Osteopathic Medicine

Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.)

College of Osteopathic Medicine

Admissions Office
University of New England
College of Osteopathic Medicine
11 Hills Beach Road
Biddeford, Maine 04005-9599
1-800-477-4UNE or 207-602-2212

Mission

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine transforms students into health care leaders who advance patient-centered, high quality osteopathic primary care, research, and community health for the people of Maine, New England, and the nation.

Degree Description

The degree of doctor of osteopathic medicine (D.O.) is granted to graduates of osteopathic medical schools to demonstrate to the public that these physicians received a unique and distinctive education based upon the principles articulated by its founder.

Consistent with the philosophy and training programs of the osteopathic profession, the majority of osteopathic physicians practice in primary care specialties. Their interest in holistic medicine, one of the basic tenets of their osteopathic heritage, encourages them to provide both preventive and curative services to their patients on a comprehensive and continuing basis.

In addition to the primary care specialties (e.g., Family Medicine, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, Geriatric Medicine), many osteopathic physicians choose residency training programs and careers in other medical and surgical specialties, and in settings such as active military practice, hospitalist care, and academic health centers. All 50 states and more then 50 foreign countries offer medical licensure to qualified osteopathic physicians.

Curriculum Overview

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine (UNECOM) curriculum is designed to develop osteopathic primary care physicians who are skilled in health promotion and illness prevention as well as the delivery of care to the ill. To that end, UNECOM provides an innovative, contemporary, patient-focused curriculum that fosters life-long, self-directed, evidence-based learning and professional development.

Our progressive, integrated 4-year curriculum aligns educational activities with the principles of adult learning to maximize the attainment and retention of knowledge, skills, and attitudes crucial to the delivery of health care in the 21st century according to the guiding principles of osteopathic medicine.

Pre-Clerkship Education

The first two years of the curriculum are spent on the UNE campus in Biddeford, Maine, and consist of a series of large and small group learning activities, combined with independent experiential learning in physicians’ offices, hospitals, extended care facilities and health centers. Scheduled classes include traditional didactic lectures, interactive problem solving sessions, patient case study discussions, hands-on laboratory exercises, panel discussions, demonstrations, and clinically-focused encounters with standardized and real patients. Learning activities are constructed to provide a strong foundation in the basic biomedical and social sciences as well as clinical skills as they apply to the practice of osteopathic medicine in the 21st century. A thorough grounding in the manual skills characteristic of Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM) is provided in the first 2 years, and supplemented, reinforced, and expanded in years 3-4.


Student preparation before class and participation in class is a consistent element in the learning dynamic throughout the curriculum. An open, free-flowing dialog between faculty and students is characteristically valued and pursued. 

Progressive, level-appropriate mastery of the seven Core Competencies identified by the American Osteopathic Association serves as the educational goal of the curriculum. These competencies include:

  1. Osteopathic Principles and Practice: The student will understand and apply osteopathic principles to patient care.
  2. Medical Knowledge: The student will demonstrate knowledge of established biomedical, epidemiological, social, and behavioral sciences and their application to patient care.
  3. Patient Care: The student will have the knowledge, attitudes, and skills to provide compassionate, appropriate and effective patient care.
  4. Interpersonal and Communication Skills: The student will demonstrate interpersonal and communication skills that result in effective interactions with patients, families, and colleagues.
  5. Professionalism: The student will demonstrate a commitment to carrying out professional responsibilities in an ethical and sensitive manner.
  6. Practice-Based Learning and Improvement: The student will demonstrate the ability to investigate and evaluate patient care practices using scientific evidence and apply these to patient care.
  7. Systems-Based Practice: The student will demonstrate an awareness of and responsiveness to the larger context and systems of health care, to provide care of optimal value.

High quality laboratory and educational facilities provide a stimulating venue for the mastery of the seven AOA competencies. The Harold Alfond Center for the Health Sciences houses laboratories and lecture halls that place the COM at the national forefront of health and life sciences education. The gross anatomy lab and fresh tissue lab are among the most advanced facilities in the world. The Osteopathic Principles and Practice (OP&P) lab is spacious and well designed with the latest technological support. The Clinical Performance Center is an interactive clinical skills education, testing and evaluation facility with a well-established Standardized Patient Program and a Patient Simulator Program.

Clerkship Education

During the last two years of their pre-doctoral training, students are placed in the field to expand their clinical acumen.

The UNECOM Clinical Campuses represent a consortium of community-based education sites consisting of one or more training institutions within geographic proximity that allow a coordinated delivery of the core academic training experience. These coordinated sites provide the patient base, the didactic and experiential opportunities, the supervisory infrastructure and the longitudinal evaluation necessary for the accomplishment of the educational goals of the core clinical rotations. While the majority of the College's Clinical Campuses are located in the New England States, some students leave the New England area for part or all of the core clinical rotation training period.

Year 3 students are assigned to rotations in core medical and surgical disciplines at one of the 12* training sites throughout the northeast that constitute the UNE clinical campus system. Many of these sites are members of the Northeast Osteopathic Medical Education Network (NEOMEN). Fourth year students continue their learning with selective and elective clinical rotations at College-approved programs of their choice.

Reflecting its focus on primary care, the UNECOM clinical clerkship training programs are located in private physician offices, in community hospitals, and in community health centers throughout the northeast that represent environments in which many of the college's graduates will eventually practice. Ambulatory care programs train students in office practice and familiarize students with the collaborative roles and skills of non-physician health care providers. While community hospitals form the core of the year 3-4 clinical rotations, affiliations with specialty-focused facilities allow students to pursue a range of clinical experiences.

Please see Core predoctoral clinical clerkship affiliates for more information .

Post-Graduate Training

UNECOM enjoys an educational affiliation with a number of postgraduate internship and residency programs. By sponsoring these independent programs, the college serves as a liaison with the American Osteopathic Association to assure compliance with accreditation criteria required for AOA approval of the training programs. UNECOM graduates apply to these and other postgraduate programs for internship and residency training. These affiliations exemplify the breadth and depth that these collaborative arrangements offer our graduates for postgraduate training. Please see postgraduate affiliates for more information on the Northeast Osteopathic Medical Education Network (NEOMEN).

* This number is accurate as of this publication date. However, with the rapidly changing dynamics in the U.S. health care delivery system, the number of training sites available in any specific year is subject to change.  

Accreditation

The University of New England is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (AOA COCA).

Additionally, the UNECOM has been accredited by the Maine Medical Association’s Council on Continuing Medical Education and Accreditation (CCMEA) to provide continuing medical education for physicians, including both D.O.s and M.D.s.

Articulation Agreements

The College of Osteopathic Medicine has established articulation agreements with both undergraduate institutions and post-baccalaureate programs.

  • Qualified students in the University of New England College of Arts and Sciences may apply for early admission to the College of Osteopathic Medicine following their junior year. The 3-4 Program allows mature, qualified UNECAS students to complete an undergraduate degree and doctor of osteopathic medicine (D.O.) degree in seven years. The 3-4 Program is for students admitted to UNECAS and is open to any major.
  • University of Hartford in West Hartford, Connecticut, and UNECOM have established an articulation agreement enabling qualified Hartford College students to complete an undergraduate degree and D.O. degree in seven years.
  • Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts, and UNECOM have established an articulation agreement enabling qualified Springfield College students to complete an undergraduate degree and D.O. degree in seven years.
  • University of Maine, Orono, and UNECOM have established an articulation agreement enabling qualified University of Maine students to complete an undergraduate degree and D.O. degree in seven years.
  • Utica College in Utica, New York, and UNECOM have established an articulation agreement enabling qualified Utica College students to complete an undergraduate degree and D.O. degree in seven years.
  • Tufts University Post-Baccalaureate Premedical Program in Medford, Massachusetts, and UNECOM have entered into an agreement whereby qualified individuals who have previously completed a baccalaureate degree can fulfill the required pre-requisite courses at Tufts University.
  • University of Vermont Post-Baccalaureate Premedical Program in Burlington, Vermont, and UNECOM have entered into an agreement whereby qualified individuals who have previously completed a baccalaureate degree can fulfill the required pre-requisite courses at University of Vermont.
Program Academic and Technical Standards

All students enrolled in the University are encouraged to acquaint themselves with the scholastic regulations, the general and specific requirements of the academic program, and the operational policies that govern the program of study. Additional information may be found in the Student Handbook Supplement for the College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Student Rights and Responsibilities

As part of its review, the UNECOM Committee on Admissions evaluates each applicant in the areas of personal and academic integrity and personal values. An invitation to join the COM community indicates that the institution feels that the applicant has a well-developed set of values and a high level of integrity. The faculty and administration are committed to fostering this sense of integrity and helping students develop an increasing awareness of the multifaceted demands of professionalism, as student physicians who are ultimately responsible for their own learning, as people who need to reflect and reappraise themselves consistently and honestly, and as future physicians who must learn to cope with an ever-evolving set of demands.

Student physicians are expected to behave professionally with respect and integrity, to face new situations and people with open minds, to maintain their intellectual and personal curiosity, and to meet their obligations. These expectations form the basis of student responsibilities.

Likewise, student rights are based on the premise of reciprocity. Students should expect to be met with the same sense of integrity, respect, and openness.

Standards for Professional Behavior and Conduct

In order to evaluate acceptable demonstration of professional behavior and conduct for graduation, the following standards have been adopted by the UNECOM faculty:

A student enrolled in the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine is expected to:

  1. Behave in a responsible, reliable and dependable manner -- e.g. to manage time well; be on time for assignments, meetings, and appointments; to plan ahead and to follow through with commitments; to cooperate with person(s) in charge of programs; and to take responsibility for absences or missed assignments.
  2. Demonstrate personal integrity, honesty, and self-discipline – e.g. to be consistent and truthful, to show appropriate personal control, to take on tasks that he/she can manage; to be honest in reports and self-evaluations.
  3. Project a professional image in manner, dress, grooming, speech, and interpersonal relationships that is consistent with the medical profession's accepted contemporary community standards – e.g. to maintain awareness of personal hygiene; to wear a white coat and name tag, if expected; to notify preceptor or other leader in case of emergency absence or calls; to apologize if unable to notify in advance; to be respectful of other students and patients when doing physical diagnosis or treatment.
  4. Recognize his/her personal limitations and biases, whether they are intellectual, physical or emotional; to strive to correct them (e.g. overcome negative behavios such as procrastination); to learn to be a team member; to adapt to new situations; and to avoids discriminatory conduct or speech.
  5. Demonstrate the professional and emotional maturity to manage tensions and conflicts which occur among professional, personal, and family responsibilities, seeking professional help if necessary – e.g. to meet with supposed antagonists to resolve misunderstandings; to get needed help from faculty advisors, tutors, counselors, learning assistance professionals and other qualified persons; to show ability to prioritize appropriately one’s personal, professional, and academic expectations and activities.
  6. Demonstrate the ability to exercise sound judgment and to function under pressure – e.g. to request help when needed and to avoid endangering others; to respect the difference between physician and physician-in-training (i.e. doctor and student doctor); to remain focused on the task at hand; to remember that as student doctor he/she represents UNECOM and the osteopathic profession to the greater community at large.
  7. Demonstrate the ability to learn from mistakes and failures and to heed admonitions and warnings from officers of UNE-COM and of clinical supervisors – e.g. to be responsive to feedback and constructive criticism regarding professional behavior and attitude; to understand the seriousness of academic and disciplinary warnings.
  8. Demonstrate compassion and respect toward others – e.g. to work cooperatively with differences and diversity in personalities and in cultural backgrounds as well as with differences in social and in economic status, and to respect the privacy and individual choice of others.
  9. Demonstrate consistently respect for administrators, faculty, staff, and fellow students of the University.

These standards are taken very seriously and evaluated regularly. Failure to abide by these standards may result in academic warning, probation, or dismissal.

Registration

The University conducts an annual registration for first and second year students during the initial days of the new academic year. During this process, students must finalize payment of tuition and related fees, as delineated in the section entitled Tuition and Fees, including filing appropriate documents with Registration Services, Financial Aid, Business Affairs, and Office of Constituent Services. In addition, all new, incoming students are required to undergo a complete physical examination, meet UNECOM immunization requirements, and complete the medical questionnaire provided by the University as a prerequisite to enrollment. Failure to comply with meeting immunization requirement may result in the inability to register for courses, receive course grades or proceed with clinical assignments.

Academic Records

Complete records and related documents are maintained in Registration Services, Decary Hall. Under the terms of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), students have the right to review and inspect all education records pertaining to their academic enrollment. However, letters of recommendation submitted on the basis of a pledge of confidentiality prior to January 1, 1975, need not be shown to students, and a student may be allowed but not required to waive his/her right of access to letters of recommendation received after that date. FERPA requires post-secondary institutions to provide students not only access to official records directly related to them, but also an opportunity for a hearing to challenge such records on the grounds that they are inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise inappropriate. It is the right of students to file a complaint with the Department of Education concerning an alleged failure by an educational agency or institution to comply with section 438 of the Act that guarantees such rights.

University students wishing to review their records may do so by providing a written request to Registration Services.

Student Access and Annual Notification

FERPA affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. They are:

  1. the right to inspect and review the student's education records within 45 days of the day the University receives a request for access. The student should submit to Registration Services a written request that identifies the records s/he wishes to inspect . The office will notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected.
  2. the right to request the University to amend the student's education records that the student believes are inaccurate or misleading. The student should write to the University Registrar, clearly identifying the part of the record s/he wishes to be changed, and specify why it is inaccurate or misleading. If it is determined not to amend the record as requested by the student, the University will notify the student of the decision and advise the student of the right to a hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding hearing procedures will accompany this notification.
  3. the right to consent to disclosure of personally identifiable information contained in the student's education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception which permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her task; or the Veterans Administration for students registered for various GI Bill programs. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility.
  4. the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education concerning alleged failure(s) by the University of New England to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The name and address of the Office that administers FERPA is:

Family Policy Compliance Office
U.S. Department of Education
600 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-4605


FERPA permits the University to disclose "directory information" without a student's consent. Directory information is defined as: name, address, e-mail address, telephone listing, photograph, date and place of birth, level of education, academic major, degrees, honors and awards received, and educational institution in which a student most recently was enrolled.

Active students who wish to have directory information withheld from release must do so in writing on a "per-academic-year" basis. Request forms are available in Registration Services or Office of Recruitment, Student and Alumni Services. Requests must be submitted prior to September 30 (if first-time enrollment for academic year is fall semester) or January 30 (if first-time enrollment for academic year is spring semester) to affect a "withhold" status.

Please remember: active students must renew a request for non-disclosure each year to keep such requests in effect. The University may disclose directory information about former students without meeting notification requirements; however, at the last opportunity as a student (just prior to departure from the University), written requests for non-disclosure will remain in effect until a written request to change non-disclosure status is made by the student.

Student Enrollment Status

The University of New England classifies student credit load status for the purposes of financial aid loan deferments. Enrollment classifications.

Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examinations

The Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examinations (COMLEX-USA) are administered by the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME) and are divided into three levels. Levels 1 and 2 are given during the college years and Level 3 is given to qualified graduates during their first year of postgraduate (residency) training. The Level 2 examination consists of two independent components – a Cognitive Evaluation (Level 2-CE) and a Performance Evaluation (Level 2-PE). The former tests predominantly a student’s knowledge base, and the latter predominantly his/her clinical skills. Students are eligible for the Level 1 examination upon successful completion of Year 2 and approval from the College of Osteopathic Medicine in which they are enrolled. Students become eligible for the Level 2 examinations in Year 3 after approval from their COM. Students must have received a passing score on COMLEX -USA Level 1 in order to begin clinical rotations. Students must take and pass both components of the Level 2 examination as a condition of graduation.

Effective with the class entering in the fall of 2004, students are allowed a maximum of three attempts to pass COMLEX-USA Level 1 and each component of COMLEX-USA Level 2. Any student who fails to pass any individual component of the COMLEX-USA examination series after three attempts will be considered for dismissal from the College.

Note: Registration and scheduling of the exams is the responsibility of the student. Students should also plan to register and take the COMLEX-USA Level 1 and 2 (PE and CE) with sufficient time allowed to receive exam results and be able to comply with any deadlines for clinical rotations or graduation. Graduating fourth year students are advised to schedule a date for their COMLEX-USA Level 2-PE (clinical skills examination) no later than December 31 of the year preceding their anticipated graduation date in order to receive scores to meet graduation requirements. This may require registration and scheduling with NBOME up to 12 months in advance.

Laptop Requirement

The College has instituted a mandatory laptop computer requirement. Specifics regarding the minimum configuration will be available on a yearly basis.

Grading

Course Grade Reporting

  • The process of determining grades and the criteria for passing a course will be described explicitly in the course syllabus that must be ratified by the Committee on Educational Programs (CEP) and posted prior to the beginning of the course.  
  • The determination of a final grade in a course is determined by the course director and must comply with the standards and principles endorsed by the CEP.  
  • Following the completion of a course, the course director will assign one of the following grades to each student, based upon the criteria published in the course syllabus:
    • Honors (H)
    • High Pass (HP)
    • Pass (P)
    • Fail (F)
    • Incomplete (I)
      • A temporary grade submitted to the registrar in instances in which:
      • Will be replaced with one of the grades listed above as soon as possible after the required work is completed, but no later than the beginning of a new academic year, and
      • Will be removed from student’s permanent transcript when the grade is replaced.
Curricular Requirements

UNECOM COURSES - YEAR 1

Osteopathic Medical Knowledge A -  14 Credits

Osteopathic Medical Knowledge A is a multidisciplinary course designed to introduce medical science knowledge that undergirds the practice of osteopathic medicine. The medical science knowledge includes biological disciplines such as histology, physiology and biochemistry and more clinical disciplines such as pathology and evidence-based medicine.  The overall aim is to allow the first year osteopathic medical student to integrate and apply this knowledge in the solution of clinical problems. Additionally, the student will develop cognitive skills and attitudes that support continual acquisition of medical knowledge

Osteopathic Clinical Skills IA - 14 credits
The aim of Osteopathic Clinical Skills IA is to transform learners into student physicians who demonstrate superior clinical skills and medical professionalism, and embody empathetic, patient centered medical care in preparation for clinical clerkship training. The purpose of the Osteopathic Clinical Skills IA course is to provide the students with a solid knowledge of clinical anatomy as the basis for competent and safe performance of physical examination and osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM); to instruct learners in the art and skill of medical history taking; to provide an understanding of structure and function to formulate a clinical temporal profile leading to the differential diagnosis; and to represent the foundation of osteopathic knowledge and skills that will be built upon longitudinally throughout the learner’s medical education and practice.

Osteopathic Medical Knowledge B – 13 credits
Osteopathic Medical Knowledge B is a multidisciplinary course designed to introduce medical science knowledge that undergirds the practice of osteopathic medicine. The medical science knowledge includes biological disciplines such as histology, physiology and biochemistry and more clinical disciplines such as pathology, pharmacology and evidence-based medicine.  The overall aim is to allow the first year osteopathic medical student to integrate and apply this knowledge in the solution of clinical problems. Additionally, the student will develop cognitive skills and attitudes that support continual acquisition of medical knowledge. Osteopathic Medical Knowledge B is a continuation of Osteopathic Medical Knowledge A and will build on the knowledge, skills and attitudes developed by the medical scholar in Osteopathic Medical Knowledge A.

Osteopathic Clinical Skills IB - 13 credits
The aim of Osteopathic Clinical Skills IB is to transform learners into student physicians who demonstrate superior clinical skills and medical professionalism, and embody empathetic, patient centered medical care in preparation for clinical clerkship training. Osteopathic Clinical Skills IB is a continuation of Osteopathic Clinical Skills IA and will build on the knowledge, skills and attitudes developed by the medical scholar in Osteopathic Clinical Skills IA.
The Osteopathic Clinical Skills IB course serves to further develop the students’ knowledge of clinical anatomy as the basis for competent and safe performance of physical examination and osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM); to instruct learners in the art and skill of medical history taking; to provide an understanding of structure and function to formulate a clinical temporal profile leading to the differential diagnosis; and to represent the foundation of osteopathic knowledge and skills that will be built upon longitudinally throughout the learner’s medical education and practice.

UNECOM Courses - Year 2

Osteopathic Systems A - 14 credits
This semester long course integrates the most common and/or important patient presentations related to the neuropsychiatric, musculoskeletal, hematological, and gastrointestinal body systems with foundational underlying biomedical scientific principles.

Using a combination of interactive, didactic presentations, case study discussions, laboratory sessions, panel discussions, and “grand rounds” conferences, the structured learning activities reinforce and expand the student’s understanding of relevant biomedical and clinical elements of health care explored in the first year UNECOM courses.

The structure-function relationship and the body's inherent ability to self-regulate, heal, and maintain health are prominent themes in the course content.

Osteopathic Clinical Skills IIA - 14 credits
This course is part of the two-year longitudinal Osteopathic Clinical Skills I course that begins in Year 1 and continues in the second year of studies. The course is designed to reinforce and expand the student’s knowledge and osteopathic clinical skills to ensure safe and competent practice during core clinical training rotations in Years 3-4.  Osteopathic Clinical Skills  IIA introduces the student to more advanced methods of Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment and extends the integration of key concepts into the clinical practice of primary care. Learning activities parallel topics and areas of focus of the Osteopathic Systems series of courses and include standardized patient experiences, osteopathic manual medicine skills sessions, clinical skills assessment, and differential diagnosis.

Osteopathic Systems B - 13 credits
This semester long course integrates the most common and/or important patient presentations related to the respiratory, cardiovascular, renal, reproductive and endocrine body systems with foundational underlying biomedical scientific principles.

Using a combination of interactive, didactic presentations, case study discussions, laboratory sessions, panel discussions, and “grand rounds” conferences, the structured learning activities reinforce and expand the student’s understanding of relevant biomedical and clinical elements of health care explored in the first year UNECOM courses.

The structure-function relationship and the body's inherent ability to self-regulate, heal, and maintain health are prominent themes in the course content.

Osteopathic Clinical Skills IIB - 13 credits
This course is part of the two-year longitudinal Osteopathic Clinical Skills course that begins in year 1 and continues in the second year of studies. The course is designed to reinforce and expand the student’s knowledge and osteopathic clinical skills to ensure safe and competent practice during core clinical training rotations in years 3-4.  OCS-IIB introduces the student to more advanced methods of osteopathic manipulative treatment and extends the integration of key concepts into the clinical practice of primary care. Learning activities parallel topics and areas of focus of the Osteopathic Systems series of courses and include standardized patient experiences, osteopathic manual medicine skills sessions, clinical skills assessment, and differential diagnosis.

Learning Outcomes

To graduate with the degree of Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, students must demonstrate achievement of the AOA COM competencies:

  • Osteopathic Principles and Practice: The student will understand and apply osteopathic principles to patient care.
  • Patient Care: The student will have the knowledge, attitudes, and skills to provide compassionate, appropriate and effective patient care.
  • Medical Knowledge: The student will demonstrate knowledge of established biomedical, epidemiological, social, and behavioral sciences and their application to patient care.
  • Practice-Based Learning and Improvement: The student will demonstrate the ability to investigate and evaluate patient care practices using scientific evidence and apply these to patient care.
  • Interpersonal and Communication Skills: The student will demonstrate interpersonal and communication skills that result in effective interactions with patients, families, and colleagues.
  • Professionalism: The student will demonstrate a commitment to carrying out professional responsibilities in an ethical and sensitive manner.
  • Systems-Based Practice: The student will demonstrate an awareness of and responsiveness to the larger context and systems of health care, to provide care of optimal value.

To educate this type of physician, UNECOM provides:

  • An innovative curriculum aligned with the precepts vital to educating quality osteopathic physicians for the 21st century and designed to ensure student achievement of the AOA COM competencies.
  • A fully integrated curriculum, during the first two years, which builds a strong foundation in the basic and clinical sciences, human behavior and community medicine and promotes long-term retention of concepts and information. 
  • A variety of learning experiences, including traditional didactic lectures; clinical case studies; case-based learning; small group discussions; independent study; and, interactions with patients in doctor's offices, nursing homes, and local schools. 
  • Teaching Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine in every part of our curriculum.
  • Open communication between faculty and students and that values student input.
  • Camaraderie and exceptional support from fellow students.
  • High quality laboratory and educational facilities, in The Harold Alfond Center for the Health Sciences which houses laboratories and lecture halls that place UNECOM at the national forefront of health and life sciences education. The Alfond Center’s gross anatomy lab and fresh tissue lab and Osteopathic Principles and Practice (OP&P) lab are spacious and well designed with the latest technological support. UNECOM’s Clinical Performance Center houses interactive clinical skills education and evaluation that supports a well-established Standardized Patient Program and a Patient Simulator Program. The newly-designed Decary Annex creates the conditions for high-quality learning and teaching in it’s flexible environment.
  • Core Clerkship and Selective/ Elective rotations in the field that fully develop clinical acumen. During the last two years, students are placed in UNECOM clinical sites. In Year 3, the core clerkship takes place at affiliated clinical campuses throughout the northeast. In Year 4, students continue learning with selective and elective clinical rotations at sites of their choosing.
Double Major

UNECOM offers medical students the opportunity to also complete a Master’s in Public Health or a Master’s in Medical Education Leadership.

Academic Policy

Attendance

The University expects the student to attend all scheduled lectures, discussions, case-based learning sessions, laboratories and clinical assignments unless appropriate permission has been secured prior to the absence. Any student who misses a class is NOT exempted from completing the assignment covered during the absence. For further information, student should consult the Excused Absence Policy as found in the Student Handbook Supplement for the College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Academic Standing

The Committee on Student Progress is responsible for making recommendations to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (ADAA) on student disciplinary and academic matters, performance, and on action(s) to be taken. Yearly, the Committee makes recommendations to the Dean on the promotion of students to the next class. At any time the Committee deems necessary, it may inform the appropriate faculty and administrative personnel of students experiencing academic difficulties so that corrective or remedial action may be taken. Also, each year the Committee recommends to the faculty, through the Dean, the awarding of the degree of doctor of osteopathic medicine to those students who have satisfied all graduation requirements.

The status of a student may be reviewed by the Committee on Student Progress when the student's performance is found to be unsatisfactory in the accumulation of knowledge and/or personal growth. For example, the student’s academic progress may be reviewed for any of the following reasons:

  1. Unexcused absence(s) from class, laboratory, or clinical experience.
  2. Failure to obtain a satisfactory grade in every unit of study such as a course, preceptorship, or clinical rotation (clerkship).
  3. Failure to abide by the Standards for Professional Behavior and Conduct or to exhibit the behavior, ethics, or professional manner deemed necessary – in the judgment of the Committee on Student Progress – for the continued study and later practice of osteopathic medicine in the judgment of the Committee on Student Progress.
  4. Personal or medical reasons; in assessing personal growth, such factors as morals, emotional stability, integrity, general conduct, reliability, judgment, and rapport with patients is considered.

After discussion, the Committee on Student Progress may decide by majority vote to make one of the following recommendations to the dean:

  1. No significant deficiency exists, and the student is promoted, with such oral or written caution to the student as may be recommended.
  2. A significant deficiency exists and one or several of the following actions is to be taken according to the severity of the deficiency, the student's overall achievement and circumstances surrounding the deficiency (illness, family emergency, etc.):
  • Student is to take remedial examination(s) after an appropriate interval recommended by the course director(s) and approved by a majority vote of the Committee on Student Progress.
  • Student is to undertake special projects or studies required to address the perceived deficiency.
  • Student is placed on academic or disciplinary probation for a stated period of time.
  • Student is required to repeat the course(s), preceptorship(s), or clerkship(s) in which there is a deficiency.
  • Student is required to repeat the academic year.
  • Student is suspended from the College.
  • Student is dismissed from the College.

Withdrawal/Dismissal

A student who is required to repeat an academic year, suspended or dismissed from the College may appeal this decision to the Dean within ten (10) days of the decision to repeat, suspend or dismiss. The Dean may, at his discretion, convene a five-member Faculty Appeals Committee for a review of the decision. The charge of the Faculty Appeals Committee will not be to repeat the deliberations of the Committee on Student Progress, but rather to determine whether or not the following conditions apply to the original decision:

  1. there is new information available at this time that was not available to the original recommending committee (CSP), OR
  2. there is evidence that the decision that the recommending committee reached was capricious or arbitrary, OR
  3. the consequence of the deliberation (we.g. dismissal, etc.) is unusually harsh or unfair.

If the Faculty Appeals Committee upholds the original recommendation, the decision is final and there is not further appeal. If the Faculty Appeals Committee does not uphold the requirement to repeat the year, suspension or dismissal, it will recommend to the Dean such other lesser requirements as it deems appropriate.
Placement of a student on academic probation or disciplinary probation indicates the faculty's extreme dissatisfaction with the student's academic or behavioral performance. While on probation, the student will not represent the college at outside events and will be asked to curtail elected office responsibilities until their academic performance improves. In addition, a student on academic probation must pass all units of study; a student on disciplinary probation must discontinue the behavior leading to probation and maintain a record of exemplary behavior. Students who violate the conditions of probation as listed above will be reviewed again by the Committee on Student Progress, which will make such recommendations to the Dean as it sees fit.

An application for voluntary withdrawal from the College must be submitted in writing to the Dean. The Dean may grant a leave of absence due to financial difficulties or for personal, medical, or family problems.

Academic Progress Policy

A. Course Failures

  • All students are expected to meet the requirements for passing by the end of a course.
  • Any student who fails to meet the criteria for passing any UNECOM course, including criteria for professional behavior, will meet with CSP.
  • Based upon the student’s overall performance, the CSP will make one of the following recommendations:
    • dismissal from the college, OR
    • repeat the entire academic year, OR
    • repeat the course when it is next offered, OR
    • reassess or remediate the course, as appropriate (see below)

B. Re-Assessment

  • All courses that base student grades on fewer than two assessments must develop a plan for re-assessment and/or remediation
  • Within 4 weeks of the end of a course, the Committee on Student Progress (CSP) will review the progress of all students who fail to meet the published criteria for passing.
  • Any student fails who to meet the published criteria for passing a course will be assigned a grade of Incomplete (I). The CSP, in consultation with the course director and other appropriate individuals, will decide whether or not the student will be allowed to repeat an assessment prior to the determination and reporting of a final grade for that course.  
  • Achieving the standards for passing after a second assessment will result in the assignment of a grade of Pass (P) for the course, as determined by the course director.  
  • Failure to achieve a passing score on a second assessment will result in the assignment of a grade of Failure (F) for the course.
  • Permission for reassessment will be based upon:
  • student performance in the course,
  • student overall performance in all other UNECOM courses (concurrent and previous), and
  • the nature of the reassessment tool.
  • (e.g. failure of a practical laboratory or skills examination may preclude the opportunity to reconstruct an appropriate re-assessment tool).  
  • If the number of re-assessments is excessive, or performance is consistently sub-standard for a particular student, CSP may refuse permission to re-assess and prescribe a remedial activity (see Course Remediation Policy below).
  • The date for reassessment for any particular course will be determined and published by the Office of Academic Affairs.

C. Course Remediation Policy

  • All courses that base student grades on fewer than two assessments must develop a plan for re-assessment and/or remediation
  • With permission of the Committee on Student Progress (CSP), a UNECOM student who is assigned a final grade of Failure (F) may enroll in a formal remediation activity approved by Committee on Educational Programs (CEP).
  • CSP will grant permission to participate in a course remediation based upon:
    • student performance in the course, and
    • student overall performance in all other UNECOM courses (concurrent and previous),
  • The remediation activity will:
    • be constructed and monitored by the original course director,
    • include an assessment comparable in scope of content to the original assessment tool designed to document achievement of the academic goals of the original course,
    • be listed with the Registrar as a separate course, and
    • carry a tuition charge.
  • The format of the activity may take the form of one or more of the following:
    • lectures
    • practical hands-on (laboratory) exercises
    • on-line modules
    • directed reading
  • The student will meet with the identified instructor at least once weekly – in person or via virtual technology – during the duration of the remediation course.
  • The syllabus of the original course, which requires CEP approval, will specify the dates and duration of the remedial activity.
  • Upon successful completion of the remedial activity, the student will be given a grade of Pass (P).
  • Failure on the assessment following a remediation activity will result in the student being considered for one of the following actions:
    • dismissal from the college, OR
    • repeat the academic year, OR
    • repeat the course when it is next offered.
Financial Information

Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fees for subsequent years may vary. Other expenses include books and housing. For more information regarding tuition and fees, please consult the Financial Information section of this catalog.

MSPR/Dean's Letter

Institutional letters of reference, the Medical Student Performance Review, for prospective postgraduate programs, such as internships, residencies, and fellowships are provided to graduating students. The first ten requests for letters shall be free of charge. All additional requests shall be assessed a $3 fee.

Special Examination Fee

All students are required to take and pass the Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination (COMLEX) part I, part II CE, and part II PE in order to graduate. All fees are determined by the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME) and are paid directly to the Board.

Leave of Absence Tuition Credit

In the event a student desires to apply for a leave of absence, a Leave Form must be submitted to the Dean's Office. The form will include the reason for leaving, as well as the expected date of return. An approved leave of absence during the on-campus portion of the curriculum will result in a refund per the Withdrawal Tuition Refund Policy. No penalty is assessed for a leave of absence during the Clerkship Training Curriculum.

A student in the military reserves will be granted a full leave of absence tuition credit should the student be called to active duty while attending courses during any given semester.

Notes

  • Students should expect annual increases in the cost of attending UNECOM since the University is subject to the same inflationary pressures that affect the rest of society.
  • UNE will continue to make every effort to contain costs from the date they are announced through the current academic year. The Board of Trustees, however, reserve the right to make changes in tuition and fees at any time.
  • For their own protection while at the University, it is recommended that students carry their own local checking accounts to provide funds for incidental expenses and emergencies. The University recommends that students open a checking account with People's United Bank, who have installed a full-service ATM machine on campus.
  • The University will not be responsible for the loss of property on or off campus although it strives to safeguard students’ property on campus.

The University offers direct deposit to its students. Students with credit balances can have the excess funds directly deposited in the bank of their choice. The sign-up form is available here.

Financial Aid

The Financial Aid Office at the University of New England is committed to providing students with information about the different education financing options available. This information is available on the Financial Aid website. The website describes the aid application process, the types of financial assistance available, and other important information.

Graduation Requirements

The Board of Trustees of the University of New England confers the degree doctor of osteopathic medicine (D.O.) upon those students who have satisfactorily completed the requirements for graduation and who have been recommended for graduation by the faculty of the College.

Every candidate for the degree of doctor of osteopathic medicine must:

  1. Be of good moral character.
  2. Have fulfilled the requirements of study for the degree as determined by the faculty.
  3. Have met the academic requirements of the College for the awarding of the degree and have been in residence at this College for the last two years.
  4. Be free of indebtedness to this College, the University, and their affiliates.
  5. Have demonstrated the ethical, personal, and professional qualities deemed necessary for the successful and continuing study and practice of osteopathic medicine.
  6. Have been recommended by the faculty for graduation.
  7. Be present at the UNE commencement and the COM Physicians Hooding Ceremony of his/her class at the time the degree is conferred.

Notice and Responsibilities Regarding this Catalog

This Catalog documents the academic programs, policies, and activities of the University of New England for the 2013-2014 academic year. The information contained herein is accurate as of date of publication August 12, 2013.

The University of New England reserves the right in its sole judgment to make changes of any nature in its programs, calendar, or academic schedule whenever it is deemed necessary or desirable, including changes in course content, the rescheduling of classes with or without extending the academic term, canceling of scheduled classes or other academic activities, in any such case giving such notice thereof as is reasonably practicable under the circumstances.

While each student may work closely with an academic advisor, he or she must retain individual responsibility for meeting requirements in this catalog and for being aware of any changes in provisions or requirements.

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