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Medic 4

THE MEDICAL CURRICULUM

The UNIMAS undergraduate medical curriculum is designed to achieve two main goals:

  1. To provide a sound education for beginning “generalist” medical practice, and;
  2. To serve as a firm foundation for later career specialisation.

The following are the key features of its curricular approach:

  • Integration is the crucial concept that brings together knowledge drawn from various disciplines into a meaningful whole.
  • The focus of the course content is on medical knowledge, clinical skills and the development of appropriate attitudes and effective communication skills as well as on professional ethics and behaviour as the essential foundation for continued development of the individual.
  • Generic and complementary courses, which contribute to the development of these attributes, are also part of the medical curriculum. Students must satisfy the requirements of these courses before being awarded their degree.
  • The sequence of the curriculum is a planned progression of cumulative learning, in both theory and practice, which reinforces horizontal and vertical integration of the different components of medical knowledge and skills.
  • The problem-based learning approach, in relating basic medical sciences to clinical problems, mirrors the educational philosophy of community-based problem solving.
  • Early clinical exposure serves not only to ensure integration and relevance but also to stimulate student interest.
  • Students’ learning environments include a wide range of settings from Faculty-based facilities to real, everyday medical practice settings in hospitals, homes and community health care facilities. Although the Faculty does not have its own university hospital, the establishment of appropriate linkages with the Ministry of Health, local medical practitioners and a range of community-based health care facilities, has enabled the Faculty to access many examples of exemplary health care management for incorporation into its clinical teaching-learning programme. Resources in Sarawak that are used for teaching and learning activities include health centres, maternal and child health clinics, polyclinics, day care centres, clinics for the treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, psychiatric and private hospitals. The flying doctor service, mobile dispensaries and private medical practitioners’ clinics are also used for clinical teaching purposes.
  • Individual capability and differences are recognised and various teaching-learning methods and strategies are employed, for example, the provision for elective subjects, problem-based learning, contractual learning, small group tasks, family education, projects, lectures, tutorials where and when needed and seminars in addition to learning in wards and relevant health care facilities.
  • The evaluation of students’ performances is done through continuous assessment, end-of-block/posting examinations and professional examinations at the end of each of the two phases of study.

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