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Yale Dermatology Medical Student Education

Yale Dermatology Medical Student Education

Yale Dermatology is deeply committed to medical student education.

Pre-clerkship Curriculum

Medical students are formally introduced to the field of dermatology in the pre-clerkship curriculum. Dermatology is a core component of the Attacks and Defenses Master Course, required for first-year students. Fundamentals of the pathophysiology, diagnosis, and management of skin disease are integrated into the framework of infectious inflammatory, allergic, autoimmune, genetic and malignant disease. Students are introduced to the breadth of the dermatologic field.

Clerkship Curriculum

Students are encouraged to take advantage of a new longitudinal thread of highly relevant clinical dermatology topics that spans the clerkship year. This clinical dermatology thread is comprised of an online collection of modules, videos, and games. Participation is voluntary.

Advanced Training

  • Dermatology Outpatient Elective
    All Yale medical students are encouraged to consider the Dermatology Outpatient Elective. This elective teaches the fundamentals of dermatology required for practicing physicians in all specialties.
  • Dermatology Inpatient Elective
    Students considering a career in dermatology are highly encouraged to enroll in the Dermatology Inpatient Elective. This intensive elective introduces students to inpatient consultative dermatology. Students are integral members of a team of attending and resident physicians and dermatopathologists. Students also participate in resident academic sessions, resident teaching rounds, and weekly Grand Rounds with the wider Yale Dermatology community. The elective culminates in a reflective humanistic essay stemming from a patient interview and a formal presentation at departmental Grand Rounds. Yale students describe this course as a highlight of their clinical education. The Dermatology Outpatient Elective is pre-requisite.
  • Research and Clinical Opportunities
    Yale medical students are encouraged to work directly with faculty members as shadows in their pre-clinical years, as researchers in the summer between first and second year, and as investigators conducting independent research as fifth-year or MD/PhD students.

Additional Career Development Opportunities

The Dermatology Interest Group is student-led, and faculty-facilitated. The interest group sponsors formal presentations for YSM students and organizes community outreach efforts, including collecting and distributing skin supplies to those in need in New Haven and conducting skin education for the Boys and Girls Club of New Haven.

Visiting Student Learning Opportunities at Yale

Yale Dermatology offers a formal clinical dermatology rotation for visiting students. This elective offers a hybrid of outpatient and inpatient experiences. Interested students may apply through Yale VSLO.

Yale offers a competitive mentorship to enhance healthcare workforce diversity for highly motivated underrepresented medical students considering careers in dermatology.

Yale Dermatology Mentorship Program to Enhance Healthcare Workforce Diversity

This program is designed to provide medical students who are underrepresented in medicine with a comprehensive and integrated extended mentorship and in-person rotation in dermatology, all within the Department of Dermatology at Yale School of Medicine. Several features of the program are designed to deliver a very strong and meaningful experience for the mentor and mentee:

  • Mentorship from Yale Dermatology full-time faculty
  • A one-month, in-person rotation at Yale with a broad experience in clinic rotations with Yale Dermatology faculty in inpatient dermatology, medical dermatology specialty clinics, dermatopathology, dermatologic surgery, and pediatric dermatology, depending on the mentee’s interests
  • Additionally, rotating students will attend all of the weekly academic components with the Yale Dermatology residents, including Yale Dermatology Grand Rounds, Visiting Lecture Series, Scientific Lecture Series, Chapter Review, Journal Club and Aesthetic Dermatology training sessions.


This scholarship is available to United States medical students who have completed their core rotations, are at the end of their third year or fourth year in medical school, and are from one or more of the following:
  • Racial or ethnic groups (e.g. Hispanic/Latinx, Black/African-American, Native American, or Asian Pacific Islander) that are underrepresented in medicine relative to their numbers in the general population
  • Socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds (e.g. first generation, low-income students)
  • Sexual orientation/gender identity minorities
  • Disability community
  • Students with backgrounds and experiences who would diversify their clinical fields

Application Process

Applications will open in late Spring of 2024

  • Applicants will provide two letters of recommendation and an academic transcript from their home institution.
  • Applicant will complete short essay questions.
  • Applications will be reviewed by Yale Dermatology Faculty

Students who are chosen for this program will be awarded $3,000 to offset costs for travel, housing and fee for the optional one-month rotation in New Haven, Conn.


2023-2024 Mentorship Application

Applicants must fill out this application and email it to Roberta Smith.


  • Medical student will be paired with a faculty member with similar interests.
  • Faculty member and medical student will meet virtually and in person during the one-month, in-person rotation.
  • Mentorship should include guidance on application process, dermatologic topics of interest, and review of the student’s career goals and objectives.

One-Month, In-Person Rotation

This rotation will be outpatient and inpatient experiences designed with applicant’s interests in mind.
  • Student will have clinical time with mentor.
  • Student will also rotate at general dermatology, dermatopathology sessions, dermatologic surgery, and specialty clinics (CTCL, rheumatology-dermatology, hair clinic, pediatric dermatology, etc.) and inpatient dermatology, depending on the student’s interest and rotation availability.
    • Student will spend academic Wednesdays with residents and participate in didactic sessions and attend grand rounds.
    • Student will plan to present at Grand Rounds.


The student will complete the following components:
  • Presentation at grand rounds
  • Write up of an ethical issue in dermatology
  • Other requirements of the visiting student rotation

Evaluation will be completed by faculty involved in the student’s rotation and course director.