Article 2: Academic Rights and Responsibilities for Medical Students


2.1.1 The establishment and maintenance of the proper relationship between instructor and student are fundamental to the University’s function and require both instructor and student to recognize the rights and responsibilities that derive from that relationship. The relationship between instructor and student should be founded on mutual respect and understanding together with shared dedication to the educational process.


2.2.1 No provision for the rights of medical students can be valid which suspends the rights of the faculty. The medical student’s right to competent instruction must be reconciled with the rights of the faculty, consistent with the principle that the competency of a professional can be rightly judged only by professionals. It is, therefore, acknowledged and mandated that competence of instruction shall be judged by the faculty.

2.2.2 Colleges, departments, and units shall provide clearly defined channels for the receipt and consideration of medical student complaints concerning instruction. In no instance shall a dispute concerning the competence of instruction form the basis for a grievance under this document.

2.2.3 Faculty shall have authority and responsibility for academic policy and practices in areas such as degree eligibility and requirements, course content and grading, classroom procedure, and standards of professional behavior in accordance with the Bylaws for Academic Governance, The Code of Teaching Responsibility, and other documents on faculty rights and responsibilities. It shall be the responsibility of the faculty of the Colleges of Human Medicine, Osteopathic Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine to establish and disseminate academic and professional requirements and the methods for evaluating student performance in their college. Determination of a medical student’s overall progress, performance, and standing in a given medical program shall be the prerogative of a student performance committee, established in accordance with college bylaws and procedures.

2.2.4 No hearing board established under this document shall direct a change in the evaluation of a medical student which represents a course instructor’s or instructional committee’s good faith judgment about the medical student’s academic performance. In the event that an evaluation is determined, by clear and convincing evidence, to be based on factors other than good faith judgment about the medical student’s academic performance, the dean of the appropriate college shall direct that the student’s performance be reassessed and that a good faith evaluation be conducted.


2.3.1 In all areas of medical education, the medical colleges shall comply with the University’s Anti-Discrimination Policy and all other University policies.

2.3.2 The medical student has a right to accurate, timely, and clearly written information concerning general academic requirements for establishing and maintaining an acceptable academic standing, the medical student’s academic relationship with the University, and any special academic conditions which may apply to the medical student. Requirements for the student’s academic program and written academic regulations, including codes of professional behavior, shall be made known to the medical student by the administering college at the time of the medical student’s enrollment. Medical students are responsible for informing themselves of University, college, department, and unit requirements stated in college publications and in the University catalog. In planning to meet such requirements, students are responsible for consulting with their academic advisers and appropriate officers of their college.

2.3.3 The medical student, regardless of degree program, has a right to the best advice the college can provide concerning program planning, research, professional expectations, selection of courses and professors, and general degree requirements.

2.3.4 The colleges shall maintain records for their medical students, specifying and/or containing degree requirements, course waivers and substitutions, program changes, and other stipulations directly affecting their degree programs. Medical students shall be provided access to and a copy of these records upon request.

2.3.5 Subject to Article 2.2, the medical student shall be free to take reasoned exception to information and views offered in instructional contexts and to reserve judgment about matters of opinion, without penalty or reprisal.

2.3.6 Medical students and faculty share responsibility for maintaining classroom decorum and a collegial atmosphere which promotes teaching and learning.

2.3.7 Each medical student shares with the faculty responsibility for maintaining the integrity of scholarship, grades, patient care, and professional standards.

2.3.8 The medical student is responsible for learning the content of a course of study according to standards of performance established by the faculty and for adhering to standards of professional behavior established by his/her college.

2.3.9 The medical student has a right to academic evaluations which represent good faith judgments of academic performance by course instructors. Course grades shall represent the instructor’s or instructors’ professional evaluation of the medical student’s academic performance, including compliance with professional standards. The medical student shall have the right to know all course requirements and grading criteria at the beginning of the course. (See also The Code of Teaching Responsibility.)

2.3.10 Faculty, academic staff, and support staff must respect the privacy of information concerning the medical student’s academic performance and the medical student’s values, beliefs, organizational affiliations, and health. (See also Article 3.)

2.3.11 Medical students and faculty members share responsibility for maintaining professional relationships based on mutual trust and civility.

2.3.12 Faculty, academic staff, and support staff may not exploit medical students. Medical students shall receive recognition for scholarly assistance to faculty.

2.3.13 The medical student has the right to refuse to participate in any research being conducted by faculty without penalty or reprisal.

2.3.14 The medical student has a right to have his/her grievance/complaint adjudicated in accordance with the procedures established in this document.

2.3.15 The medical student subject to disciplinary action for alleged unprofessional behavior has a right to an explanation from the appropriate college faculty of the allegation, including how the judgment of unprofessional behavior was made, and the right to appeal.


2.4.1  COLLEGE LEVEL.  Code of Professional Standards. Professional standards, as required by licensure, are a core part of academic training, weather in courses, clerkship settings, or outside of those specific activities while a student is enrolled in the college. Each medical college shall provide to medical students, at the time of their first enrollment in the college or in a course, any specific codes of professional behavior and other academic standards covering the conduct expected of them while enrolled in the college or in that course. Each medical college shall proceed according to its internally-defined processes to respond to breaches of professional standards.  Evaluation. Each medical college shall evaluate medical students’ academic progress, performance, and professional potential. Evaluation of medical students shall be made only by persons who are qualified to make those evaluations. Written descriptions of methods and bases of evaluations shall be provided to medical students and the faculty. Copies of written evaluations shall be provided to the medical student and placed in the medical student’s file. When a medical student’s progress or performance is unsatisfactory, the medical college shall so notify the student in writing in a timely manner and a copy of that notice shall be placed in the student’s file. Each medical college shall make reasonable efforts to identify those students who have problems with academic performance, including compliance with professional standards, and when appropriate, to provide opportunities for remediation and/or improvement.  Removal. Each medical college shall protect patients, clients, and the general public from unprofessional conduct and from performance which falls below minimally acceptable professional standards of care on the part of its students. The medical colleges must remove from patient or client contact any student who has been found to have engaged in unprofessional conduct which presents a significant possibility of harm to patients, to clients, or to the general public.  Dismissals and Withdrawals. Each medical college shall establish criteria for the dismissal or withdrawal of medical students enrolled in its medical programs. Such criteria shall be published and made available to medical students at the time they begin their medical programs. Should a decision to dismiss a medical student be made by the dean or student performance committee in a medical college, the affected medical student shall be so notified in writing in a timely manner, and the medical student may request a review for reinstatement. All information regarding the decision to dismiss is confidential and shall only be shared in accordance with the University’s policies governing the release of student records. Each medical college shall deal expeditiously with all academic dismissals, disciplinary dismissals, suspensions, appeals, and grievances.

2.4.2  JOINT MEDICAL/GRADUATE PROGRAM STUDENTS. Joint medical/graduate program students are responsible at the time they are enrolled in each program to review applicable University, college, department, and unit requirements. This document governs rights and responsibilities related to the medical program of a joint medical/graduate program student. The Graduate Student Rights and Responsibilities document (“GSRR”) governs rights and responsibilities related to the graduate program of a joint medical/graduate program student. Complaints/grievances arising from the application of this document or of the GSRR to a student jointly enrolled in graduate/medical programs shall be referred to the appropriate hearing board. The Dean of the Graduate School will determine the hearing board to which the case will be referred.