Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
MD Program

Core 1: Attendance & Absence - Clinical Encounters & Small Group

January 18, 2023

Clinical Encounters Attendance Policy

The learning of medicine requires thoughtful study, immersion in clinical activities, acquisition and practice of skills, and interaction with members of health care teams. We have therefore designated key clinical teaching offerings as Clinical Encounters which include all sessions at which patients are present and all assignments in clinical skills and in the simulation center or with simulation exercises. There may be rare sessions with invited visitors such as patient’s parents, clergy or others wherein the sessions will also be designated as Clinical Encounters. Out of respect for patients and for the commitment to outstanding patient care, attendance is required at any session designated as a Clinical Encounter. Our commitment is to make these Clinical Encounters of the highest quality.

Small Group Sessions Attendance Policy

In addition, it is required that all students attend all small group sessions. It is essential that each student be prepared for the sessions and contribute to your peers’ learning as an integral member of the learning team.

All sessions during which attendance is required will be indicated as “required” in OASIS. 

Procedure to Request an Excused Absence

  1. If students know they will not be able to attend a Clinical Encounter and/or a small group due to illness, family emergencies, or other important matters, they must notify the Chief Operating Office and the Director of Medical Education by submitting the Core 1 Clinical Encounter and Small Group Absence Request Form.
    • Any unexcused absence may need to be remediated by completing an assignment designated by the course director.
    • After submitting the form, students should follow up with the small group instructor and course director to alert them to their absence and receive any required remediation assignment.
  2. If a student does not contact appropriate faculty or administration to request or explain an absence, the Director of Medical Education will contact the student. The absence will be judged as excused or unexcused depending on the reason for the absence.
  3. Students who have more than two unexcused absences from Clinical Encounters and/or small group sessions per semester may be required to meet with their Advisory Dean, the Associate Dean for UME Science & Discovery Curriculum, and/or the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Wellness.
  4. Any pattern of multiple absences, excused or unexcused, will be brought to the attention of the Associate Deans for Curriculum and Student Affairs, and could lead to review by the Student Standards Committee.

Operational Guidelines for the Tracking of Attendance