Aug. 19, 2016

Cumming School of Medicine receives accreditation, valid for next eight years

Process involving students demonstrated 'just how strong we are'

The Cumming School of Medicine (CSM) has been successfully accredited in a process common to all North American medical schools.  In recent years, accreditation has been a challenge for many schools, with four of Canada’s 17 medical schools having failed accreditation before having it reinstated after major remedial work over the last 10 years. The CSM has continuously maintained its accredited status since it took its first students in 1970.

“Students can be assured that they will get an outstanding medical education at the Cumming School in a modern university that values research and community service,” says Dr. Tom Feasby, chair of the UME Accreditation Steering Committee and former dean of medicine.

Students played key role in accreditation process

Preparation for the accreditation took two years and involved hundreds of people including faculty and staff doing thorough self-examination of the undergraduate teaching program and many other activities at the school.

Students also played a key role. They conducted in-depth surveys of students followed by focus groups and analysis, resulting in many recommendations for improvement. Students also served on all the major accreditation subcommittees and the accreditation steering committee.

The Cumming School of Medicine, one of only two three-year medical schools in Canada, is one of the first medical schools to be assessed under new Canadian standards which came into effect in June 2015.

Demonstrated strengths in curriculum, student evaluation

“The Cumming School of Medicine has achieved the best possible result: full accreditation for an eight-year term,” says Dr. Jon Meddings, dean of Medicine. “We demonstrated throughout the accreditation process just how strong we are. Of the 95 elements evaluated by the survey team, we satisfied the requirements in 97 per cent overall; 100 per cent for elements directly related to curriculum and student evaluation.”

The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC) manages a rigorous system of accreditation at the undergraduate levels for all 17 faculties of medicine in Canada. Accreditation of undergraduate medical education is undertaken jointly between the Committee on Accreditation of Canadian Medical Schools (CACMS) in Canada and the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) in the United States. 

The site visit report can be read online.