Survey of undergraduate emergency medical education in the United States

Ann Emerg Med. 1986 Jan;15(1):1-5. doi: 10.1016/s0196-0644(86)80477-2.


To determine the status of undergraduate education in emergency medicine, questionnaires were sent to 141 medical schools. Of the 135 schools responding, 15.2% require emergency medicine courses in the fourth year (mean, 164 hours); 11.9% require these courses (average, 84 hours) in the third year. Emergency medicine is offered in 21.8% of second-year and 37.9% of first-year curriculums. Training in cardiopulmonary resuscitation is offered in 96% of the schools responding, and certification is required in 53%. Training in advanced cardiac life support is offered in 73% of schools, with 23% requiring it for graduation. Training in advanced trauma life support is offered in 17.2% of schools. Osteopathic schools require more time for emergency medicine in the clinical years but less time in formal lectures. Schools with a residency program in emergency medicine more frequently offer emergency medicine in the preclinical years. This survey provides some basic data on the status of undergraduate emergency medicine education in medical school curriculums, and it encourages medical educators to review the undergraduate curriculum to ensure that students receive adequate exposure to the essentials of emergency medicine.

MeSH terms

  • Curriculum
  • Data Collection
  • Education, Medical, Undergraduate / trends*
  • Emergency Medicine / education*
  • Internship and Residency
  • Osteopathic Medicine / education
  • Resuscitation / education
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States