COM Policies on Examinations
COM Policy on Duty Hours
COM Policy on Completion of Faculty/Course/Clerkship Evaluations
United States Medical Licensing Examinations (USMLE)
Clinical Performance Exam (CPX)
Medical Center External Mission Policy
Hospital Standards for Dress and Appearance
Laboratory Safety Rules
Student Assignment Policy
NBME Shelf Exams
Schedule of Classes/Book List
Class schedules and a list of required textbooks are provided to students prior to each academic year. Only minor adjustments to the published schedule will be made during the academic year. Examination dates cannot be changed, except in extraordinary situations as initiated by faculty and approved by the Curriculum Committee.
COM Policies on Examinations
Multiple Choice Examinations: Student Conduct
All major multiple-choice exams in the M1-M2 curriculum will be administered electronically using ExamSoft. In preparation for examinations, it is students’ responsibility to: (1) understand the rules of conduct; (2) ensure the appropriate use of accepted materials; and (3) ensure the secure storage of prohibited materials.
ExamSoft/Laptop: Each student must have a reliable, functioning laptop computer (with working AC power adapter) which meets the College of Medicine minimum standards to use the ExamSoft application. Students requiring a temporary “loaner” must contact Student Affairs at least 24 hours prior to the scheduled exam. Student Affairs will then connect the student with IT in the Dean’s office to arrange for the temporary loaner computer.
ExamSoft Download: Encryptedtestfiles are made available for download at least 12 hours prior to scheduled exams. Students must have the exam downloaded and be prepared to begin at the scheduled start time. No concessions will be made during exam time for late or unsuccessful downloads. Being punctual and prepared are markers of professional behavior, and failures to adhere to these standards will be considered professionalism breaches. All ExamSoft activity is time stamped, and a list of students downloading assessments after the start of the examination will be provided to the Dean of Student Affairs.
Exam time: Students must arrive to the exam room with sufficient time to be seated, stow personal items, power up laptops, and be ready to begin the exam promptly at the designated start time. It is recommended that students arrive at least 10 minutes prior to the start of all examinations.
- Absences: If a student is ill and unable to take an exam, he/she must contact the Dean of Students Affairs PRIOR to the exam. Students with approved absences will be given an alternative exam time. Students doing make-up exams must not participate or have access to any reviews or discussions of exam material.
- Late Arrivals: Students arriving late for an examination will not be allowed to sit for the examination, and will be referred to the Student Progress and Promotion Committee, who will determine if a make-up examination will be permitted.
- Personal Items: All personal items (study materials, backpacks, bags, purses, mobile telephones/devices, watches, brimmed hats, etc.) must be stowed in your assigned locker, at the front of the room, or under the desk/table. Mobile telephones/devices must be turned off and stowed for the duration of the exam; they MUST NOT be on your person during the exam. Hoods covering eyes or hats with brims or bills such as baseball caps may not be worn. Hats must be stowed during exam. Non-electronic ear plugs may be worn, but headphones/ear buds of any type are not permitted. Course directors will provide any supplemental exam materials, such as lab values references or scrap paper.
ID Badges: At all times, students must be prepared to confirm their identities via their UK Medical Center identification badge.
Time management: Students should be aware of the total allotted exam time and manage their time accordingly. Students must begin the exam as soon as proctors announce the start time and exam password. No additional time shall be given at the conclusion of the exam for any reason.
Proctors: Proctors will be present to administer the exams, grant permission for breaks and monitor the environment for irregular behavior. Proctors may verify the identities of students at any time. Students may not question the proctor regarding content of the examination. Such concerns are appropriate for the post-examination review, but not during exam time.
Breaks during an exam: If a student must leave during an exam, he/she must receive permission from a proctor. Students taking a break are not permitted to remove any personal materials, including, but not limited to, coats, jackets, brimmed hats, bags and mobile telephones/devices. If, for personal reasons, a student needs to access or leave with a bag or purse, he/she must notify a proctor. Any bag or purse must not contain any study materials, notes, electronic devices, watches, etc. All exam materials must remain in the exam room.
Completion of exam: Prior to exiting the exam, students must clearly display to test proctors the green “successful upload confirmation” screen. Under no circumstances will any student be allowed to leave the room with an open, unsecured exam. All students must sign out before exiting the exam and turn in all provided materials (lab value references, scrap paper, etc.). Once finished with the exam, students should leave the examination area, returning to the area only for a post-examination review or other class activities. Out of respect for fellow test-takers, students completing the exam SHOULD NOT congregate outside the exam area/classroom after completing the exam.
Professionalism: All exams, quizzes, and exam reviews are administered in accordance with the College of Medicine Honor Code, and are SECURE unless otherwise specified by the course director. Any action that subverts or attempts to subvert the exam process will be considered a failure to comply with the COM Professionalism Competency standards and subsequently an Honor Code violation. Potential violations will be referred to the Dean of Student Affairs, and students may not be permitted to begin or complete the examination at the discretion of the course director.
Professionalism issues will be addressed by the Dean of Students Affairs, which may include referral to the Professional Code Committee, and annotation as a breach of professionalism in students’ Medical Student Performance Evaluation.
Specific conduct and behavior that subvert the COM Professionalism Competency standards and the Honor Code include, but are not limited to:
- reproducing test material through any means, including but not limited to photocopying, dictation or reconstruction through memorization, and/or dissemination of any test material or content, including but not limited to written, electronic or verbal
- seeking and/or obtaining unauthorized access to exam materials
- possessing or sharing information about secure exams
- providing false information or making false statements on or in connection with an exam
- impersonating an examinee or engaging someone else to take the exam for the student
- giving, receiving, or obtaining unauthorized assistance during the exam or attempting to do so, including looking in the direction of another examinee's computer screen or talking to another examinee during the exam
- making notes of any kind while during the exam except on writing materials provided specifically for this purpose
- verbally or physically harassing exam proctors or course faculty or other disruptive or unprofessional behavior during or related to exam activity up to the assignment of final grades
- failing to adhere to any UKCOM policy, procedure, or rule, including exam proctor instructions
If a student has information or evidence of any irregular behavior or infringement of legal rights, they should immediately submit a written account to the Course Director and Dean for Student Affairs.
Exam Interruption Procedures – Instructions for Students: In the event of an alarm (fire or otherwise), extended power outage, or other emergency during an examination, your proctor(s) will provide specific instructions that you must follow.
Following these procedures will allow your examination in ExamSoft to be paused at the spot where you left off and will stop the time from expiring.
If an alarm sounds, exam proctors will provide these instructions to you:
- Completely power down laptops (not just closing the screen.) Press the power button for at least 10 seconds to force a shutdown of the laptop. This is the only way to stop the clock.
- It is important that shut down occurs as no additional time can be added to an exam in progress.
- If time runs out due to failure to shut down the computer, you must notify your proctor and report to Student Affairs for alternate arrangements.
- Exit the room. Follow standard emergency protocol for the building. Treat all alarms as a real emergency.
- You may take their belongings with you, laptop included, if you choose. Follow the instructions of the building’s designated safety officer.
- Remain together as a group until the all clear is given.
- Do not turn on your computers until instructed to do so.
- Do not discuss the exam with classmates. Doing so is considered a violation of the professional code.
When the all clear is given, return to the examination room. You will then be given instructions by the proctor(s) on how to resume your exam.
USMLE Subject Exams
The College of Medicine follows the ACGME guidelines on duty hours. Duty hours for medical students are inclusive of all required clinical and educational activities. Medical students on clinical clerkship rotations have the following guidelines for duty hours:
- Medical students are never to work more than 80 hours per week.
- Medical students are to have on average one day out of every seven free from duties.
- Medical students are to have a minimum of 10 hours off between duty periods.
- Duty periods for medical students cannot exceed 24 hours although a student may need to stay for a few additional hours longer than the allowed 24 hours in order to maintain continuity of patient care.
Every effort should be made by the student’s resident to get the medical student out of the hospital post-call. If a student finds that the rotation that they are doing is not in compliance with these guidelines, the student should alert the Clerkship Director and the Deans for Student Affairs right away who will follow-up on this issue.
University of Kentucky College of Medicine
Course Evaluation Policy
Institutional objectives: Professionalism, Practice Based Learning and Improvement (see College of Medicine Goals and Objectives).
Student objective: Through timely completion of student documentation obligations for the evaluative components of the course, the student will demonstrate comprehension of and facility with the concepts of Professionalism and Practice Based Learning, especially in terms of understanding the shared responsibility between faculty and students for the educational process. A student’s competency in this objective will be assessed by compliance with the requirement that course and teaching evaluations be completed through the evaluative component of Oasis within one week (7 days) after email notification of evaluation availability.
Rationale: Research has shown a correlation between compliance with Practice Based requirements and subsequent risk for Professionalism violations.
- Providing timely feedback is an essential part of being a physician. For medical students, this professionalism includes completing course and faculty evaluations.
- All required evaluations will be conducted electronically through the OASIS system.
- Students will receive email notification of available evaluations – which must be completed within 7 calendar days. No follow-up reminders or warnings will be sent.
- Once this window has closed, feedback cannot be provided – and the evaluation will be considered delinquent.
- Summaries of evaluation delinquencies may be included in students’ Medical Student Performance Evaluations (MSPEs) and/or shared with the UKCOM Professional Code Committee (PCC).
Students will be required to pass, in no more than three attempts, a written, comprehensive, standardized basic science examination (USMLE Step 1) before promotion to the third year; and, both a comprehensive, standardized clinical knowledge examination (USMLE Step 2-CK) and a comprehensive, standardized clinical skills exam (USMLE Step 2–CS) before graduation.
Students must take the USMLE Step 1 exam no later than June 15 upon conclusion of the second year of medical education, unless approval is granted by the SPPC for an alternate date. Any student who fails the Step 1 exam will not start third year and will reschedule the exam between the earliest date permitted (first day of the month, 60 days after the first test date) and the first day of the fourth block of third year. Students who then pass the exam will enter a rotation group as soon as possible. Students who fail the second exam will take it for the third and final time between the earliest date permitted and no later than one year from the date of the first attempt.
Students must take the USMLE Step 2-CS exam no later than September 30 and the USMLE Step 2-CK exam no later than December 31 of their fourth year, unless approval is granted by the SPPC for an alternate date. Any student who fails either exam must reschedule that exam between the earliest date permitted (first day of the month, 60 days after the first test date) and four weeks before graduation. Students who pass the second exam will graduate with their class. Students who fail the second exam will be permitted to participate in the graduation ceremony without receiving a diploma and will take the exam for the third time between the earliest date possible and July 1 of that year.
Students may sit for three consecutive administrations of the Step 1, Step 2-CK and Step 2-CS examinations in the attempt to achieve a passing score. During the interval between repeated attempts to pass the examinations, students are in a non-promotional category. If unsuccessful after the third attempt, students will be dismissed from the College of Medicine. No additional attempts beyond the 3 will be allowed under any circumstance. Students have one calendar year in which to complete 3 attempts for each USMLE exam starting from the date of the first attempt, unless a time extension is pre-approved by the SPPC.
Students will be required to pass a Clinical Performance Examination before graduation. Students who do not pass the initial examination will be required to participate in remediation activities.
Weekend Exams/Clinical Work
Because of curricular requirements, Saturday examinations are occasionally scheduled. Allowances will be made for students whose religious beliefs prohibit participation in Saturday examinations. Clinical responsibilities during the third and fourth years will necessitate night and weekend work.
Occasionally, students wish to pursue charitable or clinical service activity outside the Medical Center. The Medical Center External Missions policy states that students are not covered by the University's malpractice insurance unless the college is granting academic credit for the activity. If the activity is not part of the academic program and does not receive academic credit, malpractice coverage is provided only if the activity is approved by the Dean of the college or his/her designee. Such a request must be received by the Dean or his/her designee in writing no later than one week before the beginning of the activity. The Dean will provide a copy of the request with his/her approval or disapproval to the Risk Management Committee. In cases of disapproval, it is the responsibility of the student to provide malpractice coverage.
Occasionally students receive a summons for jury duty that interferes with their curriculum. The College will provide a statement documenting the students situation and requesting relief from jury duty. Students should see the Deans for Student Affairs when a summons is received.
Required coursework during the four-year curriculum will on occasion be at off-site locations throughout the state of Kentucky. Students are responsible for their own transportation.
The demands of the medical school curriculum consume the entire efforts of medical students. Therefore, upon acceptance to the program of study, students are required to sign a statement indicating that they will not have outside employment during the academic year. For the exceptional case, permission may be granted by the SPPC upon petition by the student.
Each student must wear a Medical Center identification badge at all times. Whenever students are in patient care areas or meeting with patients, the following hospital dress code is in effect:
- Male students must wear a tie on all services in the hospital with dress pants, and dress shirt/sweater (the only exception is when in scrubs). No jeans or other informal pants are permitted.
- Female students must wear dresses, or well-coordinated skirts/dress slacks and blouses/sweaters/jackets. Tank tops, jeans and sun dresses are not allowed. All students must wear white jackets over scrubs when they leave the sterile area.
- Scrubs should be changed when soiled. Scrubs should not be worn in combination with other clothing. Scrubs are not to be worn outside of the hospital.
- Athletic shoes and open-toed sandals are not allowed in patient care areas.
These standards apply at both the Chandler Hospital and the VA Medical Center, while on clinical rotations, and when interacting with patients. Appropriate dress is expected when students are on off-site rotations.
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In various courses in the first two years, students participate in laboratory experiences. Students may not take any equipment out of the lab. Lab safety precautions must be maintained at all times and the lab must be cleaned up after every session. Food and drink are not allowed in the laboratory.
Students may not withdraw from individual required courses. A student may withdraw from enrollment in the College of Medicine at any time. The official withdrawal date is designated as the date Student Affairs receives a written request for withdrawal.
In the event that a student believes an alternate assignment may be required during medical school, the student should first contact the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs. The Assistant Dean for Student Affairs will then work with the appropriate individuals and/or committees within the College of Medicine to make a determination as to whether an alternate assignment is required; and if so, what will be the alternate assignment.
For additional information about NBME shelf exams during third year, please go to the following page:
NOTICE: These materials constitute the official versions of Academic Procedures. Should need to be updated a new version with a date specifying its effectiveness will be produced and posted with links back to this prior version. Although other printed or electronic copies of this document may exist, the user is advised to refer to and rely upon this official version of this material when making significant decisions or judgments.