Medical students are subject to the policies and regulations of Western University, as outlined in the general Academic Calendar, in addition to the policies of the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry.
The principal function of student assessment in the MD Program is to assess competence and provide feedback for student learning. For the purpose of reporting performance, a Pass/Fail grade is used for each course. Letter or percentage grades may be used for the purpose of enhancing feedback at the course level. Students' attitudes and ethics also form part of the assessment and unethical behavior or irresponsible and inappropriate conduct may constitute grounds for a failing grade.
Assessment throughout the curriculum takes two forms:
During Years 1, and 2
- Assessment for Feedback: These assessments are designed to help the students assess their progress and to provide feedback on strengths and weaknesses. Such sessions may take the form of informal verbal feedback, individual and group assignments, or written and oral examinations provided for practice. They may occur at any time.
- Assessment for Progression: These assessments must be successfully passed in order for the student to progress to the next level of study. For these assessments students will be graded as Pass or Fail.
Assessments for feedback occur in the assessment of group participation, written examinations, written or oral presentations, and laboratory practical evaluations.
During Year 3 & 4
Assessment for progression will occur a number of times throughout each course with a final examination period each term. Evaluation will include an assessment of the quality of each student's group participation.
During Clerkship and Clinical Science Electives, assessment for feedback and progression occurs daily as the clerk interacts with house staff and clinical faculty. Frequent observation during patient care activities forms the basis for such feedback. A variety of evaluation tools are used for progression during each rotation which include but are not limited to written, oral and clinical examinations. Students will also continue to develop their professional portfolio.
Assessment of Integration, Consolidation & Enrichment is based on student participation, assignments, professional portfolio and written evaluations. Successful performance on the Observed Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE) is required to fulfill the requirements of Year 4.
The comprehensive examination (OSCE) will test students' mastery of the overall objectives of the clerkship. This evaluation will assess students' knowledge, clinical skills, professional conduct and clinical reasoning using simulated clinical settings.
To satisfactorily complete each year, and to progress to the next year or to graduation, a student must meet the following requirements:
- For Year 1, students must pass all course work, assignments and examinations of each course in the year, as defined by the Course Chairs.
- For Year 2, students must pass all course work, assignments and examinations of each course in the year, as defined by the Course Chairs.
- For Year 3 (Integrated Clinical Clerkship), students must pass all Clinical Rotations in addition to the requirements of Year 3 of the professional portfolio.
- For Year 4, students must pass the Observed Structured Clinical Exam (OSCE), all Clinical Science Electives and must meet the requirements of the Integration, Consolidation & Enrichment (final 12 weeks of the program) to pass Year 4.
In Years 1, 2, 3, 4, courses are given weights equivalent to their length.
|Course Length||Course Weight|
|0 - 30 hours||0.25|
|31 - 60 hours||0.5|
|61 - 120 hours||1.0|
|121 - 180 hours||1.5|
|181 - 240 hours||2.0|
|241 - 300 hours||2.5|
|301 - 360 hours||3.0|
|361 - 480 hours||4.0|
|52 weeks Clinical Clerkship||8.0|
|Clinical Science Options||1.5|
A student who has failed may be eligible to be considered for a period of remediation (either a study period or specific remedial program) followed by supplemental examination (reassessment which may be written, oral, and/or clinical in nature). Such supplemental privilege is in no way the right of the student, but rather is a permission granted by decision of the Undergraduate Medical Education Progression & Awards Committee. The period and scheduling of remediation is a decision of the Undergraduate Medical Education Progression & Awards Committee. The supplemental examination(s) will immediately follow the remediation. In years 1 & 2 the supplemental examination(s) must be passed on the first attempt and prior to the start of the next academic year in order for the student to remain in the program.
A student who has failed a single six-week clinical rotation in Year 3 and who has been granted permission to remediate, will be permitted to remediate during the scheduled time for Clinical Science Electives in Year 4.
A student who fails the Observed Structured Clinical Exam and has been granted permission to remediate will be permitted to remediate at the conclusion of the Integration, Consolidation & Enrichment.
Permission for remediation and supplemental examination will be considered only when following conditions both exist:
- The total of all failures (FAI) during the Doctor of Medicine program, including failures for which supplemental examination was previously granted, does not exceed three course weights.
- One of (a)-(d) is true regarding performance in the current Year:
- at the end of the first semester in Year 1 and/or the end of Year 1, the student has received grades of PAS in all but one or two course weights;
- at the end of the first semester in Year 2 and/or the end of Year 2, the student has received grades of PAS in all but one or two course weights;
- at the end of Year 3(Integrated Clinical Clerkship), the student has received grades of PAS in all but one Clinical Rotation;
- during Year 4 Clinical Science Electives and Year 4 Integration, Consolidation & Enrichment, the student has met all course requirements and has received a grade of PAS in the Observed Structured Clinical Exam.
The maximum period of remediation will be:
- Years 1, 2: Supplemental examination(s) (when granted) must be successfully completed by the student within six weeks of the end of the academic year.
- Year 3: Integrated Clinical Clerkship: Supplemental examination(s) (when granted) must be successfully completed within eight weeks of the commencement of Clinical Science Electives. Remedial work granted for the Professional Portfolio must also be completed in this time frame.
- Year 4 Clinical Science Electives: Supplemental examination(s) (when granted) must be successfully completed by the student within four weeks, to be completed after the end of Year 4.
- Year 4 Integration, Consolidation & Enrichment: Supplemental examination(s) (when granted) must be successfully completed by the student within two weeks, to be completed after the end of Year 4.
- Year 4 OSCE: Supplemental examinations(s) when granted must be successfully completed by the student within four weeks, to be completed after the end of Year 4.
- Students who are required to do remedial work at the end of Year 4 may be required to graduate in October.
Requirement to Withdraw
Achievement of pass in a supplemental examination does not delete the original grade of FAIL from the student record. A grade of SRP (Supplemental Examination/Remedial Work passed) will be separately recorded on the student record.
A student who has not met the requirements listed under "Satisfactory Progression" shall be required to withdraw from the medical program for any of the following reasons:
- the student has not met the conditions listed under "Conditional Progression" and, therefore, is not eligible for supplemental examination;
- the student has met the conditions listed under "Conditional Progression" but permission for supplemental examination is not granted;
- the student fails a supplemental examination granted under "Conditional Progression".
- the student who has met the requirements under "Satisfactory Progression" may be required to withdraw under the University penalties for Scholastic Offenses.
the student has met the requirements under "Satisfactory Progression" but has demonstrated unprofessional or unethical behaviour as defined by the Policies of the of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario and the Canadian Medical Association Code of Ethics.
Note: Students wishing to appeal against a decision of the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry should refer to the Academic Rights and Responsibilities section of Western's Academic Calendar.
The criteria for receiving a "passing" grade will be clearly identified at the start of each course. While percentage grades or letter grades may be used within courses for the purpose of student feedback, a Pass/Fail system is used to identify performance for progression and graduation. The key to this grading scheme is as follows:
|Clear competency with regards to all criteria considered essential for the completion of that specific course. On any evaluation this will be determined by achieving a minimum of 60%. |
|An inability to meet the minimal acceptable standards for a specific course. Less than 60%. |
|Course In Progress|
|Supplemental Examination/Remedial Work passed|