MD Program Year 1: Chief Concern
a doctor talking to a patient

Be Reasonable

Learning the art of thinking like a doctor.

The Chief Concern course is designed to develop your clinical reasoning skills and help you understand how doctors approach a clinical case.

By learning how to apply a framework of clinical reasoning that is based on the most up-to-date research surrounding this topic, these courses offer clinical context to what you learn in the Doctoring Course and systems-based blocks. As you gain more scientific knowledge and clinical experience, you learn the process of clinical problem solving, the cornerstone of medicine.

In the modern era, content knowledge is at our fingertips. This makes it that much more important to understand how to approach clinical problem solving and have a method to critically analyze and apply both established medical knowledge and cutting-edge research."

Michael Cole
MD, Assistant Professor, Emergency Medicine, Co-director, Chief Concern Course
Woman holding showing in lecture class

Students review actual patient cases with scientific content that is integrated with your foundational curricular blocks. In small groups led by multidisciplinary faculty, you will learn clinical reasoning following a stepwise evidence-based approach that involves learning how to develop differential diagnoses and utilizing evidence-based medicine to determine how positive and negative predictive values of data obtained from the patient’s history and physical exam affects the likelihood of the diagnoses you are considering.

In this course, you will also learn how to critically review research literature for evidence-based data and apply it to your patient’s care in their best interest.

These low-stakes, relaxing courses will place you into the role of being a physician in the real world. You may not feel ready yet, but the faculty members have worked tirelessly to create an authentic experience from which you will really feel like a problem-solving physician and detective."

Kaustubh Prabhu
Medical student