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Canvas Network

Mini Medical School

University of Colorado Denver via Canvas Network

This course may be unavailable.


This course introduces the exciting basic science that underlies modern medicine, and shows how we use that knowledge to understand medicine today. The course is designed for the general public, including high school students, who are interested in learning more about how the body works. There are no prerequisites. We want to help people take a more active role in their own wellness, and talk effectively with their healthcare providers.

Many who have taken Mini Medical School have gone on to careers in the health care professions. It's a chance to see how medicine is developing: what progress is being made, what the big challenges are that still remain, and the sort of subjects that are taught in a major School of Medicine.

The course is arranged in seven Modules. Most of us will be able to move through the course at the rate of one Module per week. The course will remain open for a few weeks after 20 November 2017 so people who joined late, or want to spend more time, will be able to complete it.

Each Module consists of 8 or 9 Units, video presentations which average about 6 minutes, so they easily fit into busy schedules. Complete transcripts of each Unit are provided; these are especially helpful for people whose main language is not English. There are links to fascinating (and sometimes very funny!) sites that may interest you. An optional quiz is available at the end of each Module. A Certificate of Completion is given to all who complete all course Units.

There is a very active Discussion Forum for each Module where you can ask questions, make comments, and interact with your classmates and University of Colorado students and faculty. All Discussion Forums will remain open as we move through the Modules, though most of the activity will, of course, be in the Forum relating to the current week's content.


  • Participants will learn that they can talk productively with a health care provider if they insist on a conversation in everyday language.
  • They will learn enough to help make well-informed decisions about illness, wellness, and life-style choices.
  • They will continue to seek out reliable and up-to-date information in order to make better decisions in the future.
  • They will become active in their communities in promoting decisions that increase wellness and appropriate health-care services.
  • Those who are thinking about careers in health care will have a better idea of the breadth, scope, and excitement of the field, to help them make their plans.

Taught by

J. John Cohen, M.D., Ph.D.


4.7 rating, based on 27 Class Central reviews

Start your review of Mini Medical School

  • Keith Okan
    This was an excellent course for those of us that are medically challenged. The variety of subjects and the humor kept the subject interesting. I would highly recommend it!
  • Anonymous
    This course is a great introduction to medicine and the science behind it. As a recent college grad and someone pursuing a career in medicine, there was a lot of review material but also a lot of interesting stories and facts related to the real world application of the science that makes medicine possible. This is a great course for anyone interested in medicine, but pay attention because the quizzes aren't just easy reviews!
  • Profile image for James Gordon
    James Gordon
    The content was well-chosen, presented in a very interesting manner with fantastic graphics and the videos were of top notch quality. The narrators/presenters were more than adequately familiar with the subject matter and had a commanding presence. The modules could have been more detailed and of greater length, though.
  • Peter M Abraham
    Very well done class. I believe it will help me on my journey to become a Registered Nurse. As a non-traditional, older, student, I appreciate the layout, order, and progression of the course.
  • Anonymous
    This was a very interesting course! I would highly recommend it to anyone who has a slight interest into going into the medical field. The course covers a vast range of topics but also manages to go into detail while keeping your interest. 10/10
  • Anonymous
    very rich comprehensive course, that will help you a lot to understand a lots of medical information, i have really enjoyed it.
  • Anonymous
    This is an excellent course, a gateway into a Library of useful and practical knowledge. I took this course a few years ago. The navigation was superb. The content was riveting, rock solid. The Quality of posted materials to view and read were o…
  • Anonymous
    As a non medical person, but have worked in administration in healthcare, this course was amazing ! Fascinating information, just made me want more !!! Well laid out, lecturer very easy to understand. Spent much more time than originally planned but that was my decision. Would love to have the next module released upon completion of previous quiz rather than only once a week. Certainly makes you appreciate the amount of learning and time that our medical professionals spend to try and be able to heal our multitude of illnesses and diseases. Thank you.

  • Anonymous
    I thoroughly enjoyed this course and found it informative. Most of it was a review for me as a CU 1968 alumni RN, but worthwhile and stimulating. I especially liked the humor that was inserted—made it fun. And the length of the classes were perfect in terms of the time required to complete—longer would not have worked in my schedule. Thanks!
  • Anonymous
    Outstanding work-smarter-not-harder approach! I thoroughly enjoyed the course and valued the depth and breadth of credible content. I completed the live version about 25 years ago; this MOOC version was even better with its videos, "learn more" features, and quizzes.
  • Took this course about 2 years ago and loved it. Helped me when I was in undergrad preparing for a career in medicine. I would recommend anyone who is into the health utilize this course.
  • Anonymous
    This was a terrific class, thoughtfully prepared and expertly delivered. I especially enjoyed the discussions where questions were posed and answered promptly.
  • Anonymous
    this course was a great course and i really learn a lot.will want to participate in any upcoming course partaining to this or from this university.thanks
  • Anonymous
    Thoroughly enjoyed this course. It was a great refresher for me, and learned new stuff as well along the way with some humor added in to keep it interesting!
  • good course, easy to understand and follow. Quizzes were easy, transcripts were clear, videos were very interesting. Definitely worth the 7 weeks.
  • Anonymous
  • BlueBird
  • Martha Stoffel

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