Electives and Clinical Studies Policy


To specify the requirements and restrictions for enrollment in electives during the clinical phases (Foundations 2 and Career Launch).


The mastery of core medical knowledge and clinical skills in the clinical phases of the curriculum is essential to becoming a competent physician. While curricular electives allow for career exploration and further expansion of knowledge and skills, it is imperative that students master the fundamental knowledge and skills to prepare them for for all future coursework and clinical experiences or rotations.

Related LCME Standards

6.2: Required Clinical Experiences


  1. Students prioritize the mastery of core medical knowledge in the core clerkships and advanced clinical studies phases (Foundations 2 and Career Launch).
  2. The Bridges Curriculum allows and encourages early career exploration during Foundations 2.
  3. Student well-being is prioritized during the core clerkship and advanced clinical studies phases by precluding students from unnecessarily increasing their work-load beyond the required full-time courses or clerkships.


During the clinical Foundations 2 and Career Launch Phases, students may not be concurrently enrolled for credit in elective UCSF courses or clerkships while they are taking courses or clerkships intended as full-time work.

  1. The policy does preclude concurrent enrollment in any elective during a longitudinal integrated clerkship programs (LICs). LICs and other longitudinal clerkship programs have “white space” designed for focus on elements of that given program. This “white space” cannot be used for concurrent enrollment in an elective or other clerkship.
  2. This policy does not preclude students’ taking 2-4 week electives (CIExes) designed for the third-year students’ early career exploration during the core clerkship phase.
  3. Fourth-year electives during Career Launch are designed to be taken individually, sequentially, and full time. Fourth-year electives may not be taken concurrently, with two exceptions:
    • Students who have completed their Deep Explore project (IDS118) and during the Introduction to Career Launch course (IDS119), may take a Tier 3 elective or SPAN (Specialty Practice Ambulatory SubInternship)  sessions (IDS116). They may not take both a Tier 3 elective and SPAN sessions during IDS119.
    • Students may take SPAN sessions (IDS116) during a Tier 3 elective.

Approval Date and Governing Body: August 14, 2018, CCEP