Satisfactory Academic Progress


Policy 560.00


Policy Statement


Students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) in order to remain enrolled as candidates for the M.D. degree. The Larner College of Medicine SAP policy includes both qualitative and quantitative standards. Academic progress for medical students is closely monitored by the Larner College of Medicine Committee on Advancement. The specific standards by which the Committee on Advancement operates are detailed within the Medical Student Handbook.

Policy Elaboration


Qualitative Standards
  1. The qualitative standards for academic progress are detailed in Policy 565.20 Review of Academic Performance and Policy 690.20 Review of Professional Performance, and each student’s progress is reviewed at least once each academic year by the Committee on Advancement.
  2. Students must pass each segment of the curriculum to the satisfaction of the Committee on Advancement before advancing to the next segment and must complete all requirements of the curriculum to the satisfaction of the Committee in order to graduate. Students must maintain academic standing consistent with the Larner College of Medicine’s graduation requirements, as outlined in Policy 565.45 Graduation Degree Requirements. Students are considered to have academic standing consistent with the College’s graduation requirements if they are progressing through the curriculum to the satisfaction of the Committee on Advancement.
  3. As outlined in the Review of Academic and Professional Performance Policies, students who fail any course, clerkship, or advanced rotation may, with the permission of the Committee on Advancement, establish a formal plan to remove those deficiencies, which may include repeating the course(s), clerkship rotation(s), or advanced integration rotation(s). A student removing deficiencies in the Foundations Level and/or in one or more Clerkship Level rotations and/or Advanced Integration Level rotations with the approval of the Committee on Advancement is considered to have an academic standing consistent with the College’s standards for graduation and, therefore, to be making Satisfactory Academic Progress, provided they continue to meet the quantitative standards.
  4. Students who fail to meet the qualitative standards are dismissed from the Larner College of Medicine.
Quantitative Standards
  1. The maximum time frame to earn the M.D. is six years, including leaves of absence granted by the Larner College of Medicine. Except as noted below, students shall not remain enrolled as candidates for the M.D. degree, and shall not receive financial aid, beyond six academic years from their matriculation to the Larner College of Medicine. Note that applicants officially become students of the Larner College of Medicine on the first day of classes.
  2. The Larner College of Medicine curriculum is comprised of three segments: Foundations, Clerkship and Advanced Integration. The standard lengths of these curricular segments are as follows:
    1. Foundations Level – 19 months
    2. Clerkship Level – 12 months
    3. Advanced Integration Level – 14 months
  3. In order to ensure timely progress toward their degrees and maintain satisfactory academic standing, students must:
    1. Complete the Foundations Level within three years of matriculation to the Larner College of Medicine.
    2. Complete the Clerkship Level within two years; students who take more than the standard 19 months to complete the Foundations Level must plan for completion of the Clerkship Level on a schedule that ensures completion of the full M.D. program, including the Advanced Integration Level, by the end of the sixth academic year from their Larner College of Medicine matriculation date.
    3. Complete the Advanced Integration Level:
      1. Within two years OR
      2. By the end of the sixth academic year following their Larner College of Medicine matriculation date, whichever is sooner.
  4. Students granted leaves of absence from the Larner College of Medicine M.D. program in order to pursue additional degrees (e.g., Master’s in Public Health) at a Title IV approved institution must meet the standards outlined in (1), (2) and (3) above and may not take more than six cumulative years to earn the M.D. degree. The period of time during which students are on leaves of absence to pursue additional degrees is excluded from the six-year cumulative maximum time frame.
  5. The quantitative standards are monitored by the Committee on Advancement. Students who fail to meet the quantitative standards are ineligible for financial aid; however, students will be eligible for financial aid during periods of Financial Aid Probation and/or when academic plans are established as the result of an Appeal, and/or review and approval to from the Committee on Advancement to continue in the curriculum, which will allow students to meet the quantitative standards by specified dates.
Repeated Coursework

A student repeating a course, clerkship or rotation with the approval of the Committee on Advancement is considered to be making Satisfactory Academic Progress provided they continue to meet the quantitative and qualitative standards.

Grades of Incomplete and Course Withdrawals

Grades of Incomplete and Withdrawn may be made up with the permission of the Committee on Advancement. A student completing a plan to address a grade of Incomplete or Withdrawal, with the approval of the Committee on Advancement, is considered to have an academic standing consistent with the College’s graduation requirements and therefore to be maintaining Satisfactory Academic Progress, provided they continue to meet the quantitative standards.

Grades of Incomplete due to a first failure of Clinical Skills Examinations may be remediated without authorization of the Committee on Advancement as described in Policy 540.30 Grading: Foundations  Level and Policy 540.40 Grading: Clerkship Level.  A grade of Incomplete due to a first failure of a clerkship knowledge assessment may also be remediated without Committee on Advancement authorization.

Incomplete

An Incomplete is a temporary grade, recorded by the Course Director when the student must complete a finite amount of work in order to satisfy the learning objectives without re-enrolling in the course.

A grade of Incomplete may be recorded on a student’s transcript in the following circumstances:

  1. Any level:
    1. An examination delay approved by the Associate/Assistant Dean for Students.
    2. Failure to meet goals and objectives of the course with approved absence.
  2. Foundations Level:
    1. Failure to pass the Clinical Skills Exam (CSE) on the first attempt.
  3. Clerkship Level:
    1. Failure to pass the assessment of medical knowledge on the first attempt but passing all other graded components of the clerkship and completing all clerkship assignments.
    2. Failure to pass the CSE on the first attempt but passing all other graded components of the clerkship and completing all clerkship assignments.
A student who receives a grade of Incomplete for failure to pass a Foundations Level CSE on the first attempt must remediate and retake the CSE within two weeks of notification of their CSE grade. For the Clerkship Level, a grade of Incomplete may be removed by successful retake of either the cognitive exam or the assessment of clinical skills examination (whichever applies). 

When entering a grade of Incomplete to a student’s record, the Course/Clerkship Director may specify a deadline for the student to address the Incomplete not to exceed one calendar year from the end date of the original course/rotation and an alternate grade to be recorded if the grade of Incomplete has not been addressed by the stated deadline. In the absence of an alternate deadline, as established by the Director, and in the absence of a final grade, all grades of Incomplete will be automatically updated to a final grade of Fail effective one year from date the grade of Incomplete was originally posted to the student electronic records system (OASIS).
Course Withdrawals

A final course grade of Withdrawn may be recorded on a student’s transcript in the following circumstances:

  • Any level: An important distinction, especially if considering a leave of absence, a final course grade of Withdrawn will be recorded if a student wishes to “step out of” a learning activity after the first meeting of the course, clerkship, or clinical rotation. A grade of Incomplete may be recorded only if the criteria noted under the Incomplete section of this policy (Policy 560.00) is met.
  • Foundations Level: A student may withdraw from a Foundations Level course following the review and approval of a request submitted in writing. Requests to withdrawal must be approved by the Associate/Assistant Dean for Students in consultation with the Course Director. The request must be made prior to the onset of the final examination in the course. The transcript grade for such a course will be recorded as Withdrawn unless the student’s cumulative grade in the course is failing at the time of withdrawal. In that event, a grade of Fail will be recorded. A student must enroll in a remediation or full future delivery of the course or equivalent of the course if/when the course no longer exists in order to complete the course requirements. All plans for course remediation must be approved by the Committee on Advancement prior to enrolling in the course and/or remediation Requests to return to the curriculum following course withdrawals will be reviewed by the Committee on Advancement.
  • Clerkship Level: A student may withdraw from a clerkship rotation following the review and approval of a request submitted in writing. Requests for withdrawal must be approved by the Associate/Assistant Dean for Students in consultation with the Clerkship Director. The request must be made prior to the final day of the rotation. The transcript grade of Withdrawn will be recorded for such a rotation. A narrative assessment of the student’s performance prior to the withdrawal will be submitted for incorporation in the student’s permanent record. Requests to return to the curriculum following Clerkship Level withdrawals will be reviewed by the Committee on Advancement.

Medical students who wish to permanently withdraw from the College should refer to Policy 593.00 Withdrawing from the Larner College of Medicine.

Academic Amnesty

All coursework completed as part of a student’s M.D. program at the Larner College of Medicine shall be evaluated when determining whether the student is making academic progress. Academic records are never altered or expunged after students remediate or retake courses and degree requirements.

Financial Aid Implications

Students shall reference the University of Vermont Student Financial Services Financial Aid Handbook for related policies. Unless permanently dismissed from the Larner College of Medicine, student loans remain available to utilize during periods of credit-bearing academic enrollment.

Institutional Scholarships

The Larner College of Medicine has the right to terminate any institutional scholarship funding in the instance of failing grade(s) and/or any evidence of unsatisfactory academic progress. Scholarship recipients shall have the right to appeal for scholarship reinstatement following successful remediation and/or academic plan approved by the Committee on Advancement.

Applicability of the Policy


All Medical Students

Related Larner College of Medicine Policies


Related University of Vermont Policies


University of Vermont Student Financial Services Financial Aid Handbook

History


  • 7/16/2013 Policy Adopted/Affirmed [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 6/19/2018 Policy Revised: Incompletes and Withdrawals [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 6/19/2018 Policy Revised: Quantitative Standards [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 9/18/2018 Policy Revised: Quantitative Standards [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 6/18/2019 Policy Revised: Academic Amnesty [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 8/20/2019 Gender Neutral Language Edit: Notification and Right to Appeal [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 6/16/2020 Policy Revised: All sections combined into one policy [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 8/6/2020 Policy Revised [Medical Curriculum Committee]
  • 9/30/2020 Policy Revised [Medical Curriculum Committee]

Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) Standard(s)


  • 9.6 Setting Standards of Achievement
  • 9.9 Student Advancement and Appeal Process
  • 10.3 Policies Regarding Student Selection/Progress and Their Dissemination

Policy Oversight


Associate/Assistant Dean for Students (Director of Academic Achievement)

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