Handbook > Policies > Attendance and Absences

Attendance and Absences


Attendance

The Next Generation Curriculum provides many diverse learning opportunities for our medical students and attendance at all activities is encouraged. Students, however, are responsible for their own learning and are not required to attend many activities. Attendance is mandatory for all activities in which team accountability is required, e.g., Team-Based Learning activities, Anatomy Dissection Teams, Clinical Performance Development groups, and any other learning activity in which accountability is required. Attendance also is mandatory for all patient interviews. Failure to attend a mandatory activity will result in a “concern card” being submitted to the student’s college dean.

Attendance policy (effective as of 8/2012).

Student Participation in Educational Activities:
The Next Generation Curriculum provides many diverse learning opportunities for our medical students and attendance at all activities is encouraged. Students, however, are responsible for their own learning and are not required to attend all activities.

Attendance is mandatory for those activities in which team accountability is required (all Large and Small Group Engagement Activities, e.g. TBLs and Problem Sets, Laboratories, Social Issues in Medicine community service activities, and Clinical Performance Development groups). Additionally attendance is required to all patient presentations, out of professional respect for the patient. Attendance will be monitored and patterns of absences will result in a “concern card” being submitted to the student’s college dean.

Patterns of attendance will be examined on a weekly basis.

Make-up

Students who have an excused absence for a summative assessment will be allowed to make up that assessment at a time agreeable to the system leaders. There is no make-up for weekend formative assessments that comprise less than 8% of a final grade. There also is no make-up for other formative scores, e.g., quizzes, laboratories, readiness assurance tests, on-line cases, etc. However, the formative grade is adjusted by a factor of 1.10 to offset absences or other life activities, not to exceed the maximum allowable formative points.

(Curriculum Committee 1/22/2004; revised 8/6/2010; 8/11/2011;6/11/2012)

 

Clinical Service - Work Hours, Trades

Medical students rotating on clinical services (clerkships, selectives and electives) will be subject to the same principles that govern the 80-hour work week for mid-level residents (a maximum of 80 hours of required clinical duties per week averaged over a four week period, no more than 24 consecutive on duty hours with at least 10 hours off between shifts, and on average one day in seven free from all required clinical duties). Four additional hours for the handover of patients (no new patients) after 24 hours is allowed for feedback on clinical decisions and for continuity. Clerkship, electives and selectives directors are responsible for monitoring and ensuring that duty hours are adjusted as necessary. Student duty hours should be set taking into account the effects of fatigue and sleep deprivation on learning and patient care. In general, medical students should not be required to work longer hours than mid-level residents*. (Curriculum Committee 9/9/2004; modified 04/14/2011; 12/13/2013)

Clerkship scheduling is done using OASIS. Students are given 2 weeks for trading locations in the fall. Schedules are then locked in the system and clerkship courses are imported into SIS. Students can drop clerkships with permission of their college dean. Dropped clerkships will be rescheduled in their 4th year based on availability.

* LCME Standard ED-38.

 

Absences and Reporting of Absences

Students may miss required academic activities for health related reasons (see Absences due to Illness), compelling personal or family issues (e.g., death in immediate family, participant in wedding), professional meetings (e.g., participant in meeting – poster, presenter, panel), or public service (e.g., jury duty). They must notify the course, system or clerkship director as well as the immediate faculty instructor by e-mail or in person. If a student misses more than 2 contiguous days, she/he must also notify their Student Affairs Dean and the Office for Student Affairs (som-studentaffairs@virginia.edu). The course, system or clerkship director will determine how and when the student can make up the time and activities that have been missed. (8/2000; 8/2010; 1/2011)

If a student is absent up to 20% of the time within a given clerkship, the clerkship director will determine whether the student will take the shelf exam at the end of the rotation. The score that the student obtains on the shelf exam will be recorded, and the student would not be able to re-take the shelf exam unless that student did not receive a passing score on the shelf exam. If the student elects to postpone taking the shelf exam, it cannot be taken before the next academic cycle. If the student is absent more than 20% of the time within a given clerkship, the student will take the shelf exam in the next academic cycle, after making up the clinical time and fulfilling the other requirements of that clerkship. In either case the student will receive an "Incomplete" until all work is completed. (9/6/2012)

Absences due to Illness

All students who miss required activities due to illness must obtain medical evaluation from the Department of Student Health or other licensed healthcare provider. It is anticipated that this will be done in person, but students with a flu-like illness should call student health first to see whether or not to report. Students with contagious diseases may be furloughed by Student Health and the UVA Health System to prevent infections from spreading to patients, healthcare workers and fellow students. Clearance from Student Health is required before the student can resume educational activities. (4/2009; 8/2010)

 

Excessive Absences

If in the view of the faculty, a student’s absences adversely affect her/his education or the education of others in the group, the faculty will submit a “Concern Card” to the Office for Student Affairs. The student will then meet with his or her dean to address the issue(s). If the issues cannot be resolved or recur, the student will be referred to the Academic Standards and Achievement Committee to discuss their progress and continuation in the School of Medicine.

 

Delay of Summative Examinations

Examinations may be delayed only for reasons of illness, or under unusual circumstances for compelling personal reasons. In all instances, approval to delay an examination must be obtained from the student's Student Affairs Dean. Students who seek to delay an examination for medical reasons must also be seen by a member of the Department of Student Health unless the student has flu-like symptoms and then they must contact Student Health (924-5362). When approval is given to delay an examination, it is the student's responsibility to schedule a time with the course/module director for the examination. (8/2000; 8/2010)

 

Withdrawal and Readmission

Withdrawals from the School of Medicine may be of four types:

  1. Voluntary Withdrawal - at the request of the student for academic or personal reasons.
  2. Medical Withdrawal - on recommendation of a physician.
  3. Academic Withdrawal - by action of the Academic Standards & Achievement Committee.
  4. Administrative Withdrawal - by action of the Dean's Office.

Students wishing to arrange a voluntary or medical withdrawal should consult with their Student Affairs Dean who will advise them of the necessary administrative procedures. It should be noted that students must complete the graduation requirements for the M.D. degree within 6 years of first matriculation in the School of Medicine.

Students who wish to be readmitted after withdrawal must notify the Assistant Dean of Records (registrar) in the Office for Student Affairs, e-mail: som-registrar@virginia.edu and cc: their College Dean, at least sixty days prior to the date of readmission (beginning of a semester). A longer period of notification is desirable if scheduling of clerkships or electives is involved. Acceptance for readmission will depend on availability. Applications for readmission will be kept on file and will be considered in the ordered received as positions become available. Students who withdraw before taking Step 1 and the Transition Course (aka Introduction to the Clerkships) can re-apply for the spring semester in the next academic year. Once enrolled they can take Step 1 and the Transition Course. Clerkship assignment is based on current availability and any assignments made prior to the withdrawal cannot be reserved.

Students without academic deficiencies who withdrew within the previous 12 months may be readmitted at the discretion of the Office for Student Affairs. Students without academic deficiencies who have withdrawn for medical reasons within the previous 12 months and who receive clearance from the Department of Student Health may be readmitted with the written approval of the Associate Dean of Student Affairs and the University Dean of Students.

Requests for readmission from students who had academic deficiencies at the time of voluntary or medical withdrawal or whose period of withdrawal has exceeded one year, but is less than two years, will be acted upon by the Academic Standards & Achievement Committee. Those on medical withdrawal must also obtain clearance from the Department of Student Health and the University Dean of Students. A subcommittee of the Academic Standards & Achievement Committee will interview the student and review his/her request for readmission. The subcommittee will make a recommendation to the Academic Standards & Achievement Committee which will make a final decision regarding readmission of the student.

Students whose period of withdrawal is greater than 2 years must reapply through the Office of Admissions.

Students who withdraw and have their request for readmission denied will have the right of appeal.

(8/2000; 8/2010; 6/2012; 2/2014)

Questions

Students with questions related to the attendance or absences should contact the Office for Student Affairs or their Student Affairs College Dean.

 

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