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2017-2018 Graduate Bulletin

College of Medicine

Dean: John P. Fogarty; Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs: Alma Littles; Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Admissions: Christopher Leadem; Assistant Dean for Student Affairs: Robert Campbell; Assistant Dean for Admissions: Graham Patrick; Associate Dean for Medical Education: TBA; Director of Assessment and Evaluation: Lynn Romrell; Senior Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs: Myra M. Hurt; Senior Assistant Dean for the Regional Medical School Campuses: Paul McLeod (Pensacola Campus); Assistant Deans for the Regional Medical School Campuses: Bruce Berg (Sarasota Campus), Juliette Lomax-Homier (Fort Pierce Campus), Luckey Dunn (Daytona Beach Campus), Ron Hartsfield (Tallahassee Campus), Michael Muszynski (Orlando Campus); Director of Rural Health: Anthony Speights; Director of the Clinical Learning Center: Debra Danforth; Director of the Medical Library: Martin Wood; Executive Director of Outreach and Advising: Thesla Berne-Anderson; Associate Dean for Faculty Development: Gregory Turner; Assistant Dean for Information Management: Wendi Cannon

The Florida State University College of Medicine is fully accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education of the Association of American Medical Colleges and the American Medical Association to provide a four-year program of study leading to the Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree. The MD degree is a requirement for admission to medical residency programs and is a prerequisite for taking the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) Step 3, and a prerequisite for licensure for the practice of medicine in the United States. Steps 1 and 2 of the USMLE are taken during medical school.

The mission of the College of Medicine is to educate and develop exemplary physicians who practice patient-centered health care, discover and advance knowledge, and are responsive to community needs, especially through service to elder, rural, minority, and underserved populations. The third and fourth year curriculum is primarily in ambulatory settings and focuses on preparing students to deliver primary care for Florida’s underserved senior, rural, minority and inner-city populations. However, the Florida State University College of Medicine student selection process and the comprehensive physician training program do not exclude students interested in specialty medicine, as specialty training is a required part of the curriculum.

The Florida State University College of Medicine (FSUCOM) was created in June 2000 by a legislative act, Florida House Bill 1121/Senate Bill 1692, to serve the unique needs of the citizens of the state of Florida. The Program in Medical Sciences (PIMS), founded in 1971 as an expansion program of the University of Florida College of Medicine, is the foundation upon which The Florida State University medical school is built.

The first two years of medical school, the basic sciences and early clinical exposure are taught at Florida State University and housed in the John E. Thrasher College of Medicine Building. Years three and four are community-based and focus on clinical training. The community-based model ensures that students receive training in a variety of practice settings including rural and inner-city hospitals, nursing homes, residency programs, clinics and doctors’ offices. Clinical training sites are located in Tallahassee, Pensacola, Orlando, Sarasota, Daytona Beach, Ft. Pierce, several Family Medicine Residency Programs, Marianna, Immokalee, and several other rural communities. Students are connected to the College of Medicine and the respective regional campuses through Internet access, videoconferencing and hand–held data units. Through these units, students can access medical information, communicate with the College of Medicine main campus, and record and evaluate their clerkship and preceptorship experiences.

The John E. Thrasher Building at the College of Medicine houses the educational program. It serves as the hub for the extensive electronic network connecting all faculty and students at several locations throughout Florida. Basic medical science and clinical training courses that utilize state-of-the-art technology and nationally recognized academicians and clinicians at The Florida State University College of Medicine and at clinical sites elsewhere in Florida have been established.

The Medical Library

The Florida State University Charlotte Edwards Maguire Medical Library was developed as a twenty-first century library with over ninety-five percent of its resources delivered in electronic format for access twenty-four hours per day, seven days per week from desktops, laptops or PDAs anywhere the student or faculty member is located. FSU students and faculty have access to over 2,100 MEDLINE journals and other medical journals specifically selected by faculty. These subscribed journals provide access to 6.2 million full-text articles appearing in PubMed. Approximately 400 electronic medical reference and textbooks are licensed both for the College of Medicine and the University. New and emerging evidence-based medicine Web sites and PDA products are especially suited to the electronic environment because they are continually updated and summarize the latest medical treatments and protocols. To name a few, the library licenses InfoRetriever, Dynamed, ePocrates, Clinical Evidence, ACP Pier, PepID, and the Cochrane databases. The physical facility of the Maguire Medical Library is located in the John E. Thrasher Building at the College of Medicine. The library holds a small core collection of print reference and textbooks and provides ample individual study space for students. As part of a larger university system, the students and faculty of the College of Medicine also have access to a broad range of electronic resources that support disciplines related to the medical curriculum and research interests of the college, such as psychology, health policy, aging studies, nutrition, exercise and sports medicine. These resources include databases as well as large collections of e-books and e-journals. Overall, 48,000 electronic serial titles and approximately 400,000 e-books are available to COM students and faculty for both on campus and remote access.

Medical students also have access to the Paul M. Dirac Library and the Robert Manning Strozier Library of Florida State University.

The Clinical Learning Center

The Clinical Learning Center, located in the John E. Thrasher Building at the College of Medicine, is a state-of-the-art teaching and assessment center that provides opportunities for medical students to learn clinical skills in a simulated clinical setting. Students learn and practice hands-on clinical skills in a supportive environment that incorporates the latest and best innovations in interactive medical technology and education. Fourteen examination rooms and two consultation rooms are equipped with audio-visual resources to record student-patient interactions for teaching and evaluation. Using standardized patients trained to portray an actual patient by simulating an illness or other physical findings, the Clinical Learning Center provides support for faculty in small group sessions to help teach students communication and physical exam skills.

The Office of Advising and Outreach

The Office of Advising and Outreach, located in the John E. Thrasher Building at the College of Medicine, provides pre-health advising and counseling to all Florida State University students who are interested in pursuing careers in the health sciences. The Advising Office sponsors sixteen pre-professional organizations that provide essential information and experiences for undergraduates interested in specific health science careers including allopathic medicine, pre-dental, pre-veterinary medicine, pre-optometry, pre-physician’s assistant, physical and occupational therapy, and pre-pharmacy.

Outreach Programs at the FSU College of Medicine include an in-school and after school pre-college program called Science Students Together Reaching Instructional Diversity and Excellence (SSTRIDE©) located in Leon, Madison, Gadsden, Orange, and Okaloosa Counties. Agreements with these school systems helps provide enhanced educational experiences in the areas of science, technology, mathematics, and medicine to rural and inner-city youth. Pre-medical students, graduate students, and medical students participate in the program providing mentorship to middle and high school students in the program.

Degree Requirements

Doctor of Medicine (MD) Degree

The four-year curriculum consists of courses in the biomedical sciences, medical humanities and social sciences; a doctoring curriculum that teaches clinical skills, preceptorships, community-based health care experiences, and clerkships in applied clinical medicine.

The pre-clerkship coursework (years one and two) takes place on the Florida State University main campus and is designed to provide students with essential basic science and general clinical information necessary for their clinical training in years three and four. Students study a core curriculum to help develop an understanding of the structure and function of the human system. The structure and function of the healthy human is studied in the first year. During the second year, emphasis is placed on microbiology, pathology, pharmacology, and general therapeutic principles for the “sick” human. The basic science and clinical instructors use a combination of small group and lecture-based instruction.

The third and fourth years are devoted to required and elective clinical clerkship rotations of two to eight weeks, most of which take place at one of the College of Medicine Regional Medical School campuses. Hospitals, physicians’ offices, neighborhood clinics, residency programs, and public health units are used as training sites in which students actively participate in the clinical setting. Up to twenty-four weeks (minimum twelve weeks) in the fourth year are devoted to student electives in which students are able to choose among select rotations including subspecialty rotations. Twelve weeks must be spent in FSUCOM sponsored electives at any of the College of Medicine sites. The remaining twelve weeks can be spent in an elective study at any accredited medical school or approved clinical setting in the United States. In select cases, consideration may be given to limited international electives with prior approval.

The FSU College of Medicine trains students in allopathic medicine, which includes diagnosing, managing and treating disease. The college confers upon its graduates the degree of Doctor of Medicine (MD). Upon completion of the four-year MD educational program, these physicians pursue graduate medical education (internship, residency, and sometimes fellowships), which is necessary for eventual licensure. Training in residency programs may take from three to nine additional years after completion of medical school.

To earn the MD degree a student must complete all required coursework and clerkships in years one through four, including a minimum of twelve weeks of electives in the year four; complete all required surveys and evaluations; pass the USMLE Step 1, Step 2 CK, and Step 2 CS; pass an OSCE (Objective Structured Clinical Examination) at the end of the third year clerkship rotations (graduation OSCE); complete all requirements in the procedures log; remain in good standing and maintain a passing grade in each course or clerkship. Further information may be found in the online College of Medicine Student Handbook at

As part of the academic and clinical curriculum, the College of Medicine emphasizes the importance of the professional and ethical development of all medical students. The College of Medicine expects professional behavior of physicians in training in all academic activities and when interacting with patients, colleagues, faculty, and staff. Professional behavior encompasses understanding of and adherence to all aspects of the academic honor code, as well as altruism, accountability, caring, compassion, devotion to duty, the practice of excellent medical care, and respect for others. These qualities and behaviors are evaluated throughout the student’s four years at the College of Medicine. In conferring the Doctor of Medicine degree, the Florida State University College of Medicine certifies that the student is competent, knowledgeable and possesses those personal traits essential to practicing the art and science of medicine.

Honors Medical Scholars Program

The FSU College of Medicine, in conjunction with the FSU Honors Office, has established a program that is open annually to qualified students. The program allows eligible FSU honors students to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree of their choice while also participating in the Honors Medical Scholars Program, which includes a seminar course, mentorship program, and required pre-medical courses and experiences. Students participating in the program may be eligible for early admission to the FSU College of Medicine upon completion of pre-med requirements. Applications and program details are available from the FSU Honors Office at (850) 644-1841.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Biomedical Sciences Program

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Biomedical Sciences Program is designed to prepare the next generation of health scientists for medical research and teaching in an era of increasing coordination and integration of traditional disciplines. The College of Medicine grants the PhD in Biomedical Sciences through an interdisciplinary program with the goal of training students to conduct research in the broad area of the molecular basis of human disease, including the function of the human genome in development, neurobiology, aging, cancer, and other disease. Undergraduate majors in biology, biochemistry, chemistry, microbiology, or other life sciences are suitable for graduate studies in biomedical sciences.

The curriculum for the Biomedical Sciences degree includes core courses in statistics and ethics in research, as well as specialized biomedical coursework and laboratory research. Laboratory rotation in at least two laboratories during the first year is a degree requirement. The direction and supervision of graduate work at the doctoral level resides primarily with the major professor and supervisory committee, which is comprised of four faculty members. Research rotations during the first year allow students to make informed choices regarding the research area and major professor with whom they will conduct their PhD work. A core curriculum of the fundamentals, the choice of electives from other departments and intellectual interaction with faculty and postdoctoral fellows encourage graduate students to mature into independent scientists.

To be considered for graduation from the FSUCOM with the PhD in Biomedical Sciences, the student must successfully complete all course requirements within five calendar years from the time the student gains admittance to candidacy by passing the preliminary exam. Other requirements for graduation include attending the Health Science Seminar Series, successfully completing the preliminary doctoral examination, submitting a doctoral research proposal approved by the major professor and the supervisory committee after admission to doctoral candidacy, registering for a minimum of twenty-four semester hours of dissertation credit, and submitting, publicly presenting and successfully defending a dissertation.

Additional details are available at

Academic Policies

All academic policies of the College of Medicine can be found in the College of Medicine Student Handbook, which is made available online to all students who enter the college at

The four-year Florida State University College of Medicine is a full-time allopathic medical school in accordance with the standards set by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education of the Association of American Medical Colleges and the American Medical Association. The minimum credit hour load requirement for each cohort is designed to ensure that medical students will complete their medical studies within a four-year period of time. The first year is a twelve-month curriculum. The second year is nine months. The third and fourth years are eleven months each. All basic science courses and clerkships are mandatory for all students.

Authorization for less than the full-time status will be granted by the Dean of the College of Medicine upon the recommendation of the Student Evaluation and Promotion Committee (SEPC) and the Associate Dean for Student Affairs. A recommendation of an extension of attendance time by the SEPC will be based on a compelling need as presented by the student.

Admission Requirements

Doctor of Medicine (MD) Program

Admission to the College of Medicine is a highly competitive process with between 1500 and 2500 applications reviewed to select the students admitted. A number of academic and personal factors are considered by the admissions office and the College of Medicine selection committee when admitting students to medical school.

The unique characteristics of medical education in the College of Medicine include clinical experiences beginning in the first year of medical school, the need for students with a high likelihood of choosing a career in primary health care, community-based clinical rotations in the third and fourth year in one of several community campuses in Florida, and a student-oriented learning environment that values teamwork and the doctor/patient relationship. The College of Medicine is searching for students who have demonstrated through their life experiences a commitment of service to others and encourages applications from traditional students, nontraditional students, and students from rural, inner city or other medically underserved areas of the state of Florida.

To apply to the College of Medicine at Florida State University, an applicant should apply through the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) and should have taken the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). To receive the FSUCOM formal secondary application, an applicant should be a legal resident of Florida, should meet academic standards predictive of success in medical school (academic grade point average and MCAT score), and should have completed the required prerequisite courses (a listing of pre-requisite courses may be obtained by contacting the Pre-Health Professions Advising Office in the College of Medicine or on the College of Medicine Web site at An applicant’s MCAT score should be dated no more than four years prior to the beginning of the year of the application cycle. A bachelor’s degree is required by the time of admission to medical school. If an applicant is currently enrolled in a degree program, the program must be completed and transcripts provided to the College of Medicine admissions office prior to the beginning of classes in late May/early June.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Biomedical Sciences Program

To apply for the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Biomedical Sciences Program, students should contact the College of Medicine’s Office of Research and Graduate Programs at (850) 645-6420 or check the program Web site ( for other contact information. Admission requirements for the PhD in Biomedical Sciences Program are as follows: a prospective candidate must (1) have or be a candidate for a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university and be in good standing at the last institution attended, (2) have a minimum GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale), and (3) have a minimum combined verbal and quantitative score of 1000 on the Graduate Records Examination (GRE). A GRE Subject Test is strongly recommended and may include Biochemistry and Cell Biology, General Biology, Chemistry, or Physics. Applicants whose native language is not English, and who have not received a degree from an English language institution are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), receiving a minimum score of 80 for the Internet based (IB) test or 550 for the paper test. Special admission consideration may be requested for students with disabilities.

Applicants must also submit the required material to the University Admissions Office through their Web site at