Office of Academic Support Services

The Keck Learning and Academic Support Services (KLASS) office provides an array of resources to help all Keck School of Medicine of USC students master and retain their curriculum throughout their four years of medical training. This goal is accomplished through the implementation of support services, catering to the individual needs of students and best practices in helping them understand complex curriculum content. All students are encouraged to meet with the KLASS team to discuss anything related to academic skills and strategies.

One-on-One Academic Counseling includes:

  • MS 1 pre-matriculation meetings
  • MS 2 Step 1 studying intake meetings
  • MS 3 shelf exam and Step 2 intake studying meetings
  • How to approach the Foundation of Medical Sciences and year 1-2 subject exams
  • Strategies on active learning via textbooks and effective notetaking
  • Identifying appropriate resources to retain curriculum content
  • Formatting notes to third-order recognition
  • Best practices in previewing instructors’ notes and using lecture objectives
  • Developing study schedules
  • Learning modality assessments and cognitive assessments

Office collaborations include:

  • Referral process for Office of Student Accessibility Services (OSAS), office of Well-Being, Occupational Therapy, and Student Affairs

Student Interest Groups (SIGs) include:

  • Pomodoro Student Interest Group
  • Medical Students for Disability and Chronic Illness Advocacy

Peer-Led Programs

We have a diverse series of peer-led review sessions that are facilitated by high-performing upperclassmen. The peer review sessions are an ecosystem of programs geared toward group learning in a relaxed and interactive environment. These mentoring programs serve as a way for students to support their peers and to learn collaboratively.

Programs include:

  • One-on-one peer academic coaching
  • Group anatomy review
  • Interactive student lectures reviewing high-yield material
  • Step 1 and Step 2 preparation
  • Group review sessions for students on clinical rotations

Academic Success Workshops

Every year, academic workshops geared toward the continued excellence and development of medical students are offered. Students receive counsel on ways to become a successful medical student, effective study strategies on learning content, preparation for studying for Step 1 and more. Workshops are interactive and occur throughout the year.

For more information on our office and programs, contact us at The services provided by this office are only available to medical students from the Keck School.

Our Team

Ranna Nash, PhD
(323) 442-2553

Ranna Nash, PhD, is the Director of Academic Support with over ten years of experience working with medical students. Dr. Nash specializes in Special Education and Disabilities. Before joining KSOM, Dr. Nash worked as Coordinator for Student Development and Academic Enrichment at the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine. She has published several articles on medical student support and advancement. Dr. Nash is very passionate about assisting medical students in achieving their goals healthily and productively.