Clinical Academic Resources



Clinical Academic Resources Program

Cheryl McNeil

Cheryl McNeil, M.D.

Director of the Clinical Academic Resources Program

1052 Bondurant Hall

What is the Clinical Academic Resources Program?

Clinical Academic Resources (CAR) is a program to help students improve clinical, communication, and professional skills.  CAR provides counseling, resources, and remediation services for students in clinical courses.


What services does CAR offer?

  • Assessment to identify competence areas that can benefit from improvement
  • Assistance in developing a self-directed plan for improvement
  • Coaching and practice for specific clinical skills including physical exam, oral presentation and written communication
  • Support and resources for students who are encountering challenging personal circumstances (e.g., personal or family member illness, family tragedy, child care problems, marital discourse)
  • Referral to appropriate services for evaluation of learning challenges, behavioral and emotional issues and substance abuse.
  • Development and tracking of remediation plan for students in the CDSP

How do students get referred to CAR?

Self- Referral: Students interested in assistance through CAR may contact the director via email for help with interview and exam skills, presentation skills, written communication, professionalism issues, or disappointing clinical grades or feedback of any kind.  All assistance initiated by students is both voluntary and, subject to applicable law, confidential, as long as it is not being offered pursuant to the CDSP.

Advisors and Faculty: Advisors and other faculty interested in referring a student for assistance in developing their clinical or professional skills can do so by emailing Dr. McNeil and the student simultaneously, after discussing this with the student.  All assistance initiated by advisors or faculty members is both voluntary and, subject to applicable law, confidential, as long as it is not being offered pursuant to the CDSP.

Outreach: After, July 1st, 2013, students will automatically be offered confidential assistance if one of several criteria are met, including but not limited to absenteeism, low performance in clinical skills and social medicine courses, low performance in clerkships, and failure of the CPX or Step 2 CS examinations.  All assistance initiated by CAR because of one of the above criteria is both voluntary and, subject to applicable law, confidential, as long as it is not being offered pursuant to the CDSP.

Competence Driven Support Program (CDSP): The CDSP is a program pursuant to which students with academic performance, clinical performance, professionalism, or other areas of concern receive an individualized plan of remediation in order to address these identified issues.  CDSPs are initiated by clinical faculty or the Associate Dean of Student Affairs and facilitated through CAR  Student information provided or developed through the CDSP will be documented in one45 until the student’s individualized remediation plan is determined to be successful and may be shared with other School of Medicine faculty members, administrators, or committees, as appropriate.

What does the Clinical Academic Resources Program add to the current Academic Assistance Program?

Clinical Academic Resources (CAR) is a new program designed to facilitate the development of the UNCSOM curriculum in clinical skills, communication, and professionalism and provide academic counseling and remediation for those curricula.  The program is meant to complement the medical knowledge academic support provided by the Academic Assistance Program and operationalize the new Competency Driven Support Program (CDSP), which is described in a separate document.  The director, Dr. Cheryl McNeil, works closely with the curriculum committees, the clinical faculty, the Advisory College, and the Office of Student Affairs, as well as the Professionalism and Clinical Skills task forces.  The goal is to integrate the work of these groups into a cohesive resource that ensures that every student has successfully mastered the UNC School of Medicine clinical, communication, professional competencies prior to graduation.