Minutes 03.21.02

Minutes 03.21.02

University of Virginia School of Medicine

Curriculum Committee

Minutes 03.21.02

Pediatric Pathology Conference Room, 4:00 PM

Present (underlined) were: Reid Adams, Robert Bloodgood, Victoria Camerini, Anita Clayton, Al Connors, Gene Corbett, Donald Innes (Chair), Howard Kutchai,Nelle Linz, Jerry Short, Bill Wilson, Debra Reed (secretary) Guests: Allison Innes, Richard Pearson

  1. Change in Neuroscience Lab Schedule. Renovations to the Jordan Hall 2nd floor labs will interfere with a Neuroscience laboratory session. The Curriculum Committee endorses the one time only use of the 12:00-1:00 (lunch) time slot to accommodate the renovations.

  2. Neuroscience Course Director. Dr. Joel Hockensmith will be taking a one year sabbatical - Dr. Clive Bradbeer will be the acting course director for this year. Dr. Hockensmith will prepare the course prior to his departure and resume course directors duties when he returns.

  3. Further discussion of USMLE Steps 1 and 2.

    Richard Pearson and Allison Innes from Student Affairs briefed the committee on problems incurred with the current and previous UVA policies regarding the USLME Step 1 and 2 exams. With the input of Richard Pearson and Allison Innes the Curriculum Committee continued it's discussion from the previous week. See the Curriculum Committee minutes for 03.14.02.

    Should a passing score on USMLE 1 and 2 be required for the awarding of a M.D. degree from the University of Virginia School of Medicine?

    Successful completion of Steps 1 and 2 are required to obtain a medical license in the United States and we expect that our graduates should be capable of practicing anywhere in the nation. The Curriculum Committee was in agreement that a passing score on USMLE 1 and 2 should continue to be a requirement for graduation.

    Should passing Step 1 be required before continuing on to third year and should there be a limit to the number of times each exam can be taken?

    A number of states require the exams to be taken no more than three times before successful completion for licensure. Again we expect that our graduates should be capable of practicing anywhere in the nation

    A great deal of discussion focused on concerns about fairness to students taking the tests multiple times. Increasing debt and the need to make career decisions in the face of decreasing chances of success were discussed. Careful mentoring of the student is required. It was agreed that successful completion of Step 1 should be required before continuing on to the clinical years 3/4. It was furthermore, recommended that a limit of three attempts should also be the UVA School of Medicine policy.

    The Curriculum Committee will defer the recommendation and remediation decision for USMLE-1 failures to the Promotions Committee. The Promotions Committee will decide based on the individual student record whether to recommend retest or repeat of the second year followed by retest. If retest is recommended, student could begin the 3rd year clinical rotations with the understanding that if Step 1 is not passed on the second try, they will not be able to finish the third year and must retake the second year.

    For example, if an "A" student fails USMLE-1, the student might be allowed to continue with clerkships and retake USMLE-1 in the fall. We expect that this student would pass on the second attempt.

    In a second example, the student identified as borderline, e.g. the "C" student, fails USMLE-1, the student would be asked to repeat the second year and retake USMLE-1 in the following spring. In the collective experience of the group, this student, having repeated the 2nd year, would be expected to pass on the second USMLE-1 attempt.
The next meeting of the Curriculum Committee will be April 4, 2002, 4:00 p.m. Howard Kutchai and Robert Bloodgood will report to the Committee on the Physiology/CTS Course 2001. Time will be allowed for discussion of a new grading system for years 1 & 2.

-Don Innes
-dmr