Curriculum and Call

University of Minnesota Medical Center has a reputation for innovation.

We actively use and teach the chronic care model and have received health care home certification by the state of Minnesota.

The following is information about our curriculum and call.

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Residents As Teachers

Family medicine residents are directly responsible for a portion of medical student clinical education during clinical experiences and clerkships.

Medical education features a closely connected cycle of teaching, learning, and progressive responsibilities; senior learners teach junior learners, and all learners are involved in ongoing professional and personal development.

Residents of the seven University of Minnesota family medicine residency programs have many responsibilities, including that of supervisors and educators. Most medical students encounter family medicine residents as teachers during the Family Medicine Clerkship. Therefore, residents receive instruction about clerkship/rotation goals and objectives as well as training in teaching methods.


Resources are available to aid residents in development as teachers.

  • Residents Teaching Students: Developed by family medicine medical student education director David Power, MBBS, MPH, and colleagues, it provides an overview of several teaching strategies. One of these is a common teaching method used by both residents and faculty, known as the One Minute Preceptor.
  • Faculty advisors and residency directors also can connect residents with resources to enhance teaching abilities.

First-year Rotations

Addiction Medicine
One-week block: Discover the role of the family physician in understanding and caring for patients with chemical dependencies at Hazelden Addiction Treatment Center.

Ambulatory Family Medicine
One 2-week block and one 4-week block: Focus on learning the fundamentals of primary care in a multidisciplinary environment. Featuring workshops in Safety, Community Health, Team-Based Care, and Research.

Behavioral Medicine
One 2-week block: Gain an understanding of caring for patients with mental health illness and the role of the family physician in caring for these patients.

Critical Care
Two 2-week blocks: Care for patients at a quaternary medical center while preparing for supervisory responsibilities.

Emergency Medicine
One 2-week block: Provide community emergency care with a variety of procedures and mental health emergencies in a Level II emergency department.

One 2-week block: Focus on elder care in a transitional care setting with a geriatrician.

Inpatient Medicine
Four 2-week blocks days, two 2-week blocks nights: Maintain complex patients on our own inpatient service in an interdisciplinary manner within the larger University system.

Inpatient Obstetrics
One 4-week block, two 2-week blocks: Manage labor and deliveries on a high-volume OB service at Health Partners Methodist Hospital.

Inpatient Pediatrics
One 4-week block: Establish competence in the care of inpatient pediatric patients at Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in Minneapolis.

One 2-week block: Focused experience with newborn care, lactation support, and exposure to post-NICU clinical follow up.

Sports Medicine/Orthopaedics
Two 2-week blocks: Rotate with sports medicine physicians and orthopedists in outpatient settings.

One 2-week block: Participate in the care and management of surgical patients with UMN Department of Surgery at UMN Medical Center.

Second-year Rotations

Ambulatory Family Medicine
Two 2-week blocks: Develop clinical chronic disease management skills necessary to improve patient outcomes. Collaborate with care coordinators on patient panel management goals and complete a clinic-wide quality improvement project.

Ambulatory Pediatrics
Two 2-week blocks: Discover a wide range of pediatric cases, requiring general and specialty care. Additional educational experiences take place in early childhood family education parenting classes and a feeding clinic.

One 2-week block:  Develop an understanding of the diagnosis and management of inpatient cardiac disease.

Community Health
One 2-week block: Work alongside community-based partners to understand local public health services and the current health condition of our community.

Eight weeks: Choose an elective or design your own. Up to four weeks are available for an international or domestic opportunity.

Emergency Medicine
One 2-week block: Solidify skills in one of the busiest community based suburban emergency centers in Minnesota.

One 2-week block: Focus on elder care in a transitional care setting with a geriatrician.

One 4-week block: Gain procedural training while focusing on the fundamentals of comprehensive reproductive health and gynecological care, which includes abortion, miscarriage management, and contraception. All residents participate in didactic learning and procedural training, with an opt-out curriculum available. Family planning research and policy opportunities are also available.

Inpatient Medicine
Four 2-week blocks days, two 2-week blocks nights: Work independently on the inpatient team with assistance from our faculty and supervising senior resident.

Inpatient Obstetrics
Two 2-week blocks: Become proficient in the care of mothers and babies, working with family medicine faculty, OB/GYN faculty, and certified midwives.

One-week block: Understand nutritional needs of distressed neonates and identify appropriate feeding strategies for these infants at a Level II NICU.

Sports Medicine/Orthopaedics
Two 2-week blocks: Rotate with sports medicine physicians and orthopedists in outpatient settings.

Third-year Rotations

Adolescent Pediatrics
Two 2-week blocks:  Focus on adolescent pediatrics at local school-based clinics.

Ambulatory Family medicine
Two 2-week blocks:  Master skills and improve clinical efficiency to prepare for practice.

One 2-week block:  Cultivate a deeper understanding of the diagnosis and management of outpatient cardiac disease.

Four weeks:  Advance proficiency in general dermatology and dermatology procedure, and the roles of the family physician in caring for patients with dermatological issues.

10 weeks: Choose an elective or design your own. Up to four weeks are available for an international or domestic opportunity.

Inpatient Medicine
Four 2-week blocks days, two 2-week blocks nights: Manage our inpatient service as the supervising senior resident, working closely with inpatient faculty and consultants.

Pediatric Emergency Medicine
Two 2-week blocks: Experience a wide range of urgent pediatric outpatient encounters in a supportive teaching environment.

Specialty Outpatient
Four 2-week blocks: Explore a variety of subspecialties, including Ambulatory procedures, Endocrinology, Ophthalmology, Outpatient general surgery, Urology.


We support residents in creating electives to help them pursue their personal interests and achieve their individual goals. Whether it’s research, sports medicine, procedures, alternative medicine, or medical humanities, we have faculty excited to mentor and guide.

Stock Electives

We have an extensive list of pre-designed stock electives. Some are fully developed and do not require any planning time on the part of the residents, while others are partially developed and allow residents to participate in the planning of the elective.

  • Academic medicine
  • Adolescent medicine
  • Allergy and immunology
  • Alternative medicine
  • Diabetes care (adolescent)
  • Gastroenterology
  • Humanities and ethics
  • Infectious disease
  • OB (away with a high-risk population)
  • Pain management
  • Palliative care
  • Parenting
  • Rheumatology
  • Sexual medicine
  • Sports medicine
  • Sports medicine at USA Soccer Cup
  • Surgery (ambulatory)
  • Urgent care
  • Wellness and self-care

Resident-planned Electives

Through the partnership of the University of Minnesota Medical Center—a quaternary facility and the primary teaching site for the University of Minnesota Medical School—the possibilities for elective rotations are limitless.

Residents have also planned electives in other areas of the United States and abroad.

International Electives

Residents may use personal connections to establish international electives. Learn more about Global Health opportunities.

Longitudinal Electives / Areas of Concentration

Longitudinal electives, otherwise known as "areas of concentration," are encouraged and available for residents interested in pursuing a particular interest throughout their second and third years. This allows for deeper focus within the breadth of family medicine training. Example of longitudinal study include:

  • Academic medicine
  • Research
  • Sports medicine
  • Vasectomy training
  • Advanced family planning
  • Healthcare advocacy


Monday Lectures

Our half-day structure runs from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm every Monday. Lecture schedules vary slightly from week to week. Presenters include University of Minnesota Medical Center faculty, outside experts, and residents.

In an effort to be innovative in our teaching, we incorporate group discussions, workshops, and simple audience response tools alongside lectures.

Topics include:

  • Ambulatory medicine topics
  • Board review
  • Case review/M&M
  • Evidence-based medicine
  • Practice management
  • Procedural workshops
  • Scholarly work
  • Seminars on ethics, feedback, reflection, and goal setting
  • Specialist case review
  • Support group

Grand Rounds

During inpatient medicine rotations, residents at University of Minnesota Medical Center have access to daily grand rounds from a variety of specialty areas over the noon hour, including monthly noon lectures and University of Minnesota Family Medicine and Community Health Grand Rounds.


We have a strong focus on teaching our residents procedures. Our rotations that are procedure-focused include:

  • Ambulatory surgery
  • Dermatology
  • Gynecology
  • Obstetrics
  • Orthopedics I and II

In addition, our residents have access to ultrasound-guided procedures on our inpatient service. We also hold quarterly procedural workshops during our weekly half-day didactics to prepare residents for procedures.

Central to our procedural training are our procedural clinics where residents learn core family medicine procedures:

  • Colposcopy
  • Endometrial biopsy
  • IUD/Nexplanon insertions and removals
  • Joint injections
  • Newborn circumcision
  • Skin procedures

Training Goals

Residents are to provide:

  • Guidance and the opportunity to competently perform core procedures
  • Defined benchmarks and clearly delineated thresholds for attaining competence
  • A system for assessing and documenting step-by-step procedural competence


We have a structured night float system to support continuity on our inpatient service. When on night float or call for our family medicine inpatient service, residents admit patients, manage cross-over questions, and answer clinic calls.

When on call for our family medicine obstetrics service, residents triage patients, admit patients, manage labor and delivery, and provide postpartum care for mother and baby.

Guiding principles:

  • Frequency and volume of night float/call is designed to meet residents' educational needs.
  • Direct supervision is provided for intern residents by senior residents and faculty.
  • Indirect supervision for senior residents is provided by faculty. If a situation requires, faculty are available onsite.

First Year

  • Family medicine inpatient service: four 2-week blocks days and two 2-week blocks night float; all blocks include weekend shifts
  • One 4-week block and two 2-week blocks on OB at Methodist Hospital with 24-hour call shift every three or four days
  • Pediatrics service: one 4-week block of day, night float shifts, and weekend shifts

Second Year

  • Four 2-week blocks on the family medicine inpatient service with weekday and weekend day shifts
  • Two 2-week blocks night float
  • OB family medicine service: two 2-week blocks of weekday and weekend shifts, which includes home call on nights when the service is covered by our own faculty

Third Year

  • Four 2-week blocks on the family medicine inpatient service with weekday and weekend day shifts
  • Two 2-week blocks night float