Elective Requirements

Site for year 3

Scheduled Elective Weeks (Year 3 and Year 4 of the MDCM Program)

Scheduled vacation weeks  (Year 3 and Year 4 of the MDCM Program)



(minimum 18, maximum 20)

(minimum 3, maximum 5)



(minimum 22, maximum 24)

(minimum 3, maximum 5)

  • Electives must be taken in medical or medically-related fields under the supervision of certified physicians who are not family members or close friends. The physicians must be affiliated with a medical school or university.
  • The faculty accepts 2, 3, and 4-week electives for all elective blocks.
  • Students must undertake electives in 3 different disciplines, with minimum 2-weeks per discipline. See the Elective discipline breakdown
  • Research electives are not recognized as an elective discipline, but it will count towards the discipline in which the research project was carried out. (E.G. Research in Pediatric Endocrinology, will fall under "Pediatrics" and not "Research".) It is the student’s responsibility to advise the UGME office if they are planning to do a four-week or eight-week Research Elective. Confirmation from the Research supervisor will be required, as well as the topic proposal and dates planned. See: Student Research for more information on research opportunities and the summer research bursary program.
  • Students must submit an electronic Elective Placement Form for each elective at least 8 weeks (two academic periods) in advance of the elective rotation start date. (See deadlines here)
  • The Faculty must be able to contact students on elective; therefore, students must ensure that current contact information is available at all times via Minerva.
  • Electives must be a minimum of 2 weeks (10 working days). When completing a McGill elective during Period 7, elective students will be allotted time off for the statutory holidays, as determined by the clinical teaching site. Students are permitted to take vacation weeks or Flex Days during Period 7, as long as they meet the minimum requirement.  Please consult the Absences and Leaves Policy for more information.
  • When completing an Away Elective (i.e. an elective outside of McGill), students must follow the policies of the host institution.  This includes the host institution’s policies concerning workload, absences, and holiday time off.  If an illness or emergency should occur during an elective at another institution, students are required to contact their local elective supervisor and the McGill Electives Coordinator (mcgillelectives.med [at] mcgill.ca).
  • Prior to an Away Elective (i.e. an elective outside of McGill) that is outside of Canada (including the United States), students must complete a mandatory online pre-departure training. Please check here for full details on how to fulfill this mandatory requirement.
  • The Associate Dean reserves the right to approve students’ elective rotations
    • Should an elective request be deemed inappropriate, the rotation will not be approved
    • In cases of students with poor academic standing, who are on probation, or who have taken a leave of absence, elective options may be modified or withdrawn.
  • Students are required to complete between 3 to 5 weeks of vacation between Year 3 and end of Year 4. This must be tracked using the electronic Elective Placement Form. Students are allowed to switch vacation blocks with elective blocks with the permission of the McGill Electives Office. Here is how you record your vacation.
  • See here for elective work flow chart.