MD Program

Contact Medical Student Global Programs

1187 MERF
Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2600
Phone:(319) 353-5762
Fax: (319) 335-8643

  • Electives

    Elective courses are offered through the Office of Global Programs throughout the year. Three on-campus courses are offered during the M1/M2 years. To register, please email


     MED:8081 Global Health Issue I 
    One credit elective. Offered Fall semester.
    Monday 5:30-6:50 pm.
    Topics include: Introduction to Global Health Issues; Health and Development, Social Determinants; Measuring Health and Disease; Healthcare as a human right; Humanitarian crisis response; Pandemics; Travel health; and health care systems. Completion of this course is a requirement of the Global Health Distinction Track. 

    MED:8082 Global Health Issues II
    One credit elective. Offered Spring semester.
    Monday 5:30-6:50 pm.
    Topics discussed include: Health as a Human Right; Why is the Third World the Third World?; Healthcare in low resource settings; Vulnerable populations; and Career Development in global health. Global Health Issues I is a prerequisite to this course. Completion of this course is a requirement of the Global Health Distinction Track.

    MED:8084 Global Programs Seminar
    One credit elective. Offered Fall and Spring semesters.
    Tuesdays 4:30-5:20 pm.
    Past topics have included: Surgical missions in developing countries; Ponseti work worldwide; Chikungunya: an emerging threat; Anesthesia in developing countries; Hemorrhagic fever viruses and the recent Ebola virus outbreak; Women's health issues in Haiti; Oncology work in under-resourced nations; Child abuse, neglect, and childhood adversity on a global scale; North American indigenous populations and social inequalities affecting health; Geographic patterns of disease using GIS; How to work with a philanthropy on global health; Advances in HIV-related research; Women's health and obstetric fistula; and more. This course may be repeated.

    Off-campus Global Individually Arranged Electives and Clerkships

    Students may pursue individually arranged summer electives and final year clerkships in global health.

    • MED:8083 Global Health Elective (M1/M2 summer)
    • MED:8480 Global Health Clerkship (M4)

    Please email to register for an off-campus elective.

    The minimum program length that will be considered for an individually arranged elective is four consecutive weeks. Global Programs offers opportunities across a range of settings including domestic community sites both in and outside of Iowa, and in international communities including, but not limited to:

    • Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean: Belize, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Nicaragua, and West Indies
    • South America: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, St. Lucia, and Venezuela
    • Europe: Bosnia-Herzegovinia, Bulgaria, Denmark, England, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, and Turkey 
    • Middle East: Israel, Lebanon, Palestine and Qatar
    • Africa: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe
    • Asia: Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, People's Republic of China, Russia, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam
    • South Pacific: Cook Islands, East Timor, Philippines, Samoa and Vanuatu
    • Australia: Australia and New Guinea
    • Canada and the United States