicine, Docent Rotation I, Family Medicine, Ambulatory Care Pharmacology (Self-Paced), Continuing Care Clinic (half-day weekly), Patient-Physician-Society I and II

Year 3

Psychiatry, Prescribing for Special Populations (Self-Paced), Obstetrics/Gynecology, Pediatrics, Family Medicine Preceptorship, Surgery, Docent Rotation II, Continuing Care Clinic (half-day weekly), Elective, Humanities

Year 4

Docent Rotation III, Emergency Medicine, Rational and Safe Drug Prescribing (Independent Study), Continuing Care Clinic (half-day weekly), Electives*, Humanities

*Students may take six to seven electives in Year 4. They must choose three clinical electives from nine designated categories. One of these electives must also be a critical care elective.

Student Learning Outcomes

Please click here to review the Student Learning Outcomes

 Graduation Requirements

Approval of each student’s curriculum plan is contingent on the following expectations:

  1. Continuous enrollment in the School of Medicine for 48 months (including four months vacation).
  2. Four vacation months (one per 12-month period) during the 48 months of enrollment.
  3. Successful completion of 34 months of UMKC School of Medicine credit for graduation.
  4. Participation in Fundamentals of Medicine IV (MED 9220) concurrent with participation in Human Structure Function I, II, III.
  5. Enrollment in all required School of Medicine rotations and courses with students in Years III through VI of the six-year program including the Self-Paced Pharmacology Series.
  6. All students will be required to complete a one-month medical humanities course in the last two years.
  7. Completion of three electives from nine categories with one elective fulfilling the critical-care requirement.

Applying for Admission

Please click here to visit the program website for information regarding:

  • Applying for Admission
  • Admission Requirements
  • Council on Selection (Admissions Committee)
  • Technical Standards
  • Costs & Financial Aid

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Please visit the M.D. Program website for additional information regarding this program: http://med.umkc.edu/md

UMKC School of Medicine
Office of Admissions, M1-103
2411 Holmes
Kansas City, MO  64108
Phone: 816-235-1870
Fax: 816-235-6579
Website: med.umkc.edu
Email: medicine@umkc.edu