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Remediation and Residency

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by amygdala16, May 12, 2014.

  1. amygdala16


    May 12, 2014
    Hi everybody,

    I was wondering how bad remediating a course looks on a residency application?

    I am a MS2 and I am in the process of studying for Step 1. I have completed all of my coursework for the first 2 years. My school is on a graded system. I have received over an 85% in every class except my clinical medicine class. Here's the kicker. I more than passed all of the quizzes and tests in the class. I failed the final paper. As a result, I have a conditional grade and they are making me redo the paper. After I redo the paper, I will receive a pass with a note that I had to remediate.

    I have no idea what I did wrong on the paper but I do have a meeting with the course director to discuss. It doesn't seem like my grade will be changed though.

    The clinical medicine class was always made out to be the easy class. How ironic? I feel like residency program directors are going to look at my application and think I am socially inept.

    Is this going to ruin my chances at a good residency? (not sure of specialty yet but I want to be in NYC)
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  3. DermViser

    DermViser 5+ Year Member

    Apr 4, 2009
  4. amygdala16


    May 12, 2014
    I'm not sure what that means. This is a 100% serious question. I was hoping somebody had a related experience and could weigh in. I am really freaking out about this. I can't believe my school is going to ruin my transcript because of 1 bad freaking paper. I can't even imagine what I did on it to screw it up that badly.

    I'm honestly hoping that when I meet with the course director that they change their mind. I have an impeccable academic record.

    What does one remediation do in the grand scheme of residency applications?
  5. dadaddadaBATMAN

    dadaddadaBATMAN 2+ Year Member

    Apr 27, 2014
    Umbrella pulled out

    I'm even further down the chain than you are, but since no one else is answering, maybe I can give you an objective perspective.

    It's a preclinical grade. Failing it isn't good, but it isn't the end of the fricking world either. Especially not if you can explain that you essentially failed a term paper (which from your explanation sounds like an ethics or similarly touchy-feely type thing).

    If you have a CV that would have gotten you a top residency, I doubt this will destroy everything you've done. Maybe a few more of the top residencies will turn you down because "why take this guy vs guy who has no fails," but other than that I couldn't see this impacting an otherwise good candidate.

    Perhaps most importantly: if it is going to show up as a fail, and there is nothing you can do about it, there is no point in worrying about it. It is what it is. Just do everything you can to make the other crap line up the way it should.

    Best of luck

    Edit: did not see the following.

    I'm sure you already know this, but do not say either of the bolded sentences during your meeting. At least, not the way you stated them there.

    If you have to error one way or another, you definitely want to error toward being passive. Last thing you want is to get labeled is either
    A.) entitled
    B.) Unprofessional

    Remediated pre-clinical grade sounds not fun, but neither of those words is something you want within a hundred miles of you or your dean's letter (Or even just your reputation. The community of clinicians that teach us is pretty small, at least at my school. They know each other).

    The way that seems to get the furthest, from my experience, is acting very concerned about improvement/what you can do to fix things or make things right. Hopefully it really was some weird error on their part, but there's a chance it wasn't.

    The moment you hint that you are only there for the grade (which admittedly is probably the only reason you give a flying f*** about this paper) they are probably going to zone out. That part doesn't mean much to them. If you get worked up about it, they'll think you're missing the point of the grade and won't feel much need to change it.

    If the course director feels like you are learning what they are trying to teach you with the fail, they may actually think about you as a human being for a second. A neurotic, crazy human who desperately wants a clean transcript. Who knows, maybe they'll take mercy.

    But like I outlined above the quote, I wouldn't be crazily worried if it were me. Actually, that's a lie.

    But in my opinion it wouldn't be rational for me to be crazily worried, and that's what's important for you to know.
    Last edited: May 12, 2014
    fastlane likes this.
  6. amygdala16


    May 12, 2014
    Thank you for your response. I really appreciate it.

    I know it isn't the end of the world. I'm just so upset. I am a good student. I worked my butt off.

    I have classmates that have failed midterms and finals but because we have fluff like micro or histo, which everyone gets 100% in (I'm not saying that the topics themselves are fluff), it bumped them up to passing. I more than passed everything. For just this class, you needed to pass both the final and the paper to get credit for the course. I even passed every single quiz. I am failing over one paper and it is literally the only thing I have ever failed or even marginally came close to failing. It's just so messed up, at least in my opinion, to ruin my record over a paper.

    What's even more messed up is that this was literally my last pre-clinical course. On the same day, I found out I got a 90% in my last block followed by an email from the dean saying I failed my clinical medicine course over a paper. The email even stated that I passed all quizzes, the midterm and the final. Wtf?!?!?! Arghhhhh
  7. Wordead

    Wordead 10+ Year Member

    Dec 21, 2007
    There has to be more to this story that you aren't telling us or you aren't aware of. Did you just not do the paper? plagiarize?
    DermViser likes this.
  8. amygdala16


    May 12, 2014
    I am not aware of the rest of the story yet. I haven't met with the course director to go over the paper.

    I did the paper. I handed it in a day early. It's not really something you can plagiarize. It was writing up a report on a patient that I saw in clinic. I didn't copy and paste anything. I wrote it out.
  9. dadaddadaBATMAN

    dadaddadaBATMAN 2+ Year Member

    Apr 27, 2014
    Umbrella pulled out
    :( Whole thing sounds like a serious bummer. I'm really sorry to hear this happened to you, and I can only imagine how much it would freak me out if I were in your shoes.

    But go to the meeting, see what you can do, and most importantly don't let it mess up your step studying. Stuff sounds pretty unfair, but remember that it won't be that big a road-block in the scheme of things.

    More like an annoying little bump in the road. That won't stop screaming. But if you drive fast enough, chances are no one will get your licence plate down, so don't worry about it too much. No need to stop, the police don't need your help. You'd only confuse things anyway, conflicting stories and all. Besides, that guy probably had a pretty good view of it, from the trip around your wheel well, and he'll be happy to give them a full account if he ever regains consciousness.

    If you need to vent, you could write out a letter saying what you think of this course director, and send it in 10 years when you don't need to deal with his/her bull****.

    Then he'll send back a letter that says "what are you doing with your life? And who the hell still sends things by mail?" and win the exchange. But you could bask in the glory of knowing your long-awaited plan mildly irritated him/her one morning.

    I added some stuff to my original post: it'll probably come off a little sanctimonious, but I'm a jack-ass so you'll just have to deal with it.
    If you have any worries about plagiarism, I'd have a record of your drafts available (assuming you keep one).

    I've never plagiarized anything, but as a paranoid student, I always keep extensive records of all my drafts in my email.
    It's not that anyone would ever think something I wrote was good enough to be plagiarized, it's just in case. Good move for anyone really.

    If you don't have any such records, because you're "normal" and not a "total ****ing whack job," then you can always just take a look at your paper and try to remember what you were thinking while you wrote it. Not perfect, but will help if that's what they're worried about.
  10. sobored

    sobored 2+ Year Member

    Feb 18, 2013
    Go in there and tell the dean that that is bullsh*t.
  11. amygdala16


    May 12, 2014
    Thank you very much. Your post made me smile. And I will heed your advice about not making it all about my grades. I think that is solid advice. Honestly, I do want to learn from my mistakes. I do want to know what I did wrong and not make the same mistakes going forward. I am totally open to redoing the paper because I think it is good practice. I just don't want it on my record.
    dadaddadaBATMAN likes this.
  12. dadaddadaBATMAN

    dadaddadaBATMAN 2+ Year Member

    Apr 27, 2014
    Umbrella pulled out
    To me, the bolded is the perfect level of assertiveness/humility. It's also great because it contains 0% weasel... no maneuvering or subtle implications you wish the grade could change, just the open statement that you hope to keep it off your record.

    It still might not change anything, but that's probably your best shot (in my opinion at least).

    Glad the post made you smile, and good luck. Good night!
  13. evilbooyaa

    evilbooyaa Staff Member Moderator 5+ Year Member

    Oct 10, 2011
    Sorry to hear about your situation, OP. Try to not be too grade focused (rather just state about how it concerns you that this will affect your transcript during residency applications) and see how the meeting goes.
  14. Priapism4tooLong

    Priapism4tooLong 2+ Year Member

    Mar 29, 2013
    What was the paper on?
  15. atomi

    atomi Member 10+ Year Member

    Feb 6, 2005
    OP, forget about it. It will likely make zero difference in residency selection. Most PDs probably won't even see it. If you think a PD reads every last bit of your ERAS app, you're wrong. They skim it because they don't have time. They will read the beginning of the MSPE and look at scores, select clerkship grades, and reputation of medical school to screen, they will usually attempt to read all of the personal statement and LORs of people have screened. I feel that it is highly unlikely that little remark will even get noticed by anybody, and even if it does, won't influence whether you get an interview, and certainly won't influence ranking (interview performance and scores will do that).

    Not worth getting worked up about. Re-write the paper, pass the class, and move on. Step 1 is infinitely more important.

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