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Scholarly Concentrations


IU School of Medicine is confident that the curriculum prepares all future healers to transform health across the state and beyond. Many students come into medical school with varied interests related to medicine. Maybe they worked in an underserved rural clinic or still reflect on bioethics discussions from one of their favorite undergraduate courses. The Scholarly Concentrations Program offers medical students the opportunity to pursue their passions through coursework and scholarship in an academic setting that runs throughout medical school yet doesn’t extend the time it takes to complete a medical degree.

Learn why Paul Wallach, MD, is excited about Scholarly Concentrations.


  • Concentrations are completely optional and empower students to pursue a focused area of study that expands upon the school’s core curriculum.
  • Concentrations allow students to customize their education and engage in experiences that lead to multidisciplinary scholarship, research and community engagement.
  • Each concentration exposes students to world-class experts and resources at sponsoring campuses and communities.
  • Throughout each concentration students receive mentorship and develop kills and products that will help them stand out in residency and professional opportunists.
  • Completing a Scholarly Concentration does not add time or tuition to the traditional four-year medical curriculum.
  • Students completing a concentration earn two non-clinical elective credits towards MD graduation requirements and a Scholarly Concentration designation suitable for their curriculum vitae and other professional documentation.
  • Completing a Scholarly Concentration requires no additional tuition or fees.

The scholarly concentration (has) strengthened my desire to serve those in my small community and afforded me the skills to be able to do so with confidence and greater knowledge of the needs around me. It is preparing me to come home and care for those who took such good care of me.


Emma Eckrote

MS3, Rural Health

“Pursuing a Scholarly Concentration during my medical training at University of Arizona College of Medicine allowed me to focus more time doing what I love (giving back to my community). I did my project on reproductive healthcare for transgender men, and found it to be so, so valuable. Carrying out a project from start to finish has had a real impact on my community, been a great addition to my resume for residencies, and helped me gain invaluable skills that will help me in the future!”


Alex Geiger, MD

Internal Medicine-Pediatrics Resident at IU School of Medicine

Topics and Locations

There are a wide range of Scholarly Concentration topics offered at IU School of Medicine campuses. Each concentration highlights an area of expertise on its home campus. Typically, some concentrations require students to be on its campus, while others are more flexible and available statewide. During COVID-19 restrictions, all concentration courses are online. See each concentration description for requirements.

Requirements and Timeline

Concentrations have required or recommended pathways toward completion, although there may be some flexibility. Typically, students begin their concentration between the first and second years or medical school, or during the first year. However, there may be opportunities to begin a concentration at other times in the curriculum. It is vital that students determine if the plan of study will work in their schedule by talking with their concentration co-directors and lead advisor in advance of applying for a concentration. Scholarly Concentrations are composed of a core curriculum and typically two or three topic-specific courses, which allow for exploration. See concentrations for details. A bit about the core:

  • Fundamentals of Research and Scholarship course
    • Students develop fundamental skills in research study design, scientific inquiry and methods, data management, statistical analysis and human subjects research ethics in this online and asynchronous course.
  • Scholarly project
    • Students will gain firsthand experience by developing and conducting scholarly inquiry appropriate to their concentration. Completion of the project will form the basis of a scholarly concentration product.
  • Scholarly product
    • A scholarly product is typically a manuscript submitted to a peer-reviewed journal and a poster for presentation at IU School of Medicine Education Day. Publication is not required.

See Where a Scholarly Concentration Can Take You

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