Florida International University Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine (HWCOM) has recently established a graduate certificate program to provide academic enhancement and professional development to applicants to health-related professional degree programs.
The Graduate Certificate in Molecular and Biomedical Sciences program will strengthen the applicant's biomedical knowledge and/or enhance his or her professionalism skills, improving his or her qualifications for future application to medical school or other health-related professional degree programs.
The certificate program comprises eight graduate-level courses. Six biomedical courses (3 credits each) include Medical Cell Biology and Biochemistry, Medical Molecular Biology, Medical Microbiology and Immunology, Medical Physiology, Pathology and Medical Histology, and Medical Genetics. Two sequential one-credit Professional Skills in Medical Sciences courses emphasize valuable learning techniques and the importance of keeping abreast of the latest biomedical research developments. Program faculty also help students improve nonacademic factors and attributes essential for successful application to medical school; professionalism is an essential component of all courses.
The basic science courses are taught by medical school faculty and are similar to those taught during the first year of medical school. The topics are presented in lectures, team-based learning, and small-group and whole-class discussion sessions. In addition, students are required to evaluate current scientific literature related to course topics. The courses reinforce basic science concepts through examples of human diseases and experimental data, and are fundamental for better understanding of clinical sciences. Discussions emphasize the implications of research data on the practice of health care. The program encourages students to be self-directed learners, critical thinkers, and decision makers. Students are required to search, analyze, and utilize scientific literature.