Purpose and Role
The Student Evaluations and Promotions Committee (SEPC) is charged with the responsibility of reviewing student performance, enforcing academic standards, and assessing a student’s suitability to practice medicine. The primary responsibility for the evaluation and promotion of students rests with the academic departments of the Medical School. The faculty has an obligation to the students, to the school, and to society to evaluate students and promote and graduate only those who have demonstrated their suitability for the practice of medicine both in cognitive and in noncognitive areas such as clinical ability, interpersonal relations, and personal conduct and professional characteristics. This obligation continues from matriculation to graduation. The evaluation of performance in noncognitive areas is particularly important in the clinical years. A student whose performance in noncognitive areas is deemed by the faculty to be unacceptable, even if grades on tests and other evaluations are satisfactory, will be subject to dismissal.
The faculty of the Medical School has the responsibility for identifying students who are in academic difficulty and determining whether the deficiency can be remediated or the student should be dismissed. This responsibility is administered through the Student Evaluations and Promotions Committee (SEPC) as the representative body of the faculty-at-large. Grades and other information relative to a student’s academic performance are transmitted to the SEPC which reviews the cumulative record of the student and, based upon an overall consideration of the student’s grades, demonstrated knowledge, clinical performance and suitability to practice medicine, decides whether a student should be promoted, continued with remedial work assigned, or dismissed. Any student whose record indicates that he/she is not qualified to continue the study of medicine will be dismissed. The SEPC may dismiss a student after a review of his/her complete record, if the student’s performance in noncognitive areas such as clinical ability, interpersonal relations, personal and professional characteristics makes him/her unsuitable for the practice of medicine. The SEPC
shall also determine when it is appropriate for a student who has been required to do remedial work to progress to the next level.
The SEPC is comprised of faculty members appointed by the Dean based upon recommendations by the Committee on Committees (Bylaws, McGovern Medical School) with non-voting but appropriate administrative support. Clerkship directors, module directors, and discipline directors are not eligible to be on the SEPC. A quorum, defined as seven (7) voting members of the Committee, must be present for the Committee to conduct official business. Decisions of the committee are made by a majority vote of the members present at an official meeting. The Chair casts a vote in the case of a tie.
All committee members sign confidentiality agreements that comply with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) regulations.
Student appeals of SEPC decisions are ultimately decided by the Dean of the medical school.
Members of the SEPC are asked to declare any conflicts with the students who will appear before the SEPC at that meeting. Members with conflicts are asked to step out of the meeting prior to any discussion of the student and not return until committee actions are final.