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Clerkship Information

Goals and Objectives (LCME mapping terms)

Patient Care

  • Provide compassionate, patient- and family-centered care to all patients in all clinical settings. (patient care, pediatrics, patient-centered care, family-centered care, interpersonal and communication skills)
  • Demonstrate effective history-taking and physical exam skills for infants, children, and adolescents. (history and physical exam, pediatrics, patient care, medical knowledge)
  • Apply knowledge of human growth and development to the care of pediatric patients at all ages. (patient care, growth and development, pediatrics)
  • Document appropriately encounters for pediatric patients in both inpatient and outpatient clinical settings

Knowledge for Practice (Medical Knowledge)

  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of growth and development (physical and psychosocial) from birth through adolescence. (growth, development, pediatrics, medical knowledge)
  • Explain the disease mechanisms, diagnosis, and initial management of common acute and chronic illnesses in pediatrics patients. (medical knowledge, acute illness, chronic illness, pediatrics)
  • Develop clinical problem-solving skills as evidenced by thoughtful differential diagnoses and assessments. (clinical reasoning, illness scripts, differential diagnosis, medical knowledge, patient care

Practice-Based Learning and Improvement

  • Apply strategies for health promotion, as well as disease and injury prevention to improve the care of pediatric patients. (disease prevention, injury prevention, health maintenance, patient care, medical knowledge, systems-based practice, practice-based learning and improvement)
  • Utilize evidence-based principles to advance the care of pediatric patients. (evidence-based medicine, pediatrics, practice-based learning and improvement)
  • Engage in self-directed learning to encourage the practice of life-long learning. (self-directed learning, life-long learning, pediatrics, practice-based learning and improvement)

Interpersonal and Communication Skills

  • Develop communication skills that will facilitate the clinical interaction with children, adolescents, and their families and thus ensure that complete, accurate data are obtained. (communication skills, professionalism, patient care, interpersonal skills and communication, interprofessional team)
  • Provide anticipatory guidance to parents and caregivers regarding their child’s development and medical illnesses. (interpersonal and communication skills, anticipatory guidance, pediatrics)


  • Develop the attitudes and professional behaviors appropriate for clinical practice. (professionalism, interpersonal skills and communication)

Systems-Based Practice

  • Recognize the illness severity of a patient and effectively communicate this severity to other team members through effective patient handovers. (patient care, illness severity, medical knowledge, patient handover, communication, systems-based practice, pediatrics)
  • Recognize the impact of family, community, and society on the health and wellness of children. (social determinants of health, population health, patient care, systems-based practice, interpersonal skills and communication)
  • Recognize the approach of pediatricians to the health care of children and adolescents. (systems based practice, population health, social determinants of health)

Interprofessional Collaboration

  • Participate as an active team member in multi-disciplinary patient- and family-centered rounds.
General Description


The pediatrics clerkship is divided into two sections: 4 weeks of inpatient experience and 4 weeks of outpatient experience. Please view the Student Assignments for details. Every attempt was made to accommodate requests.

While on the inpatient month, the student will become an integral part of the inpatient ward team, consisting of the attending(s), supervising resident(s), interns and other students. The outpatient (ambulatory) rotation will be spent rotating through general pediatric, subspecialty clinics, and the newborn nursery evaluating patients and presenting to supervising residents and/or faculty.

Things To Remember

Peds is different! Medical students will experience decidedly less autonomy when dealing with pediatric patients when compared to other clerkships. This should not be taken personally. All efforts are made to limit the procedures performed on children so that painful, frightening intervention is kept to a bare minimum. Students are also advised to make every attempt to attend as many other procedures as possible, such as surgical or radiologic procedures performed on their patients.
Students will be excused from routine duties to be able to attend these procedures provided this privilege is not abused.

The purpose of this rotation is to facilitate the student’s learning about the medicine of Pediatrics, not necessarily to make future pediatricians. If the students have any problems or suggestions on how we can help them learn, they are instructed to call the clerkship director as soon as possible.

Recommended Text

There is no specifically recommended text in pediatrics. If the student is already sure that he/she will be going into pediatrics as a career, then a more expensive comprehensive text may be most appropriate. However, for simple general review, the less expensive review texts are adequate with no one particular book having any more advantage over the others. The text should therefore be selected for ease of reading and the style that suits the student.

Comprehensive Reference Texts:

  • Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics (Behrman and Vaughn) - $115 (Available on Clinical Key)
  • Rudolph's Pediatrics (Rudolph, Hoffman and Rudolph) - $150
  • Principles and Practices of Pediatrics (Oski et al.) - $120

"Meat and Potato" Text:

  • Nelson Essentials of Pediatrics (Marcdante, Kleigman) - $40-60 (Available on Clinical Key)
  • Current Diagnosis and Treatment Pediatrics (Lange) - $60

Miscellaneous Reference Texts:

  • Manual of Pediatric Physical Diagnosis (Barness) - $45
  • The Harriet Lane Handbook (Greene) - $65 (Available on Clinical Key)

Most Popular Adjunct Texts:

  • Case Files- Pediatrics (Toy et al, Lange) - $30
  • Pediatrics PreTest (Yetman and Hormann) - $30
  • NMS Pediatrics (Dworkin, Lippincott Williams and Wilkins) - $45
  • Blueprints - Pediatrics (Marino and Fine, Lippincott Williams and Wilkins) - $40

COMSEP Curriculum

The pediatrics clerkship follows the Core Curriculum developed by the Counsel on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics (COMSEP). Here is an outline of the most updated COMSEP Curriculum. Students should review the curriculum to understand the goals of this clerkship.

Useful information about the Pediatric Physical Exam and other Learning Resources from COMSEP.

Aquifer Pediatrics Cases

The clerkship also utilizes the Aquifer Pediatrics cases, developed by COMSEP, to teach and test the important points of clinical pediatric care. Aquifer is a comprehensive internet-based learning program for use by third year medical students during their pediatrics clerkship. Aquifer's 32 interactive cases are designed to cover all the core content of the COMSEP curriculum. It is expected that each Aquifer case will take a student approximately 45 minutes to complete. To access the Aquifer cases, go to the Aquifer home page. See directions below for registering.

We will focus on 20 Aquifer cases during the clerkship. Topics pertaining to the first 8 cases listed below will be tested on the first Slide exam during week 3. Topics pertaining to the remaining 12 cases will be tested on the second Slide exam during week 6.

Aquifer Pediatrics cases to study corresponding with Slide Exams:

Slide Exam 1: 2, 8, 11, 17, 19, 23, 25, 29

Slide Exam 2: 3, 6, 12, 13, 15, 16, 18, 21, 26, 27, 30, 31

Instructions for Logging onto Aquifer

General Responsibilities


The inpatient portion of the clerkship is fun but busy. Students should carry 4 patients each day. Ideally, students should follow the patients they admit overnight until discharge when possible. Daily responsibilities include: attending morning checkout and morning report, pre-rounding on patients, writing H&Ps on the patients you admit, writing progress notes on each patient, attending daily rounds and presenting your patients, following up on lab tests, diagnostic studies, consultants, seeing patients again in the afternoon. For more information, please see Inpatient Responsibilities.


Students are required to turn in 4 written H&Ps to an attending on the inpatient rotation. Students may turn in multiple H&Ps on their night shift week. H&Ps should contain a complete history and physical exam, as well as a differential diagnosis with discussion, assessment with working diagnosis, and plan with justifications. This is an example of a pediatric H&P.

Progress Notes

Progress notes on the inpatient wards follow the Interim History, Objective, Assessment, Problem list/Plan format. More information will be discussed at the inpatient orientation. This is an example of an inpatient progress note.

Discharge summaries

Practice writing a discharge summary for one or more of your patients being discharged home. This is a critical skill to learn as this is your communication with the patient’s next care provider, usually the primary care physician. Use this discharge summary template to help organize your discharge summary.

Night Shifts

At the Memphis location, students will complete 4 night shifts during the inpatient month, usually Sunday through Wednesday nights. Night shifts will begin at 7:00pm and end after morning report with the team at 8:00am. Students are expected to follow the night intern for their team all night for both cross-cover issues and new admissions. Students should write an H&P for each admission they perform, and turn in at least one formal H&P write-up to their attending during this week. Students should also briefly present one of their overnight admissions during morning check-out (handover) each morning after a night shift. For students on night shift during a Slide exam week, the student will be dismissed from their night shift early on the Wednesday morning of the Slide exam day at 4:00am (do not report to morning checkout or morning report). Students will then report for the Slide exam at 3:00pm that day and then start their night shift Wednesday evening at 4:00pm. For students starting night shift the first week of the even blocks (week 5 of the clerkship), they will start nights on Sunday night and will receive an extra day off during their inpatient month to be taken on a weekend day. The week of night shifts will conclude on Thursday morning after morning report. Students will be dismissed at 8:00am Thursday morning and will have no further clinical responsibilities that day. Students will then report back to wards on Friday morning. If you have ANY questions about night shift, please contact Dr. Bettin or Ms. Wilson immediately. For other sites, night shift times and days may vary. Please contact your local clerkship director for more details.


Students on days should practice signing out to the night shift student using the I-PASS format. Students on night shift should use the I-PASS format to handover one or more patient(s) during morning handover each day.

Admission Orders

Students should practice writing their own admission orders while on call and compare theirs to those of the admitting resident. This is an example of admission orders.


Students may be asked to give 2-4 short presentations (3-5 minutes each) to their team on general pediatrics issues. Choosing topics, which relate to current patients, helps to improve clinical applications of knowledge.


The outpatient portion of the clerkship is designed to provide students with a broad view of outpatient and subspecialty pediatric opportunities. Students will attend clinic one day per week with a community (general pediatrician) preceptor. Students will rotate in the newborn nursery or NICU, sub-specialty clinics, developmental clinic, adolescent clinic, St. Jude clinics (in Memphis), and emergency department shifts. To get the most out of this experience, it is important that the student come to clinic prepared, having read the assigned pre-reading materials and read about patients coming to clinic when permitted. Students should also be proactive in trying to see patients on their own when permitted, keeping in mind the need to avoid disrupting the efficient flow of patients through the clinic. Students will receive more information about the outpatient rotation during outpatient orientation, but helpful information can be found in your Pediatrics Clerkship handbook given to you at orientation (Memphis). Students are required to have each outpatient attending sign their handbook for EACH CLINIC experience during this month (excluding St. Jude and your community preceptor).

Focused exams are only appropriate if you have reviewed the patient’s chart in detail or know the patient well. Otherwise, a more comprehensive evaluation is required so that you can give a complete and accurate presentation to your supervising resident or faculty. Remember to develop your assessment, differential diagnosis and management plan before discussing with the supervisor. Students now have access to outpatient Cerner and will be able to access the outpatient electronic medical record.

Newborn Nursery/NICU

For information about the Newborn Nursery/NICU, please view the medical students curriculum.

Duty Hours

Duty hours will be limited to 80 hours per week averaged over a four-week period, inclusive of all in-house call and patient care activities. Continuous on-site duty, including in-house call, will not exceed 30 consecutive hours. Students may remain on duty additional hours to participate in transferring care of patients, conducting outpatient clinics, maintaining continuity of medical and surgical care, and attending required didactic activities. Students will be provided with one day in seven free from all educational and clinical responsibilities, averaged over the rotation, inclusive of call. One day is defined as one continuous 24-hour period free from all clinical, didactic, and administrative activities. Students should be provided with a 10-hour period after in-house call during which they are free from all patient care activities.

Please use the iLogin link to log duty hours. Please see the instructions below for logging duty hours.

  1. To enter hours, scroll down to the calendar and enter either an hourly amount
    in the text field, select ‘DAY-OFF’ or ‘POST-CALL’ for the day you wish to
  2. After entering all of the data you want, multiple days can be done
    simultaneously, hit ‘ENTER’ or click the ‘SUBMIT HOURS’ button at the
    bottom of the calendar.
  3. After verifying the logging operations, exit the pages one by one until you are
    back in the iLogin environ. LOGOUT and have a nice day.


Component Percent of
Final Grade
Inpatient Rotation Evaluation 50%
Shelf Exam 35%
SLIDE Exams 10% (Exam 1 = 3%, Exam 2 = 7%)
Outpatient/Newborn Evaluation 5%
Outpatient (Ambulatory) Rotation Pass/Low Pass/Fail

Grading Scale

The following scale will be used to assign final grades for the clerkship. Grades will not be curved or rounded.

A: 89.5-100
B: 78.5-89.49
C: 67.5-78.49
F: 67.49 or lower

The standard deviation for final grades is historically very small. Therefore, a difference as small as 0.2 points is significant and will not be curved or adjusted upwards.

Inpatient Rotation

This grade is determined by your attending(s) and supervising resident(s) with input from your interns based on patient work-ups, daily progress notes, participation in rounds, presentations, etc. and accounts for 50% of the final clerkship grade. Listen carefully to the explanation given during orientation concerning how a numerical grade is calculated using this forms. Inpatient Evaluation

To give you an idea of how you are performing, your attending physician(s) will provide written mid-month feedback halfway through your inpatient month. If the faculty fails to provide this feedback, the student is expected to ask the attending for the current evaluation. This form should be turned into the clerkship coordinator at the end of the second week of the inpatient rotation unless otherwise stated during orientation. Mid-Rotation Feedback

During your week of nights, a resident will evaluate your performance using the following form Resident Evaluation. This form should be returned to your inpatient attending for inclusion in your final evaluation.

Shelf Exam

At the end of the clerkship, students will take the National Board of Medical Examiners (NBME) Pediatric Shelf Exam as the written exam. This score accounts for 35% of the final clerkship grade. A score of less than 62 on this test requires repeat testing.  The minimum score to be eligible to receive an “A” for the clerkship is 80. The NBME shelf exam is also used as the written re-exam. NBME Sample Exam

Re-examination must occur as follows: if failed during Block 5/6, 7/8, or 9/10 you must retake the exam in January of Block 1 of your M3 year; if failed during Block 11/12, 1/2, or 3/4 you must retake the Shelf exam by the end of Block 8 of your senior year.  Under special circumstances, a student may be able to retake the Shelf exam other than at the regularly scheduled time, and if so, 4 weeks’ notice must be given.

Failure to be re-examined will result in a failing grade for the rotation. The original test score will be averaged into the final overall grade. Failure of the re-exam or failure of any portion of the clerkship requires that the entire rotation be repeated.

Slide Exams

At week 3 and week 6 of the clerkship, a slide exam will be given and the combined scores count as 10% of the total clerkship grade (Exam 1 = 3% and Exam 2 = 7%). The questions are derived from the topics in the Aquifer Pediatrics cases but there are additional general pediatric issues included as well. Sample Slide Exam

Outpatient/Newborn Evaluation

Students will spend one day per week with their outpatient community preceptor. Students should participate in both well child care and acute visits during this time. For students rotating in Memphis, there will be a short evaluation for preceptor portion of the outpatient rotation that is to be completed by the community preceptor. For students rotating in Chattanooga or Knoxville, this identical evaluation will be completed in the newborn nursery by the supervising attending. This evaluation will account for 5% of the overall clerkship grade at all sites. Outpatient/Newborn Evaluation

Outpatient Rotation

Understandably, the format of the outpatient rotation does not lend itself well to critical evaluation of the student’s performance. Consequently, the lion’s share of subjective evaluation for the clerkship is obtained on the inpatient rotation where the students experience the most continuity of evaluators. Comments from the ambulatory faculty with input from the supervising residents, newborn nursery/NICU attendings, private pediatrician preceptors, and subspecialty physicians during the outpatient month may be included in the inpatient pediatric evaluation that will be sent to Academic Affairs for inclusion in the Dean’s Letter. Once again, students are evaluated on patient work-ups, physical examination skills, participation, and preparation prior to the clinic, etc.

  • Pass- requires documentation of experience and participation in all clinics
  • Low Pass - Multiple concerns expressed by various residents or faculty concerning students' performance during the ambulatory rotation.
  • Fail - 2 or more unexcused absences or serious concerns expressed by various residents or faculty concerning students' performance during the ambulatory rotation.

Important Notes on Grading

The Clerkship Director retains the right to discuss with the attending physicians any serious infraction, professionalism issues, extenuating circumstances, or positive behavior not previously known to the attendings and may advise the attendings to alter the student’s grade accordingly.

All portions of the pediatrics clerkship including clinics, exams, etc. must be completed and passed within one (1) year of starting the pediatrics clerkship or by September of the senior year, whichever comes first. Failure of the first shelf exam, or any segment of the clerkship, negates the ability to receive an “A” as a final grade no matter in what the ultimate grade average results.

When grades are finalized, you will receive an email notifying you that your evaluations and grading composite are available in New Innovations.

Students failing to complete and turn in all of their assignments and documentation with appropriate signatures (clinic logs, mastery skills sheet, clinical skills rubrics), and all duty hours and diagnoses logs by the end of the rotation will receive a failing grade for the rotation. All items are required to be submitted the Wednesday before the Pediatrics Shelf exam. There will be no guarantee that requirements will be satisfied if items submitted at any other time other than the Wednesday before the exam.

Hall S. Tackett Evaluations

Each student is required to complete a Hall S. Tackett evaluation (link will be emailed). These evaluations must be completed before student grades can be turned into the registrar's office. If you do not complete your Hall S. Tackett by the time grades are being reported, an “I” will be submitted for your grade and you will have 1 week from that point to complete it. If you fail to complete your Hall S. Tackett by the end of the week, unless preapproved by the clerkship director, you will receive an “F” for the rotation.

Helpful Links for Grading

SASSI Accommodations

Any student who feels he/she may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact Student Academic Support Services and Inclusion (SASSI) to self-disclose and officially request accommodations. All requests for accommodations must be submitted with supporting documentation and the SASSI Self-Disclosure and Accommodation Request Forms. Although students may register for services at any time, please attempt to make arrangements within the first two weeks of the semester as it does take time to process the request and review documentation. For additional information, contact the SASSI Disability Coordinator at or (901) 448-1452.

Any special testing accommodations need to be arranged at the beginning of the rotation. If not it may not be possible to honor requests (i.e. testing in the SASSI office, etc.) In general, no special accommodations are necessary for the SLIDE exams.


In contrast to the first two years of medical school where much of a student’s grade is based on objective criteria obtained through written testing, the second two years base much of the grade on subjective evaluation. Perusal of the evaluation form reveals that at least forty percent of the grade is based on evaluation of professional and personal attributes. Physicians-in-training must possess certain necessary attitudes and interpersonal skills. Some of these are inherent, but much can be cultivated particularly in an environment filled with the appropriate role models. The administration of the University of Tennessee feels strongly about this and has published guidelines for Professional Behavior and Conduct reproduced here:

Computer Use

It has become standard that all large corporations monitor the computer use in their businesses. Methodist Hospital, of which Le Bonheur is a part, is no exception. Students can be identified surfing inappropriate websites, which will result in dismissal from medical school.

Students are expected to have completed Cerner training and to have obtained access to the electronic medical record at Le Bonheur prior to the beginning of the rotation. Please inform the clerkship coordinator on the first day of the rotation if you have not accomplished this.

For Powerchart (Cerner) access, call (901) 516-0000 #2.

Conferences and Calendars

Case Conferences

For students rotating in Memphis, Case conferences (didactics) are Friday afternoons, with occasional Wednesday afternoon sessions. A schedule is in your orientation packet and on our website (Case Conference Schedule). Students are required to attend ALL learning sessions. Roll will be taken and will be reflected in your grade. Friday conferences are generally 1:45pm-2:45pm and 3:00pm-4:00pm. Wednesday conferences times vary. Please refer to your schedule for details on times and locations of conferences. Students are expected to read and be prepared to discuss cases pertaining to the conference topic. Case Conference reading materials are available for reading. A password is required for each topic. The password will be given to you during orientation and can be found on your case conference schedule. Case conference and didactic schedules for Chattanooga and Knoxville sites vary. Please ask your local clerkship director for details.

Other Conferences (Memphis Location)

All conferences are mandatory for students on the inpatient rotation. Some conferences are mandatory for all students. See Monthly Inpatient Calendar.

  • Patient Checkout and Morning Report: All inpatient students are expected to attend every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings from 7:00am – 8:00am, Wednesday morning 7:00-7:30am.

  • Grand Rounds: Wednesday mornings 8:00am-9:00am, Auditorium. Mandatory attendance for ALL students. (except students on nights).
  • Noon Conference: Daily 12:00pm-1:00pm, Education Classroom. All inpatient students (except students on nights) are expected to attend every day. Outpatient students encouraged to attend when possible.
  • Combined Team Rounds: Tuesday afternoons 2:30pm-3:30pm. Mandatory for inpatient students (except those on nights).
  • Chief Resident Rounds: Usually one Thursday afternoon. Mandatory for inpatient students.
  • PICU Rounds: Usually one Thursday afternoon. Mandatory for inpatient students (except those on nights).

Clinical Skills Assessments (Rubrics)

Students will complete clinical skills rubrics for the following pediatric skills: 1) otoscopic examination and 2) developmental assessment. Rubrics may be completed either during inpatient or at the preceptor’s office. Student must be directly observed by a faculty member or supervising resident (PGY 2-4) for each skill. Students will have 2 attempts for each skills assessment, and must achieve a rating of “able to perform independently” on at least 4 items per rubric in order to pass this assignment. This is a pass/fail assignment that must be completed and turned in to the clerkship coordinator prior to the end of the clerkship. It is the student’s responsibility to alert the attending or supervising resident to the need for this assessment, and to ensure that both skills assessments are completed prior to the end of the clerkship.

Prior to the skills assessments, students should review the supplemental materials listed below:

  • Otoscopic examination - View the online module on Acute Otitis Media
  • Developmental assessment – Read the following chapter, which can be accessed via Clinical Key on the UTHSC Library website: Caplin, D., Cooper, M. “Child Development for Inpatient Medicine”, Comprehensive Pediatric Hospital Medicine. 2007: 1285-1292.

Students will also be provided with a copy of the “Kube card” of developmental milestones, which may be used during the skills assessment. Please return these cards at the end of the clerkship.

*For Memphis location, these are in your Pediatrics Clerkship handbook.

Physical Exam Skills Sheet

You are required to have an inpatient resident or attending observe your history taking and physical exam skills and sign the following card. If you do not perform the skill adequately, you and the resident should discuss ways to improve then they should observe you again for competence. This physical examination mastery skills form should be turned into the clerkship coordinator by the end of the clerkship.

*For Memphis location, this is in your Pediatrics Clerkship handbook.

Diagnoses Logs

In order to ensure that you are seeing a breadth of patients, we require documentation of 19 patient diagnoses located on the iLogin website. If you do not see a patient with a particular diagnosis, you should complete the appropriate CLIPP case to fill in the gaps (How to use the Pediatric Patient Encounter Logs example). Instructions are below:

  1. Go to the iLogin page and log in.
  2. On the Application List page click on ‘Student Information Services’.
  3. Choose ‘Student Information Services’ from the expanded file.
  4. Choose the ‘Clerkship Tracking’ button to the left of the page.
  5. You will be taken to an external page. You will see an entry message, and
    soon two buttons labeled ‘SHOW SCHEDULE’ and ‘SHOW CALENDAR’,
    (for now these two areas are displayed automatically).
  6. To log a procedure or diagnosis, select the clerkship you wish to do it in from
    the selections on the far right of the schedule table.
  7. You will then be taken to another page where there is a ‘HELP’ tab available
    to describe this pages process.

White Clinic Cards/Clinic Log

More information about these will be given during the outpatient orientation, but students must have a white card for each clinic they attend during the outpatient portion of the clerkship.

*For Memphis location, these are in your Pediatrics Clerkship handbook.

Additional Information about Assignments

Students failing to complete and turn in their Pediatric Patient Log cards (white clinic cards), their H&P card, clinical skills rubrics (all with appropriate signatures), and all duty hours and diagnoses logs by the end of the rotation will receive a failing grade for the rotation. Cards are required to be submitted the Wednesday before the Pediatrics Shelf exam. There will be no guarantee that card documentation will be satisfied if cards are submitted at any other time other than the Wednesday before the exam.

Miscellaneous Information


During normal working hours on weekdays (8 a.m. -5pm), students must park in their university-assigned parking places. Do not park in the Le Bonheur parking garage or your car will be booted.

Lounge Use

For brief periods of relaxation, M3 students are authorized to use the student medical staff lounge located on the 6th floor of the Children's Foundation Research Building. Students are allowed to play video games but are warned that too much playtime could affect their subjective evaluation detrimentally. Please complete the Student Information Sheet contained in your orientation folder and give to the assistant on the 6th floor for access to the lounge.



Important Policies

Excused Absences: There may be various reasons for a student to be absent from a clerkship. These may include:

  • Funerals - Students may be excused for the death of immediate family only. It will be at the discretion of the CD as to what “immediate” means, how much time will be given off, how much needs to be made up and when
  • Doctors’ appointments - Requests for time off for doctors’ appointments should be approved through the CD as soon as possible, preferable 30 days before start of the rotation. The appointments must be scheduled at a time that is least disruptive to patient care or education should not be elective or preventative (These should be scheduled before and after the M-3 year) and will require proof of attendance.
  • Weddings - Students may be excused for the weddings of immediate family only (again as determined by and at the discretion of the CD.) Students should submit a request in writing for permission to be absent from the course no less than 30 days before the start of the clerkship. If approved, time will be given off only for out of town weddings and only Friday afternoons and the following weekend. Students may request absence for only 1 wedding in the M-3 year. If necessary, the student may need to take a 2-week option block to accommodate other weddings. At orientation to med school, students will be informed that there are no vacations in M-3 year, allowing students, family and friends to plan accordingly.
  • Step II CK/CS - Students must complete all CORE M-3 clerkships before taking the Step II CK. Students may not take time out of required M-4 rotations/JI to take Step II CK/CS. Students should submit a request in writing for permission to be absent from an elective at least 30 days prior to the beginning of the rotation. Permission must be obtained from the CD and faculty member in charge of the elective.
  • Residency Interviews - Students may not be excused for traveling for interviews in required CORE rotations/JI’s. Students should submit a request in writing for permission to be absent from an elective at least 30 days prior to the beginning of the rotation. Permission must be obtained from the CD and faculty member in charge of the elective.
  • Presentations - Students are both encouraged and required to take part in scholarly projects including research, patient safety/quality improvement, or in community and global population health. Many of our students are involved in ongoing research projects and many be invited to present their work at regional or national meetings. The clerkship directors wish to encourage scholarly activity and will work with student to allow them to present their work with as little impact on patient care and team responsibilities as possible.
      • Students should submit a request in writing for permission to be absent from the course for the purpose of presenting scholarly work.
      • The invitation to present the work should be included with the request for an excused absence.
      • The request should be submitted as soon as the student receives the invitation to present at the meeting.
      • Clerkship Directors may refuse the request for time off if it is made less than 30 days before the requested excused absence.

Dress codes/Scrubs

UTHSC Dress Code

Name Badges

Pediatrics-specific Policy

During the week, proper professional attire is expected. Athletic shoes may be worn if clean and not excessively worn. No open-toed shoes may be worn. Students MUST wear white coats and ID badges at all times.


Daily dress should be business casual (men - trousers, shirts, ties are preferred but optional depending on the attending; women – knee length skirts. slacks, blouses or dresses). No provocative clothing. Scrubs may only be worn after 4pm on call days. You may wear your scrubs post-call and on weekends, however, they should be clean. T-shirts may be worn with your scrub pants; however, shirts with holes, dirt, bloodstains, and advertisements are not acceptable.


Scrubs are acceptable in these areas.


Daily dress is business casual. Scrubs should never be worn in the outpatient clinic.

Health Policy

UT Student Health and Wellness Policy

Should a student become ill of such severity to require absence of two or more days necessitating medical or psychological care while on a clerkship, it should be reported to the clerkship director. The student should not be seen or evaluated as a patient by a practitioner who may later be in a position to evaluate the student for a grade in a clerkship. If the student’s health issue will significantly disrupt their progress in the clerkship, the situation, but not the nature of the illness, should be reported to the course director (Memphis clerkship director) and subsequently to the Assistant Dean for Clinical Education and the Associate Dean of Medical Education. In case of a prolonged illness or disability, the student may be extended a Leave of Absence (UT Leave of Absence Policy) or be allowed to use option blocks for recovery during the clinical clerkships.

Should a student develop a chronic illness or lingering disability, the issue must be verified by the student’s physician and the student must declare the disability. The Clinical Sciences Subcommittee will then tailor a clerkship curriculum to the student’s particular needs while ensuring that a comparable educational experience is maintained.

On the Chattanooga and Knoxville campuses the clerkship director should also notify the Education Director/Coordinator who will notify the Associate Dean of Education who will in turn notify the Dean for that campus as well as the Associate Dean of Students.

Every effort will be made to insure confidentiality in compliance with HIPAA and FERPA. All campuses offer a Student Health office in which the medical, nursing, and administrative staff is independent of faculty and college administration. The personnel are never in a position to evaluate the students that visit the University Health Services as patients.

Should a student need specialty care and choose one of the faculty physicians for their healthcare, the faculty member will neither be asked nor allowed to evaluate that student. Faculty members who have seen students as patients are asked to recuse themselves should that student come before any academic committee.

Inclement Weather Policy

UTHSC Policy on Inclement Weather


If you feel you are being mistreated, we encourage you to talk to the person who is mistreating you first. On the inpatient rotation, you should discuss any issues with your supervising resident followed by the attending. If the issue is still not resolved, then you should contact the clerkship director. On the outpatient rotation, you should discuss any issues with the supervising provider then the clerkship director. If the issue is sensitive, then please report the issue straight to the Office of Student Affairs. Please refer to the policies below for further details:

Needle Stick Injury

Policy Search Tool

Search for UTHSC policies


Code of Professional Conduct

General Guidelines for Professional Behavior and Conduct in Pediatrics

Religious Accommodations

Accommodations for Religious Beliefs, Practices, and Observances


Student Workload

Student Workload - Clinical Clerkships

Last Published: Aug 27, 2018