Students in the accelerated (3+) MD programs at Penn State College of Medicine are pictured in 2019 seated in the lobby of the college on modern-looking chairs. An oblong coffee table is in front of the students. Pictured are, from left, Seth Martin, FM-APPS; Frank Striale, FM-APPS; Dennis Madden, NS-APPS; Elizabeth Zimmerman, IM-APPS; Shannon Brumbaugh, FM-APPS; Alexander Lee, EM-APPS; and Abdel Mohamed, FM-APPS.

MD Program: Accelerated Pathways

Flexible Options in Medical Education at Penn State College of Medicine

Option 1: Three-Year MD Accelerated Pathways

Penn State College of Medicine has a portfolio of 3+ pathways that allow students to select a concentration of study that will enhance/accelerate their professional development. Penn State College of Medicine is a member of the national Consortium of Accelerated Medical Pathway Programs (CAMPP), initially funded by the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation.

The three-year MD Accelerated Pathways provide students the opportunity to complete medical school in three years with direct progression into one of Penn State's residency programs, pending successful completion of their medical school training. Upon meeting the academic and professional standards for graduation from medical school, students are ranked to match into a Penn State Health residency program through the National Resident Matching Program®. Should students choose to rank Penn State, they would match into a position at Penn State College of Medicine for residency.

Penn State's accelerated MD Program is unique in that its pathways are designed to optimize the UME-GME continuum and allow students who already know their career path to directly progress into one of these specialties: family medicine, emergency medicine, internal medicine, neurology, psychiatry, radiology, neurosurgery, orthopaedics and pathology. There are also accelerated pathways that are designed to accommodate the timelines for MD/PhD students in dermatology, neurosurgery and otolaryngology.

The benefits of the accelerated options include reduction of medical education costs and earlier career entry. The linkage of undergraduate and graduate medical education optimizes opportunities for continuity of patient care, mentoring and advising.

Option 2: Clinician Scientist and Clinician Educator Pathways

These pathways allow students to achieve school-wide competencies and complete the core graduation requirements in approximately three years while devoting the majority of the fourth year of medical school to either research (Clinician Scientist Pathway) or a Master of Education degree (Clinician Educator Pathway).

Three-Year MD Accelerated Pathways

Diagnostic Radiology Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (DR-APPS)

In the 3+ Diagnostic Radiology Accelerated Pathway sees students completing their medical school education in three years, followed by three years of diagnostic radiology residency training within Penn State Health. Students have the opportunity to save one year of tuition and enter practice one year earlier.

Students accepted into this pathway will receive mentoring and support throughout their medical education with the goal that graduates will be prepared to assume the responsibilities of residency in Diagnostic Radiology.

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Emergency Medicine Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (EM-APPS)

In the 3+3 Emergency Medicine Accelerated Pathway, students complete medical school education in three years followed by three years of emergency medicine residency training within Penn State Health. Students have the opportunity to save one year of tuition and enter practice one year earlier.

Graduates will be skilled emergency physicians who will be well trained to practice in a field noted for its flexible schedule, diagnostic challenges and variety of cases encountered.

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Family Medicine Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (FM-APPS)

In the 3+3 Family Medicine Accelerated Pathway, students complete medical school in three years followed by three years of family medicine residency within Penn State Health. Students will have the opportunity to save one year of tuition and enter practice one year earlier.

By blending a three-year pathway with the longitudinally integrated clerkship format, graduates are poised to become patient-centered, empathetic physicians who are well prepared to practice family medicine.

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Internal Medicine Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (IM-APPS)

In the 3+3 Internal Medicine Accelerated Pathway, students complete medical school in three years followed by three years of internal medicine residency training within Penn State Health. Students have the opportunity to save one year of tuition and enter practice one year earlier.

Graduates will emerge as skilled internists, ready to integrate seamlessly into the ever-changing field of primary care delivery. Opportunities also exist for additional fellowship training in the Department of Medicine following residency.

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Neurology Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (N-APPS)

In the 3+4 Neurology Accelerated Pathway, students complete medical school in three years, followed by four years of neurology residency training at Penn State Health. Students will have the opportunity to save one year of tuition and enter practice one year earlier.

During their training, students learn from more than 30 dedicated neurology faculty who are nationally and internationally recognized for quality patient care, clinical teaching and research. The training curriculum is built around active patient-care experiences. These experiences are the intellectual backbone of neurology.

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Neurosurgery Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (NS-APPS)

In the 3+7 Neurosurgery Accelerated Pathway, students complete medical school in three years followed by seven years of neurosurgery residency training at Penn State Health. Students will have the opportunity to save one year of tuition and enter practice one year earlier.

During this innovative training, graduates learn from 23 dedicated Neurosurgery faculty, each of whom is either board-certified or internationally recognized in their subspecialty within neurosurgery. Penn State Neurosurgery is a leader in neurosurgical research, presently ranked among the top 12 programs in the United States for federal grant money.

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Orthopaedic Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (O-APPS)

In the 3+5 Orthopaedic Accelerated Pathway, students complete medical school in three years followed by five years of orthopaedics residency training at Penn State Health. Students have the opportunity to save one year of tuition and enter practice one year earlier.

With curricular innovation, early mentoring, and extensive exposure to the clinical and didactic experiences of orthopaedics, we will prepare graduates to be well-rounded physicians who also have the competencies necessary to enter this highly competitive surgical specialty.

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Psychiatry Accelerated Pathway at Penn State (Psy-APPS)

The Penn State College of Medicine 3+ Psychiatry Accelerated Pathway (Psy-APPS) is a three-year accelerated MD specialty pathway with direct progression to the Psychiatry Residency program at Penn State Health. Students will complete the medical degree in three years followed by four years of residency training in psychiatry.

Students accepted into this pathway will receive mentoring and support throughout their medical education with the goal that graduates of the Psy-APPS program will be prepared to assume the responsibilities of residency in psychiatry.

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Clinician Scientist and Clinician Educator Pathways

Clinician Educator Pathway at Penn State

In the Clinician Educator Pathway, students complete all requirements for both the MD and the Master of Education (MEd) degree in four years.

Students have the opportunity to work with leaders in educational research and theory in health systems science.

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Clinician Scientist Pathway at Penn State

In the Clinician Scientist Pathway, students incorporate an extended period of research within the four years of medical school, facilitating their development as strong physician-scientists.

Students have the opportunity to work with nationally recognized investigators to advance the understanding of health sciences across a continuum of research types - basic science, clinical, translational and health services.

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What's New in the MD Program