Balancing pre-clinical and clinical education while preparing you to become a competent, confident, caring physician.

Our four-year curriculum is rigorous but student-centered.

  • We listen to you (our students).  

  • We listen to our faculty and staff.

  • We listen to our clinical faculty.

  • We listen to residency programs.

  • We listen to our alumni.

  • We listen to the trends in healthcare.  

We listen and strive to keep our curriculum current and engaging.

Our education is delivered via lectures (48 students maximum, recorded, small group sessions, hands-on workshops, simulation and clinical experiences.

We have a 4 year curriculum:

  • First year
    • didactic courses 5 days per week
  • Second year
    • didactic courses 3 days per week
    • clinical rotations 2 days per week
  • Third year  didactic courses 2 day per week
    • didactic courses 2 day per week
    • clinical rotations 4 days per week
  • Fourth year
    • clinical rotations and clerkships 5 days per week

After you successfully complete 4 years of curriculum, pass AMPLE Boards Part I and Part II and receive approval for graduation from CSPM, you will be awarded the degree of Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM).

    Pre-Clinical Courses

        Human Anatomy I & II

             Human Anatomy Cadaver Lab (I & II)

        Lower Extremity Anatomy I & II

             Lower Extremity Cadaver Lab ( I & II)

        Physiology I & II
        Biochemistry I & II
        Medical Genetics

     Clinical Courses

        Introduction to Evidence Based Medicine
        Introduction to Clinical Medicine
        Biomechanics I

   Clinical Rotations

         First Year Clinical Skills Rotation

Pre-Clinical Courses

        Pharmacology I & II
        Pathology I & II
        Medical Microbiology and Microbiology Lab
        Clinical Neuroscience and Lab

     Clinical Courses

         General Medicine I & II
         Biomechanics II
         Podiatric Medicine I & II
         Radiology I & II
         Podiatric Surgery I & II

     Clinical Rotations

         Second Year Clinical Skills Rotation
         Second Year Simulation Center Rotation
         Second Year Highland Hospital Rotation
         Second Year Radiology Rotation
         Second Year Biomechanics Workshop
         Second Year Homeless Clinic Rotation
         Second Year Laguna Honda Hospital Rotation
         Second Year Medicine Rotation

Clinical Courses

         General Medicine III & IV
         Biomechanics III
         Dermatology I and II
         Public Health
         Pod Surgery III
         Podiatric Trauma

     Clinical Rotations

         Third Year Medicine
         Third Year Highland Hospital Rotation
         Third Year Diabetic Wound Care Rotation
         Third Year Biomechanics and Sports Medicine Rotation
         Third Year Radiology Rotation
         Third Year Surgery Rotation
               Podiatric, General Surgery and Simulation
         Third Year Private Office Clerkship
         Third Year Highland Rotation- Mondays

Core Programs

         Fourth year students base 7 months of their clinical training at CSPM or one of the following 5 locations:

  • Long Beach Memorial Hospital, Long Beach, California

  • George E. Wahlen VA Medical Center, Salt Lake City, Utah

  • Department of Veterans Affairs Hospital, Puget Sound, Washington

  • Maricopa Medical Center, Phoenix, Arizona

  • New Mexico VA Health Care System, Albuquerque, New Mexico


      During the fourth year, you will spend 5 months at clerkships.  These are month-long, hospital-based podiatric rotations at teaching hospitals throughout the United States.  


      During your fourth year, you will apply and interview for a residency position.  Interviews are held at a central location in January. The results of the interviews are released on Match Day, the third Friday in March, when you will learn where you will be a resident.  

There are two board exams. The American Podiatric Medical Licensing Exam Part I (APMLE I) is given in early July of the third year.  A clinical component of the APMLE Part II exam, the Clinical Skills Physical Exam (CSPE), is given in the fall of the fourth year. The written part of the APMLE Part II exam is given in the winter of the fourth year.    

Prior to graduation, each DPM student must demonstrate to the satisfaction of the faculty, the following Program Learning Outcomes.  The knowledge and skills will be attained as a result of the didactic instruction and clinical training received in the courses and clinical rotations and clerkship assignments from year one through year four:

  1. Be knowledgeable in the preclinical sciences and use this knowledge as a foundation for learning outcomes two through nine.

    1. Describe and explain the bodies of knowledge concerning normal human anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, and the structure and function of the human body.

    2. Describe and explain the causes of disease and the consequences of altered structure or function of the human body and its organ systems.

    3. Describe and explain pharmacological principles and interventions.

    4. Describe and explain the role of microbes, parasites and the diseases that they cause.

    5. Describe and explain the structure and function of the immune system.

  2. Formulate successful patient management strategies based upon sound, applicable diagnostic and assessment skills.

    1. Apply knowledge of the preclinical sciences in clinical decision-making and patient care

    2. Perform and interpret a history and physical examination.

    3. Identify and interpret common clinical, laboratory, imaging, gait and other studies used to diagnose pathologies.

    4. Describe, recognize and explain the pathologic manifestations of common conditions of the lower extremity.

    5. Formulate appropriate differential diagnoses and plans of management.

    6. Select and administer, under supervision, appropriate medical and surgical treatments.

    7. Recognize patients with life threatening emergencies and institute initial therapy.

  1. Identify and perform clinical practice behaviors that hallmark professionalism, empathy and ethical decision-making.

    1. Describe, explain and follow the ethical boundaries of the doctor-patient relationship.

    2. Describe, explain and follow state and federal laws governing the practice of the profession.

    3. Describe, explain and demonstrate the principles of bioethics, including customary and accepted standards of professional practice.

    4. Describe, explain and demonstrate principles of self-regulation of the profession.

    5. Practice with honesty and integrity, avoiding conflicts of interest.

    6. Identify, value, and practice empathetic patient care.   

    7. Demonstrate compassion and caring in patient care.

  2. Select, interpret and apply the scientific literature to clinical practice.

    1. Recognize and interpret the strengths and weaknesses of the medical literature.

    2. Explain and follow principles of research methodology in the analysis of levels of evidence.

    3. Use CME among other sources to optimize patient outcomes

    4. Explain and apply the principles of evidence-based medicine in clinical decision-making.

    5. Retrieve, interpret, manage, and use biomedical information to solve problems and to make decisions relevant to the care of individuals and populations.

    6. Assess actual patient outcomes versus evidence based outcomes or standards of care practice guidelines.

  3. Acknowledge, value, and respect the role of all health care professionals.

    1. Demonstrate effective collaboration with other health care professionals to promote the delivery of quality health care services.

    2. Identify and perform appropriate referrals to other healthcare providers and agencies.

  4. Understand healthcare systems and policy.

    1. Describe and explain the role of stakeholders in healthcare.

    2. Describe and explain basic healthcare insurance products and third party reimbursement, including but not limited to fee for service, independent practice associations (IPA), preferred provider organizations (PPO), health maintenance organizations (HMO) and capitation.

    3. Describe and explain basic types of professional insurance.

    4. Describe and explain the role of federal and state regulations in medical practice.

    5. Describe and explain basic legal considerations in medical practice and risk management.

  5. Facilitate the promotion, maintenance, and restoration of health for culturally diverse individuals, groups, families, and communities.

    1. Describe and explain the role of the healthcare advocate and operate as an advocate for healthcare rights for all individuals.

    2. Describe and explain the importance of non-biological determinants of poor health and of the economic, psychological, social, and cultural factors that contribute to the development and continuation of maladies.

    3. Demonstrate a commitment to provide care to marginalized patients in underserved populations.

    4. Describe and explain the basic principles of public health, health promotion, disease prevention and clinical epidemiology.

  6. Acknowledge professional responsibility.

    1. Recognize and participate in opportunities to enhance development of the profession.

    2. Commit to life-long learning.

    3. Commit to actively participate in community service.

  7. Demonstrate effective verbal, written and technological interactions in communication with patients, families and colleagues and in information retrieval.

    1. Exchange information accurately.

    2. Exhibit empathy in all communications.

    3. Communicate effectively both verbally and in writing with patients, families and colleagues.

    4. Effectively use and value interpersonal skills related to gender, social, cultural and economic differences.

    5. Demonstrate active listening.

Occupational Therapy students working with a patient

Clinical Experiences in 2nd Year

At CSPM, we believe that hands-on experiences early in the program help reinforce learning.

Students outside of Peralta Pavilion

Hands-on Skills

At CSPM, we believe that hands-on learning in skills workshops will help you be more confident when you begin seeing patients in clinic.


Diversity is Embraced

We embrace diversity of our students, faculty, patients and community. Since we are a school in the SF Bay Area, we are part of a diverse community.  As a student, you will have a global experience whether you are in clinic, out with your classmates, or enjoying some so time to reflect.

Students outside of Peralta Pavilion

Technology for Learning

Learning in the state of the art Simulation Center is unique and vital for early learners. You can develop skills for patient interaction and follow up with a chance to discuss you experience with the clinician and your peers.

Becoming a Physician

The process of becoming a physician includes academic, clinical, personal and professional experiences.