Grading Policies


Overall Clerkship Grade Policy:

Per the SSOM grading system, the final grade for the Psychiatry Clerkship will be:  Honors, High Pass, Pass, Fail, Unsatisfactory or Incomplete.  The final grade is based on the total number of points earned out of the 360 maximum.  The contributions of each educationsl exercise towards the overall clerkship grade are as follows:


Max points

Percentage of grade

Clinical Performance Evaluation


100/360 = 27.8%

Clerkship Exam


100/360 = 27.8%

SPPAM presentation


40/360 = 11.1%

Standardized Patient Exercise


40/360 = 11.1%

Video OSCE


35/360 = 9.7%

Risk Assessment Exercise


15/360 = 4.16%

Mental Status Exam Exercise


15/360 = 4.17%

Quiz/IRATs - Individual Readiness Assessment Tests

15 total

15/360 = 4.17%


Example:  Mean = 310, Standard Deviation=10


> Mean + 1.1 Standard Deviation            

Honors  > 321

High Pass:        

Mean to Mean + 1 Standard Deviation 

High Pass 310-321


< Mean                                                  

Pass < 310

Clinical Performance Evaluation

Approximately the fifth week of the clerkship, students will provide their supervising clinical attending(s) with the clinical performance evaluation form from their orientation packet. After filling out the form, the supervising clinical attending will review the evaluation with the student. At this time, if there are any concerns regarding the clinical evaluation the student may discuss this with their supervising clinical attending. After the review of the clinical evaluation, both the attending and student sign the evaluation form. The attending is responsible for returning the form to the Clerkship Coordinator.

While the supervising clinical attending is ultimately responsible for the evaluation, the attending is encouraged to consider input from others about the student's clinical performance.   If the student has worked with multiple attendings, a composite evaluation may be done. Or each attending may fill out a separate evaluation. In the event of multiple attending evaluations, each evaluation will be weighted by the amount of clinical time the student spent with each attending.

Students must receive a passing evaluation to pass the clerkship.  A Likert scale of 6-10 is applied to the evaluation form.  A passing evaluation score is set as > 80%.  Hypothetically, if a student received a failing evaluation and a passing evaluation, final determination of pass/fail would be done by the Clerkship Director after reviewing all available information with the two supervising clinical attendings who did the individual evaluations.


Clerkship Exam

Students must pass the clerkship exam to pass the clerkship. The passing score cutoff is set as > 60%.   If any exam question(s) are thrown out, all students are given credit for those question(s).

Students Presenting Psychiatric Aspects of Medicine (SPPAM presentation)

SPPAM faculty (psychiatrists, psychologists, or senior residents) will evaluate individual student's presentations. The final numerical evaluation is the average of the SPPAM faculty's evaluations. Alternatively, the SPPAM faculty may together fill out one composite evaluation for the student's presentation.  There is no defined minimal passing score for SPPAM.

Mental Status Exam, Risk Assessment, Standardized Patient, Video OSCE exercises                   

Individual student exercises are de-identified prior to the application of the exercise scoring rubric.  There is no defined minimal passing score for these individual exercises.

Competencies:  Meets, Meets with Concerns, Does Not Meet

This part of the grading system is for internal use by SSOM to identify students who have struggled in competency area(s) over multiple clerkships.  SSOM desires to use this system to identify struggling students and then to help these students successfully address whatever issues are hindering their performance.  Information contained in this section does NOT appear in a student's Dean's Letter. 

In general, a student's individual performance on an exercise is compared with student performance data from the past academic year and any individual performance that is more than 2 Standard Deviations below the mean of the past year's data may result in a Meets with Concerns for one of the Competencies.  Consideration is given to when during the academic year the individual performance took place.

A Clerkship Exam performance that is passing, but close to the pass/fail cut-off, will result in a Meets with Concerns designation for a Competency.  Similarly, an Overall Clerkship Composite Score that is passing, but close to the pass/fail cut-off, will result in a Meets with Concerns designation for one of the Competencies.

Failure and Remediation

A failing Clerkship Exam will require successful remediation in order to pass the clerkship.  All clerkship exam remediation are set-up in conjunction with the Dean of Student Affair's office after the student meets with the Associate Dean of Student Affairs.

Similarly, a failing Clinical Performance Evaluation will require successful remediation to pass the clerkship. All Clinical Performance remediation are set up in conjunction with the Dean of Student Affair's office after the student has met with the Associate Dean of Student Affairs.

Finally, a failing performance from not meeting the minimal required overall composite score standard will require successful remediation in order to pass the clerkship.  All remediation of a failure from  not meeting the overall composite score standard is set up in conjunction with the Dean of Student Affair's office after the student has met with the Associate Dean of Student Affairs.

Upon successful remediation, a revised grade of Pass will be submitted to the Registrar's Office. Unsuccessful remediation attempt(s), whether a student has earned a P* passing grade for the clerkship, or has failed the clerkship are determined per the SSOM Academic Policy Manuel regarding these issues.

Students will NOT be required to remediate the Standardized Patient exercise, the Video OSCE exercise, SPPAM, the Mental Status Exam Exercise, the Risk Assessment Exercise or any IRAT's/quizzes due to a poor performance in that particular activity. In the event of an irregularity in one of these exercises, that activity may need to be repeated/remediated per the discretion of the Clerkship Director. In the event of an overall clerkship failure, these activities may play a role in the remediation of the clerkship.

Grade Reporting

The final grade will be reported to the Registrar within 30 days of the last day of the clerkship. Once the Registrar has processed all documentation, the Registrar will notify students that their grades are available. Please note that the SSOM grading system requires the grade data (grade ranges, grade cutoffs) to be in a percentage format.


At the end of the academic year, a review is done in which an overall year-long Mean (M) and Standard Deviation (SD) is calculated. In reviewing the entire years' worth of grades, some students would have received a higher grade had the full year's M and SD been used for the grading cut-offs rather than their individual clerkship's M and SD.  For students who would benefit from the use of the full year's M and SD, their grades are raised to the higher grade. Please note, SSOM's grade distribution guidelines per the Central Curricular Authority are also taken into account during the end-of-the-year-review.  In no situation will a student's grade be lowered as a result of the end-of-the-year-review.

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