Typical coursework for college of osteopathy students spans four academic years. The first two years tend to cover didactic instruction, while the second two years feature clinical rotations.
Osteopathic physicians subscribe to a medical approach that is patient-oriented vs. disease-oriented. Physicians trained at a college of osteopathy are schooled in a philosophy that regards the patient as an integrated whole, treating patients as unique individuals with biological, psychological, and sociological needs.
Graduates of college of osteopathy programs are eligible for postdoctoral residency training in all fields of medicine. And they are not limited to D.O. residencies only, but may apply to allopathic programs as well. For example, graduates of Midwestern University’s class of 2011 placed in 151 residency programs – from Northwestern to the University of Connecticut to Georgetown University.
According to a survey released in June 2011 by the Association of American Medical Colleges:
- Enrollment in colleges of osteopathy continues to rise very rapidly
- First-year enrollment in 2015-16 is expected to reach 6,222, more than twice first-year enrollment in 2002
- Combined first-year M.D. and D.O. enrollment in 2015-16 is projected to be 26,403, 35 percent above 2002-03