Rural Preceptorship

word cloud of most common words appearing in students' essays about rural preceptorships                                                                                      

The four-week rural preceptorship allows fourth-year medical students the opportunity to integrate and apply the knowledge and skills of a generalist physician acquired during the third-year clerkships. Application of these skills will take place in a rural setting, which provides optimum opportunities for student learning from integrated, multiple sites. Preceptorships are offered in the primary care medicine disciplines of internal medicine, pediatrics and family medicine.

The program emphasizes the challenge of practicing primary care medicine in areas away from the influence of the tertiary care medical center and urban living. Many rural populations are considered to be underserved and through this preceptorship students gain an understanding of issues facing physicians and their patients. Practicing medicine in rural areas is often done with limited resources and students will need to rely on their previous medical education experiences.

Expectations and goals

  • Students are expected to function more independently than on other rotations in their clinical years.
  • Students are exposed to the various roles of a rural physician in his/her community, both medical and non-medical, giving the student an opportunity to understand and appreciate the fully integrated personal and professional life of the rural physician as they participate in many community leadership activities.
  • Students, regardless of their ultimate career choice, should gain an appreciation of how a primary care physician practicing in a rural setting balances professional and personal responsibilities to serve their community as a whole.



For more information, contact:

Neesa Montoya, Administrator

Last modified: May 11, 2018
Rural Preceptorship links
History of the program

KU  Medical Center has a rich tradition introducing students to rural medicine.

In 1949, legislation established the Kansas Rural Health Program and the Kansas Rural Preceptorship Program. The first students began their Rural Preceptorship in 1951.

Since then, thousands of KU Medical Center students have been hosted by volunteer faculty preceptors across the state.

To read a history of rural health care in Kansas, visit the KU website.