University of Pittsburgh


Introduction to Patient Care

Advanced Physical Exam
MS-1 and MS-2

APE 2 - August 23, 2018-February 18, 2019 - 19 half days
APE 1 - January 10, 2019-May 17, 2019 - 16 half days

Course Director
Scott Herrle, MD
Assistant Professor
Department of Medicine

Course Co-Director, Pediatric Segment
Kishore Vellody, MD
Assistant Professor
Department of Pediatrics

Course Co-Director, Pediatric Segment
Andrew McCormick, MD
Assistant Professor
Department of Pediatrics and Internal Medicine


Course Description

This course takes a hands-on approach to learning to take a patient history and perform a physical exam.

The goals of the course are for the student to:

  1. become comfortable in the approach to the patient.
  2. build on the skills learned in Introduction to Medical Interviewing to develop proper techniques for taking a complete medical history.
  3. begin to understand abnormal history patterns and their pathophysiologic implications
  4. learn to record a history for the medical record.
  5. build on the skills learned in Introduction to Physical Examination to perform an orderly and technically correct physical examination.
  6. begin to appreciate abnormal physical findings and their pathophysiologic significance.
  7. learn to record the physical examination for the medical record.
  8. begin to analyze the data obtained in the history and the physical examination and to develop a problem list and differential diagnosis.

Students have three 4-week adult physical examination segments and one 4-week pediatrics physical examination segment.

Faculty for this course includes more than 70 physicians from local teaching hospitals.

Educational Methods


Clinical skills development Preceptorship/hospital experience Lectures    
Patient write-ups Standardized patients Demonstrations    



Evaluation is based on reports from clinical preceptors, a successful completion of an observed full history and physical examination of a simulated patient, and a written, multiple-choice exam.

Grading: The weighting of the course grade within a block grade is based on the length of the course. Grading for the block is Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory.

Faculty Note

David Eibling, MD, and Jason Rosenstock, MD, are recipients of the Kenneth E. Schuit Master Educator Award. In addition, Drs. Eibling and Rosenstock; Kathleen McIntyre-Seltman, MD; and Evan Waxman, MD, PhD, are members of the UPSOM Academy of Master Educators.