This document sets out the information relevant to student appeals in the Doctor of Medicine (MD) Program of the Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry. The process will also apply to requests to withdraw from the MD Program based on unprofessional behaviours or attitudes that violate professional codes of conduct (CMA/OMA/CPSO) or the objectives of the Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, The University of Western Ontario, MD Program. The CMA Code of Ethics can be found at www.cma.ca. The Objectives of the MD Program can be found here.
The procedure for appeals relating to all other departmentally based courses is available on The University of Western Ontario web site: www.uwo.ca/univsec/handbook/
Students should refer to The University of Western Ontario web site for the most up-to-date information relating to their Academic Rights and Responsibilities.
General Procedure for Appeals:
At The University of Western Ontario, the formal appeal process involves several levels of appeal. The first level is to the Course Chair of the course in which the student wishes to appeal. If the student is not satisfied with the result at this level, the student then appeals to the relevant Department Chair. If the student remains unsatisfied, he/she may then appeal to the Dean, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry. It is the prerogative of the Dean, on an individual basis, to decide when and how appeals will be considered. The Dean may appoint an appeals committee to advise him/her. The final level for appeal is the Senate Review Board Academic (SRBA).
For interdepartmental courses and for appeals against unprofessional behaviour or attitudes in the Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, the Appeals Committee will consider appeals at the level equivalent to that of the Department Chair. In the MD Program, request for relief against a final mark must be initiated with the Course Chair within four weeks of approval of the mark by the Undergraduate Medical Education Office. Following approval of final marks, the Undergraduate Medical Education Office will send a notice in writing to a student with a failure in any course. The four weeks will begin on the date of writing of the letter notifying a student of a failure in a course. All other requests for relief must be made within four weeks of the date of the decision giving rise to the request for relief. A request for relief to each successive level must be made within four weeks of the date of the decision at the prior level or an appeal will not be heard.
For request for relief against a mark obtained in a single rotation in the clerkship, the first level of appeal will be to the Clerkship and Electives Committee. If the appeal is denied, the student should notify the Chair of the Appeals Committee in writing of his/her intention to appeal further. However, this appeal will not be heard until the end of the academic year for the clerkship and the final grades for all rotations have been approved. If the student has failed more than one clerkship rotation or remedial privileges for a single failure are not granted, the student will be required to withdraw from the MD Program. If a student has been notified of a "requirement to withdraw from the MD Program", the appeal to the Dean's Appeals Committee will be heard immediately.
The deadline for an appeal to the SRBA remains at six weeks after the Dean, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, has issued a decision.
Students may invite a single person to accompany them for support at any appeal where the student is required to make a personal representation. This may be a medical student or a professor, a representative of the university Ombudsperson’s Office, or the Assistant Dean, Admissions and Student Affairs. Legal counsel will not permitted to attend any appeal within the Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry.
The Registrar's Office will be notified simultaneously with the student when a "requirement to withdraw from the program" is issued to the student. Therefore, having no official status, the student may not continue participating in any way in the MD Program from that day on, even though a further appeal may be pending.
Grounds for an Appeal:
The grounds for an appeal may be one or more of the following:
- medical or compassionate circumstances
- extenuating circumstances beyond the appellant's control
- inaccuracy or unfairness
Ignorance of Senate regulations and policies and program requirements and policies does not constitute grounds for an appeal.
Sequence for Appeal:
1. Course Chair
A written request should be submitted to the Course Chair. This need not be lengthy but should indicate clearly detailed reasons for the request and the relief requested. The Course Chair may meet with the student and confer with his/her course committee. A formal personal presentation to the course committee by the student will not be required. The Course Chair will respond to the student in writing indicating whether or not the request has been granted and giving reasons.
2. Appeals Committee
If the student is not satisfied with the decision of the Course Chair, the student may submit a formal written request to the Department Chair or the Chair of the Undergraduate Medical Education: Appeals Committee. A formal presentation by the student to the committee will be required. The Department Chair or the Chair of the Appeals Committee will respond in writing to the student indicating whether or not the appeal has been granted giving reasons.
3. Dean, Schulich School Medicine and Dentistry
If the student is not satisfied with the decision of the Department Chair or Appeals Committee, the student may appeal to the Dean, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry. The request should be made in writing, providing all relevant information and documentation, clearly outlining the relief requested. A formal presentation to the Dean will be required. The Dean will respond in writing to the student indicating whether or not the appeal has been granted, giving reasons.
Senate guidelines for appeal apply. Please refer to the official up-to-date Western Academic Calendar
Sequence for Student Appeals
Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, MD Program
Four (4) weeks is the maximum time permitted for notification of intention to appeal at each level. There are no exceptions to this. SRBA remains at six weeks.