- Code MEDI8020
- Unit Value 21 units
- Offered by School of Medicine and Psychology
- ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
- Course subject Medicine
- Areas of interest Medicine
- Work Integrated Learning Placements
- Academic career PGRD
- Dr Karin Messerle
- Mode of delivery In Person
First Semester 2024
Second Semester 2024
See Future Offerings
This course encompasses the second year of the ANU medical program, which is part of Phase 1. During year 2 students study the musculoskeletal and nervous systems, digestive system, haematology, cancer and immunity. Students also learn about pathological processes of metabolic imbalance, inherited disease, infection, immunity, neoplasm and degenerative disease. Students continue their learning of the themes and frameworks of the ANU medical program in the context of the physiological systems and the associated population and social determinants of health and medical ethics and the law. The transition block is designed to synthesise the learning of Phase 1 in preparation for learning in clinical environments in Phase 2.
Course Structure and Content
Block 4: Musculoskeletal and Neuroscience
Block 5: Digestive and Nutrition
Block 6: Haematology, Oncology and Infectious Diseases
Block 7: Transition
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- Musculoskeletal and Neuroscience block:Outline the functions of the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and describe and analyse disease states that affect those functions.
- Explain the structure and function of the components of the musculoskeletal system and its common pathologies.
- Integrate knowledge of the musculoskeletal system with an understanding of basic medical sciences and clinical skills, to interpret items of the clinical history, examination, and investigations to formulate diagnoses of common pathologies of the musculoskeletal system and describe these in the context of the individual patient.
- Explain the classes and mechanisms of action of anti-rheumatic agents, immunosuppressives, psychotropic drugs and drugs used in pain management.
- Apply principles of immunology to investigate immune-mediated autoimmune disease using routine diagnostic laboratory tests.
- Describe the anatomy and common pathologies of the eye and related structures, retina & visual pathways, and explain the principles of formation and perception of a visual image.
- Outline the anatomy and functions of the central nervous system (CNS) and the roles of transmitters, synaptic plasticity, and networks in normal sensory-motor processing and in higher functions including learning and memory.
- Discuss the organization of the major sensory (somatosensory, visual, auditory) and motor (corticospinal, rubrospinal, reticulospinal) pathways of the CNS, and describe the organization of the major regulatory (basal ganglia and cerebellum) and neuromodulatory (brainstem catecholamine) systems and their functions in regulating behaviour and mood.
- Apply a knowledge of CNS structure and function to analyse, interpret and predict signs and symptoms resulting from common CNS disorders, or from site-specific CNS injuries including stroke.
- Apply a knowledge of tissues to analyse and explain the pathophysiology of common conditions affecting the CNS, the eye and the musculoskeletal system.
- Explain how microorganisms cause infections of the central nervous system.
- Analyse, evaluate, and incorporate information from various sources to identify social, ethical, legal and human rights issues of presented medical cases in the context of global health issues including the ethical conduct of clinical trials, impact of trade agreements, pharmaceutical and insurance industries as well as new technologies (such as nanotechnology and artificial photosynthesis) on sustainability of a safe and healthy environment and health system quality and equity.
- Demonstrate a capacity for reflective practice on the ideas and principles that drive collaborative practice with disciplines working together for health outcomes.
- Discuss epidemiology and prevention of common mental health disorders including life-long cognitive disability and age-related cognitive impairment such as dementia.
- Develop foundational knowledge in how population-level health policies are developed and implemented.
- Identify the role of environmental, infectious, and other exposures on the development of the immune system and immune-mediated diseases at a population-level.
- Obtain a history from patients whose presenting complaint(s) suggest(s) a disorder of the nervous and/or musculoskeletal systems to elucidate the cause of the illness and its impact on well-being and define the biological, social, and psychological context of management; demonstrate system specific physical signs and interpret them in physiological and pathological terms; integrate clinical pathology, clinical physiology and imaging investigations with history and physical signs.
- Further develop clinical reasoning skills in Problem Based Learning cases through the integration of information from lectures, practicals and clinical skills, and consideration of population health and social aspects of musculoskeletal disorders, CNS injury and neurological disease.
- Digestive and Nutrition block:Describe the anatomy and histology of the gastrointestinal tract and hepatobiliary system and the common associated pathologies.
- Describe the function of the gastrointestinal tract and hepatobiliary system with emphasis on the processes involved in the digestion and absorption of nutrients, intestinal motility, and metabolic functions of the liver, and explain how disease can affect them.
- Describe the vascular supply and the endocrine and nervous control of the gastrointestinal tract and hepatobiliary system.
- Discuss how infection, bleeding, obstruction, perforation and malignancy affect gastrointestinal tract and hepatobiliary system function, and the normal physiological responses to them.
- Describe how dietary intake can affect health and disease, explain and demonstrate how nutritional status can be determined and discuss how body weight is controlled.
- Explain the effects of age on nutritional status and on the functions of the gastrointestinal tract and hepatobiliary system in health and disease.
- Explain the molecular and genetic causation of diseases of the gastrointestinal and hepatobiliary systems.
- Identify and describe the commensal intestinal microflora, the common gastrointestinal and hepatic viruses, the endogenous and exogenous bacterial pathogens and parasites of the gastrointestinal tract, the organisation and function of the mucosal immune system, and illustrate how to isolate and identify different gastrointestinal pathogens.
- List the classes and mechanisms of action of drugs used in the treatment of gastrointestinal and hepatobiliary disorders, identify the potential complications associated with the use of medication in liver failure, and identify the common side effects of drug classes (including pain relieving medications) that affect the gastrointestinal and hepatobiliary systems.
- Identify gastrointestinal disorders of public health importance including risk factors and multifactorial causality; describe basic epidemiological steps in outbreak investigation
- Identify risk factors and discuss prevention and management of obesity, alcohol use and substance abuse from a population perspective.
- Describe the ideas and principles that drive collaborative practice so that disciplines working together can improve health outcomes.
- Define and apply ethical, legal and human rights principles to medical practice from narrow, individual cases, to broader, social examples including inter-professional learning, the standard of care in Emergency Department discharges and good documentation.
- Apply ethical, legal and human rights principles to medical practice in an integrated way both broadly, generalisable (horizontal integration) and deeply with detailed rationales and justification for action or inaction (vertical integration).
- Obtain a history from patients whose presenting complaint(s) suggest(s) a disorder of the gastrointestinal system and/or of nutritional status to elucidate the cause of the illness and its impact on well-being and define the biological, social and psychological context of management; demonstrate system specific physical signs and interpret them in physiological and pathological terms; integrate clinical pathology, clinical physiology and imaging investigations with history and physical signs.
- Further develop clinical reasoning skills in Problem Based Learning cases through the integration of information from lectures, practicals and clinical skills, and consideration of population health and social aspects of disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, hepatobiliary system, and nutritional status
- Oncology/Haematology/Infectious Diseases block:Describe the anatomy of the haematopoietic, lymphatic, and genitourinary systems and discuss and analyse the disease states that affect these systems.
- Describe the anatomy, histology, and pathophysiology of human haematological and solid malignancies in the context of typical clinical presentations; explain how tumours escape immune recognition.
- Discuss the role of cellular components of the immune system and molecular signals including complement during acute and chronic inflammation; explain the basis of hypersensitivity reactions.
- Describe coagulation, thrombosis, and haemostasis; explain the pathogenetic basis of hematologic disease and identify the pathways amenable to pharmacologic intervention.
- Explain the principles of blood typing; the transfusion of blood and blood products, and transfusion reactions; outline the principles of alloreactivity, tissue typing and graft versus host disease.
- Interpret basic haematology and coagulation test results and apply these in the context of typical clinical presentations.
- Outline the stages in the development of haematological diseases, blood-borne and emerging infectious diseases; interpret epidemiological studies in understanding burden and risk factors for these diseases; discuss relevant preventive strategies, including immunisation, describe the role of agencies such as the TGA.
- Interpret epidemiological studies in understanding the burden of disease and risk factors for cancer and discuss the rationale for relevant preventive strategies including population-level cancer screening programs.
- List the classes and explain the mechanisms of action of anti-coagulants, anti-cancer (including targeted therapies), anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-parasitic agents; outline the principles of radiotherapy for treatment of cancer.
- Discuss the skin microflora, nosocomial bacterial pathogens, infections by atypical bacteria, antibiotic resistance mechanisms and transfer, biofilms, and abscesses; describe the steps in identification of these pathogens in the laboratory.
- Discuss infections by retroviruses, particularly HIV, and understand the basis for identification of HIV in the laboratory; describe arboviruses.
- Describe the common infections caused by fungi, helminths and protozoa and the life cycle and laboratory identification of these pathogens.
- Apply evidence based medicine, scientific methods and understanding of behavioural, cultural, and social factors to develop and critically evaluate new knowledge.
- Explain and apply concepts of medical negligence, professional misconduct, and professional responsibilities while working in multidisciplinary teams
- Compare, deconstruct, extrapolate, relate, and organise their knowledge of ethical, legal, and human rights principles relevant to medical practice both generally and specifically. Areas of knowledge for mastery include core concepts from Year 1 plus their application to issues in drug addiction and practitioner well-being, whistleblowing and professional conduct and community responsibilities in relation to health system inequity and injustice.
- Revise foundational concepts in social determinants of health and core epidemiological principles in disease causation and measurement.
- Further develop clinical reasoning skills in Problem Based Learning cases through the integration of information from lectures, practicals and clinical skills, and consideration of population health and social aspects of disorders of the haematopoietic system, infectious diseases, and solid malignancies.
- Transition block:evaluate and interpret the involvement of multiple body systems in complex diseases, including the interactions of biological determinants with the environment, society and culture, and apply this knowledge to clinical scenarios through effective communication, history taking and examination.
- Apply evidence-based medicine, scientific methods and understanding of behavioural, social and cultural factors to develop and critically evaluate new knowledge and contribute to the prevention and treatment of disease and illness.
- Analyse and apply key principles of ethics, law and human rights in medical practice and the operation of health systems.
- Articulate an approach to end of life that incorporates an understanding of the social world of patient and family, and the collaboration between health practitioners.
- Formulate a clinical problem statement for patients with illnesses commonly seen in community and hospital practice; define how history, physical examination, and special investigations will help address the clinical problem; demonstrate the ability to record and communicate the results of history, physical examination and special tests.
- Discuss population health and social aspects of multi-system disease, identify issues related to Planetary Health from a Population Health perspective and apply advocacy skills to improving Planetary Health.
Work Integrated Learning
All students engage with WIL partners (internal/external) as a minor component of the course
Inherent Requirement Descriptors continued:
Insight into their own health and behaviour
- Medical students will be expected to demonstrate an ability to recognise when they experience poor health and put in place effective processes to ensure their own health or behaviours do not pose a risk to others.
Cognition, critical thinking and problem solving skills
- Medical students will be expected to have an aptitude for problem solving, based on scientific principles to understand and solve the complex medical needs of patients, whilst also considering the context of the patient’s circumstances and the health system they are working in.
- Medical students will be expected to work willingly and cohesively as part of a team, taking responsibility for their actions as well as recognising and respecting the skills of other professionals.
Physical and observational capabilities
- Medical students will be expected to demonstrate their ability to acquire information, carry out a range of procedures suitable to their level of capability, and understand and carry out their role in assisting during a medical emergency.
- Medical students will be expected to demonstrate both physical and mental performance at a consistent and sustained level to perform multiple tasks in an assigned period of time that provides safe and effective care without compromise.
- End of Block 4 MCQ quiz (hurdle requirement) (10) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18]
- End of Block 5 MCQ quiz (hurdle requirement) (10) [LO 19,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34]
- End of semester 1 written examination (Minicase and SAQ) (hurdle requirement) (30) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34]
- End of Block 6 MCQ quiz (hurdle requirement) (10) [LO 35,36,37,38,39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47,48,49,50,51]
- Professionalism and Leadership Assignment (hurdle requirement) (5) [LO 12,13,18,30,31,32,47,48,49]
- Population Health Assignment (hurdle requirement) (5) [LO 12,14,15,16,18,28,29,34,41,42,47,50,51]
- Final Examination (hurdle requirement), made up of the following: (30) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34,35,36,37,38,39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47,48,49,50,51]
- MCQ item paper
- Minicase and SAQ written papers
- Block 7 Formative online training modules and assessments (hurdle requirement) (0) [LO 52,53,54,55,56,57]
- Clinical Skill Progress Reviews / Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) (hurdle requirement - must pass 80% of assessment tasks across Semester 1 and Semester 2 of MEDI8020) (0) [LO 1,2,3,6,9,10,17,18,19,20,22,23,24,33,34,35,36,40,51]
- Must meet 85% attendance at Clinical Skills and compulsory teaching sessions (hurdle requirement) (0) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29,30,31,32,33,34,35,36,37,38,39,40,41,42,43,44,45,46,47,48,49,50,51,52,53,54,55,56,57]
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This course must be enrolled in twice over two consecutive semesters (21 units +21 units)
Students are expected to devote a minimum of 40 hours per week to scheduled course activities and independent study. Scheduled activities, some of which have minimum compulsory attendance requirements, comprise 20-22 hours per week.
Students develop a range of skills and knowledge over the course of the medical program to build the foundation for medical practice. A wide range of capabilities and attributes are required of doctors; some of which are inherent in the person, and some developed and learnt during medical training and lifelong learning as a medical practitioner. Inherent requirements for the ANU Doctor of Medicine and Surgery are guided by the Medical Deans of Australia and New Zealand Inclusive Medical Education guidance note:
Communication skills – verbal, non-verbal and written
- Medical students will be expected to communicate effectively and sensitively with a range of different people to establish rapport, involve patients and carers in decision making, and practise in a culturally safe way to deliver high quality, safe care. This applies to listening, speaking, reading, writing, and the capability to use these different modes to elicit information from people, often under pressure and in difficult situations.
- Medical students will be expected to demonstrate capabilities consistent with those of a medical professional, including a commitment to making the care of patients their priority, and to practise safely and effectively, treat people with dignity and respect, and be aware of the limits of their own knowledge, skills and health. They will also be required to comply with the law, regulations and any other university codes or policies.
Insight into their own health and behaviour
Cognition, critical thinking and problem solving skills
Physical and observational capabilities
(See the Other Information for the full descriptors of the final five areas).
It should be recognised that there may be cases where students will not be able to meet the requirements of the program, even with reasonable adjustments. Steps should then be taken by university staff to provide guidance on other study options available.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Please refer to the Class Summary.
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Unit value:
- 21 units
If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.
Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links
ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.
|Class start date
|Last day to enrol
|Class end date
|Mode Of Delivery
|22 Jan 2024
|26 Feb 2024
|05 Apr 2024
|21 Jun 2024
|Class start date
|Last day to enrol
|Class end date
|Mode Of Delivery
|24 Jun 2024
|29 Jul 2024
|31 Aug 2024
|08 Nov 2024