Faculty of Medicine

 

Committed to excellence, innovation and scholarship in education, research, and care, the UBC Faculty of Medicine contributes to the health of individuals and communities locally, nationally, and internationally.

The only medical school in British Columbia, the UBC Faculty of Medicine provides innovative educational and research programs through an integrated and province-wide delivery model on 4 academic campuses and at over 100 training facilities. Over 4,500 learners study and train at the UBC Faculty of Medicine, including 1,255 undergraduate students.

677 full-time faculty and 6,059 clinical faculty include internationally recognized authorities in HIV/AIDS treatment, genomics, and infectious diseases. Current and past faculty are in receipt of prestigious national and international awards, including the Nobel Prize and the Order of Canada.

For more information, visit med.ubc.ca

The VSP Medicine program consists of a package of two courses, each with approximately 39 hours of class time, equivalent to six credits. Courses are directed and taught by UBC faculty members. Classes are interactive and may include group discussions, guest lecturers, research projects, laboratory experimentation, and visits to research facilities. Course credit will be granted at the discretion of the participating universities.

June 3 - July 3, 2018 Course Packages

Introduction to Clinical Research in the Sciences
This course provides a window into how clinical research is conducted in the medical sciences. Research methodologies, research process, ethical considerations and practical tips for conducting high-yield, evidence-driven research with patients will all be presented and discussed. The course includes lectures, workshops and a hands-on mentored individual research project by students that will be presented at the end of the course. A wide variety of health care providers and medical educators will participate in the course and provide examples of research conducted at UBC and other academic institutions. Engaging speakers, visits to clinical research facilities and effective mentorship techniques will provide students with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take part in the most advanced learning in basic clinical research.
Introduction to Clinical Medicine at the Bedside
This course will bring medical and science students close to the real life of medicine in the 21st century. Students will be able to meet up close with practicing clinicians who manage complex patients every day as part of their work in the hospital and clinic setting. Using advanced teaching tools such as medical simulation, and together with experienced physicians from multiple disciplines of medicine, students will learn how to approach patients with medical history taking, physical examination, development of a medical differential diagnosis, and will gain knowledge in determining the need for investigations in order to reach a diagnosis and a develop a treatment plan. A combination of lectures, simulation labs, case-based workshops and visits to laboratory and clinical areas, will enhance the hands-on experience and understanding of the medical and other sciences.
Health care and living with long-term condition
The World Health Organization has identified a critical need for comprehensive health and social programs to address the “global burden” of chronic illness and long-term disability. This course will provide an exploration of long-term conditions and how these affect activity and participation in everyday life. Drawing on individuals “lived experiences” across the life span and continuum of care, a case-based curriculum will include topics related to: infants in neonatal intensive care, children with a variety of diagnosis, teens and adults coping with mental health diagnosis, and populations living with mobility impairments. Experiential sessions will include field trips, incorporating elements of universal design, working with a variety of devices and adaptations, and trialing ambulation aides. This unique course will enhance understanding of disability, the experience of living with chronic conditions, and the need for community integration in the context of the unique Canadian health care system. Learning approaches will include short talks and demonstrations from clinical experts and researchers, experiential sessions, video cases, and tutorials.
Strategies for Cognitive, Psychosocial and Rehabilitation Management of Long-term Conditions
This course advances knowledge from the first course and will provide an introduction to various rehabilitation assessment methods and intervention strategies for the evidence-based management of long-term chronic conditions in everyday life. Examples of topics covered include using evidence in practice, assessing and managing living with pain, assessment and training in the advance use of manual and power wheelchairs and mobility technology, use of virtual reality in rehabilitation, managing living with invisible disability, and hi-tech and lo-tech strategies for visual impairment in overcoming daily challenges and support healthy living. The sessions in this course will use case examples and exercises, social media, workshop format and field trips to tap into creativity to effectively apply the principles presented.

July 15 - August 15 2017 Course Packages

Introduction to Clinical Research in the Sciences(Pediatrics)
This course provides a window into how clinical research is conducted in the medical sciences. Research methodologies, research process, ethical considerations and practical tips for conducting high-yield, evidence-driven research with patients will all be presented and discussed. The course includes lectures, workshops and a hands-on mentored individual research project by students that will be presented at the end of the course. A wide variety of health care providers and medical educators will participate in the course and provide examples of research conducted at UBC and other academic institutions. Engaging speakers, visits to clinical research facilities and effective mentorship techniques will provide students with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take part in the most advanced learning in basic clinical research.
Introduction to Clinical Medicine at the Bedside (Pediatrics)
This course will bring medical and science students close to the real life of medicine in the 21st century. Students will be able to meet up close with practicing clinicians who manage complex patients every day as part of their work in the hospital and clinic setting. Using advanced teaching tools such as medical simulation, and together with experienced physicians from multiple disciplines of medicine, students will learn how to approach patients with medical history taking, physical examination, development of a medical differential diagnosis, and will gain knowledge in determining the need for investigations in order to reach a diagnosis and a develop a treatment plan. A combination of lectures, simulation labs, case-based workshops and visits to laboratory and clinical areas, will enhance the hands-on experience and understanding of the medical and other sciences.
The Department of Anesthesiology, Pharmacology & Therapeutics is committed to excellence in education and research through creativity and dedication. Our teaching programs are synonymous with consistent educational excellence, and our students are recognized locally, nationally and internationally for their knowledge and skills developed and honed under our award-winning instructors.
Pharmacology through Case Studies (Anesthesiology, Pharmacology & Therapeutics)
You will experience an integrated approach to learning pharmacology through the use of simulated clinical cases specifically designed to highlight the fundamental principles. Knowledge acquisition from both the scientific and clinical perspectives will be supported through complementary lectures and small group exercises. You will have the chance to design and present your very own case study, incorporating the newly learned pharmacological concepts with your creativity and analytical skills. Through this educational model, you will explore the basic science and clinical applications of cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal, reproductive, endocrine and autonomic pharmacology, and their integration across multiple related disciplines.
Primary Literature Analysis in Science and Medicine (Anesthesiology, Pharmacology & Therapeutics)
This course will empower you with an understanding of the scientific method and the important decisions that must be carefully considered in designing, conducting and communicating experimental studies, providing the foundation needed to adequately review and appraise primary literature in any clinical or basic science discipline. The resulting downstream consequences of poor experimental design and interpretation of results in informing (or formulating) evidence-based medicine will also be explored. You will learn about the different types of studies that can be conducted, the major elements of an experiment, and the overall publication process. Through lectures, small group exercises and discussions, you will develop the skills necessary to critically evaluate study research questions, strategies of subject selection and randomization, and proper use of controls. You will learn to identify confounding factors such as inadequate study design, bias, and poor statistical analysis – intentional or not – and describe how they may impact the quality of the underlying study conclusions, culminating in the opportunity to apply this knowledge through a group critical analysis of literature presentation at the end of the course.
Introduction to Medical Imaging: Understanding radiologic normal anatomy and disease using cutting-edge technology (Radiology)
This course will proved an introductory understanding of the imaging modalities (plain radiographs, ultrasound, CT and MRI, plus some limited discussion of interventional radiology) used to solve common clinical problems in all body systems. Considerable time will be spent reviewing imaging of normal anatomy, using gross anatomy-cross sectional imaging correlation, and this will be followed by demonstration of the critical role that modern imaging plays in Cardiac, Pulmonary, GI, Neurologic and Musculoskeletal disorders. Students will gain an understanding of the indications and contra-indications for specific imaging tests, and the advantages and disadvantages of each modality in common clinical scenarios. Case-based learning, interactive sessions, and possible hands-on ultrasound will augment didactic lectures, which will be given by subspecialty Radiologists, Fellows, and Residents. A tour of a modern tertiary care hospital imaging department will form part of the course. The course will conclude with a presentation entitled: 'Top ten don't miss cases in Radiology'.
Introduction to Anatomy using a Hands-on Approach (Cellular and Physiological Sciences)
This course will cover foundational functional anatomy including all major organ systems as well as the musculoskeletal system. Students will learn how the human body develops through the embryonic period to give rise to these systems and how they are functionally and structurally related to each other. Thoracic anatomy will focus on the cardiovascular and pulmonary systems, abdominal anatomy on the digestive and renal system and pelvic anatomy on the reproductive systems. The musculoskeletal system will be covered from a conceptual point of view focusing on the major functions of the upper and lower limbs and the importance of the musculoskeletal system for human form and structure. This course will give a basic foundation in functional anatomy that will help students as they prepare for life and health sciences programs.
Molecular Mechanisms of Disease (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
This course will provide an introduction to the molecular basis of disease and the concepts behind novel molecular therapies. Students will gain an understanding of fundamental human biochemical pathways and learn how molecular perturbations in these pathways via genetics, environmental insults and pathogens can lead to disease. Several case-based topics will be presented featuring work from world-renowned UBC faculty. The course will be taught through a combination of lectures, student presentations and small group problem-based learning all led by UBC experts. Course content will vary but may include topics such as the role of gut microbiota in health, cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Several novel molecular therapeutic strategies will be discussed and may include genetically engineered gene/cell based therapies, stem cell cures, siRNA based expression control, and nanoparticle delivery systems. This course is intended for students in medical programs or life science related fields.
Environmental Biochemistry (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
Environmental Biochemistry will critically examine biochemical and chemical processes in the world at large and the impact on human health. The course will provide students with the scientific principles and concepts required to understand key interrelationships of the natural world and tackle the most daunting challenges of the 21st century. We will explore and debate key processes in a case-based approach. Topics discussed may include life & water (quantity and quality), pH and ocean acidification, UV-B radiation, sustainable vs. unsustainable energy flows, cycles of carbon & nitrogen, chemicals in the environment (e.g. glyphosate, neonicotinoids, heavy metals, crude oil, SO2, pesticides, dioxins and PCBs, environmental estrogens), food security (synthetic fertilizers, genetically modified organisms, pesticides, herbicides), smog & others. Students will incorporate current issues into their work featuring small group discussions, learn to evaluate the relative risks of many present-day problems and gain the tools to further explore these topics.

 

Pre-requisites: Students are expected to have a strong background in biology and chemistry at a level equivalent to typical 1st year North American undergraduate courses. Students lacking a basic biochemistry background can expect a higher workload compared to students with previous biochemistry knowledge.

Introduction to the Science behind the Mind (Psychiatry)
This course will offer you an introduction to the mind and basic neuroanatomy emphasizing which brain structures play a role in the generation of normal and abnormal mental states. You will learn about the neurological basis of mental illness and the mental status examination. In addition to the main instructors, you will learn from guest lecturers who will share their knowledge and expertise in specialized fields of study. Past guest lecturers included experts in neuroimaging, neurostimulation and EEG, neurogenetics, and neuropsychology. Classes are lecture-based with fieldtrips and labs. The course will be at a level suitable for students who have completed Year 2 of undergraduate studies in Medicine.
Introduction to Psychiatric Disorders and their Pharmacological Treatment (Psychiatry)
This course will cover the major psychiatric disorders that include schizophrenia, major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder. Over the duration of the course, you will learn the symptoms and neurobiology of these disorders, and how pharmacological therapies work to treat target symptoms. You will study the pharmacology of these drugs at the molecular level which will provide you with the foundation for understanding their clinical application. Finally, you will learn about treatment strategies using the most up-to-date evidence-based treatment guidelines. Classes are lecture-based with group discussions. The course will be at a level suitable for students who have completed Year 2 of undergraduate studies in Medicine.
Mood Disorders and Psychosis: Assessment and Diagnosis (Psychiatry)
This course will provide you with a broad overview of mood disorders (such as clinical depression and bipolar disorder) and psychosis (where reality testing is impaired, such as in schizophrenia). Mood disorders and psychosis are among the most disabling psychiatric conditions worldwide, due to significant symptoms and functional impairments that can lead to both personal distress and substantial economic burden on society. A major focus of this course will be identification and assessment, and accurate differential diagnosis. Additional topics will include epidemiology, neurobiology, psychosocial factors, and a variety of evidence-based interventions and therapies. Classes are lecture-based with group work, discussions, and a lab tour/demonstration. This course will be at a level suitable for students who have completed Year 1 of undergraduate studies in Medicine.
Introduction to Psychotherapy (Psychiatry)
This course will provide you with an introduction to the theory and practice of psychotherapy, focusing on core principles and skills that can be applied across a range of clinical and practice contexts. The course will orient you to the evolution of psychotherapy as an evidence-based intervention for common mental health disorders. You will learn about the common elements of major models of psychotherapy. The course will also cover practical skills such as interviewing, assessment, and building and maintaining therapeutic alliance – skills that can benefit all helping professionals. Lectures will include video demonstrations of psychotherapy, and role-playing exercises to develop practice skills.
Population and public health focus on the health of populations and communities, asking questions like ‘why are some people healthy and others not?’ and ‘how can we proactively improve people’s well-being?’. These topics are important to students interested in medicine or health sciences because they provide a broader prospective on the notion of health and what it means. The course also provides students the skills and knowledge to begin advocating for health equity and seeking ways to promote health on a large scale. Through presentations, problem-based learning, group assignments, class discussions and field trips, students will expand their understanding of health and consider how to apply these ideas in their home countries and elsewhere.
Social Determinants of Health (Population and Public Health)
In this course you will broaden your understanding of how social factors, such as skin colour and income, affect population and public health. We will explore the meaning of health and its measurement, and examine what influences the health, well-being and quality of life of individuals, families, communities and nations. You will gain an understanding of the complex pathways through which social circumstances affect health and well-being, and hands-on experience thinking through real world problems. Lectures in class are followed by interactive group activities and trips outside of the classroom to explore health promotion services in Vancouver. This class will bring a new light to your understanding of the factors that affect health, and challenge you to think differently about what we can do as a society to decrease health inequities.
Introduction to Population and Public Health Practice (Population and Public Health)
This course addresses the question of how we can respond to population and public health concerns. It introduces the student to key perspectives and frameworks that are used to inform activities that can improve the health of individuals, families, communities and nations. Potential approaches to preventing disease and improving health, such as a focus on the prevention of disease, screening for disease, the implementation of monitoring and surveillance systems, and the treatment of disease will be covered. Key frameworks such as types of prevention (i.e. primary, secondary, tertiary), and evaluating the cost and effectiveness of activities will also be considered.
Exercise is Medicine (Physical Therapy)
This course will provide an exploration of exercise and physical activity in the treatment of chronic health conditions. Through an exploration of chronic conditions such as arthritis, cancer, cognitive impairment and cardiovascular disease, you will gain an appreciation of the effects of exercise on brain function, bone and muscle health, and cardiovascular function. Topics will also include the epidemiology of physical inactivity across the world, measurement of physical activity in chronic disease, strategies to get a nation more active, role of health professionals in physical activity prevention and treatment, and mobile technology to motivate physical activity in chronic disease. Students will use a variety of interactive methods to understand the content, including case studies, small group tutorials, and problem-based learning. Students will have hands-on labs in a state-of-art fitness and exercise research facility designed to enable access for people with chronic disease and disability, interact with new mobile technology to motivate physical activity and measure the impact of exercise on physical function and cognition.
Recovery from Injury (Physical Therapy)
This course will introduce students to the science of rehabilitation and recovery from injury and disease. Through this approach, students will understand how severe injuries and chronic diseases can impact the patient and family, both physically and emotionally. Conditions such as spinal cord injury, concussion, stroke, arthritis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease will be used to illustrate the journey through rehabilitation, the road to recovery and adjustment to disability. Along this journey, students will be introduced to concepts about the musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, pulmonary and neurological systems, as well as coping mechanisms and quality of life. In addition, cutting-edge research on novel rehabilitation treatments will be introduced, including a visit to a world famous spinal cord injury research centre to view the latest treatments, including robotic suits to permit walking after spinal cord injury and e-Health applications (e.g., tele-medicine, video games, wearable sensors) to improve function. Students will use a variety of interactive methods to understand the content, including, small group tutorials, and problem-based learning.
This course package is offered through the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, home to nationally and internationally recognized researchers and award-winning teachers. Together, we are active in all spheres of inquiry and education concerning the causes and mechanisms of disease.
Introduction to Medical Laboratory Science (Pathology and Laboratory Medicine)
You will explore the normal and abnormal biochemistry and physiology of blood and organ systems including the liver, gastrointestinal tract, and kidneys. You will solve medical case studies and diagnose diseases by interpreting patient history information, physical findings, and results of selected clinical laboratory tests. You will participate in case-based learning, team presentations, interactive lectures, and a hands-on blood cell morphology laboratory session in which you prepare and stain blood smears, then distinguish different cells under the microscope. You will also take guided tours of clinical research lab facilities and of the David Hardwick Pathology Learning Centre which houses tissue specimens representing a wide range of pathological conditions. Past students stated they “learned a lot – not only knowledge, but the way to get knowledge ….and had lots of fun in this class”. They valued the team-work and interacting with instructors who were “very knowledgeable, approachable and kind”.
Fundamental Techniques for Clinical and Medical Research Laboratories (Pathology and Laboratory Medicine)
The focus of this course will be to perform methods that are commonly used in hospital and biomedical research laboratories. You will learn through hands-on laboratory sessions and will focus on the following disciplines: molecular biology, cell culture and histochemistry. Experiments you will conduct include DNA finger printing and culturing a mammalian cell line. You will also conduct a series of experiments using different staining techniques and microscopically determine the composition of unknown tissues. Your learning will be supported through demonstrations, discussions of experimental design, data analysis activities and interactive lecture sessions. Past students stated that they "enjoyed extracting and analyzing their own DNA" and that the cell culture labs were "very unique and interesting - something we cannot do in our home country." They were also "excited to analyze their slides and share with others during their histochemistry presentations".
Principles of Body Structure and Function (Cellular and Physiological Sciences)
This course will cover foundational functional anatomy including all major organ systems as well as the musculoskeletal system. Students will learn how the human body develops through the embryonic period to give rise to these systems and how they are functionally and structurally related to each other. Thoracic anatomy will focus on the cardiovascular and pulmonary systems, abdominal anatomy on the digestive and renal system and pelvic anatomy on the reproductive systems. The musculoskeletal system will be covered from a conceptual point of view focusing on the major functions of the upper and lower limbs and the importance of the musculoskeletal system for human form and structure. This course will give a basic foundation in functional anatomy that will help students as they prepare for life and health sciences programs.
Applied Neuroanatomy (Cellular and Physiological Sciences)
This course will take students through the fundamental principles of how our nervous system works. Students will learn about both the peripheral and central nervous systems and how they interact to allow us to experience and interact with the world around us. Higher order systems in the cerebral cortex will be explored and include both primary areas of the cortex and association areas that process information and put it into context. The control of cortical output through intricate systems will be discussed as well as the importance of areas involved in emotional processing. At the end of the course students will have gained a basic understanding of CNS pathways and functions that will give them a solid foundation for many life sciences programs, in particular health sciences or neuroscience.
Participants

Participants are undergraduate students (typically in their first 2 years of study) studying medicine or related sciences (e.g. biology, pharmacy, general sciences) at international institutions. Participants must be proficient in English (all classes will be taught in English) and have a strong academic background.

Program Size

Course packages have a minimum and maximum class size, so institutions are encouraged to register their students as early as possible. Course packages that do not meet the minimum number of students will not be offered. Students will be informed if their first choice package is full or has been cancelled and will be given the option to choose another package.