Grading: Foundations Level

Policy 540.30

Policy Statement

1. All courses in Foundations record a grade of Pass or Fail on the student transcript. 

2. Students must pass each institutional competency that is assessed in a course as defined in the course syllabus to pass the course. Any one competency in which they receive a grade of Fail, Incomplete or unsatisfactory progress must be remediated according to Policy 565.20 Review of Academic Performance: Foundations Level.

3. For courses that include a clinical skills component, the following policies apply:

  1. The Clinical Skills Examination (CSE) portion of a course will be graded as pass or fail.
  2. A student must receive a passing CSE grade to pass the course.
  3. A student must pass all assessed domains of the CSE to receive a passing grade.
  4. Failure to pass the CSE on the first attempt results in a grade of incomplete. Failure to pass the CSE on the second attempt results in a grade of Fail for the course. A student who receives a grade of Incomplete must remediate and retake the CSE within two weeks of notification of their CSE grade. A student will be notified via email of their CSE grade. It is the responsibility of the student to contact the Clinical Simulation Lab to schedule remediation.

4. Course syllabi may include additional information about mandatory attendance and specific instructions for completion of course assignments.

5. Grades in all Foundations courses will be assigned according to individual course syllabus grading rubrics.

  1. An overall grade of 70.00 or above is recorded as a Pass. An overall grade below 70.00 is recorded as a Fail.
  2. A final grade of Pass in Foundations of Clinical Sciences (MD-540) requires a passing score of 70.00 or above for each block of the course.
  3. Although not recorded on the transcript, final numeric grades are recorded for use in determining academic awards or for calculation of grades for transfer purposes.
  4. Grades for courses approved for graduate credit may be converted to letter grades for transfer to other programs at UVM or other universities; details are contained in the Policy Elaboration.

6. Students that receive a final course grade between 70.00 – 74.99 will receive notice that their grade is considered a Marginal Pass by the Larner College of Medicine. The Marginal Pass grade is a formative grade that does not appear on the official UVM transcript but is recorded in the student’s Larner College of Medicine file and is reviewed by the Advancement Committee in its evaluation of student progress.

7. The process for appealing a grade is specified in Policy 540.60 Grade Appeals and Narrative Assessment Appeals.

8. All students’ Foundations grades are routinely reviewed by the Advancement Committee as specified in Policy 565.20 Review of Academic Performance: Foundations Level.

9. To be eligible to take the End of Foundations Clinical Skills Exam, all required Foundations course work must be successfully completed. Students must pass the End of Foundations Clinical Skills Exam before they can advance to the Clerkship Level. Failure on the first attempt requires remediation and a retake of the exam. Failure on the second attempt requires review by the Advancement Committee.

Policy Elaboration

Foundations Post-Exam Review and Re-Grading of Exams

Each secure examination in Foundations will be subjected to a post-exam item performance analysis.
Statistical analysis of the performance of the class on each question to determine quality and validity of exam items will be used. This analysis may result in removal of invalid items from the exam with subsequent re-scoring.

Transfer of Foundations Course Grades

Courses approved for graduate credit may be transferred to other programs at UVM or other universities, including the following courses: 
  • Foundations of Clinical Sciences (MD-540) 18 credits
  • Attacks and Defenses (MD-555) 6 credits
  • Nutrition, Metabolism, and Gastrointestinal Systems (MD-556) 8 credits
  • Medical Neuroscience (MD-557) 9 credits
  • Connections (MD-558) 3 credits
  • Cardiovascular, Respiratory, and Renal Systems (MD-559) 8 credits
  • Human Development and Reproductive Health (MD-560) 8 credits
Students who require a grade report with Foundation Level grades for applications to other programs may request one from the College of Medicine Registrar. For Foundations of Clinical Sciences (MD-540), the average of final block scores will be used to assign the final course grade. Students with individual block failures will be assigned an F unless the block was remediated, in which case, the average of blocks with the remediated scores will be assigned. For all other courses, letter grades will be assigned using the course grade percentages according to the approved grading scale below: 

A+      94-100 
A        91-93.9 
A-       88-90.9
B+       85-87.9 
B        80-84.9
B-       78-79.9 
C+      75-77.9
C        72-74.9 
C-       70-71.9 percent
F        <70.0 percent

For internal program transfer of credits, the Foundations Level courses have the following UVM Graduate College course equivalents: