UNIV 330:
Medical Exploration and Observership

UNIV 330: Medical Exploration and Observership Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

COVID-19 Pandemic and UNIV 330 Updates.

As of right now we are cautiously optimistic that shadowing will resume as planned for Fall 2020, but do not want you to be financially burdened in the unfortunate case that it is cancelled. As a result, we urge you to refrain from obtaining a new drug test, background check, or any immunizations you may need until AFTER we have emailed you regarding the status of the Fall UNIV 330 class. Please expect to receive this email during the second week of July, though we are likely to reach out before then.

If the class proceeds as planned for Fall 2020, the MERLIN application and MARS training module due dates of July 29th and August 5th will remain in place. While we ask you to delay the financial elements of the application, please begin on the other sections, outlined below, as soon as possible so that you are not rushed to complete the entire application. Please read this guide in full as soon as possible so that you have a better understanding of the registration process and requirements.

In the case that the course is cancelled for Fall 2020, students registered for Fall 2020 will be given priority registration for the Spring 2021 course.

What is UNIV 330? Is this a course I should take?

UNIV 330: Medical Exploration and Observership is designed for currently enrolled undergraduate students to gain exposure to the medical setting and develop professional skills, while earning course credit. The purpose is to allow you to explore careers in the health professions through exposure to medical shadowing and the healthcare industry. Students interested in careers in the medical profession that desire shadowing exposure should consider registering for this course.

How many credit hours is UNIV 330?

This course will consist of both lecture components and observership blocks. Students will earn two credit hours with a letter grade.

When is UNIV 330?

The lecture component of UNIV 330 is Tuesdays/Thursdays from 9:25am – 10:40am. Starting the sixth week of the semester, students will begin their weekly, 3.5 hour observership in which they shadow a Houston Methodist Hospital physician. Details pertaining to the observership will be communicated after the start of the semester. If you have a time conflict with the lecture portion of UNIV 330, you will not be able to register for the course.

When is the last day to add UNIV 003?

This course is not a traditional registration, it requires an additional layer of verification and registration through Houston Methodist Hospital. Therefore, in order to allow adequate processing time, students will not be permitted to add the course after 10:00am CST on Tuesday, April 21st.

What is the structure of the observerships?

The observerships begin the sixth week of the semester and consist of two 4-week “Blocks” during which students will shadow two separate physicians in separate specialties.

How are observership matches determined?

The observership matches are determined from the student provided information regarding their availability and specialty preferences, and physician specialty and availability. We aim to match each student with a physician in at least one of their desired specialties. Should you successfully complete all of the registration requirements, you will be asked to provide your availability. To have the highest chances of securing an observership in a specialty of your choice, you will need to be flexible and have multiple timeslot availabilities. We highly advise you to take the shadowing timeslots into account when planning your course schedule.

What are the shadowing timeslots?

The timeslots are 3.5 hours, once per week during the following times:

Mondays: 7:00am – 10:30am, 8:30am – 12:00pm, 1:00pm – 4:30pm

Tuesdays: 1:00pm – 4:30pm

Wednesdays: 7:00am – 10:30am, 8:30am – 12:00pm, 1:00pm – 4:30pm

Thursdays: 1:00pm – 4:30pm

These timeslots are firm and will not be moved. If you have a conflict with these timeslots, you will not be able to register for the course.

How do I register for UNIV 330?

Students should register for UNIV 003 (Pre-Registration for UNIV 330) but this does not guarantee a seat in UNIV 330 (Medical Exploration and Observership).

Students need to complete the Fall 2020 UNIV 330 Course Application.

Based on students' responses and physician availability, students will be approved to take UNIV 330 course. Approval for the course will occur on a rolling basis from Monday, April 13 through Tuesday, April 21. Approved students will be notified via email and provided with directions on how to create an account and submit an application in Houston Methodist Hospital’s MERLIN system, and subsequently complete the required online MARS training. There are multiple deadlines throughout the registration process, and if you fail to meet one of them, your application will be deemed incomplete and you will be ineligible to register for UNIV 330.

If selected for enrollment in UNIV 330, you will be provided instructions on how to drop UNIV 003 and register for a specific section of UNIV 330, based on your assigned observership time.

If I took NSCI 399: Medical Professionalism and Observership in the past, can I enroll for UNIV 330?

If a student took a NSCI 399 in a previous semester, they will not be allowed to take UNIV 330.

Below is a timeline of the UNIV 330 Application process

Fall UNIV 330 Medical Exploration and Observership Timeline

March 27

Course application Google Form opens

Course registration opens

April 13

Course roster released

Students emailed MERLIN Guide

April 15-21 at 10:00am

Students may add/drop UNIV 003

April 21 at 10:00am

Course application Google Form closes

No submissions after 10:00am will be considered eligible for UNIV 003

July 29 at 10:00am

MERLIN Application submission due

August 5 at 10:00am

MARS Training modules must be completed

August 25

First day of class

September 2 at 10:00am

Influenza records deadline

September 4

Last day for add/drop

For all additional questions, you may contact the instructors of UNIV 330 at hpa@rice.edu.

Office | Ley Student Center, Suite 132

Phone | 713.348.4060

Email | aadv@rice.edu