​Guidelines for Academic Evaluations and Progress

I. Grading

An Honors (H), Pass (P), Fail (F) grading system is in place.

If a student wishes to contest a final grade in a course, they are encouraged to first meet with their Course Director. If the issue is not resolved, they should notify the Associate Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs. A subcommittee made up of members of the Committee of Instruction and the Academic Progress Committee will be convened to hear the student’s concern. The decision of this committee is final.

If a student has not completed all course work by the time final grades must be submitted, the student may receive a Credit Pending (CP). It is the course director’s obligation to set a deadline for the completion of outstanding work and to inform the student that if the deadline is not met, the grade will be changed to F and the matter referred to the Academic Progress Committee for further disposition.

Course directors set their own grading policy and determine whether a student meets the requirements in the course. The grading policy in the course must be made known to the students at the beginning of the course and be applied fairly and without subsequent changes. Grading policies for each course can be found on CourseWorks, as shared by the course director at the beginning of the semester.

II. Policy on posting grades and evaluations

Final course grades are posted after course evaluations have been completed by students. The evaluations are anonymous in content and are accessed on-line in the OASIS environment. At the end of each course all registered students receive an e-mail message alerting them that the evaluation is now “live”. The evaluations must be completed in the designated time frame (usually two weeks). Once evaluations are received, final grades are released on Student Services Online (SSOL).

III. Academic Progress

Student academic progress is monitored in several ways, specifically by each course director, by divisions, by the appropriate academic progress committee, and finally by the Administration of the College. If it is determined during a course that a student's performance is unsatisfactory, that the student is in danger of failing a course, or that the student has failed an exam, the Academic Dean and/or Academic Progress Committee shares the information with the Associate Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs. The Associate Dean meets with the students to discuss tutoring services and other services available for the student’s well-being, through the Student Success Network as well as support services. In order to help students improve their learning experiences, tutorial support will be offered as soon as we identify poor progress. Students are also informed by the course directors of their progress after every exam.

If a student has failed a course or is having significant academic difficulty they will be placed on Monitored Status; an internal designation made by the Academic Progress Committees. Monitored Status designation means that the appropriate Academic Progress Committee will review the student’s academic performance at their regular meetings to further identify any difficulties. The Academic Dean and Progress Committee, in consultation with the Associate Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs may intercede with tutors, guidance and other support systems to improve the student’s learning experience and ensure success. While students are on Monitored Academic Status, they may not serve in any leadership or club positions (including travel to conferences as CDM representative). The Academic Dean will inform students when they are removed from Monitored Status, after a vote by the Academic Progress Committee. This designation is not recorded in the permanent record.

Students experiencing academic difficulty should, at their earliest opportunity, speak first with the Course Director regarding their performance and, secondly, with the Associate Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs regarding tutorial support, personal counseling opportunities, or related matters.

IV. Academic Progress Committees

The Academic Progress Committee for academic years one and two (D1 and D2), the Academic Progress Committee for years three and four, (D3 and D4), and the Postdoctoral Academic Progress Committee for Postdoctoral students shall make recommendations to the Faculty on matters of instruction, progress toward competencies, and promotion of members of their respective classes to the next academic year and ultimately graduation. Each committee, made up of 8-12 members, meets several times a year. The Academic Dean shall serve as Chair ex officio and the membership in each committee shall be appointed by the Dean from members of the College of Physicians and Surgeons and the College of Dental Medicine faculty and instructional staff who are course directors in those academic years.

V. Academic Promotion

A student with a satisfactory academic record, ethical and professional behavior in all areas will be recommended for advancement by the Faculty.

VI. Remediation Policies

The Academic Progress Committees, in consultation with the relevant course director(s) make the final decision on remediation to correct a completed course failure. Final course grades are submitted to the Dean for Academic Affairs and to the appropriate Academic Progress Committee chairperson. Final grades for all completed courses are reviewed by the Committees at the close of each academic year.

Remediation may be by:

  • re-examination may occur after a reasonable period of guided or independent study at the recommendation of the course director and with permission of the Academic Progress Committee, which has overview of the student’s total performance
  • successful completion of a remedial program determined by the course director and the committee
  • successful completion of an acceptable extramural equivalent course at an institution approved by the Course Director; a passing grade is required in the latter instance.

Failure of the remediation will result in the student having to repeat the course or academic year. Any course failure is open to one remediation attempt only. Students who are required to remediate a course failure may have a modified academic or clinical schedule, which can lead to a delayed graduation and additional tuition and fees. The Dean for Academic Affairs determines final course scheduling.

VII. Right to Review Academic Progress Committee Decisions

The student has the right to request a review of a decision made by the Academic Progress Committees. The request must be made in writing within seven days of the time the student is notified of the decision, and it must clearly state the grounds for review. Such request should be sent to the Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. A hearing with a committee from College of Dental Medicine Faculty then takes place with the student. A faculty advocate may be chosen by the student to accompany them to the hearing; if not, one will be appointed by the Associate Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs in consultation with the student.

If the committee from College of Dental Medicine Faculty reaffirms the original decision, then the student may appeal the decision within seven days of notification, to the Dean of the College of Dental Medicine.

The Dean may serve alone or may appoint an ad hoc committee to review the decision of the Academic Progress Committee. The charge of the ad hoc Committee is to review and determine the adequacy of due process, taking care to ensure that any evidence regarding mitigating circumstances has been considered and the correct protocol observed. If in place, the Committee, upon completion of its investigation, will render its decision promptly in writing to the Dean of the College.

On such an appeal, the Dean of the College of Dental Medicine relies solely upon the written record and does not conduct a new factual investigation. Moreover, the Dean focuses upon whether, in the Dean’s view, the decision made is reasonable under all of the circumstances of the case. There is no further appeal within the University.

VIII. DDS Degree Requirements

In addition to successfully completing all course requirements in each phase of the curriculum, students are required to pass NBDE Part 1 and take NBDE Part 2 to be eligible for graduation from the College of Dental Medicine.

At the close of the senior year, the Academic Progress Committee recommends to the Faculty for award of the degree, those students who have successfully completed the entire curriculum. The committee must be assured that students have acquired the knowledge, skills, and attitudes essential for the safe assumption of responsibility for patient care.

IX. MS Degree and Certificate of Training Requirements

In addition to successfully passing all course and clinical requirements, attending assigned rotations, and completing any required thesis, students are required to pass prescribed written, oral, and practical examinations at the end of residence.