LUCOM student-doctor performs Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) to patient.

The Curriculum

The curriculum is built around a semester schedule utilizing an integrated, interdisciplinary, systems-based model with an emphasis on active learning.

The curriculum combines the following:

  • Lecture demonstration with active-learning techniques
  • Team-based learning activities
  • Interactive classroom learning
  • Case-based education
  • High-fidelity simulation encounters and standardized patient encounters

The curriculum is designed to emphasize biomedical and clinical interdisciplinary collaboration, guiding student-doctors to develop a holistic, and importantly, an osteopathic approach to medicine. We continually correlate basic scientific information and methodology with fundamental clinical application.


After an introductory foundations course during the first six-weeks of the curriculum, the remainder of the first-year (OMS-I) consists of a system-based look at normal structure and function, from the molecular level to the whole-person level, as well as general pathological processes that affect human health.

During the second year (OMS-II), a second pass through the system-organized courses places more emphasis on the pathological conditions common to humans that detract from human health during.

LUCOM student-doctor and standardized patient.

Dynamic Challenges

Throughout the first two-years, student-doctors have an active introduction to and interaction with challenges related to the professional, ethical, moral, humanitarian, and business aspects of the life and work of a physician. Additionally, student-doctors examine the dynamic nature of national and global health policy and health care delivery.  

Student-doctors have extensive lab based active learning opportunities during their first two-years designed to develop problem solving, osteopathic principles and manipulative techniques, diagnostic and clinical skills. Additionally, students will have extensive anatomy education with cadaveric education throughout this time period.

Student-doctors begin clinical exposure in their first semester, with shadowing experiences, standardized patients, simulation encounters and patient care opportunities that give them exposure to and prepare them for the “real world” of medicine.

Each student-doctor's clinical exposure expands in the second year. Student-doctors have increased opportunity to interact with standardized patients and high fidelity simulators on campus as well as be involved, under physician supervision, with real patients in the office and hospital setting.


Student-doctors are assigned to one of LUCOM’s core clinical education centers for their entire third-year of medical school. This foundational clinical education ensures quality, consistency and coordination of the student-doctors’ clinical education as well as preparation for graduate medical education (GME) and board examinations.


In the fourth-year of medical school, each student-doctor has ample opportunity to explore GME training opportunities through five elective rotations. During the hospital based sub-internships - consisting of three core selective rotations in internal medicine, emergency medicine and surgery - student-doctors are expected to develop the knowledge and skills required to be a resident in their desired GME training program.

Our core curriculum is designed to fulfill our mission of training students who are competent and ready to enter graduate medical education in any medical discipline, with an emphasis on preparing students to become community based and primary care physicians.

LUCOM student-doctor on clinical rotations.A notable aspect of the clinical program is a required month long rotation in a rural practice setting. In community health centers, rural clinics and hospitals throughout the state of Virginia, our student-doctors participate in providing health care to medically underserved and indigent patients. Our student-doctors learn to treat various patients whose lifestyles, practices, and attitudes toward health care differ from those seen in more traditional training sites. This enriching educational experience is one that cannot be taught in the classroom.  

Clinical Rotations

LUCOM student-doctors have the opportunity to perform clinical rotations globally during their OMS-III and OMS-IV year, as well as the opportunity to participate in medical outreach events during break times beginning near the end of the first-year of education. 

Liberty University

LUCOM is continuing to develop strong professional relationships with Liberty University School of Law, which will enable student-doctors to have opportunities to study and advance public health and health policy through programs. Additionally LUCOM works with the School of Nursing to advance health care team settings and promote interdisciplinary cooperation both in the classroom and in all of its clinical settings. The School of Nursing has a strong and viable program that places their students in some of LUCOM's core rotation sites.