Clerkship Patient Logger Policy


During the clinical clerkships, students focus on developing the clinical competencies required for graduation and post-graduate training. These competencies are evaluated in many different ways: by faculty observation during rotations, by examinations, by NBME Subject Examinations, and by the USMLE Step 2 Examinations. In order to develop many of these competencies and meet the objectives required for graduation, the Boonshoft School of Medicine needs to ensure that each student sees an appropriate mix of clinical encounters during their clerkships to achieve the learning objectives. For these reasons, as well as others discussed below and to meet accreditation standards, the school has developed this patient encounter log policy.

Part of our medical student learning objectives that students must achieve during their training involves documentation. Documentation is an essential and important feature of patient care and learning how and what to document is an important part of medical education. Keeping this log becomes a student training exercise in documentation. The seriousness and accuracy with which students maintain and update their patient log will be part of their evaluation during the clerkships.

In compliance with LCME Standard 6.2, each clerkship steering committee, chaired by the clerkship director, will identify the types of patient encounters/procedures that each student must complete during that particular clerkship rotation. Clerkship steering committees can look to specialty-specific national curriculum to guide the selection of these required patient encounters/procedures, but they must be derived from the BSOM learning goals and milestones. Clerkship steering committees must identify the minimum level of participation, based on student role, for each required patient encounter/procedure, with no more than 50% of required patient encounters/procedures designated as “observation” only. Clerkship steering committees must also identify acceptable alternative experiences for a student to meet the requirements of the patient logger in the case that they are unable to satisfy the requirement during their clinical rotations. This may include, but is not limited to, online case-based modules and in-class didactic topics.

Student Responsibility and Requirements:

  • Document all required patient encounters (and procedures if applicable). Students must log whether or not they were observed under the “Student Role” option in the logger. Students are encouraged to log live patient encounters before using simulated encounters.
  • Document information in a timely manner. The student should develop a habit of logging patient encounters frequently, with evidence of logging prior to the mid-clerkship point. Completion of the encounter log is due the last day of each clerkship. If an excused circumstance presents wherein the student is unable to complete the log during a specific clerkship, the student will be responsible to participate in a clinical elective or other remediation as determined by the clerkship, wherein the remaining items on the checklist will be completed.

Approved by FCC 1/28/15. Updated by FCC 5/24/17. 

Last edited on 04/26/2018.