CMSV 324 Examination Policy
Policy Name: Examination Policy
All College of Mount Saint Vincent Master of Science Physician Assistant Program students will be expected to take their examinations at a scheduled date and time. Examinations will be arranged and scheduled with as much advance notice as is possible. Due to the amount of didactic material needed to be covered, students can expect that there may be more then one-examination scheduled on any given date. This multi-test arrangement will be kept at an absolute minimum and all considerations will be given to the program class to assist in minimizing this occurrence.
Date of scheduled examinations may be changed by the faculty when necessary and a minimum of one week’s notice will be given when possible. In the event of an unexpected school closure (e.g. snow day, unexpected natural event, etc.), on a day when an exam is scheduled, it will be rescheduled when classes resume on the next scheduled date of return to campus. All PA students should be aware of this possible occurrence and plan accordingly.
Examination Policy | Guidelines
Examinations will be given in either a computer based or written format. Proctors will be present for every examination and will review the specific examination procedure and protocol, including length of exam and seating arrangements prior to the start of every examination. Students will be advised, prior to the start of the examination, of the exact time-length allowed for the examination. The time-length of the examination may vary and is dependent on the number and type of questions being put forward.
During examinations, assigned seating may be used at the discretion of the proctor. Students are not permitted to leave their seats during the exam, other than to turn in their exam/paper or validate completion on their laptop device. Students are required, on all lap-top based examinations, to keep their screens flat to the desk surface to minimize other students from reviewing their lap-top screen.
Once an exam begins, no student is permitted to exit and re-enter the exam room under any circumstances until the exam is completed. Students who finish before the end of the testing period should not remain directly outside the testing room but congregate away from the testing site.
Examination Room Policy | General
Only writing tools and standard calculators (when required) are permitted on the desk. No notebooks, notes, cell phones, smartphones, textbooks, personal digital assistants, Google glasses, Apple Watch, laptops, hand-held computers, bags, coats, and personal items will be allowed.
Any student found in violation of this directive will forfeit the examination and receive a grade of ‘zero’ which will be factored into their final grade, as well as appear in front of Professional Review Committee for possible professional sanctions.
Examination Room Policy | Cell Phones
All cell phones will be turned off and placed within the proper storage area located in the rear of the room in specially numbered bins assigned to each student. If your phone goes off during an exam, your exam will be taken from you and you will be graded on the number of questions completed to that point. So, it is advised that every student turn off their cell phones and not just silence the phone prior to the start of the examination.
Examination Policy | Violation of Academic Honesty and Cheating
Cheating on an examination is strictly prohibited and will result in your appearance before the Professional Review Committee, as well as dismissal from the Master of Science Physician Assistant Program.
Further guidelines to consider:
- Retaining, copying, or possessing an exam, in whole or in part, is considered theft of intellectual property.
- Reconstructing an exam in writing, in whole or in part, through memorization, is considered unethical and unprofessional.
- Distributing and accepting such reconstructed exams constitutes academic dishonesty.
- Ethical and professional behavior is mandatory during testing and students should refrain from dressing or acting in a manner that can arouse suspicion (i.e. overcoats, brimmed hats, looking around during the exam, etc.).
- A proctor who observes a student cheating has the right to confiscate the exam and refer the student to the program director for referral to the Professional Review Committee with resultant sanctions to be considered.
Please note: If it is discovered, following the completion of an examination, that students had an advanced copy of the examination, the entire examination will be discarded, and a new examination put in its place.
Examination Policy | Make-up Exams
Specific guidelines regarding this policy:
No make-up examinations will be offered in the event of a failure of an individual exam, except under the following circumstances:
- Failure of a physical diagnosis practical examination:
- A student may make-up one (1) failed physical diagnosis practical exam, grade <80%, per semester. A second failure within the same semester will result in the student being referred to the Academic Performance Committee for possible dismissal from the program.
- The make-up examination must be taken within a one-week timeframe.
Missed examinations are taken very seriously by the program and a decision on allowing a make-up examination is dependent on the following guidelines:
- The student in question must provide written documentation, addressed to the course instructor and academic/clinical coordinators as to the reason for missing the examination.
- It is left to the discretion of the course instructor, along with the academic and clinical coordinators, as to whether or not a make-up exam will be given after reviewing the students written documentation.
- If the academic and/or clinical coordinator rule a student can take the make-up examination, then the highest grade achievable will be a C- (70%) and 80% for physical diagnosis exams.
- If the academic and/or clinical coordinator deny the student the permission to take the make-up examination, the student can appeal to the Academic Performance Committee, who will review the matter and render a determination which can include:
- Allowing the student to take the make-up examination with the highest grade achievable, being a C- (70%) or 80% for physical diagnosis, and placing the student on academic warning. Any future missed exams will be grounds for dismissal from the program.
- Confirming the denial of the make-up examination and the student will receive a ‘zero’ for that examination.
- The format of the make-up examination will be at the discretion of the program faculty, but will not mirror the original examination that was missed.
The College’s program has the right to refuse to offer a make-up exam to any student who is absent or late for an exam, when the exam is scheduled on either of the following:
- The last day of class before a vacation, scheduled break, or weekend.
- The day classes resume after a vacation, scheduled break, or weekend.
Examination Policy | Review of Examinations
Specific guidelines regarding this policy:
- A review of an examination is only available to students who achieved a grade below B- (80%).
- Students must request a meeting with academic or clinical administrative assistant, who will go over the review process with the student and assign the student a time for the meeting.
- If a student fails to report for the meeting, they will forfeit their opportunity to review the examination and the grade will remain unchanged.
- Students who meet the criteria in ‘a’ and wish to review their grades must adhere to the following protocol:
- If a student fails to report for the meeting they will forfeit their opportunity to review the examination and the grade will remain unchanged.
- Students will only be to be allowed to review the questions they got wrong.
- Students will be allotted 15 minutes review time per exam.
- Students may not remove an exam questions from the main office during review.
- Students may not be in possession of cell phones, electronic devices of any kind, or any form of writing implement.
- An exam question contestation form needs to be completed in order to contest a question.
Examination Policy | Exam Revision
To ensure the validity of all examinations and to enhance the educational advancement of the PA students, all examinations offered at the College are subject to post-examination faculty review.
- The faculty will analyze exam question performance and those questions deemed invalid, for any reason, will be dropped from the examination and student grades will be recalibrated.
- If it has been determined that one question had two possible answers, both answers will be accepted and the grades will be recalibrated.
- Students who received credit initially for the correct choice will not receive extra credit upon grade recalibration.
- If more than two answers are deemed correct, the question will be deemed invalid and dropped and the score will be recalibrated
Examination Policy | Curving of Grades
No curving of any examination grades is allowable.
Examination Policy | Examination Security Following an Evacuation
In the event of a fire-alarm activation or emergency building evacuation, the following protocol will go into effect:
- The assigned proctor will stop the examination and make note of the time remaining.
- Students will proceed to follow the instructions of the proctor as to the egress from the building.
- Students will not be allowed to converse with each during the evacuation and will be on the honor-system.
- They will not be allowed access to their electronic devices.
- Upon egress from the building, students will line up with the proctor who will monitor the students for compliance in order to maintain examination integrity.
- Upon termination of the fire-drill or evacuation process, students will return to the classroom to their assigned seat and await further instructions.
- Depending on the amount of time remaining for the exam, as well as the amount of time of evacuation of the building and on the subsequent availability of the classroom, the instructor and/or faculty member in attendance will determine:
- If the exam will resume immediately upon re-entry, to be completed in the time remaining from the originally allocated time;
- If the interrupted exam will be disqualified, and a new exam will be given at a later date; or
- If the interrupted exam can be scored as is, but on a pro-rated basis.
- If the instructor and/or faculty member determines the examination integrity has been compromised, the examination will be canceled and the academic/clinical coordinator will schedule a second examination within a one (1) week timeframe and inform students of decision within a 24-hour period.
Please note: Any student found in violation of the Academic Honesty Policy during exam evaluation proceeding will be subject to disciplinary action by the Professional Review Committee.