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Removing the Shelf Cutoff to Achieve Honors in the Clerkship Does Not Change Test Scores
Purpose: Purpose: To identify students’ performance on the NBME
subject examination changes when a minimum score requirement for Honors is
Background: Background: The NBME subject examination is used in
many obstetrics and gynecology clerkships as an objective measure of knowledge.
The exam score may be included in the calculation of a student’s final grade,
with a requirement to achieve a certain minimum score to be eligible for a
grade of Honors. At our institution, this cutoff was removed from the obstetrics
and gynecology clerkship in 2017.
Methods: Methods: Scores for the Obstetrics and Gynecology
subject examination at the University of Pennsylvania were compared between
2016 (the most recent year in which a cutoff was used) and 2017 (the first year
in which the cutoff was removed). Comparative statistical analyses were
performed, including mean, standard deviation, and Student’s T-test.
Results: Results: In 2016, 161 students took the NBME subject
examination, during which time a minimum score of 81 was required to be
eligible for a final grade of Honors. The mean score was 80.58 (range 61-93,
standard deviation 6.34). In 2017, the minimum cutoff requirement was removed,
and 163 students took the exam. The mean score was 80.42 (range 53-94, standard
deviation 6.38). The T-test result for comparison between the two means was
Discussions: Discussion: At this academic institution, the mean NBME
subject examination score did not change between the two years. Students
continue to study for the final exam when the minimum cutoff is removed.
CREOG & APGO Annual Meeting, 2019, Faculty, Clerkship Director, Medical Knowledge, UME, Assessment, Independent Study,