Essential Standards for Matriculation, Promotion, and Graduation at Central Michigan University College of Medicine
It is important that all applicants and current students read this document to better understand what is expected at the CMU College of Medicine.
Medical education requires that the accumulation of scientific knowledge be accompanied by the simultaneous development of specific skills and other competencies.
Our College of Medicine has a responsibility to society to graduate the best possible physicians:
- Admission to the College of Medicine is offered to applicants who present outstanding qualifications for the study and practice of medicine.
- All students must successfully complete the entire medical school curriculum.
- All students must meet both our academic standards and our standards for capacity (SFC) in order to progress through the College of Medicine and graduate.
Academic standards refer to acceptable demonstrations of mastery in various disciplines, before matriculation and after, as judged by faculty members, examinations and other measurements of performance.
Acceptable levels of mastery are required in six broad areas of competency once a student matriculates at CMU College of Medicine:
- Medical/scientific knowledge
- Clinical skills
- Communication/interpersonal skills
- Practice-based learning (engaging in self-assessment and making improvements in one's learning and performance)
- Systems-based practice (effectively carrying out responsibilities in a complex system of medical and associated professionals)
Standards for capacity, also known as technical standards, are the essential aptitudes and abilities that allow medical students (and physicians) to perform in the vast array of requisite ways summarized by the six areas of competency above.
"Standards for capacity" may sound unfamiliar, even though the abilities they represent are extremely important in the field of medicine. Those abilities are the foundation for academic success at the College of Medicine, and for the eventual practice of medicine itself. Our standards for capacity are described in detail in this document.
It is our experience that a number of individuals with disabilities (as defined by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act) are qualified to study and practice medicine with the use of reasonable accommodations.
To be qualified for the study of medicine at the College of Medicine, those individuals must be able to meet both our academic standards and the standards for capacity, with or without approved accommodation. Accommodation is viewed as a means of helping students with disabilities to meet essential standards, not to circumvent them.
Use of Auxiliary Aids and Intermediaries
Qualified students with documented disabilities are readily provided with reasonable accommodations at CMU College of Medicine, and those accommodations sometimes involve an intermediary or an auxiliary aid.
However, no disability can be reasonably accommodated at the College of Medicine with an auxiliary aid or intermediary that provides cognitive support or medical knowledge, substitutes for essential clinical skills, or supplements clinical and ethical judgment. That is to say, accommodations cannot eliminate essential program elements.
The faculty believes that visual impairments severe enough to require a medically trained intermediary cannot be accommodated at the College of Medicine. Certainly, there are advances in technology all the time, and at some point, there may be acceptable accommodations for blind students, but an intermediary that would have to select and interpret visual information (e.g. slide configurations, clinical presentations, etc.), would constitute cognitive support and/or a supplement to clinical judgment.
This kind of assistance would also, undoubtedly, depend on medical/scientific knowledge to some extent. Use of this type of intermediary, in the faculty's opinion, would represent a fundamental alteration to the medical program. Reliance on an intermediary trained to perform physical exams for a student with a severe physical disability would also be unacceptable for the same reasons.