Support ATSU
  • About
  • Programs of Study
  • Admissions
  • Alumni
  • Departments
A.T. Still University Home

Summer Preceptorship - Overview

Course Goals:

As part of the Complete DO course, each ATSU-KCOM student completes a two-week preceptorship between semesters 2 and 3. Focused on patient assessment and basic clinical skills, this experience helps students apply classroom knowledge in clinical settings serving underserved populations.

Course Process:

Information on practice-related interests, housing availability, foreign language skills, etc. will be gathered and taken into consideration when assignments are made. All assignments are in Missouri. Preparatory activities necessary for successful outcomes occur throughout the year.

Course Purpose:

Each student will spend two weeks with a physician in a clinic/facility which provides primary healthcare services in the areas of general practice/family medicine, general internal medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics/gynecology and/or emergency care. The student will assist the physician and his or her staff, observe how the physician interacts with patients and staff, and contribute to provision of care on site and in the community service setting.

Student Goals and Objectives:

  1. Increase familiarity with primary care (general practice/family medicine, general pediatrics, general internal medicine) and related specialties (emergency medicine and obstetrics/gynecology)
  2. Increase clinical skills through observation and practice

By the end of this clinical experience, the student should be able to:

  • Perform basic office procedures, both medical and paraprofessional
  • Assess a patient's health and describe the medical conditions seen
  • Communicate with patients in the doctor-patient encounter, building upon concepts developed in previous courses
  • Become familiar with the types of clinical problems prevented or managed by a physician providing primary or related care in a medically underserved area
  • Become familiar with the roles of other medical specialties and health disciplines
  • Recognize the importance of community resources in achieving and maintaining health


ATSU-KCOM AHEC staff members work with regional AHEC staff to complete course arrangements. They coordinate logistics including the work of regional AHEC staff, prepare student and preceptor packets, and secure legal agreements from preceptors and host medical facilities, and course/preceptor evaluations. ATSU-KCOM AHEC staff members communicate regularly with students and preceptors prior to and after rotations, and evaluate rotation sites during the clinical experience.

Regional AHEC Staff:

Regional AHEC staff members recruit preceptors and ensure that each training site meets standard criteria concerning patient population, preceptor qualifications, and technology access as well as school-specific criteria. Missouri AHEC staff members work with a variety of health professions schools and communities and collaborate with KCOM AHEC staff to obtain and provide favorable student housing.