You are reading the 2024/25 Academic Calendar. The 2023/24 version remains in effect until August 31, 2024 and is available here.

Degree Requirements

MEDD_V 411 will be based at the distributed campuses of the MDUP (Vancouver, Island, Northern and Southern Medical Programs) and includes a one-week orientation at the Vancouver campus.

In order to receive the M.D. degree, students must pass all assessments, all courses, and all years of the four-year M.D. undergraduate program. For more information about courses, please see the Courses Leading to the Doctor of Medicine section below.

During the program, protected time for independent study has been set aside to allow and encourage students to take responsibility for their own progress in meeting the competencies for the undergraduate medical program.

The first two years of the program are given primarily at the university campuses of UBC Vancouver, UBC Okanagan, University of Victoria, and University of Northern British Columbia. During third and fourth years, clinical instruction is given in affiliated teaching hospitals and community facilities throughout the province.

Students must have the skills and abilities to ensure their own safety and the safety of the patients they encounter during their medical training. Please see Essential Skills and Abilities for the Essential Skills and Technical standards required to complete the MD Undergraduate Program, as approved by UBC Senate. For any questions regarding these technical standards, please contact Student Affairs or see the Student Affairs webpage.


Equipment, instruments, and supplies will be required throughout the four-year program. Computer access via laptop is essential, and a mobile device is recommended. It is recommended that no purchases be made until details concerning the necessary equipment are provided at the beginning of classes by the courses concerned. For information please contact the Student Financial Assistance Officer: or see this webpage


Information regarding textbooks will be given before the start of each course. Approximate costs for purchasing textbooks and expendable supplies can be found using the Cost Calculator.

Courses Leading to the Doctor of Medicine

Departmental and interdepartmental courses offered by the Faculty of Medicine are listed in detail in Courses.

The subjects in which instruction is given in the four years leading to the Doctor of Medicine are as follows:

First and Second Year

The first year of the program starts in late August and ends in late May. The second year of the program starts in late August and ends in mid-April. The first two years of the program consist of six courses:

  • MEDD_V 411 (Foundations of Medical Practice I)
  • MEDD_V 412 (Foundations of Medical Practice II
  • MEDD_V 419 (Foundations of Scholarship and Flexible Enhanced Learning I)
  • MEDD_V 421 (Foundations of Medical Practice III)
  • MEDD_V 422 (Transition into Clinical Education), and
  • MEDD_V 429 (Flexible Enhanced Learning II)

MEDD_V 411 spans 17 weeks and includes two weeks of orientation to the medical profession, during which foundational medical concepts and information about the learning activities and assessment types that students will engage in throughout the program are introduced.

MEDD_V 412, 421, and 422 each span 15 weeks (August – December or January – April)

All four courses offer a variety of learning activities including small group case-based learning, lectures, seminars, labs, clinical skills, family practice office visits, and self-directed learning. Each week, these learning activities will be focused on weekly clinical presentations/topics, and will address foundational program themes including:

  • Clinical Medicine (e.g., infectious diseases and medical microbiology; cardiovascular; pulmonary; fluids, electrolytes, renal, and genitourinary; gastrointestinal; blood and lymphatics; musculoskeletal and locomotor; endocrine and metabolism; integument; brain and behaviour; reproduction; and nutrition, growth, and development),
  • Medical Sciences (e.g., anatomy and embryology, physiology, medical microbiology and infectious disease, genetics, biochemistry and molecular biology, pathology, and histology),
  • Diagnostic Sciences (e.g., diagnostic imaging, clinical laboratory techniques, and laboratory diagnosis),
  • Treatment Methods (e.g., pharmacology, therapeutics, and complementary/alternative therapies; and non-pharmacological disease management including counselling, surgery, rehabilitation, and nutrition and exercise),
  • Care of Patients (e.g., communication, professionalism, medical ethics, collaboration and inter-professional care, health care system, leadership, quality improvement, patient safety, and eHealth informatics),
  • Populations, Diversity, and Equity (e.g., public health, prevention, and control; geriatrics; first peoples; addictions; palliative care; global health; health advocacy), and
  • Scholarship (e.g., scholarship and evidence-based medicine).

The weekly clinical presentations/topics and associated content progress in complexity from course to course. Also, as these courses progress, there is an increasing focus on preparation for clinical training. MEDD_V 422 (Transition into Clinical Education) continues to provide students with an enriched learning environment supporting enhanced understanding of foundational medical sciences and culminates in preparing students to transition from more classroom-based learning to more clinical practice-based learning during the last two weeks of the Course.

MEDD_V 419 (Foundations of Scholarship and Flexible Enhanced Learning I) runs longitudinally through first year with weekly half-day sessions concurrent with MEDD_V 411 and 412, plus a six week block at the end of MEDD_V 412. MEDD_V 429 (Flexible Enhanced Learning II) runs longitudinally through second year with weekly half-day sessions concurrent with MEDD_V 421 and 422, plus a three-week block between MEDD_V 421 and winter holidays. These courses provide a foundation for scholarly inquiry and time to pursue a variety of scholarly and community service projects.

Third Year

The third year typically starts in early June and ends in May the following year. MEDD_V 431 (Clerkship), consists of one course, which includes content and clinical experiences in family medicine, internal medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, surgery, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, orthopedics, and ambulatory medicine (e.g., dermatology, ophthalmology, geriatrics).

Fourth Year

The fourth year normally starts in July and ends at the end of April. Starting with students entering in the academic year of 2018-19, fourth year consists of the following required courses:

  • MEDD_V 440 (24 credit) Senior Electives.
  • MEDD_V 448 (Transition into Postgraduate Education and Practice). A 9-credit course supports students to effectively transition from medical school to residency and medical practice.
  • MEDD_V 449 (Flexible Enhanced Learning III). A 4-credit course supports student engagement in scholarly and community service projects.
  • MEDD_V 451 (0) - the final examination for fourth year and encompasses all clinical subjects.

Information concerning elective offerings may be obtained from the Dean's Office, Undergraduate Education.


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