Article 9: Faculty Review of Student Performance Table of Contents

Article 9.1 Academic Standards

Article 9.2 Review of Didactic Performance

Article 9.3 Review of Clinical Performance

Article 9.4 Review of Professional Behavior

Article 9.5 Suspension of Clinical Privileges

Article 9.6 Health Professions Student Promotions Committee

Article 9.7 Academic Performance

Article 9.8 Policies and Procedures Concerning Rights, Responsibilities, and Appeals to SHP Student Promotions Committee Actions

Article 9.9 Actions, Sanctions, and Appeals Regarding Student Performance

Article 9.1 Academic Standards – Health Professions students are expected to meet standards of academic excellence established by the faculty of the SHP. These standards are reviewed on an annual basis by the didactic and clinical faculty through the activities of the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee. The documentation of academic standard achievement is accomplished through scheduled programs of testing and the observation of student performance. The testing and observation of student performance may also be independent of courses and rotations. Various methods are employed to provide students with a measure of their progress as they transition through their education and training. Examples of these processes and instruments include: written examinations, skill-based tests, faculty observations, oral presentations, student self-assessments of progress, daily and/or monthly faculty performance evaluations, and quarterly evaluations by the student’s academic advisor.

Article 9.2 Review of Didactic Performance – Each student’s didactic performance is assessed by the faculty at specified intervals throughout the didactic phase of the curriculum. This is accomplished using methods of evaluation such as written, demonstrative, and verbal assessments of knowledge and skills. All course coordinators/directors will submit grades to the Program Director upon course completion. The responsible Program Director will report all grades to the Office of the Registrar. The responsible Program Director will prepare grade reports for review by the SHP Dean and the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee. To begin clinical rotations, a student must achieve a passing grade in all courses in the didactic phase of the curriculum.

Article 9.3 Review of Clinical Performance – Each student’s clinical performance will be evaluated by the program faculty as well as the clinical faculty and preceptors with whom they work. This will be accomplished using faculty performance evaluations, written examinations, patient simulation testing, and skills tests. These evaluations are submitted to the Program Director. The Health Professions program faculty will review these evaluations, in conjunction with all other available credible information concerning the student’s performance, to determine the grade. The responsible Program Director will submit grades to the Office of the Registrar. The responsible Program Director will prepare grade reports for review by the SHP Dean and the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee. The responsible Program Director will take academic action consistent with Article 5.13.5 and may make recommendations to the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee regarding academic action(s). Any such recommendations are not final until accepted by the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee, at which point they become actions of the committee.

Article 9.4 Review of Professional Behavior – It is also the responsibility of the SHP to ensure that its graduates meet local and national standards of professional conduct and responsibility. Students will be held accountable for their own actions. Integrity, respect, personal demeanor and appearance, accountability, collegial interaction, commitment to excellence, empathy and self-reflection have been identified as those professional attributes that facilitate honest communications, nurture confidentiality, facilitate boundary maintenance, encourage lifelong learning, engage in compassionate care provision, and acknowledge the value of others in the caring process. Students will be assessed, in part on their reliability, honesty and integrity, responsibility, and professional relationships with patients, families, and colleagues as well as their responsibility related to substance use and abuse. Any behavior that calls into question a student’s professionalism or potential capabilities as a future healthcare provider will be reviewed by the Program Director, who may institute sanctions, with consultation as needed by the Dean, or may be referred by the Program Director to the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee if it has implications for didactic or clinical course grades or the student’s standing in the program.

Article 9.5 Suspension of Clinical Privileges – In the event that the Program Director determines that a student’s conduct has presented concerns regarding patient safety, substandard care, or was unprofessional in nature, the student will be placed on academic probation and the student’s clinical education will be immediately suspended. The matter will be forwarded to the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee for further consideration and action. Following the suspension of clinical privileges by the Program Director, the student is prohibited from any clinical activities pending the outcome of the deliberations of the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee. During the period between clinical privileges being suspended and the decision(s) of the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee, the student shall remain in good standing. The Program Director may require the student to participate or prohibit the student from participating in non-clinical activities during this time.

Article 9.6 Health Professions Student Promotions Committee – The Health Professions Student Promotions Committee is charged with monitoring student academic performance during the program. It is composed of faculty members from Basic Science and Clinical departments, usually including faculty from Basic Science courses, clinical rotations, and the SHP Dean. The academic progress and professional development of each student is reviewed at regular intervals throughout each academic year. Grades, examination scores, narrative summaries and professional conduct and development are assessed to ensure the successful progress of each student. The Health Professions Student Promotions Committee has the primary responsibility for the following:

1. setting academic standards and requirements necessary for promotion and graduation;

2. recommending qualified students for promotion;

3. setting requirements for remedial work or revised academic course load for students whose academic work is unsatisfactory;

4. ensuring that each student demonstrates the academic competency of a nurse anesthetist, physician assistant, or orthotist/prosthetist;

5. rendering a decision and taking action on students whose academic work is consistently unsatisfactory;

6. addressing conduct and professional behavior of students when brought for deliberation by a Program Director;

7. proceeding with suspension, withdrawal, or dismissal of students;

8. recommending awarding of the Master's or Doctoral Degree, or appropriate certificate after careful review of academic records;

9. designating awarding of the Master of Science or Doctor of Nursing Practice degree with Highest Honor, High Honor and Honor for exceptional academic work throughout the period of education; and

10. reviewing the system of evaluation of student performance (i.e., grading system and narrative summaries).

The Health Professions Student Promotions Committee is scheduled to meet three times a year: at the end of the Fall term (December), at the end of the Spring Term (August), and in October to determine graduation status. Additional meetings may be called as deemed necessary.

Article 9.7 Academic Performance – Periodic promotion and ultimately recommendation to the President of the College to grant the Master of Science or Doctor of Nursing Practice degree require the satisfactory completion of all required courses, examinations and credits as well as demonstration by the student that he or she is capable of conduct appropriate within the discipline for which he or she is receiving education and training.

In the case of a student whose academic performance has been unsatisfactory in one or more courses or clinical rotations, the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee may require the student to:

1. take a special make-up examination;
2. be placed on Academic Probation;
3. enroll in a remedial course of study;
4. repeat specific courses or rotations even if previously passed;
5. repeat an academic year of study;
6. withdraw from the College;
7. be dismissed from the College and not be allowed to pursue further studies at the institution; and/or
8. comply with other actions as appropriate.

Students who are required to repeat a didactic or clinical course are responsible for the same academic work and examinations as required of other students taking the course. It is contrary to policy to offer an examination or re-examination to a student who has been suspended, withdrawn, dismissed, or is on a leave of absence.

BCM publishes a course repeat policy to explicate the Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) criteria for calculating repeats in coursework. The full policy is available in the BCM Policy and Procedure Manual. http://intranet.bcm.edu/index.cfm?fuseaction=Policies.Display_Policy&Policy_Number=23.1.09

To be promoted and begin clinical courses, a student must achieve passing grades in all courses of the preclinical curriculum. All grades reflected on the transcript including remedial and repeated courses are counted. Students required to repeat an entire year of study are expected to complete successfully all the courses in the curriculum. Request for dispensation and waivers of this latter policy must be made in writing and requires advance approval of the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee.

The Health Professions Student Promotions Committee reviews at regular intervals all grades and evaluations regarding academic and clinical performance. Both academic performance and professional behavior by a student in connection with his or her academic and clinical activities will be considered by the committee under these procedures. Unacceptable behaviors include those listed under Article 8 “Regulations Concerning Student Conduct,” as well as misrepresentation, distortions or serious omissions in data reports, research and clinical care; abuse, misrepresentation or seriously improper conduct in relation to patients or colleagues in clinical training or academic settings; repeated failures without adequate excuse to meet assigned obligations in professional, clinical, and research clinical training; and breaches of other standards of professional conduct and responsibility.

Article 9.8 Policies and Procedures Concerning Rights, Responsibilities, and Appeals to SHP Student Promotions Committee Actions – In general, procedures regarding appeals are implemented with every effort made to ensure fairness, objectivity and thoroughness. The confidentiality of these procedures is maintained to every extent possible and consistent with other obligations of the faculty and the College, including the requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).

These are academic, not legal, procedural matters. Any evidence that a review committee deems relevant and trustworthy may be considered. In any matter under appeal, the review committee has access to and may consider a student’s academic and disciplinary record as a whole. Although a student may seek legal advice with respect to these procedures, a student may not be represented by an attorney before a reviewing body and attorneys do not attend interviews of a student or other witnesses. The student must represent him/herself.  The Dean and/or a Department Chair with whom the Program is affiliated may attend hearing(s) held by the Appeals Review Subcommittee, which is described below. Information obtained in confidence by a student counseling service or other health care providers, whether medical or psychiatric, will not be sought or disclosed to a person or committee without the student's consent. Any information relative to a student’s health history that is requested in such instances will be managed in accordance with relevant State and Federal laws, including HIPAA regulations. The absence of such information may preclude the person or committee from considering a medical excuse. A reviewing body, in connection with its deliberations or as part of a remedial or corrective action, may require a student to obtain medical or psychiatric assistance and may require a student to consent to disclosure of relevant information from that health care provider in order for the committee to make its final recommendation. Procedures and timelines outlined below may be somewhat modified by prior notice to the student when necessary to achieve a full and fair resolution of the matter. Remedial and corrective actions and sanctions that may be imposed under the appeals procedure include, but are not limited to, academic remediation, personal counseling, reprimand, warning, probation, suspension, withdrawal and dismissal. The Health Professions Student Promotions Committee is responsible for assessing the satisfactory completion of the conditions of any probation and its termination.

Article 9.9 Actions, Sanctions, and Appeals Regarding Student Performance

1. Grades are rendered by course directors and reflect the students’ performance. They become official when accepted by the Program Director. Students’ concerns about grades or evaluations of academic or clinical performance should be directed to the course director. If such concerns are not satisfactorily resolved, the student should bring the matter to the attention of the Program Director who may consult with the course director to discuss the grade, evaluation or report to assist the student in understanding and resolving the matter.

2. The Program Director takes academic action on any student who demonstrates a deficiency of academic or clinical performance, or where concerns arise about inappropriate, irresponsible, or unprofessional conduct. The student is notified in writing of the decision, including rationale for the decision, and action regarding recommendations or sanctions. Sanctions imposed by Program Directors may include, but are not limited to, reprimand, probation, or suspension. Formal actions taken by a Program Director are reported to the SHP Dean and the HSPC.

3. The Health Professions Student Promotions Committee, upon their review of the student’s performance, may impose other sanctions in addition to those taken by the Program Director including, but not limited to, requirements to remediate or repeat courses, withdraw, or be dismissed.

4. The Program Director shall be available to counsel students whose academic work has been deemed unsatisfactory. The Dean shall be available to interpret the actions of the Health Professions Student Promotions Committee to the student, to inform students of written narrative comments by the faculty concerning unsatisfactory academic work, to review with a student the steps in the Appeal process and to counsel students.

5. Decisions of the Program Director or HSPC may be appealed through the Adverse Academic Action Appeal Procedure.

The full Student Grievances Policy is available in the BCM Policy and Procedure Manual. http://intranet.bcm.edu/index.cfm?fuseaction=Policies.Display_Policy&Policy_Number=23.1.08