Office of Medical Education

Undergraduate Medical Education

Clinical Skills Integration 101 & 102

Isidore Cohn, Jr., M.D. Student Learning Center

CSI 101 & 102 are interdisciplinary courses required of all first year medical students.  The courses aims to integrate clinical medicine with the basic science that students are learning in the mornings (anatomy, histology, biochemistry, physiology).  Basic clinical skills and competencies are emphasized: history taking, clinical problem solving, critical thinking, procedural skills, and professionalism.  The courses also assesses fundamental knowledge of clinical medicine, medical ethics, and doctor-patient communication via multiple choice examinations.  CSI 101 & 102 consists of three components which are described below. 

DxR Computer-based Cases:  Computer-based cases are assigned to all students on a weekly basis.  These assignments ensure that students develop some skill at clinical problem solving.  Cases are selected to reflect complaints that are commonly seen in clinical practice.  They are also selected to reinforce concepts learned in the basic science classes.  Over the year-long course, students are exposed to many clinical cases and witness a variety of expert approaches to clinical problem solving. 

Clinical Forums: Professionalism, patient-physician communication, social issues, and tthe role of culture in health lend themselves to discussion in a small group format. These and other topics are addressed in a longitudinal series of small group seminars with clinical faculty.  Groups contain 12-13 students and meet regularly throughout both semesters.  Role-playing is often employed to illustrate important concepts about the patient-physician relationship and history taking.  The continuity of discussions from one seminar to the next, reading assignments, and active learning on the part of the students are expected.  

Clinical Experience / Skills Lab: The Clinical Skills Lab section of the course provides hands-on experience and the opportunity for students to practice the skills of clinical medicine with focused feedback in a safe arena.  Six training sessions (basic life support, standard precautions, vital signs, surgical scrub and sterile gown/glove, cardiac monitoring and emergency assessment) are conducted each year.  These labs provide supervised practice and assurance of student competency in basic medical procedures.  Basic physical examination skills (heart and lung, head and neck, and abdomen) are also taught in this course.  All students arrange a one-week preceptorship with a primary care physician at the beginning of the second semester, at which time they practice the history taking and physical examination skills learned in the first semester.



Medical Knowledge

  1. Students must demonstrate knowledge of common disease processes encountered in the clinical sciences to a degree commensurate with their level of training.  This includes a basic understanding of the pathophysiology, clinical presentation, and diagnosis of diseases in the following categories: musculoskeletal disease, acute respiratory disease, acute and chronic cardiac disease, central and peripheral neurologic disease, acute infectious disease, acute and chronic abdominal disease, hematologic and malignant disease (from institutional program objective #2)
  2. Students must demonstrate an understanding of the safe techniques for and complications of basic medical procedures, including basic life support, sterile technique, simple suturing, and cardiac monitoring.
  3. Students must be able to identify and apply principles of medical ethics to patient care (from institutional program objective #3)

Patient Care

  • Students must demonstrate the ability to gather appropriate patient information from patients via history taking and physical examination. (from institutional program objective #5)   
  1. Students must demonstrate the ability to make an accurate diagnosis of common conditions listed above using skills of clinical problem solving. (from institutional program objective #6)
  2. Students must demonstrate the ability to perform basic procedures in accordance with best practice standards for patient safety and patient comfort.

Practice Based Learning and Improvement

  • Students must use appropriate sources of medical information to answer clinical questions related to the diagnosis of disease (from institutional program objective #11)

Interpersonal Relationships and Communication

  • Students must demonstrate effective working relationships and communication with team members when participating in small group discussions and role play exercises.  (from institutional program objective #16)

Professional Behavior

  • Students must maintain integrity and personal responsibility in adherence to course policies and completion of course requirements.  (from institutional program objective #19)
  1. Students must demonstrate dependability, respectfulness, and responsibility to their colleagues when participating in small group discussions and role play exercises.  (from institutional program objective #20)
  •  Students must understand their own limits and ensure their own competence.  (from institutional program objective #21)


For questions about the class schedule, course policies, or grading please contact:

Dr. Robin English (
Director, CSI 101 & 102


Herman Williams (568-5640)
Coordinator, Undergraduate Medical Education