Grading Policy


Numeric Grade

Letter Grade




High Pass



Score below the 10th percentile on the SHELF on the first attempt


Below 70


It is expected that less than 1% of students fail the course.



% Of Grade

Medical Knowledge

SHELF Exam Percentile Rank



5 %

Clinical Performance (Common Assessment Form)

Attending Evaluation


Resident/NP(ICU) Evaluation


Structured Observations

Observed Neurological Exam


Coma Exam (ICU)



EPIC Training; Completing clinical log; submitting/completing all required assignments


NBME Shelf Exam

The Shelf Exam will be administered on the last Friday of your rotation. Your percentile score will make up 20% of the final Neurology Clerkship Grade. Percentile scores are calculated by comparing raw scores to the percentile ranks for your quarter for the academic year two years prior to your current year.

For 2014-15, you will be ranked using the most recent norms available.

A Shelf Exam score of less than the 10th percentile will result in an Incomplete grade until the exam is retaken. After the Shelf Exam has been retaken and passed, the final grade will be changed to a Pass. The final calculated grade will not be altered by the new score. Students who earn less than the 10th percentile on the Shelf Exam, but a passing grade overall must retake the Shelf Exam only.

NMBE and AAN Self Assessment tests are available for online use linked in the Resources page.


Quizzes will be administered three times during the clerkship. The questions will come from assigned Neurology Pre-Test questions for the case-based sessions from that week. There are three post-module quizzes to document competencies in Systems Based Practice, Stroke Prevention, and Head CT interpretation. Together the three Pre-Test quizzes and three post-module quizzes make up 5 % of your Neurology Clerkship Grade.

Clinical Evaluations

During the rotation you will be asked to identify one Neurology faculty and one Neurology Resident (no off-service residents or interns), or Nurse Practitioner (in the NeuroICU) to evaluate you, using the Common Student Assessment Form that you will send them using one45. You must work with the faculty and resident for at least 4 1/2 days to request the evaluation, to ensure that this is a fair assessment of your performance. You will be asked to evaluate the faculty and resident as well. These are anonymously distributed but critical for faculty and resident feedback on their teaching skills and are distributed to faculty and residents quarterly as an aggregate. Together these clinical evaluations will make up 40 % of your grade for the Clerkship. 

Skills Observation

Every student will participate in one observed Neurologic Exam. During this activity, students will examine their own Neurology patient under supervision of Neurology faculty/residents and receive feedback on their performance. Please refer to the Grading/ Feedback Checklist for Observed Neurological Exam for guidance on expectations for this activity. You are NOT required to memorize the MMSE and you must bring a copy of the form with you, to facilitate feedback, although it is preferred that you not refer to the form during the encounter with the patient. This activity will make up 15% of your final grade and you will receive up to 10 points for your Neurologic exam. You will have the opportunity to repeat your practical exam for a replacement grade if you score below 8 points.

In addition, students will perform an observed Coma Exam in the Neuro ICU, scheduled during the block. This activity will make up 15% of your grade.