The following core objectives have been identified by the Undergraduate Medical Education Committee of the Association of Professors in Gynecology and Obstetrics (APGO) as forming the central body of women’s health knowledge, skills and attitudes that are fundamental to the practice of a general physician. Please refer to the Course Web site for detailed bulleted information on what level of skill and/or knowledge the student will need to demonstrate during the clerkship.

During the clerkship, the student will be able to accomplish the following:

  1. Develop competence in the medical interview and physical exam, and to provide culturally competent health care
  2. Apply recommended prevention strategies to women throughout the lifespan
  3. Recognize his/her role as a leader and advocate for women, related to the well-being of populations, social and policy aspect of women’s health, including domestic violence, adolescent pregnancy, ethical issues and access to health care.
  4. Demonstrate knowledge of preconception care including the impact of genetics, medical conditions and environmental factors on maternal health and fetal development, including teratogens
  5. Explain the normal physiologic changes of pregnancy including interpretation of common diagnostic studies
  6. Describe common problems in obstetrics
  7. Demonstrate knowledge of intrapartum care
  8. Demonstrate knowledge of postpartum care of the mother and newborn, including breast feeding
  9. Describe menstrual cycle physiology, discuss puberty and menopause and explain normal and abnormal bleeding
  10. Describe the etiology and evaluation of infertility
  11. Develop a thorough understanding of contraception, including sterilization and abortion
  12. Demonstrate knowledge of common benign gynecologic conditions
  13. Formulate a differential diagnosis of the acute abdomen and chronic pelvic pain
  14. Describe common breast conditions and outline the evaluation of breast complaints
  15. Demonstrate knowledge of perioperative care and familiarity with gynecological procedures
  16. Describe gynecological malignancies including risk factors, signs and symptoms and initial evaluation and screening such as the collection and interpretation of cervical cytology
  17. Provide a preliminary assessment of patients with sexual concerns


These core topics are organized according to the following 7 Educational Units and 58 Topic Areas:

I. Approach to the patient

1. History
2. Examination
3. Pap smear and DNA Probes/Cultures
4. Diagnosis and Management Plan
5. Personal Interation and Communication Skills
6. Legal and Ethics Issues in Obstetrics and Gynecology
7. Preventative Care and Health Maintenance

II. Obstetrics

A. Normal Obstetrics

8. Maternal-fetal physiology
9. Preconception care
10. Antepartum care
11. Intrapartum care
12. Immediate care of the newborn
13. Postpartum care
14. Lactation

B. Abnormal obstetrics

15. Ectopic pregnancy
16. Spontaneous abortion
17. Medical and surgical conditions in pregnancy
18. Preeclampsia-Eclampsia
19. Alloimmunization
20. Multifetal gestation
21. Fetal death
22. Abnormal labor
23. Third-trimester bleeding
24. Preterm labor
25. Premature rupture of membranes
26. Intrapartum fetal surveillance
27. Postpartum hemorrhage
28. Postpartum infection
29. Anxiety and Depression
30. Postterm pregnancy
31. Fetal growth abnormalities

C. Procedures

32. Obstetric procedures

III. Gynecology

A. General Gynecology

33. Family Planning
34. Induced Abortion
35. Vulvar and Vaginal Disease
36. Sexually Transmitted Infections and Urinary Tract Infections
37. Pelvic Organ Prolapse and Urinary Incontinence
38. Endometriosis
39. Chronic Pelvic Pain

B. Breasts

40. Disorders of the Breast

C. Procedures

41. Gynecological Procedures

IV. Reproductive endocrinology, infertility and related topics

42. Puberty
43. Amenorrhea
44. Hirsutism and virilization
45. Normal and abnormal uterine bleeding
46. Dysmenorrhea
47. Menopause
48. Infertility
49. Premenstrual Syndrome and Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder

V. Neoplasia

50. Gestational trophoblastic neoplasia
51. Vulvar neoplasms
52. Cervical disease and neoplasia
53. Uterine leiomyomas
54. Endometrial Hyperplasia and Carcinoma
55. Ovarian neoplasms

VI. Human Sexuality

56. Sexuality and Modes of Sexual Expression

VII. Violence Against Women

57. Sexual Assault
58. Domestic Violence

Adapted from the APGO Medical Student Educational Objectives.