UGME Student Assessment Subcommittee

Terms of Reference

Purpose and Authority

The purpose of this subcommittee is to:

  • Plan, implement, and manage the Undergraduate Medical Education programmatic assessment system as a whole, including setting standards of achievement and maintaining responsibility for modality design and implementation, according to policies and direction set forth by the Undergraduate Medical Education Committee (UGMEC), and in close collaboration with the Years 1&2 Curriculum Subcommittee, the Years 3&4 Curriculum Subcommittee, and the Curriculum Integration Advisory Council.
  • Recommend to the UGMEC substantive changes to the programmatic assessment system including policy changes.
  • Advise the Director, Assessment, UGME on programmatic assessment system objectives, design, and implementation.


This subcommittee is made up of ex officio and appointed members.

The Faculty of Medicine's commitment to equitable and diverse membership on its committees and advisory councils guides its nomination and selection process.

Voting Members

Ex officio

  • Director, Assessment, Undergraduate Medical Education (chair) (1)
  • Director, Curriculum, Undergraduate Medical Education (1)
  • Faculty Lead, MCQ Assessment Pillar (1)
  • Faculty Lead, OSCE Assessment Pillar (1)
  • Associate Lead, OSCE Assessment (1)
  • Faculty Lead, Portfolios Assessment Pillar (1)
  • Faculty Lead, Workplace-based Assessment Methods Pillar (1)
  • Associate Director, Years 1&2 Curriculum, or delegate (1)
  • Associate Director, Years 3&4 Curriculum, or delegate (1)


  • Two faculty members (one from each of foundational science and clinical disciplines) (2)
  • One Centre for Health Education Scholarship member (1)
  • Four UGME students (one from each year and each site) (4)

Non-voting Members

Ex officio

  • Manager, Assessment Operations, Educational Assessment Unit (1)
  • Team Lead, Exam Site Administrator (1)
  • Team Lead, Senior Assessment Coordinator (1)
  • Senior Assessment Coordinators (4)
  • Director, Evaluation Studies Unit, or delegate (1)


  • One Program Manager, Years 1&2 (1) (rotating among sites)
  • One Program Manager, Years 3&4 (1) (rotating among sites)
  • One Program Assistant (Assessment and Evaluation Coordinator) (1)
  • One Office of Faculty Development member (1)
  • One student affairs member (1) (rotating among sites)
  • One MedIT member (1)
  • One faculty member from Postgraduate Medical Education (PGME) (1)

Corresponding Members

  • Associate Dean, Undergraduate Medical Education (1)
  • Assistant Deans (4)
  • Chair, Student Promotions and Review Board (1)
  • Director, Integrated Community Clerkship (1)
  • Program Managers (6)
  • Assessment and Evaluation Site Coordinators (7)

Guests may be invited to join specific meetings or portions of specific meetings at the chair's discretion.

Appointment Process

Ex officio members are members by virtue of their administrative appointment.

Appointed student members are appointed by the Medical Undergraduate Society (MUS).

Other appointed members are appointed by the chair.


Ex officio members are members as long as they hold their administrative appointment.

Appointed students members are members for a one-year term and are eligible for renewal. It is recommended that Year 1 students continue as members into subsequent years.

Other appointed members are members for a three-year term provided that they continue to be representative of the role associated with their appointment or nomination. These members are eligible for one renewal.


Chaired by the Director, Assessment, Undergraduate Medical Education.

Meeting Schedule and Administration

Normally meets approximately every month and at the call of the chair.

All members are expected to attend all meetings in person or via videoconference or phone.

Corresponding members may join at their discretion.

A staff member from the Educational Assessment Unit will capture meeting minutes. Minutes will be circulated to all members as well as to the Medical Undergraduate Society President.

Records will be maintained in accordance with UBC and Faculty of Medicine records retention procedures.

Quorum and Decision Making Process

Quorum consists of 50% plus one of voting members.

Decisions are made by vote, requiring 50% plus one of voting members present to vote in favour to pass.

If a vote by email is required, it will be sent to all voting members. The email will include a clear motion with vote options (e.g., in favour, against, abstain), a reasonable deadline by which votes must be received, sufficient information and relevant discussion notes to enable members to make an informed decision, and a clear statement of what happens if someone does not vote (e.g., not responding is considered a vote in favour).

Lines of Accountability and Communication

This subcommittee:

  • Takes direction from, and makes recommendations to, the UGMEC.
  • Seeks advice before making recommendations to the UGMEC from:
    • The Curriculum Integration Advisory Council (CIAC) regarding pedagogical implications; and
    • The Regional and Resource Advisory Council (RRAC) regarding resource implications (human, financial, or infrastructural).
  • Works collaboratively with the Years 1&2 and Years 3&4 Curriculum Subcommittees.
  • Reports to the UGMEC on an annual basis.
  • Provides advice to the Director, Assessment regarding UGME assessment system issues.

Representatives of this subcommittee liaise with other academic and administrative committees and advisory councils, as needed.


This subcommittee:

  1. Designs and implements the programmatic student assessment system [9.4][i] , including:
    1. The explicit goals of the system;
    2. The principles of student assessment that will affect how the assessment system is designed and administered;
    3. The methods of assessment to measure students' achievement of milestones and program-specified exit competencies; [9.5, 9.7 9.8][ii]
    4. The timing of assessments;
    5. Sources of assessment items and quality control methods;
    6. Methods and tools for data capture, management and storage;
    7. Faculty development strategies for producing assessment items and capturing assessment data;
    8. Timing and methods of reporting  assessment results, to guide interpretation and decision making; and
    9. Administrative structure, operational activities, communication strategies, policies and procedures related to the system.
  2. Liaises closely with the CIAC and the Years 1&2 and Years 3&4 Curriculum Subcommittees to ensure assessment is appropriately integrated with the curriculum; to set consistent standards of achievement for required learning experiences; and to ensure alignment with exit competencies.[9.6][iii].
  3. Advises course and clerkship directors on course level assessment modalities and approves or declines changes requested by the course directors. May recommend changes to course level assessment modalities direct to UGMEC.
  4. Recommends to UGMEC programmatic changes, including policy changes that enhance the quality and efficiency of the student assessment system, or improve alignment with CACMS standards and UBC Senate policies.
  5. Monitors compliance with the assessment policies stipulated by UBC Senate and the CACMS standards that pertain to assessment.
  6. Through the Director of Assessment, provides strategic guidance to the EAU.
  7. Develops with the ESU the evaluation framework for the programmatic assessment system. Reviews the evaluation data pertaining to the student assessment system, including outcome data such as aggregated student performance data from internal and external sources (including MCCQE Part I) and system process data to identify system strengths and areas for improvement.
  8. Ensures quality control of examinations and the student assessment systems.
  9. Sets consistent standards of achievement in each required learning experience in the medical education program.
  10. Reviews the Student Assessment Subcommittee Terms of Reference in June each year and recommends changes to UGMEC.


This version of these terms of reference has been approved by the UGME Committee on April 23, 2018.

Version History

  • Approved by the Undergraduate Medical Education Committee on April 23, 2018
  • Approved by MDUEC on March 20, 2017
  • Approved by MDUEC on August 17, 2015
  • Approved by MDUREX on August 25, 2015
  • Received by Faculty Executive on September 15, 2015
  • Revised on October 19, 2015.

[i] 9.4 Assessment System

A medical school ensures that, throughout its medical education program, there is a centralized system in place that employs a variety of measures (including direct observation) for the assessment of student achievement, including  students' acquisition of the knowledge, core clinical skills (e.g., medical history-taking, physical examination), behaviors, and attitudes specified in medical education program objectives, and that ensures that all medical students achieve the same medical education program objectives.

[ii] 9.5 Narrative Assessment

A medical school ensures that a narrative description of a medical student's performance, including his or her non-cognitive achievement, is included as a component of the assessment in each required learning experience in the medical education program whenever teacher-student interaction permits this form of assessment.

9.7 Timely Formative Assessment and Feedback

A medical school ensures that the medical education program provides timely formative assessment consisting of appropriate measures by which a medical student can measure his or her progress in learning. Each medical student is assessed and provided with formal formative feedback early enough during each required learning experience four or more weeks in length to allow sufficient time for remediation. Formal feedback typically occurs at least at the midpoint of the learning experience. In medical education programs with longer educational experiences (e.g., longitudinal integrated clerkship, year-long courses) formal feedback occurs approximately every six weeks.  For required learning experiences less than four weeks in length alternate means are provided by which a medical student can measure his or her progress in learning.

9.8 Fair and Timely Summative Assessment

A medical school has in place a system of fair and timely summative assessment of medical student achievement in each required learning experience of the medical education program. Final grades are available within six weeks after the end of a required learning experience.

[iii] 9.6 Setting Standards of Achievement

A medical school ensures that faculty members with appropriate knowledge and expertise set standards of achievement in each required learning experience in the medical education program.