The clinical curriculum emphasizes active student participation on patient care teams, and assignment of increased responsibility for patient management as students progress through the clinical phases of the curriculum. Students are expected to actively engage in independent learning/study about diseases encountered and to attend and participate in conferences. The professional development of students as patient care providers and team members is an essential component of teaching and role modeling within the clinical curriculum.

Students are expected to gain broad educational experience utilizing both the wide-range of primary care and specialty clerkships in clinic and hospital settings across the WWAMI region.

Students enter the clinical phases of their medical education the Spring quarter of their second year of medical school.  The clinical phase is broken up into two phases:

  1. PATIENT CARE PHASE where students achieve specific competencies in six core clinical disciplines- Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Surgery- and will also have six weeks off or time to schedule a clinical elective (restrictions may apply for clinical electives in the Patient Care Phase).
  2. EXPLORE & FOCUS PHASE– a 15-month phase of the curriculum designed to allow students to explore potential specialty careers, through a combination of required and elective clinical clerkships. Students will participate in required Advanced Patient Care clerkships, required Neurology/Neurosurgery and Emergency Medicine, and clinical elective opportunities.

Additionally, in the clinical phases students complete a series of Integrative learning weeks, as well as Transition to Residency before graduation.

Students participate in these clinical experiences in a variety of locations, in both urban and rural settings throughout the WWAMI region. There is an opportunity for students to apply for Special Programs, including two integrated clerkship options (WRITE and Olympic LIC) and Track.  See Special Programs for Clinical Rotations below for additional details.  All students will travel throughout the WWAMI Region during their clerkship phases.

Interested in learning more about the transition into the Clinical Phases? 

  • Transition to Clerkships 2023 WEBINAR  and PRESENTATION SLIDES (This webinar has helpful information about what you expect when you enter your Patient Care Phase, and the various program options for your rotations, including information about Special Programs from students who have participated!!). Recording for 2023 will be updated at the end of March 2023
  • Follow up Transition to Clerkships 2023 Student Office Hours: Recording will be updated May 2023

Clinical Curriculum Phase Resources

Access UW SOM Clinical Academic Calendars HERE

NOTE: DRAFT clinical calendar information is subject to change.

Information about registration in the clinical phases can be found HERE. Please contact the Registration Team at for additional information about scheduling your clerkships.

Looking for information about travel and housing for your required WWAMI clerkship? Please go here:

Questions?  Contact for assistance.

Information about Research and Independent Study in the clinical phases.

eValue is an online tool the UW School of Medicine uses for scheduling, viewing availability, and submitting evaluations for clinical clerkships. It IS NOT a course catalog and may not represent all clerkships available for scheduling (for example, there are permission-only clerkships that may not appear in eValue until you are registered).