Overview of Personal and Professional Development (PPD)

The Personal and Professional Development (PPD) Course is designed to provide the opportunity for all third- and fourth-year students to engage in structured didactic and simulation -  content that is best addressed while students are actively involved in patient care.

The courses are conducted as a one-week courses six times in year 3 (PPDA) and six times in year 4 (PPDB). Individual sessions vary in presentation methodology and may be formatted as didactics, workshops, small group discussions, simulations or self-study modules.

Each PPDA week is designed to prepare students for their upcoming adjacent clerkship with content directly related to the experiences and activities of that clerkship. PPDA in year 3 will include the Longitudinal Patient Care (LPC) course on Wednesday afternoons.

PPD B is a longitudinal course that challenges senior students approaching the residency match and graduation to hone their scientific medical knowledge and advanced clinical skills as they build their professional identify as a physician in the context of the medical systems in which they will train and ultimately practice. A crucial element of professional development is concurrent personal development, with an ability for an individual student to also focus on their own wellness and goals in the context of their own career.

Course Content

The PPD content will include:

  • Topics that revisit Basic Science content that are enhanced when placed in clinical context and will help prepare students for the Step 2 exam such as acid-base, infectious disease, cardiovascular clinical problems (physiology), completing death certificates (forensic pathology) and clinical pharmacology/toxicology.
  • Curricular Themes and Topics: Ethics, P3 (Public Health/Prevention/Health Promotion), Biomedical Informatics, Behavioral Health, Health Care Transformation, Health Equity, Gerontology/Geriatrics, Individualized Prevention and Care, Interprofessional Education.
  • Clinical radiology.
  • Advanced Simulation and Skills Development.
  • Student Affairs Activities: Career advising and preparation for certification exams.
  • Time to focus on establishing and balancing personal and professional goals.

Course Expectations and Evaluation

PPD is an opportunity to reinvigorate the student during these challenging clinical years by actively engaging in reinforcing and learning new skills while reconnecting classmates. Attendance is required and knowledge, skills and attitudes are assessed based on engagement in the sessions.