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Accelerated Medical Pathway Eligibility and Progress Policy

Medical Students (M.D.)

Policy ID Number: N/A
Policy Title: Accelerated Medical Pathway Eligibility and Progress Policy
Classification: University
Approval Authority: Undergraduate Curriculum Committee
Responsible Entity: College of Medicine Undergraduate Medical Education
Policy Owner: Undergraduate Curriculum Committee

 

I. Policy Statement

This policy outlines the academic and professional criteria that determine eligibility for and continued progress in one of the Accelerated Medical Pathways which allow a pathway for MD degree students to complete graduation requirements in a three year time frame and enter a conditional residency position in a designated MUSC residency program. Acceptance into an Accelerated Medical Pathway does not guarantee that a student will match into the residency position.

II. Scope

This policy applies to all COM MD students who apply for and enter an Accelerated Medical Pathway in the College of Medicine as well as the residency programs that participate in the program.

III. Approval Authority

The Undergraduate Curriculum Committee is responsible for periodic review and approval of this policy.

IV. Purpose of This Policy

The Accelerated Medical Pathways at MUSC allow students with very strong academic and professional performance to apply for acceptance into an accelerated track in a specific specialty. If accepted into an Accelerated Medical Pathway, a student will have an altered timeline for the completion of key graduation requirements and clinical courses in order to obtain the MD degree in a three year time frame. This policy outlines detailed eligibility criteria for acceptance and continued progress in each track from the perspective of both the College of Medicine Undergraduate Medical Education Program and the respective Residency Program.

V. Who Should Be Knowledgeable about This Policy

College of Medicine students

College of Medicine clinical faculty, residents, and staff

Undergraduate and Graduate Medical Education Deans

Clinical department chairs and residency program directors

Graduate Medical Education staff

VI. The Policy

Program Eligibility:

In order to apply for an Accelerated Medical Pathway, students finishing the first year of the preclerkship curriculum must complete an application and an Educational Record Release Form allowing a detailed review of their academic and professional record by the Associate Dean for Curriculum, Clinical Sciences, COM Progress Committee, and the respective Residency Program sponsoring the conditional position.

The initial application phase during the summer semester of the preclerkship phase is the single entry point into an accelerated program.

Each application will be reviewed jointly by the Associate Dean for Curriculum, Clinical Sciences and the COM Progress Committee to determine eligibility. Students will be eligible for consideration by the Residency Program if they meet all of the following criteria:

• High academic performance in the preclerkship phase as demonstrated by

o An overall average of 85% on each preclerkship block exam (total points earned/total points available)
o A final longitudinal clinical skills grade of High Pass or Honors every semester
o No more than 2 preclerkship theme scores on block exams over the first two semesters that fall below 78%
o No scores in any block that require Assurance of Competency Exam

• Professional behavior with no serious professionalism concerns and fewer than three minor professionalism reports (ex. late assignments, unexcused absences, etc.)
• Behavior consistent with the ability to move through MD degree requirements in an accelerated fashion as demonstrated by written or other feedback that does not indicate a lack of organization, poor engagement, lack of responsiveness to feedback, or an inability to recognize personal limitations.
• These criteria for eligibility remain in effect for all semesters of the preclerkship phase.

All applications of students who meet the eligibility criteria above will be passed to the respective Residency Program identified by the student for review and decisions on final acceptance. The application each program reviews will include a personal statement, curriculum vitae, MCAT score, preclerkship grades and narrative comments, and a standardized professionalism report generated by the Dean’s Office.

Residency Programs will adhere to the following principles in their acceptance decisions:
• Programs will interview viable candidates prior to the acceptance decision in order to gauge a candidate’s maturity, fit with the program, etc.
• Each program that has agreed to participate may accept 0, 1, 2, or 3 students into the track for a given year based on the number of spots they pre-specified. Programs are not required to accept any students in a given year.

Progress in an Accelerated Medical Pathway

Due to availability of clinical space for learners and administrative resources, the Accelerated Medical Pathways program will accept no more than the pre-specified final number of students per program.

Once accepted into an Accelerated Medical Pathway, student performance will undergo periodic review by the Associate Dean for Curriculum, Clinical Sciences. A final formal performance review conducted jointly by the Associate Dean for Curriculum, Clinical Sciences and COM Progress committee will occur midway through the clerkship year. At this time, students must meet the following criteria to continue in an Accelerated Medical Pathway:
• Met eligibility criteria for all semesters of the preclerkship phase
• Passing grade on USMLE Step 1 on first attempt.
• Passing grades on all NBME subject exams on first attempt.
• Passing grades on all Observed Structured Clinical Exams on first attempt.
• Passing grades on all clerkships on first attempt.
• Performance on all assessments including USMLE Step 1, NBME subject exams, OSCEs and Clinical Performance Evaluations that support a high level of confidence that a student will successfully complete all graduation requirements in an accelerated manner without difficulty including the Clinical Competency Exam 3 (CCX3), USMLE Step 2 CK and CS.
• Consistent professional behavior with no serious professionalism concerns and fewer than three minor professionalism reports (ex. physician forms, concern cards, unexcused absences, etc.)
• Behavior consistent with the ability to move through MD degree requirements in an accelerated fashion as demonstrated by written or other feedback that does not indicate a lack of organization, poor engagement, lack of responsiveness to feedback, or an inability to recognize personal limitations.

If the COM Progress Committee concludes that a student meets criteria to continue in an Accelerated Medical Pathway, the Residency Program will also conduct a final formal performance review in which they may review a student’s USMLE Step 1 score; a Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE) that outlines preclerkship performance, clinical performance to date including overall grade, honors designation, NBME grade, OSCE grade, and narrative comments; and a professionalism report. Residency programs must determine if the student remains eligible to continue in their Accelerated Medical Pathway and into the conditional residency position based on the following criteria:
• Student meets expectations for professionalism, clinical skills, patient care, medical knowledge, communication skills, teamwork, or practice-based learning.
• A minimum USMLE Step 1 score as determined by each Residency Program.


Transition into the 4 Year Pathway

Should a student in any track decide they do not want to continue in their track or fail to maintain eligibility by the criteria specified above, they may transition back into the traditional 4 year pathway. To transition back into the 4 year pathway, students will complete the remaining clerkships, enter the FLEX phase, and then begin the 4th year on cycle in July of the following year. Students who transition into the 4 year pathway will be responsible for the tuition for the year.

Students are not permitted to transition into a different accelerated pathway. Alternate students will not be accepted into any Accelerated Medical Pathway outside of the initial acceptance process.

Academic Advising for Accelerated Medical Pathways

Students are encouraged to seek individualized advising with the Associate Dean of Career Planning when weighing the decision to apply for an Accelerated Medical Pathway. Once accepted into an Accelerated Medical Pathway, students will have formal advising with the Associate Dean of Career Planning and appropriate Dean’s Office staff throughout the clinical phase of their education and at the point of final performance review.

VII. Special situations

Due to regulations that govern residency placement for military students, they will not be able to apply for an Accelerated Medical Pathway.

VIII. Sanctions for Non-compliance

Non-compliance with this policy by a student, COM faculty or staff member, or representatives of a participating residency program will be investigated and appropriate action determined on a case-by-case basis.

IX. Related Information

A. References, citations

B. Other
Link to the Educational Record Release Form
Link to the website for AMP once developed and posted
Link to FAQs

C. Appendices
Include procedure documents as an appendix including schematic, academic calendar, and timeline procedures.

X. Communication Plan

Informational sessions will be held annually to educate matriculating students about the Accelerated Medical Pathways and this policy. The policy will be shared at least annually with personnel from participating residency programs.

XI. Definitions

 

XII. Review Cycle

This policy and data regarding outcomes and eligibility criteria will be reviewed at least every 2 years by the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee.

XIII. Approval History

List original approval date and subsequent review dates

Approval Authority Date Approved
Undergraduate Curriculum Committee January 18, 2019

XIV. Approval Signature

January 18, 2019

Donna Kern, MD (Signature) Date

Title: Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education