Graduate Certificate: Narrative Medicine


About the Certificate

The graduate certificate in Narrative Medicine is designed to enhance medical and healthcare education by giving students the competence to identify, acknowledge and interpret stories of sickness and of health through close observation of the human experience as they represent and serve our diverse society. Strong focus is placed on analysis of fiction and non-fiction writing. Reflective and creative writing assignments are designed to improve students’ ability to recognize, interpret and tell patient stories. Students interested in film, visual arts, dance and other creative mediums have opportunities to explore these outlets.

Using small-seminar courses and a capstone project, students explore the role of narrative in medicine and the vast expanse of human stories to improve their ability to care for patients and to deepen their satisfaction as a healthcare provider. The certificate is unique in its provision of a theoretical and academic foundation in narrative medicine bolstered immediately and rigorously by experiential work in the hospital setting.

The certificate program is open to students at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine (LKSOM) who are working toward their MD degree. They may complete the Narrative Medicine certificate along with their LKSOM MD curriculum. Courses and assignments have been formulated to align with and complement medical school coursework.

The certificate program is also open to students who are not pursuing the MD. They may take advantage of the vast knowledge and experience of our medical school and humanities faculties and teaching physicians at Temple University Hospital.

Time Limit for Certificate Completion: 4 years

Campus Location: Health Sciences Center

Full-Time/Part-Time Status: The graduate certificate can be completed on a part-time basis. NOTE: International students may not be eligible to apply for a student visa based on admission to the certificate program. Please contact the certificate's director for more information.

Non-Matriculated Student Policy: Non-matriculated students may take up to 9 credits of coursework before applying to the graduate certificate program.

Admission Requirements and Deadlines

Application Deadline:
Applications are reviewed year-round for the graduate certificate program.

Students in the MD program apply to the Narrative Medicine certificate program before or during their first year of study in order to coordinate their schedule and complete the certificate by the time they finish the MD degree.

APPLY ONLINE to this certificate program.

Bachelor's Degree in Discipline/Related Discipline: All applicants must present credentials that are the equivalent of the appropriate baccalaureate degree at Temple University. Official undergraduate and graduate transcripts from all accredited institutions attended are required.

Certificate Requirements

Number of Credits Required to Complete the Certificate: 12

Required Courses:

LKSOM MD Student Curriculum

Core Courses
NMED 8101Introduction to Narrative Medicine (Professional Students)3
NMED 8102Literature and Medicine (Professional Students)2
NMED 8103Narrative Medicine and Clinical Practice (Professional Students)2
Select two from the following: 12
Reflections on Gross Anatomy
Medical Humanities
Arts Workshop
Fundamentals of Improv Theater
Yoga and Writing
An Exploration of Narrative Medicine
An Exploration of Meaning through Stories, Poems, and Plays
Humans of North Philly: Portraits from the Streets
Artful Thinking
Psychiatry: A Narrative Pursuit
Capstone Course
NMED 9182Narrative Medicine Capstone Project (Professional Students)3
Total Credit Hours12

Curriculum for Students Not Enrolled in LKSOM's MD Program

NMED 8200Special Topic in Narrative Medicine (Graduate Students) (2 terms)2
NMED 8201Introduction to Narrative Medicine (Graduate Students)3
NMED 8202Literature and Medicine (Graduate Students)2
NMED 8204Narrative Medicine and Clinical Practice (Graduate Students)2
NMED 9282Narrative Medicine Capstone Project (Graduate Students)3
Total Credit Hours12

GPA Required to be Awarded the Certificate: 3.0 minimum


Certificate Program Web Address:

Admissions Information:

Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University

3500 N. Broad Street, MERB 325

Philadelphia, PA 19140


Submission Address for Application Materials:

Department Contacts:

Director, Certificate in Narrative Medicine:

Naomi Rosenberg, MD

Assistant Director of Narrative Medicine