The following college-level policies are subject to University Council Regulations. In the absence of information, or in the case of discrepancies between university and college regulations, university regulations will prevail. Please note that students will graduate according to the regulations effective for the year in which they are approved to graduate. In all other cases, the most current rules will apply, unless otherwise stated.

Please note the following academic information and policies that relate to the Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) program:

Promotion and Graduation

Student Promotion 

The academic performance of each student will be considered by the relevant Year or Term committee who will recommend that a student be:

  • Promoted,
  • Required to Repeat a portion of the program, or
  • Required to Discontinue.

Year or Term Committee Meetings are held at the end of each promotion period to consider student performance. Promotion recommendations will be forwarded to the Student Academic Management Committee (Promotion committee for the MD program) for a final determination of the student’s status. Note that, although numeric grades are often used within the college to delineate standards of achievement for promotion and awards, the final transcript will indicate only pass (P) or fail (F). A student who has been not been promoted due to being unsuccessful in one or more course will receive a fail (F) on his/her transcript for the relevant course(s).

Promotion and graduation decisions will be made in keeping with the principle that a student must demonstrate academic performance and professional attributes sufficient to support their success in subsequent portions of the program or post-graduate education. The Student Academic Management Committee will make promotion and graduation decisions in accordance with the Promotion standards and this principle. Notwithstanding the Standards, the Student Academic Management Committee can make decisions that uphold the principle. Students who meet the Standards for unconditional promotion and for whom there are no professional behaviour concerns that would prevent promotion will be considered by definition to have met the principle outlined above.

Update Approved College of Medicine Faculty Council January 30, 2019

M.D. Program Promotion Standards - Pre-Clerkship

For students enrolled in the MD program the following promotion standards will apply:

In the pre-clerkship period (Years 1 and 2), students must achieve the following in order to be promoted to the next term of the program:

Successful completion of each course in each term in the pre-clerkship period, as described in the course syllabus for each course.

a. Students who have successfully completed all courses will be promoted unconditionally.

b. Students who have been unsuccessful in any one course will be required to either remediate the course in which they were unsuccessful, repeat a portion of the program, or discontinue, based on the following considerations:

  • academic performance in all courses of that term, including performance on individual in-course assessment components and modules
  • academic performance in previous terms in the MD program
  • other mitigating circumstances

c. Students who have been unsuccessful in more than one course will be required to either repeat a portion of the program or discontinue. 

d. Students may be required to remediate a portion of the program, repeat a portion of the program, be suspended for a period of time, or be required to discontinue on the basis of unprofessional behaviour.

Students will be allowed to repeat no more than two terms (or portions of terms) of the pre-clerkship curriculum due to failure of promotion based on academic reasons or academic withdrawal. 

In addition, students will be allowed a total of no more than six years for completion of the MD Program for reasons of academic failure/academic withdrawal. This will not apply to withdrawal/leaves for medical or personal reasons in which academic performance is not a concern or for approved degree programs in which the student is in good academic standing. Student Academic Management Committee (SAMC) will determine appropriate duration of withdrawal periods and placement on return to program in order to support student success.

M.D. Program Promotion Standards - Clerkship

For students enrolled in the M.D. program, the following promotion standards will apply:

In Year 3 of the clerkship period, students must achieve the following in order to be promoted to Year 4:

Successful completion of each course in Year 3, as determined by that Course’s policies as per the Course Syllabus.

a. Students who have successfully completed all courses will be promoted unconditionally.

b. Students who have been unsuccessful in any one course (with the exception of Core Clinical Rotations – see “c” below) will be required to either remediate that course, repeat a portion of the program, or discontinue the program, based on the following considerations:

  • academic performance in all courses of that year, including performance on individual in-course assessment components and modules
  • academic performance in previous terms in the MD program
  • other mitigating circumstances

c. Students who have been unsuccessful in the Core Rotations Course, or in more than one of the other Year 3 courses (Selected Topics in Medicine; Selective Clinical Rotations; Success in Medical School III) will not be promoted, but will be required to either repeat a portion of the program or discontinue.

d. Students may also be required to remediate a portion of the program, repeat a portion of the program, be suspended for a period of time, or be required to discontinue on the basis of unprofessional behaviour.

In Year 4 of the clerkship period, students must achieve the following in order to graduate:

Successful completion of each course in each Year 4, as determined by that Course’s policies as per the Course Syllabus.

a. Students who have successfully completed all courses will graduate unconditionally.

b. Students who have been unsuccessful in one or more Year 4 course(s) will not graduate, but will be required to either repeat a portion of the program, or discontinue.

c. Students may also be required to remediate a portion of the program, repeat a portion of the program, be suspended for a period of time, or be required to discontinue on the basis of unprofessional behaviour.

Students will be allowed to repeat each year of the clerkship program (or portion of that year) no more than once due to failure of promotion based on academic reasons, or academic withdrawal.

In addition, students will be allowed a total of no more than six years for completion of the MD Program for academic failure /academic withdrawal reasons. This will not apply to withdrawal/leaves for medical or personal reasons in which academic performance is not a concern or for approved additional degree programs in which the student is in good academic standing. SAMC will determine appropriate duration of withdrawal periods and placement on return to program in order to support student success.

Assessment System

Assessment of students shall measure relevant knowledge, skills, values and attitudes in sufficient detail to give an adequate picture of the student’s strengths and weaknesses in regards to the stated educational objectives of that course of instruction.

There shall be formative (ongoing) as well as suitable summative (final) evaluation of student progress.  The results of assessment shall be transmitted to the student at appropriate intervals and in sufficient detail to enable corrective measures to be taken.

Final grade reports of medical students shall be reported to the Office of the Registrar as Pass (P), Pass No Credit (PN), Withdrawal (W), or Fail (F) for all courses in all four years of the MD program at the University of Saskatchewan.*

*(IP) indicates that the courses are in-progress and final grades (P or F) will only be applied to the final term.

Grading System

Recognizing that medical students, as future physicians participating in patient care, require a high level of knowledge and competence, the College of Medicine operates on an alternate grading system as described below.

1.  The College of Medicine operates on a pass/fail system. Grades submitted may include:

P (Pass): Performance demonstrates requisite knowledge and competence in that course.

PN (Pass No Credit): Performance demonstrates requisite knowledge and competence in that course, however student is required to repeat the course due to not meeting promotion standards in parallel integrated curriculum.

W (Withdrawal): If a student withdraws from the class after the add-drop deadline but before the withdrawal deadline for that class, the class remains on their transcript and is shown as a withdrawal.
Withdrawal is a grading status alternative which appears permanently on a student's transcript as a W.

Withdrawal has no academic standing and does not impact the calculation of a student's average. If a student withdraws from a class before the add-drop deadline for a term, the listing of the class is deleted from their transcript.

F (Fail): Performance does not demonstrate requisite knowledge and competence in that course.

2.  Within the majority of courses a numeric grade is assigned for internal program use to determine level of knowledge and competence, to identify students at academic risk, and to assist with determination of awards.  70% is the default pass mark within the program for courses which assign a numeric mark.  The pass mark is verified and supported by an accepted method of standard setting.  

In some instances individual assessments may have a pass mark other than 70%, where justified by the assessment type; in this case the pass mark is verified and supported by an accepted method of standard setting.

3. The following descriptors apply to marks for internal program use:

90-100 Excellent

A superior performance with consistently strong evidence of:

  • a comprehensive grasp of subject matter;
  • an ability to make insightful, critical evaluation of information;
  • an exceptional capacity for self-reflection and original, creative and/or logical thinking;
  • an excellent ability to organize, analyze, synthesize, and integrate concepts, to effectively apply these to solving clinical problems, and to express thoughts fluently;
  • demonstration of excellent clinical skills including effective and compassionate patient interactions, and highly effective communication of knowledge.

80-89 Good to Very Good

A good to very good performance with evidence of:

  • a comprehensive grasp of subject matter;
  • an ability to make insightful, critical evaluation of information;
  • a good to very good capacity for self-reflection and original, creative and/or logical thinking;
  • a good to very good ability to organize, analyze, synthesize, and integrate concepts to effectively apply these to solving clinical problems, and to express thoughts fluently;
  • demonstration of strong clinical skills including effective and compassionate patient interactions and communication of knowledge.

70-79 Satisfactory to Good

A satisfactory to good performance with evidence of:

  • a substantial knowledge of subject matter, adequate to ensure safe patient care;
  • a satisfactory to good ability to critically evaluate information;
  • a satisfactory to good capacity for self-reflection and logical thinking; and satisfactory
  • a satisfactory to good ability to organize, to analyze, and integrate concepts and apply  these to solving clinical problems, and to express thoughts clearly
  • demonstration of satisfactory to good clinical skills including effective and compassionate patient interactions and satisfactory communication of knowledge.

Less than 70 Fail

Unacceptable knowledge and/or performance, deemed inadequate to ensure future safe patient care.

4.  As per the Course Syllabi and MD Program Promotion Standards, students who are otherwise successful in a course may fail a course/ fail to be promoted on the basis of unprofessional conduct.

Examinations

Scheduling of Examinations

Final examinations shall be held as soon as possible after the end of classes.

A mid-term examination may qualify as a scheduled exam for purposes of promotion provided that:

  • Intention of its being held is announced at the beginning of the course and included in the class syllabus;
  • The actual date of an exam will be included in the class syllabus.

Mid-term examinations for promotion shall be scheduled through Directors of Instruction.  Exceptions to the regulations on the scheduling of examinations require the approval of the Curriculum Committee.

Examinations in Clerkship will be held within rotations and the timing of exams are described in the course syllabus and communicated during rotation orientations.

Deferred Examinations

A student who is absent from a final examination through no fault of his/her own, for medical or other valid reasons, may apply for a deferred examination. Please see the College of Medicine Deferred Exam Policy.

Remediation & Supplemental Assessment

A student who fails an examination, module or course requirement may be granted a supplemental assessment or remediation under the regulations established by the College (for more specific information please refer to the appropriate course syllabus and the Undergraduate Medical Education Remediation Policy

Success in supplemental assessment or remediation will be accorded a maximum grade equivalent to the minimum requirement for successful completion of that component of the curriculum.

Appeals

Please note that appeals of evaluation, grading, and academic standing are governed by university-wide council regulations.

The specific procedures for applying the university regulations at the College level are described in the Undergraduate Medical Education Procedures for Academic Appeals

Licensure

MEDICAL COUNCIL OF CANADA

The Medical Council of Canada (MCC) is registered as a corporation under the Canadian Corporation Act. It is empowered to establish an examination board for the purpose of conducting medical licensing examinations and to establish a Canadian Medical Register. The LMCC (Licentiate of the Medical Council of Canada) qualification is granted to graduate physicians who have passed the Qualifying Examinations (QE) Part I and II, conducted by the MCC.

All students in the College of Medicine are expected to sit the MCC QE Part I examination in their graduation year. This examination is a national examination with national standards and is delivered “on-line” to all Canadian medical students. All Canadian students are also expected to sit the MCC QE Part II. The majority of students take this examination early in their postgraduate training. This examination is also a national examination with national standards and is an objective structured clinical examination (OSCE).

COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS AND SURGEONS

The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan (CPSS) is the provincial licensing body for medical practitioners. Student enrolled in the MD program are licensed as pre-clerkship students at the beginning of Year 1. This educational license is renewed at the beginning of clerkship and again in postgraduate training.