Medicine and Surgery


Program Description

"Not just to teach the medical profession, but also to build a solid scientific basis for continued training that will be vital for the reception and understanding of future medicine" For further information about the Harvey Medicine and Surgery Course please consult:

Admission to the Harvey course

Candidates who possess a High School Diploma or equivalent foreign qualification may be admitted to the Degree in Medicine and Surgery. The number of students admitted is provided for under Italian legislation governing admission to university courses (Statute 264, August 2, 1999) and is decided bearing in mind national planning, availability of teaching staff, teaching and hospital facilities, the recommendations of the European Union’s Advisory Committee on Medical Training as well as criteria and guidelines laid down by the University and the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery in question. Admission is also dependent on the results of the entrance exam, as established by the ranking emerging from the entrance exam. The entrance exam is a national test drawn up by MIUR, the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research and implemented on the same day in the individual Italian State Universities. It consists of 80 multiple choice questions on the following subjects: logic and general knowledge, biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics.

Recognition of exams taken in other degree courses

Students who enroll in the first year of Medicine and Surgery (LM 41) who were already enrolled in a degree course in Biology, Pharmacy, CTF, Biotechnology, Physics, Chemistry, Engineering may make an application for previously passed exams to be recognized as such where the exams involved include: - Physics (5 credits) - Chemistry and Introductory Biochemistry (7 CFU), provided exams in General Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry and Organic Chemistry have been passed Students enrolled in a degree course in Biology, Pharmacy, CTF, Biotechnology, Physics, Chemistry, Engineering who have taken the exam in General Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry but not Organic Chemistry, should contact the course teacher so as to complete the exam (by establishing the program for the part relating to Organic Chemistry and Introductory Biochemistry). NB: exams taken outside the Faculty are not counted in the final average making up the degree mark.


A University Credit (CFU) is the unit of measurement of work students are required to undertake. A CFU corresponds to 25 hours including hours of study, lectures, interactive teaching and practical training:

  • 8 hours of lectures and 17 hours of study
  • 20 hours of practical training and 5 hours of study
  • 15 hours for practical training and 10 hours of study

Educational organization of the degree course

Current legislation (DM 16 March 2007 GU 155 July 6 2007 - Suppl. Ordinario n. 153) lays down six years of study for the degree course in Medicine and Surgery with a total of 360 credits including 60 credits for Vocational Training to be acquired in educational activities designed to promote the acquisition of specific vocational skills. Attendance at these educational activities (lectures and training) is compulsory and is a prerequisite to taking exams.

Semesters: The Degree course is divided into 12 semesters. The average duration is 14 weeks each, based on a teaching progression starting with basic science in the first two years and progressing with medical and clinical methods, healthcare organization in Italy, ethical and legal aspects of medicine.

Courses and exams: Individual courses are grouped into modules in keeping with the principle of integrated teaching with a total of 36 examinations (esami di profitto) undertaken in the six-year course. Continuous assessment may be prescribed for courses held across two terms.

Internship/Vocational Training: The period of Vocational Training (60 credits) functions to all intents and purposes as an integral part of the Degree course. Starting in the third year it is carried out in one of the following clinics: Internal Medicine, General Surgery, Pediatrics, Obstetrics, and Gynecology as well as other medical and surgical specializations. The internship takes the form of tutorial teaching in which practical activities are conducted under the supervision of a Tutor-Teacher.

ADEs: 8 credits are assigned to elective educational activities (ADEs) chosen by students. ADEs are no-mark exams.

Thesis: 18 credits are assigned to thesis preparation.

Assessment of learning- Examination sessions

Assessment is either by:

  • exams without marks (idoneità) designed to determine the effectiveness of learning and teaching processes;
  • exams with marks (esami di profitto) designed to assess course objectives have been fulfilled, to certify an individual student’s preparation and quantify the outcome with a mark.

All exams are taken during specific exam periods.

Official exam sessions are:

  • First session in January-February, two alternative sessions;
  • Second session in June, two alternative sessions;
  • Third session in July for retakes;
  • Fourth session in September for retakes.

Transition from the first to the second year:

in order to register for the second year, students must have obtained at least 42 credits within a set deadline in September.

Transition from the second to the third year:

to register for the third year students must have acquired all credits in the course of the first two years, including credits earned through courses with continuous assessment.

Transition from third to fourth year:

to register for the fourth year students must have passed the Human Physiology exam all exams from previous years. A student who has attended the degree course for the number of years stipulated by the university regulations but who has not acquired all the credits needed to graduate is given fuori corso status (repeating student). A student who has not obtained a certificate of attendance at courses specified in the study plan for a specific year of study or who has not acquired the minimum number of credits required for enrolment in the subsequent year becomes a ripetente i.e. a student who repeats the year.

ADEs: Optional courses

Optional Courses (ADEs) are those forms of learning and teaching chosen by students to shape their education in ways and through the study of subjects most congenial to them. These optional courses consist of a set of activities made available to students in the form of course extensions or specialized courses, which once chosen require compulsory attendance and the acquisition of credits. The Academic Board draws up a list of elective learning activities on an annual basis with a view to avoiding overlaps with compulsory curricular activities. Mindful of the recommended curriculum, students should acquire a total of 8 CFUs in the course of their six-year degree, attending elective activities chosen from the following types:

  • Elective Internship: 1 credit
  • Monographic course: 1 credit

Elective Internship:

an elective internship, with an attendance of no more than 20 hours, provides students with the opportunity to develop some specific interests either in research laboratories or in clinics. In pursuance of their cultural interests or intended future career, internship activities are designed to increase a student’s knowledge in a given area that falls outside the interactive educational activities, which are an integral part of the degree course.

Monographic Course:

The monographic course, which consists of 8 hours of frontal lectures, is a deepening of the theoretical activity carried out during the course. The Faculty’s teaching schedule is updated annually. To obtain the required signature or certificate, a student must attend no less than 75% of scheduled lessons.

Vocational training

Vocational training activities are those activities which allow students to acquire specific skills in the field of Internal Medicine, General Surgery, Pediatrics, Obstetrics, and Gynecology, as well as other specialized Medical and Surgical disciplines. These activities are conducted in person by the student under the direct supervision of a Faculty mentor and require the student to demonstrate a high degree of autonomy when making a diagnosis and proposed treatment. The 60 credits for professional skills are acquired from the third year onwards.

Training activities for the preparation of the thesis

18 credits are awarded for thesis preparation in university clinical structures or biology institutions. This student activity is known as internato di laurea or degree internship. Students intending to carry out their degree internship within a specific structure must submit a formal request to the Director of that structure together with a curriculum vitae (i.e. a list of exams passed, marks, optional attended activities, training periods in laboratories or clinics or any other activity performed for training purposes). After consultation with colleagues and having ascertained the availability of positions, the Director of the structure approves the request and assigns the responsibility for monitoring and certifying the activities carried out by the students to a Tutor, where possible specified by the student.

Degree exam

To be eligible to take the Degree exam, students must:

  • have followed all the courses and have passed all the exams;
  • have obtained a total of 360 credits in the course of the six years;
  • have delivered to the Segreteria Studenti
    • a) an application to the Rector at least 30 days before the Degree session;
    • b) a copy of the thesis at least 10 days before the Degree session.

Degree Exams are held in the summer, fall and special “extraordinary” sessions.

Final Degree mark / Degree thesis discussion

Currently, the final score of the Degree in Medicine and Surgery, following the thesis defense, is determined by the following sum:

average exams excluding grades with honors in the Degree Course in Medicine: the average is multiplied by 11 and divided by 3, the result is rounded up or down to a ‘whole number’ (e.g. 95.5 -> 96 and 95.4 -> 94). The result is the baseline score.

Last updated Apr 2019

About the School

The University of Pavia is one of the world’s oldest academic institutions: it was founded in 1361 and until the 20th century it was the only university in the Milan area and the region of Lombardy. P ... Read More

The University of Pavia is one of the world’s oldest academic institutions: it was founded in 1361 and until the 20th century it was the only university in the Milan area and the region of Lombardy. Pavia has been a city-campus since its foundation and even today it offers its 24,000 students an experience unique in Italy and rare in Europe: studying at 20 University colleges that are largely independent from the administrative structure of the University. The University of Pavia covers all subject areas and is composed of 18 Departments offering study programmes at all levels, from Bachelor’s degrees to Doctorate programmes Read less
Pavia , Milan + 1 More Less