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Course Descriptions


Human Gross Anatomy and Embryology (with Laboratory)

The molecular renaissance in basic medical science education has remained the norm, though gross and developmental anatomy are core subjects in medical education.  Gross anatomy is the regional exploration of the structure of the human body. Exploration of the cadaver along with lectures, normal radiography and assigned readings will provide the foundation for this course.  Students will utilize QUCOM’s institutional subscription to Access Medicine, My Access and Case Files to carry out educational assignments.


Histology and Cell Biology

The histology portion of this course involves the study of individual cells and the organization in tissues and organ systems. Emphasis is on the correlation of structure and function at all levels of such organization.  Courseware will be provided, in addition to assignments in Access Medicine, My Access and Case Files.  Cell biology is concerned primarily with eukaryotic cells. By its completion, students should have a comprehensive understanding of the architecture and function of living cells.  Emphasis is placed on experimental approaches taken to elucidate various biologic principles.


Biostatistics and Medical Terminology

This course consists of two main focuses: Biostatistics and Terminology.  The biostatistics portion of the class focuses on the application of standard statistical methods to the study of a variety of medical parameters in health and disease.  Students learn descriptive and inferential statistics to access the strength of medical data, evaluate data, generalize conclusions, make predictions and comparisons to the whole population (sample vs. population) in epidemiological studies.  The medical terminology section focuses on the basic components of medical language needed to enable productive communication in a future professional environment.  Students learn how to analyze medical terms pertaining to the human body, its major systems and instruments, used in day-to-day medical practice.



The neuroscience course emphasizes the study of the human nervous system as it applies to clinical medicine.  The overarching theme of the neuroscience course is that nervous system disorders can be understood in terms of neuroanatomical and physiological mechanisms; contrasts between function and dysfunction are consistently shown. Individual topics include:

  • Organization

  • Function and dysfunction (e.g., lesion effects) of the spinal cord, brainstem, cerebral cortex and subcortical regions


Additional topics that will be covered include the cranial nerves, mental status, motor/sensory systems as well as neuro-ophthalmological exams.  Information on current neuroradiology testing is considered vital to the student, including: angiography, CT, MRI and PET scans.

Biochemistry and Medical Genetics

The biochemistry course introduces the fundamentals of modern molecular biology and biochemistry as applied to medicine. The medical genetics introduces the basic principles of human genetics and their application to clinical medicine.

Topics include:

  • Chromosome abnormalities

  • Genetic patterns of inheritance

  • Inborn errors of metabolism

  • Multifactorial inheritance

  • Population genetics

  • Gene mapping and identification

  • Genetic screening

  • Cancer genetics

  • Pharmacogenetics

  • Gene therapy

  • Genetic counseling

  • Ethical issues and decision-making in medical genetics

Reading assignments will be made in Access Medicine and My Access case files.


Medical Physiology
The medical physiology course examines the physiological function and regulation of major organ systems and their components in the human body.  Instruction will be composed of lectures, problem-solving and case-study sessions, as well as clinical correlation sessions. This course emphasizes mechanistic and integrative functions of normal physiology and explores abnormal function that occurs in many human diseases.  Access Medicine will help to enhance student knowledge and competence in medical physiology.


General Pathology
Introduction to pathology presents the etiology, pathogenesis and pathophysiology of general disease processes and some specific diseases of organ systems, as well as the clinical consequences of disease.  Students will acquire information from several sources, including lectures, course syllabus, textbook readings and demonstrations of gross tissue specimens by pathology faculty.  Lecture sessions and online assignments in Access Medicine and My Access will provide a solid foundation to general pathology.

​Medical Psychology & Ethics
This clinically oriented course will cover foundational topics in behavioral science and medical ethics, and will introduce clinically relevant social issues such as dealing with domestic violence as it presents clinically, and treating minority or underserved populations (cultural competence).  
Behavioral science topics will include:
  • Human development across the lifespan
  • Major psychiatric disorders (mood, anxiety, psychotic, somatoform, childhood-onset, cognitive and eating disorders)
  • Addiction
The medical ethics component of the course will introduce key principles and values in clinical ethics by way of case-based teaching and will cover topics such as:
  • Capacity
  • Informed consent
  • Surrogate decision making
  • Virtues/values/principles of medical ethics
  • End-of-life decision making
  • Distributive justice in healthcare


Medical Microbiology (with Laboratory)

This course introduces the fundamentals of infectious disease. The goals of the course are for students to gain a basic knowledge and understanding of the following:


  • Microbial diagnosis (the basis, sensitivity and limitations of clinical diagnostic tests)

  • Etiology (infectious agents responsible, differential diagnoses–infectious or not)

  • Epidemiology (transmission, susceptibility, patterns)

  • Pathogenesis (how organisms cause disease)

  • Symptoms (symptoms that help in diagnosis and how they relate to disease)

  • Prevention (vaccines, handwashing, etc.)

  • Treatment (drug or other treatment options; treatment failure)

  • Complications (spectrum of disease and other complications as a result of infection


Systems Pathology

Detailed in this course are disease entities and disease processes of the following organ systems:


  • Cardiovascular

  • Respiratory

  • Gastrointestinal

  • Liver

  • Pancreas

  • Head and neck

  • Renal

  • Male and female reproductive

  • Breast

  • Endocrine

  • Skin

  • Bone

  • Peripheral nervous system

  • Central nervous system

  • Eye

Histopathology, pathophysiology and integration across the basic sciences will be emphasized.  Lectures, reading and computer resources/assignments via Access Medicine and My Access provide the student with the necessary resources to fulfill the course objectives.

Pharmacology & Therapeutics
Medical pharmacology is designed to prepare students for the clinical study of therapeutics by providing knowledge of the manner in which drugs modify biological function.  Learning objectives for each contact hour have been developed and will be posted. Defined learning objectives are intended to help assist students in mastering the content of each session, and for preparing for exams scheduled at the end of each subject block.  Online assignments from our institutional subscriptions to Access Medicine, My Access and The Medical Letter will be provided.


Introduction to Clinical Medicine 1

Principles and Practice offers classroom-based and supervised patient instruction that serves as a transition from basic to clinical sciences. The goal is to help each student acquire the knowledge necessary to participate in patient care.  Didactic material reinforces the pathophysiology of important diseases and the differential diagnosis of cardinal symptoms, as well as common treatment modalities.

Students will become proficient in:

  • Data gathering

  • Clinical reasoning and judgment

  • Practical skills

  • Understanding / demonstrating ethical and professional behavior toward patients

Clinical Medicine 
Clinical Medicine is the follow-up course in which students learn the components of physical examination and how to do a complete history and physical exam.  Learning is accomplished at a variety of sites, with modules taught at the medical school as well as inpatient wards, neighborhood health centers and private doctor’s offices.

Science & Medicine Review
Integrated systems-based review of the medical basic sciences aimed at achieving matriculation of the Comprehensive Basic Science Examination and the United States Medical Licensure Examination Step One.  Students are encouraged to utilize QUCOM’s vast resources, including Access Medicine, My Access, Case Files and The Medical Letter.


Medical Immunology

The course will provide a foundation in the basic concepts and terminology of immunology. The important components (cells, tissues, antibodies, immunoglobulins) involved in host defense against infectious agents are examined.  Introductory lectures serve to describe and differentiate between natural defense (innate) mechanisms and adaptive immunity mediated by functional B and T lymphocytes and their products.  Subsequently, cellular interactions, especially the differentiation of helper T cell subsets and the production of relevant cytokines, will be described. This will include the mechanisms of T cell activation and regulation.


The overall learning goals for the course are:

  • To acquire a fundamental working knowledge of the basic principles of immunology

  • To begin to understand how these principles apply to the process of immune function

  • To develop the ability to solve problems in clinical immunology by making use of the available resources and communicating with colleagues


Modern Approach to Immunotherapeutic

This seminar series will examine three major areas, as follows: The complex social, health care, legal and ethical issues associated with vaccination and other immunotherapeutic.  We will focus on the design and production of vaccines and other such drugs.  Additionally, students will study the science behind these novel therapies as it relates to the boards and clinical practice.

i. Immunoprophylaxis

  1. Inducing passive, active and herd immunity to prevent infections in modern societies

  2. Application of vaccines to treat cancer via induction of delayed type hypersensitivity

ii. Immuno-activating therapies

  1. Application of Recombinant Technologies to Induce Immune Responses via Pro-inflammatory Cytokines

  2. Autologous Immune Enhancement Therapies


iii.  Immunosuppressive therapies

  1. Modern Therapeutic Approaches to Prevent Transplant Rejection

  2. Combating Autoimmune Disorders via Targeted Suppression of the Immune System

iv. Monoclonal Antibody based Therapies to target cancers

v.  Helminthic immunotherapies to combat diseases arising from uncontrolled hypersensitivity reactions.

Medicine & Spirituality
During training at the Basic Science Campus, you will have a rare opportunity to participate in classes offered by scholars of the Codrington College.  These classes aim to provide you with a general understanding of the harmony between the healing of the body and dialogue in patient care as well as interaction with the patient or patient’s family in the face of difficult decisions.

Epidemiology is the study of the distribution, determinants and control of illness and impairment in human populations. It is the cornerstone of population health, and informs policy decisions and evidence-based medicine by identifying risk factors for disease and targets for treatment and prevention.
Clinical Patient Skills
The Clinical Skills Program is an educational and assessment resource designed to support the learning objectives (curriculum) of the Queen’s University College of Medicine. We are dedicated to providing quality instructional and assessment programs to medical students. The mission of the Clinical Skills Program is to promote and facilitate educational clinical experiences in an immersive learning environment, with the ultimate goals of developing the interviewing skills, physical exam techniques, diagnostic reasoning, and professionalism needed for the practice of medicine.
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