Fundamental of Biomedical Science (FBS)

Seattle Mini Medical School’s curriculum is designed for students who are serious about pursuing a career in medicine or any other healthcare professionals. FBS is similar to, but shorter and simplified version of the first two-year pre-clinical portion in the medical school. Outside speakers, seminars, webinars, workshops, hands-on, lecturing, note taking, scientific reading, scientific writing, and presentations are essential parts of these courses. Writing in this course involves students’ personal reflections on their understanding of the topics, workings of disease in society, write-ups of epidemiological and case studies, journal entries, and descriptive narratives of the human systems.

The below curriculum summaries were adopted from: University of Washington School of Medicine, University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, and Dartmouth Geisel School of Medicine.

Anatomy and Embryology

State Course Code: 03054 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5-1 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, one or two semester.

Descriptions: The Human Anatomy course presents the gross structure and function of the human body as it relates to the practice of medicine. By using model and multimedia simulation of surface, radiological, and cadaver anatomy, students acquire a three-dimensional understanding of structural relationships in the living body. Videos illustrating the anatomy of selected regions of the body are available for on-demand viewing. Lectures stress important aspects of anatomy, especially as they relate to medical practice. The Medical Embryology course covers embryologic development from ovulation through birth, and is organized by organ systems. Topics are integrated with Human Anatomy to facilitate understanding of anatomical relationships, selected birth defects, and anatomical variants. Following an introductory overview lecture, the remainder of the course is completed in an online self-study format. Course materials include a complete syllabus with self-study questions, a companion website, a CD-ROM with animations of embryologic development, and supplementary textbooks on library reserve. The course culminates in an informal journal club that explores selected topics of relevance to modern developmental biology and medicine. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Describe basic principles of embryology and general anatomical concepts.
  2. Develop a broad understanding of the structural organization of the human body at the macroscopic level.
  3. Develop a foundation for physical examination and functional assessment of the human organism.
  4. Describe the thoracic, abdomen, and pelvis cavities and the viscera they contain.
  5. Describe the three-dimensional interrelationships & the general principles of blood & nerve supply.
  6. Describe the gross anatomy of skull, head and neck.
  7. Provide anatomical basis for cross sectional and 3D digital imaging.

Biochemistry

State Course Code: 03059 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5-1 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, one or two semester.

Descriptions: The Medical Biochemistry course introduces the fundamentals of modern molecular biology and biochemistry as applied to medicine. The course is divided into four blocks: The first block enhances your understanding of proteins including their structure and function. We explore the basic amino acid building blocks and how differences in structures are manifested into a variety of functional states. The second block explores nucleic acids, macromolecular machines, and their regulation on a molecular level. Sections three and four delve into the intrinsic nature of metabolism. Section three deals with the fundamentals of carbohydrate and amino acid metabolism including a variety of disease states arising from genetic and environmental factors. Section four covers the breadth of lipid metabolism, with major emphasis given to diseases such as diabetes, obesity, and atherosclerosis. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Solve problems in diagnosis and treatment of human disease by application of biochemical principles.
  2. Use the primary medical and scientific literature as a resource for learning and problem solving.
  3. Define, describe and contrast functions of genes and macromolecules in normal and pathologic contexts.
  4. Define and describe systemic metabolic biochemistry in terms of genes and molecules.
  5. Deduce therapeutic mechanisms from established molecular mechanisms.
  6. Interpret new medical discoveries in terms of fundamental principles of biochemistry
  7. Explain the molecular basis of diseases that affect cellular function or development.

Cell Biology

State Course Code: 03052 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, one semester.

Descriptions: The Biology of Cells and Tissues course consists of lectures and coordinated laboratory sessions that introduce the fine structure and function of cells, tissues, and organ systems of the human body, primarily as observed at the resolution of light microscopy. Emphasis is placed on structure-function relationships between different cell types in human tissues and organ systems, as well as on how alterations in cell architecture and cell behaviors lead to disease. The first part of the course covers the functional morphology of cells and their organelles, the biochemical composition of cellular components and products, features of cell surfaces and cellular movement, and the basics of cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions. The remainder of the course is a systematic survey of the body’s organ systems, with an emphasis on the functions of specialized cell types in each organ. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Recognize the structure of the components of the cell.
  2. Explain the correlation between the structure and function of cell components, including organelles.
  3. Predict how dysfunction of cellular elements would affect cell appearance and function.
  4. Identify and describe the components of tissues.
  5. Explain the organization of tissue components and the correlation with function.
  6. Predict how dysfunction of tissue components would affect tissue appearance and function.
  7. Describe the tissue components of organs.
  8. Explain how microscopic structure of organs contributes to organ function.
  9. Predict the effect of dysfunction of cellular or tissue elements on organ appearance and function.
  10. Differentiate organs and tissues by appearance.
  11. Predict the functional states of organs and tissues by appearance.
  12. Describe techniques and tools in study of the structure and function of cells, tissues and organs.
  13. Practice and demonstrate systematic problem-­‐solving skills.
  14. Set up, use and troubleshoot a microscope.
  15. Communicate cell, organ and tissue composition with fellow students and faculty
  16. Practice team skills by participating in team exercises.

Genetics

State Course Code: 03059 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, one semester.

Descriptions: The Medical Genetics course introduces basic principles of human genetics and their application to clinical medicine. Topics include chromosome abnormalities, genetic patterns of inheritance, inborn errors of metabolism, multifactorial inheritance, population genetics, gene mapping and identification, genetic screening, cancer genetics, pharmacogenetics, gene therapy, genetic counseling, and ethical issues, and decision-making in medical genetics. The course consists primarily of self-study assignments that precede interactive, classroom-based problem-solving sessions led by a faculty expert in each topic. In-class quizzes are administered to provide students with ample formative feedback throughout the course. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Describe what genes are, how they are organized and controlled, what they do and how they segregate.
  2. Describe the nature of mutations and permutations and how they contribute to human variability and to disease.
  3. Describe the patterns of inheritance for autosomal dominant/recess, sex-linked, and mitochondrial inheritance.
  4. Describe how genes are organized into chromosomes, mitosis and meiosis, and transmitted from parent to child.
  5. Describe the clinical manifestations of common numeric, structural, and mosaic chromosomal anomalies.
  6. Describe how polymorphism, gene linkage, and human gene mapping are used in medicine.
  7. Describe the multifactorial nature of most human traits, both normal and abnormal, and how inheritance works.
  8. Describe the role of genetics in the pathogenesis of neoplasms and in the predisposition of malignancies.
  9. Identify common molecular and cytogenetic diagnostic techniques and how they are applied to genetic disorders.
  10. Describe the procedures available for prenatal genetic diagnosis and diseases that can be detected prenatally.
  11. Identify and describe the approaches to treatment of genetic diseases.
  12. Students will be able to elicit a comprehensive medical genetic history and construct an appropriate pedigree.
  13. Students will be able to demonstrate sympathy, a non-judgmental and non-directive attitude, recognize their own limitations, seek consultation whenever necessary, and become life-long self-motivated learners

Human Behavior and Psychopathology

State Course Code: 03052 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, one semester.

Description: The Human Behavior course examines the basic science of human behavior that is relevant to the understanding of mental disorders. A variety of educational media (lectures, videos, computer media) are used to examine human psychosocial development and the biopsychosocial underpinnings of behavior. Course content is coordinated with small group sessions allowing students to practice clinical interview and examination skills, reflect on how patients and physicians react to illness, and recognize salient aspects of the physician’s professional roles. Major psychiatric disorders are defined and described and a systematic approach to differential diagnosis is presented. Conceptual development, pathogenesis, epidemiology, nomenclature and the terminology used in psychiatry are discussed. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Apply knowledge of normal biopsychosocial development across the lifespan to clinical scenarios.
  2. Recognize and identify behavioral and developmental factors in primary care.
  3. Recognize and identify psychosocial mediators of biological and behavioral factors in health and illness.
  4. Identify major health risk behaviors and common principles of behavior change.
  5. Describe the impact of psychosocial stressors on illness, patients, and families.
  6. Recognize and describe the impact of culture, development, and responses in the doctor-patient relationship.
  7. List the components of the Mental Status Exam.
  8. Begin to develop skills on how to conduct a psychiatric interview.
  9. Discuss how to assess and manage a suicidal patient.
  10. Define and distinguish affective disorders.
  11. Define and distinguish psychotic disorders.
  12. Define and distinguish anxiety disorders.
  13. Define and distinguish personality disorders.
  14. Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of psychotherapy.
  15. Demonstrate a general understanding of the biological basis of psychiatry.

Immunology and Virology

State Course Code: 03052 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, 1 or 2 semester.

Descriptions: The Fundamentals of Immunology course introduces the components of the immune system, their locations in the human body, and their interactions in different clinical contexts. Students learn how the immune system senses and attempts to eliminate pathogens, and how selected pathogens evade it to cause disease. First, the genes and molecules that play key roles in the immune system – including antigens, antigen receptors, antibodies, complement, major histocompatibility complex loci, chemokines, and cytokines – are introduced. The interactions between innate and acquired are then discussed. Finally, medically relevant forms of immune dysregulation and intervention are explored, including vaccines, immunomodulators, hypersensitivities, immunodeficiency, autoimmunity, graft-versus-host disease, transplantation immunology, and tumor immunology. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Describe the cells, products, and effector responses of the immune system
  2. Describe an immune response from initiation to resolution
  3. Describe T and B cell receptor diversity and antigen recognition
  4. Explain the role of tolerance, when and how it occurs, and consequences of autoimmunity
  5. Compare innate and adaptive immune responses
  6. Describe how pathogens are recognized, presented to the immune system, and how influences vaccine design
  7. Describe and explain the key interactions during T cell and B cell interactions
  8. Describe and compare the four types of hypersensitivity
  9. Explain and compare immune processes during transplantation and tumor immunity
  • Explain how specific drugs alter the function of the immune system
  • Explain the consequences of specific immune deficiencies and approaches to treat them
  • Describe how specific immunological tests function and are used in diagnosis
  • Describe the immune basis, pathophysiology, epidemiology, clinical manifestations, and treatment of a disease
  • Function as a team member and coordinate an effective presentation
  • Provide presentation on the important characteristics of a disease, diagnosis, and treatment.
  • Lead a discussion of a topic and help fellow students understand key issues
  • Interpret data from experiments and draw appropriate conclusions from the data.
  • Recognize the structure of viruses.
  • Describe the replication strategy of viruses.
  • Explain pathogenesis of diseases caused by viruses.
  • Identify how viruses spread from person to person.
  • Recognize an epidemic or pandemic of virus infection.
  • Describe tools and techniques in study of the structure, life cycle, pathogenesis, and diagnosis of viruses and their clinical signs.
  • Distinguish replicative virus infection from virus latency.
  • Explain the role of the immune system in the control of virus infection.
  • Recognize current strategies to prevent virus infection by vaccination
  • Recognize current strategies to control virus infection or pathogenesis by immunological intervention.
  • Recognize current strategies to control virus infection or pathogenesis by pharmacological intervention.
  • Describe the growth differences between cells transformed by oncogenic DNA and RNA viruses compared to normal cells.
  • Relate tumor suppressor genes and the control of normal cell growth.
  • Interpret how tumor suppressor gene products intersect growth and survival pathways and how tumor viruses interact with these molecules and their pathways.
  • Differentiate the processes involved in the antitumor effects of certain viruses.
  • Practice and demonstrate systematic problem-¬‐solving skills in basic and clinical virology.
  • Integrate strategies learned in the context of virus systems into the design of experiments that address other systems

Medical Neuroscience

State Course Code: 03052 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, one semester.

Descriptions: Medical neuroscience is an integrated course that is designed to introduce elements of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, neuropharmacology, with illustrations from neuropathology and clinical neurology. Lectures use frequent clinical examples and much of neuroanatomy is taught through extended team-based learning exercises and jigsaw sessions. There are guided topographic and cross-sectional anatomy labs with strong emphasis on correlation with normal radiographic anatomy. Student proficiency is assessed through quizzes and written exams (including a practical exam component), as well as performance in the team-based learning exercise. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Define the terms commonly used to describe the nervous system and its functions.
  2. Explain the cellular and molecular basis for excitability, conductivity, synaptic function and plasticity of the nervous system.
  3. Identify and describe the major features of the brain that are identifiable on gross inspection and in coronal, axial and sagittal section.
  4. Identify the organization and distribution of the major blood vessels of the brain and describe the regulation of blood flow and the transit of nutrients into and out of the brain.
  5. Describe general concepts in development and repair of functions of the nervous system and consequences of disruption of these processes.
  6. Explain the formation and flow of cerebrospinal fluid.
  7. Describe the major tracts of the brain and identify the functions and the consequences of damage to the tracts.
  8. Describe the major components of the sensory systems of the nervous system and predict the consequences of damage to these systems.
  9. Describe the major components of the motor systems and predict the consequences of damage to these systems.
  10. Describe the substrates for the major behavioral and cognitive functions of the brain and predict the consequences of damage to these systems.
  11. Describe the control of integrated functions of the brain including neuroendocrine function, autonomic control, emotional regulation, appetite, and sleep.
  12. Describe techniques and tools in study of the structure and function of the brain including neurophysiological and neuroimaging.
  13. Practice and demonstrate systematic problem‐solving skills.
  14. Practice communication of neuroscience concepts with fellow students and faculty.
  15. Practice team skills, including respectful, responsible and professional participation.
  16. Read critically, evaluate, and assess medical information and scientific literature about biomedical topics and questions.
  17. Help colleagues by contributing constructive suggestions

Microbiology and Infection Disease

State Course Code: 03060 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5-1(HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, 1 or 2 semester.

Descriptions: This course introduces the pathogenesis and immunity of infectious diseases, and natural barriers. Microbiology, epidemiology, clinical manifestations and control of representative bacterial, fungal, parasitic and viral infectious diseases are covered. Chemotherapeutics and principles of chemotherapy, sterilization, principles of asepsis, nosocomial and iatrogenic infections are discussed. Objectives, at the end of the course, students should be able to:

  1. Compare and contrast essential features of viruses, the prokaryotic cell, the fungal cell, and the mammalian cell.
  2. Describe essential features of bacterial structure, metabolism, genetics, and classification.
  3. Describe essential features of fungal morphology and growth.
  4. Describe essential features of viral structure, genetics, and growth.
  5. Compare and contrast distinguishing features of parasite classes, including the life cycles of parasitic pathogens.
  6. Describe the major classes of antibiotics, including anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-parasitic drugs, and describe their mechanisms of action, and mechanisms of acquired resistance.
  7. For selected infectious diseases and syndromes:
  8. Identify the pathogens of major importance
  9. Describe the affected populations and modes of transmission
  10. Describe the major clinical manifestations of disease
  11. Explain the mechanisms of pathogenesis
  12. Explain the principles of diagnosis, therapy, and prevention

Pharmacology

State Course Code: 14253 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Completion Time: Competency-based, one semester.

Descriptions: Medical Pharmacology is first approached as a basic biomedical science and later focuses on therapeutics and clinical pharmacology. After a thorough introduction to the general principles of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics, the pharmacological and toxicological properties of the major classes of drugs are covered. Emphasis is placed on understanding mechanisms of drug-induced modifications of physiological functions. Lectures are supplemented with clinical correlations that explore the rational use of drugs in the management of disease. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Enumerate and begin developing skills to interpret information on absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of drugs and apply such information in solving problems
  2. Enumerate, in general, how drugs interact with receptors and the general consequences of such interactions
  3. Identify the major factors influencing the effects of drugs in humans and their interactions with one another
  4. Identify the major classes of and mechanisms of action of antibiotic, anti–cancer, autonomic and cardiovascular drugs and the primary characteristics of major prototype drugs in each class
  5. Identify the major effects and common adverse reactions of major antibiotics and of prototype drugs acting on the autonomic and cardiovascular systems.
  6. Identify common indications, contra–indications and limitations, including major adverse reactions, of a number of classes of clinically important drugs
  7. Describe and appreciate the implications of the placebo effect in human medicine and research

Medicine, Health, and Society

State Course Code: 03063 Subject: Science Grade: 9-12 Credits: 0.5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Time: Competency-based, one semester.

Descriptions: Addresses interrelationships between provision of medical care and non-biological factors that influence health. Issues include relative importance of society, environment and individual choice in determining health status; impact of organizational, economic, and political influences on medical practice and choice; measurement of costs, risks, benefits and efficacy of diagnostic and therapeutic technologies; importance of these concepts in responsible and scientific decision-making. Interdisciplinary course including medical, pharmacy, nursing, and other allied health care students. Objectives, at the conclusion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Discuss access to health care and the factors, including race, ethnicity, and social class, that influence access.
  2. Outline the major factors related to the financing of health care, with topics including employer-based health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid and safety net systems for the uninsured.
  3. Outline the major factors related to the quality of heath care, with topics including medical errors, performance measurement, and systems approaches to improving quality.
  4. Discuss the roles of risk behaviors in illness prevention.
  5. Discuss/analyze the roles of clinical preventive services, determinants of health in illness prevention.
  6. Make a persuasive oral presentation on a health policy topic.

Medical Seminar

State Course Code: 22106 Subject: Science Grade: 7-12 Credits: 0.5-1 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Time: Competency-based, one or two semester.

Descriptions: Seminar courses vary widely, but typically offer a small peer group the opportunity to investigate areas of interest. Course objectives may include improvement of research and investigatory skills, presentation skills, interpersonal skills, group process skills, and problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. Seminars aimed at juniors and seniors often include a college and career exploration and planning component.

Scientific Research and Design

State Course Code: 03212 Subject: Science Grade: 10-12 Credits: 0.5-5 (HS). Prerequisites: Completion of Biology and Chemistry. Time: Competency-based.

Descriptions: In Scientific Research and Design courses, students conceive of, design, and complete a project using scientific inquiry and experimentation methodologies. Emphasis is typically placed on safety issues, research protocols, controlling or manipulating variables, data analysis, and a coherent display of the project and its outcome(s).

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