University of Missouri School of Medicine

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The University of Missouri School of Medicine is located in the southern part of the University of Missouri campus in Columbia, Missouri. It was the first publicly supported medical school west of the Mississippi River. The school offers a program that emphasizes a medical education founded on clinical experience and research. The School of Medicine is a pioneer in the problem-based learning style of medical education that emphasizes problem solving, self-directed learning and early clinical experience. In addition, the Pre-Admissions Program and the Rural Track Program offered through the school give students an opportunity to gain education and experience practicing medicine in a rural area.

A faculty of 70 basic scientists and 260 clinicians joins 350 residents in more than 60 specialties and subspecialties to supervise patient care and student teaching. The school provides postgraduate medical training in virtually all specialties and subspecialties. Each year 96 first-year slots are available. Eighty-five percent or more of graduates receive their first or second choice of specialties and residency programs, with 70 percent or more being matched with the program they most want.

The school is leading a major initiative that allows rural physicians and their patients to consult with Health Sciences Center specialists via telemedicine technology.


The University of Missouri School of Medicine was the first publicly supported medical school west of the Mississippi River. It was organized as a two-year school in 1872. Joseph Norwood, M.D., professor of natural science and philosophy, was the first dean.

Progress was slow until 1890, when Richard Jesse was appointed university president. The school was housed in an old frame building on the northwest corner of campus. Equipment was inadequate and out of date. The program was in danger of being discontinued. Fortunately, Jesse led the school to new heights due to nationwide advances in modernizing medical education. In addition, he reorganized the academic structure and raised financial support for new facilities.

W.L. Parker established an endowment that supplemented the cost of building the Parker Memorial Hospital. In 1957, the school was transformed into a four-year program. As a result, the medical center was constructed in 1960. The name was later changed to University Hospitals and Clinics.


Several basic science departments are nationally recognized for excellent research. U.S. News and World Report has ranked MU’s Department of Family and Community Medicine as one of the top three family medicine programs nationwide for 15 consecutive years.[1] The 2008 rankings ranked MU third in family medicine (tied with University of Wisconsin–Madison) and 23rd among schools emphasizing primary care.[2]


  1. "MU Family Medicine Ranked the Number Three Department in Country."
  2. U.S. News and World Report: Best Medical Schools


  • University of Missouri School of Medicine [1]
  • University of Missouri. "History of the School of Medicine."[2]

Coordinates: 38°56′19″N 92°19′41″W / 38.93859°N 92.32792°W / 38.93859; -92.32792