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Third Year

Core Clinical Clerkships

Third Year Preparation

This is a one week course at the start of the third year. The goals of the course are to ease the transition from classroom work to clinical rotations, to introduce students to basic skills needed for clinical rotations and to prepare students for studying and assessment on clinical rotations.  Sessions include a review of clinical skills, a discussion of the evaluation process and small group discussions about how to maintain wellness on clinical rotations.

Family Medicine

Family Medicine is a 6-week rotation that exposes students to the breadth and the depth of the specialty of Family Medicine with a focus on care of the whole person and family as a dynamic unit of physical, social, behavioral, and psychological factors.  Students are actively engaged in preventive, acute, and chronic care of patients of all ages and build on clinical skills learned elsewhere in the curriculum to manage patients with complex medical and psychosocial issues.  Evidence-based care principles are stressed in developing management plans and students build skills for life-long evidence based learning through an evidence-based medicine project.  Additionally, students engage in patient-centered care and the principles of community and population health through the biopsychosocial project where students engage with patient in their own environment during home visits and a narrative assignment. 

Internal Medicine

Internal Medicine is an 8-week rotation that introduces students to the field of Internal Medicine and teaches them clinical reasoning and common medical diseases.  Students are an integral part of a medicine team, and participate in the care of the patients admitted to their service.  The majority of the rotation is an inpatient experience, with a 1-2 week experience in the outpatient setting. Students learn about the work-up, diagnosis and treatment of patients with common internal medicine diseases.  They work collaboratively with other students, residents, attendings, consultants and other healthcare workers.  In addition to lectures, students improve their skills and knowledge through self-directed learning, and the support of their supervisors.


Neurology is 4-week rotation in which students learn to take a history for Neurological disease, perform the Neurological exam, and present their findings orally and in written work.  Students may evaluate patients across the clinical spectrum, from clinic to ICU.  This is a brief rotation, so if students do not have the opportunity to see a particular type of patient, web based content is utilized.  Students are supervised by faculty and residents, all of whom contribute to student evaluations.  All students complete an evidence based medicine presentation and sit for a standardized SHELF exam.  What’s more, patient education and patient communication are key elements, and requirements, of the rotation.


This six-week hospital-based clerkship is coordinated by the eight individual Site Directors with oversight by the Temple Clerkship Director. The purpose of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Clerkship is to provide the basic knowledge and skills specific to our specialty that are required for the general education of all medical students. This foundation will prepare the student for his/her future role as a physician, regardless of specialty choice.  Students at all sites will work in ambulatory, inpatient, and surgical settings, experiencing the full spectrum of obstetrical and gynecological care.


The 3rd year pediatric rotation is a six week core clinical clerkship, during which students will be exposed to and learn about pediatric health maintenance and common pediatric medical problems and their treatment.  The students rotate in several inpatient and outpatient settings, where they will develop a fund of medical knowledge and a basic understanding of the pathophysiologic principles of disease and apply this knowledge in an appropriate fashion to the clinical cases they encounter.   Subsequently, they will be able to develop an appropriate case specific differential diagnosis for each patient they encounter.   Students learn to perform a thorough and accurate physical examination on an infant, child, and adolescent.  Develop interpersonal skills that build rapport and empathy, and should become competent in communicating with patients and their families across socioeconomic, ethnic and cultural boundaries.


The third year psychiatry rotation is a six-week core clerkship rotation, during which third year medical students become familiar with common psychiatric disorders and treatments for these disorders.  Students are engaged in assessment and care of patients with a variety of presentations, including depressive and bipolar spectrum disorders, psychotic disorders, anxiety disorders, substance use disorders, and personality disorders.  Students become adept at completing a psychiatric interview and performing a mental status exam, and using the information they gathered from both subjective patient reports and objective observed findings to develop differential diagnoses, propose further workup, and identify appropriate treatments.  Students also develop skills in addressing sensitive subjects, including substance use, exposure to abuse and violence, and personal losses in their assessment of patients.


The third year General Surgery Clerkship at Temple University and clinical sites is eight weeks long and is designed to give the rotating student a unique experience in general surgery with exposure to a broad range of common surgical disease entities and clinical scenarios. Each student will have a distinct and unique clinical experience during the surgery rotation. A unifying feature is that you will be exposed to a wide variety of patients requiring surgical care and intervention as Surgery is a complaint-oriented specialty, which is fast-paced, and goal directed such that clinical outcomes are often immediately observable. In the course of your participation in patient care you will be able to incorporate the clinical and cognitive knowledge and skills you have acquired up to this point.

Elective (1 block)

Students must take a 4-week elective block during their 3rd year.  They may choose to do a 4-week 4th year elective or two 2-week electives.  Electives are offered in several specialties, including surgical and medical subspecialties.