Master of Medical Science Physician Assistant

Policies & Procedures


General Policies

This page is intended to be a general overview of the PA program policies.  A complete guide to these policies is contained in the PA program student handbook and the School of Medicine handbook, distributed to all matriculating students.

Advanced Placement

Course work in the Physician Assistant program is different from most traditional graduate programs. Due to the knowledge base of each semester building on the knowledge base from the previous semester, it is vital that all students of the UMKC Physician Assistant program complete the required work in the prescribed sequence. No advanced placement, or substitution of coursework based on prior academic or clinical experience, within the PA program is allowed.

Student Employment

Full or part-time employment is strongly discouraged while a student, but not prohibited. Due to the rigorous nature of the program, the demands placed on students are extremely high, particularly with respect to the clinical work schedule and associated study requirements. Non-program activities shall not interfere with academic or clinical requirements of the program.

Students are not required to work for the program. Students may not, by position or responsibility, be employed or function as instructional faculty or substitute for clinical or administrative staff during clinical rotations. UMKC employee policies do not apply to students while in the program. An MMSPA student, credentialed or licensed in other non-PA professions cannot function in that role while in the role of an MMSPA student. Students must not accept payment while on rotation for work at clinical sites. Rotation experiences are for educational purposes only.

Clinical Rotation Site & Preceptor Recruitment

The program is responsible for coordinating (identifying, contacting, and evaluating) and assigning all student clinical experiences. Students are not allowed to arrange their own clinical experiences, but may suggest potential opportunities to the Clinical Coordinator. Student preferences for clinical assignments may be taken into consideration, but are not guaranteed.

Remediation

Remediation in the Didactic Phase

MEDPA 5501 Anatomy for the PA and MEDPA 5502 Foundations of Medicine: Students earning a final course grade of C- or below (< 70%) will be provided an opportunity to take a remediation exam to demonstrate their competence and knowledge of course material. The remediation exam will be a pass/fail cumulative exam covering material presented in the course. Students who pass this exam with a score of at least 70% will be awarded a C for the final course grade.

Science and Practice of Medicine I-IV: Remediation will occur when a MMSPA student fails to successfully pass a module exam or clinical assessment/skill check off in the following courses: MEDPA 5531, MEDPA 5532, MEDPA 5533, and MEDPA 5534.

In the event that a student fails a module exam (<70%), the course director will notify the student.  The student will then meet with their advisor to formulate a remediation plan.  The remediation plan will be tailored to the failed learning outcomes and may consist of appropriate reading, other applicable learning activities, working with relevant instructional faculty, and accessing SOM academic resources for assistance.

The student will have the opportunity to take a remediation exam and must earn a score ≥ 70% to pass.  A student is allowed only one attempt at the remediation exam. Regardless of the remediation exam score, the score equal to 70% will be awarded.  A student may not remediate more than 50% of the module exams in any one semester. Achieving less than 70% on more than 50% of the module exams in a semester will result in failure of the course.

In the event a student fails a module clinical assessment or skills exam by scoring below the program set passing score, the student will meet with their advisor to formulate a remediation plan. The student will have the opportunity to take a remediation clinical assessment and/or skills exam and must score the program set expectation in order to pass. The student is allowed only one attempt at the remediation exam. Regardless of the remediation clinical assessment or skill exam score, the minimum passing score for the exam will be awarded.

Students must complete any and all remediation exams prior to the end of the course.

Students who fail to successfully complete a remediation plan and/or exam will be referred to the Committee on Progression for further determination.

Remediation in the Clinical Phase

Remediation in the clinical phase occurs when a student fails to pass the End of Rotation (EOR) exam on the first attempt in the following courses:  MEDPA 5611 Family Medicine II, MEDPA 5621 Internal Medicine II, MEDPA 5630 Emergency Medicine, MEDPA 5640 Women’s Health, MEDPA 5650 Pediatrics, MEDPA 5660 Surgery, and MEDPA 5670 Psychiatry.

Failure to achieve the program defined pass rate of 70% (without rounding) on an EOR exam on the first attempt will require the student to participate in remediation and retake the failed EOR exam.  The second attempt must be completed after remediation and within two rotation blocks of the failed attempt.  The Director of Clinical Education has final approval of exam scheduling; this determination will be included in the student’s remediation plan.

Students who fail a first attempt EOR exam are ineligible to earn higher than a 70% for the repeated EOR exam.  Failure to obtain the program defined pass rate on the second attempt will result in failure of the course.  Students must pass the EOR exam to pass the course.

Any student with two outstanding EOR exams will be required to enroll in a four-week directed studies course in lieu of their scheduled clinical rotation.  The program will attempt to schedule the directed studies course within one rotation of the second failed EOR exam.  Successful completion of both outstanding exams must be completed by the end of the directed studies course to avoid failure of the respective courses.

Students failing an EOR exam in the last two rotations of the clinical phase must complete the second attempt exam(s) prior to the program completion date or take a directed studies course.  Enrollment in a directed studies course will result in the extension of the student’s program of study and delay of their program completion.  Financial costs associated with an extended program of study are the responsibility of the student.

Remediation of the Summative Exam

Students who fail to meet the program set passing score for passage of the summative exam will be given one chance to remediate each exam. Students who fail to achieve a passing score will be notified by the Program Director.  Students will then meet with the Program Director and the student’s academic advisor to formulate a remediation plan.  The remediation plan may consist of appropriate reading and activities relative to subject areas of need, scheduled meetings with identified faculty and identification of SOM resources for assistance.

The time required to remediate either exam may result in a delay of program completion and graduation.  Students who fail to successfully remediate the promotion and/or summative exam will appear before the Committee on Progression for further determination.