Frequently asked questions
Undergraduate accreditation is used to demonstrate that our undergraduate medical program meets accepted standards for educational quality. Accreditation ensures that the program meets established standards for function, structure and performance. The accreditation process also fosters institutional and program improvement.
In Canada, a school receives accreditation from The Committee on Accreditation of Canadian Medical Schools (CACMS), a committee of the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC), with representation from the Canadian Medical Association (CMA). Accreditation decisions of Canadian Medical Schools are agreed to by a member of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME).
CACMS accreditation provides assurances to medical students, graduates, the medical profession, health-care institutions, health authorities, regulatory authorities and the public that:
- Educational programs culminating in the award of the MD degree meet reasonable, generally-accepted, and appropriate national standards for educational quality and;
- Graduates of such programs have a complete and valid educational experience sufficient to prepare them for the next stage of their training.
The accreditation requirements are divided into 12 standards, which are further subdivided into 96 elements. A full list of these are found at the CACMS website.
Standards consider the leadership, learning environment, school resources, curriculum, and student supports. Each standard is rated as being in compliance, compliance with need for monitoring, or noncompliance.
The elements are the smaller components that compose the standards. They are rated as satisfactory, satisfactory with monitoring, or unsatisfactory.
Our UGME Accreditation Site Visit will take on April 4-6, 2022 with a follow up visit on May 11, 2022.
The Accreditation Site Visit will be conducted virtually using Webex online meeting software.
- The 1-day follow-up visit will:
- Allow the Site Visit Team to follow-up in areas that…
- Require more time in questioning than was allotted in first visit.
- Require further clarification.
- Became identified throughout the Site Visit.
- Provide the school with an opportunity to showcase particular strengths (as time permits).
- Allow the Site Visit Team to follow-up in areas that…
The Site Visit Team will be reviewing:
- Elements that have been identified as requiring further information.
- Elements that have been identified as having potential issues.
- Elements that the school has historically rated as “Unsatisfactory.”
- Elements that are traditionally cited for many Canadian Medical Schools.
- CACMS assembles a site visit team that includes the dean of another medical school, a representative from LCME, a medical student and at least two faculty members from other universities.
- At least three months before the team’s visit, the medical school must submit the following required information:
- a data collection instrument (DCI)
- medical school self-study (MSS)
- the independent student assessment (ISA)
- The team meets with educational leadership, staff, students, residents and faculty to clarify information and learn if the school actually follows its policies and procedures. The team sends a report to CACMS, which meets to decide the accreditation status of the school.
A full list is available and the accreditation team has identified areas that need an increase in awareness.
The site visit team will ALWAYS ask EVERYONE about student mistreatment and student exposure policies.
Staff and faculty connected directly to the provision of undergraduate medical education will be expected to be aware of the policies and procedures relevant to their work and provide evidence that the policies and procedures are followed. For example, the UCLs should know procedures around changing the curricular content and be able to provide evidence of a time when the procedure was followed.
The Faculty of Medicine is committed to a learning environment free of bullying, intimidation, harassment, sexual harassment and sexual assault. If you need assistance with any issues related to mistreatment there is a Professionalism and Mistreatment website which contains resources to inform you of our policies and guidelines expected of everyone at the Faculty of Medicine in order to maintain a professional working and learning environment.
The possible outcomes are:
- Accreditation for an eight year term. Typically the school completes status reports in follow-up.
- Accreditation with indeterminate term. The school will have a follow-up limited site visit within 24 months.
- Accreditation with shortened term. A full accreditation will occur in less than eight years.
- Accreditation with warning. The school must create an Action Plan and, if this plan is approved, a follow-up limited site visit is scheduled within 13 - 15 months.
- Accreditation with probation. This status is not confidential and is publicly posted on the CACMS and LCME websites. The school must submit an Action Plan. If the Plan is accepted, the school will have a post-probation site visit. If the school does poorly at this visit, the school may have its accreditation withdrawn.
- Withdrawal of accreditation.
NOTE: Every school is asked for some follow-up after a site visit. Our goal is to maintain accreditation and to only have to provide status reports.
- The provision of national standards of educational quality
- The quality assurance process requires us to assess and improve our undergraduate educational program
- Knowledge that we are providing the same quality of education as other medical schools across Canada and the U.S.
While a program is unlikely to lose its accreditation following a survey and site visit, a probationary or warning status may have a significant and lasting impact on the program.
Adverse accreditation findings affect the institution’s reputation, including its place in national and international rankings, and may have a negative impact on the institution’s development activities.
A program on probation must send written notification to all current students and applicants for admission that it has been placed on probation.
In order to apply for and enroll in a post-graduate training program (residency) in Canada and/or the United States, students must have graduated from a Doctor of Medicine (MD) program accredited by the CACMS and LCME. Maintaining accreditation is therefore essential to ensuring that MD program graduates are able to continue their training beyond the MD level.
- For the 3-day virtual :
- Participation may be required from ALL relevant committees and ANYONE involved with the Undergraduate Medical Education program.
- Meetings will be focused on just the Elements that the Site Visit Team wish to review.
- Entire committees may not actually be called on for meetings.
The final schedule is unknown until the Survey Team reviews the materials (approx. one month prior to Site Visit).