A Course of Study

You can watch a short video giving an overview of our curriculum here and read more details below.

Tri-I MD-PhD Timeline

Years 1 and 2

Tri-I students arrive on campus on July 1 to complete their first rotation before medical school begins in mid-August. They also take Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) and participate in a Journal Club (JC) facilitated by Tri-I leadership. In addition to the first 18 months of pre-clinical medical school courses at Weill Cornell Medical College, students take several MD-PhD-specific courses: Introduction to Clinical and Translational Research, Frontiers in Biomedicine I & II, and Research Lunches.

During the last 6 months of the pre-PhD portion of their studies, students complete 20 weeks of clerkships and a Pathology elective, as well as sit for USMLE Step 1.

Year 3 through Thesis Defense

Students select a thesis lab and graduate school by September of Year 3. During the first year of graduate school, they complete limited, advanced level coursework, including a course in Quantitative Methods.

At the beginning of Year 4, students write and defend a Thesis Research Proposal (TRP). Program leadership provides a grant-writing tutorial to support students in converting their TRP into an NIH NRSA F30/F31 application. While in the lab,  students maintain their clinical skills by participating in the Weill Cornell Community Clinic or shadowing physicians in fields they would like to explore.

Final Clinical Training

Students defend their theses in the early fall before resuming clerkship training. They complete remaining core clerkships, sit for USMLE Step 2, and undertake a Sub-I and clinical electives before applying for residency. In their final year, in addition to interviewing for residency, students complete remaining coursework (Advanced Clinical Ethics [ACE], Health Policy [HP], and Transition to Residency [TTR]), as well as advanced clinical and research electives.