This page represents a general overview of the PA Program's policies. A complete guide to these policies is contained in the Program Handbook, distributed to all matriculating students.

ACADEMIC GRADE POINT AVERAGE

Student academic performance in the PA Program is measured by computation of the GPA. The GPA is calculated by dividing the accumulated number of grade points earned by the accumulated number of credit hours attempted.

Grading Scale:

A= 4 Quality Points (89.5 – 100) 

B= 3 Quality Points (79.5 – 89.4) 

C= 2 Quality Points (70 – 79.4)

F= Below 70 

I = Incomplete

Grading Criteria for Didactic Phase It is the Course Director’s decision to determine the grading components and associated weights for a course. The Course Director will determine the type of assessment instrument(s) to be used in the classroom. Course syllabi provide course content and course expectations. It is the student’s responsibility to become familiar with this information. The cumulative average is calculated as all course averages multiplied by semester hours per course, then divided by total semester hours

Grading Criteria for Clinical Phase A final score of 70% is required to pass this course. Grades will be assigned based on the following percentages: 

Assessment Tool Course Learning Outcome MeasuredPercentage of Grade
End of Rotation ExamK1- Knowledge
IS1 - History
IS2 - Patient Education
IS3 - Communicate and Document Medical Information
CRPS1 - Different Diagnosis
CRPS2 - Diagnostic Studies
40%
Preceptor EvaluationCRPS2 - Diagnostic Studies
CRPS3 - Therapeutic Management
CRPS - Evidence - based Medical Decisions
CTS1 - Physical Exam
CTS2 - Clinical Procedures
PROF1 - Professionalism
40%
Direct Observation of Procedural Skills (DOPS)
Completing Course-Related
CTS1 - Physical Exam
CTS2 - Clinical Procedures
10%
Administration Requirements - Mid- Rotation EvaluationPROF1 - Professionalism10%




End-of-Rotation Exam

The last Friday of each SCPE, students will be required to return to campus for testing. For our grading purposes, the exam scores will be converted using a student Z-score and the minimum acceptable adjusted grade is 70%.

  1. How to Find The Z-Score
  2. Using the Z-Score to Convert the EOR Test Grade
Z- ScoreAdjusted Grade Letter Grade
+0.67 to +2.0090% to 100%A
-0.66 to +0.6680% to 89%B
-0.67 to -2.0070% to 79%C
-2.00 or Lower  Below 70%F




 EOR Exam

The end of rotation exam is delivered by the Physician Assistant Education Association (PAEA) and is based on the National Committee on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA) blueprint for the Physician Assistant National Certification Exam (PANCE). While students expand their skills in the supervised clinical setting, each student is expected to do additional reading and research preparing for the exam that will be given when the rotation ends. 

Preceptor Evaluation

At the end of the SCPE, the preceptor will evaluate the student on their attainment of the course learning outcomes and professionalism. The performance evaluation accounts for 40% of the SCPE grade.


Direct Observation of Procedural Skills (DOPS)

During each SCPE the clinical phase PA student should review their past performance of clinical and technical skills with their preceptor and set goals for developing additional skills and reinforcing maintenance of prior skills. When a preceptor observes a student proficiently demonstrate a clinical procedure or clinical/technical skill listed on the Direct Observation of Procedural Skills (DOPS) form they should sign and date the form attesting to proficient performance of the clinical procedure during the Family Medicine SCPE. Individual preceptors should only sign the form once per SCPE. Student submission of the DOPS accounts for 10% of the Family Medicine SCPE grade.

Completing Course Related Administration Requirements

This portion of the grade is based on the student’s demonstration of professional behaviors expected of all PA students while on the SCPE and appropriate and timely communication with the program. Please reference the Student Handbook for all policies related to student expectations while participating in SCPEs. 

Mid-Rotation Preceptor Evaluation of the Student

By the end of week 2, the preceptor will evaluate the student on areas of needed improvement in regard to attainment of the course learning outcomes. Failure to complete the mid-rotation evaluation results in a grade of 0% completing course related administrative requirements grade for this mandatory formative assessment of their learning.

End of Rotation Evaluation of Students

The End of Rotation Evaluation of Student is required prior to the end of week 4 and is weighted as 40% of the student’s rotation grade. If the final evaluation is not received by the completion of business on the Monday following the end of the 4-week rotation period, the student will receive an Incomplete as their final evaluation grade until the evaluation is returned. An Incomplete on the student’s transcript may delay or prevent them from: 1) advancing from one semester to the next, or 2) graduation. The Program recommends that preceptors review their evaluations with students. 

The End of Rotation Evaluation of Student rates students directly on their performance of learning outcomes stated in the course syllabus. The expected rating of the average clinical year PA student is a “3” and is a 90%.

Item Score GradeQualities Associated with item Score 
5100%Performs at the level of an experienced PA:
The PA student, in a non-educational setting, would be bale to elicit
an appropriately interpret the study results; and create an appropriate
assessment and plan based on their findings with full autonomy. The student
is fully aware of their limitations and knows when and how to obtain appropriate collaboration.
495%Performs at the level of a new graduate PA: The PA student is able to complete the tasks of an experienced PA with limited amount of collaboration. The student is fully aware of their limitations and knows when and how to obtain appropriate collaboration and does so on a regular basis.
390%Performs at the level of a clinical year PA student:
The PA student is able to complete the task of an experienced PA with moderate amount of collaboration and direction from their preceptor. The student is fully aware of their limitations and regularly seeks critique and direction.
270%Performs below the level of typical clinical year PA student:
The PA student is unable to complete the task after receiving frequent and regular guidance and direction. The student is aware of their limitations but does not seek or show the ability to improve through preceptor critique and direction.
10%Performs in a manner that would jeopardize patient safety:
The student demonstrates clinical skills or decision-making that, if not corrected, would have directly caused harm to the patient. The s



 

Academic Standing Definitions

1. Good Standing without Academic Warning:

Status of a student who has met course and clinical requirements in a satisfactory manner, and has demonstrated appropriate professional behavior.

To remain in good academic standing, all PA students must maintain a minimum semester GPA (grade point average) of 3.0 better or and a “P” (pass) in all performance-grade rated courses at all times throughout the program.

 As a Master’s level program, attaining grades of “B” or above in all courses is considered passing and maintaining satisfactory performance.

A student must complete the program within a time period of three calendar years or less unless due to a medical leave or leave of absence approved by the PA program. Therefore, a student will only be permitted to sit out and repeat a course (courses) one time.

2. Good Standing with Academic Warning:

 Status of a student whose performance in an academic course or clinical rotation grade places him/her in jeopardy of falling below the minimum stated standards, or who has exhibited inappropriate professional behavior.

 Obtaining a grade of less than a “C” on any assessment and regardless of your overall GPA, will result in academic warning.

Example includes but not limited to: A student who receives a grade less than a 70% on any assessment will receive an academic warning and should meet with the Course Director or designee.

3. Academic Probation:

Status of a student whose performance in the program has fallen below acceptable academic standards or who has exhibited unacceptable professional behavior.

Examples include but are not limited to:

  • Students with semester GPA of less than 3.0
  • Student with final grade in a course below 79.5%
  • Failing a SCPE 

Students placed on academic probation will be referred to the APC committee. The academic probation will be in effect for the duration of the subsequent semester. At that time the probation will be removed, assuming the student’s performance has improved to the minimum expectation that led to the probation status.

4. Dismissal:

Action whereby a student is dismissed from the XULA Physician Assistant Studies Program due to failure to adhere to program standards including but not limited to academic, clinical, and/or professional standards.

Failure to meet Minimum Academic Standards

  1. Students with semester GPA (grade point average) of less than 3.0 will be placed on academic probation and referred to the Academic Progression Committee. The academic probation will be in effect for the duration of the subsequent semester. At that time the probation will be removed, assuming the student’s performance has improved to the minimum expected cumulative GPA of 3.0. If the student’s GPA at the end of the subsequent semester remains less than a 3.0, then student is dismissed from program. 
  2. Grades of “F” in any course are not acceptable for progression in the program and are grounds for dismissal from the program.
  3. A "C" is a course grade that requires remediation and students can only remediate one course in the didactic phase and one SCPE. A second "C" in the phase may be grounds for dismissal.
  4. Earning more than one grade of “C” or less any time during the didactic phase may be grounds for possible dismissal from the program. 
  5. A second failed SCPE (either a repeat of an initially failed SCPE or a failed SCPE in another discipline) may be grounds for possible dismissal from program.

5. Request for Readmission

In general, a student may seek readmission to the PA Program via the College of Pharmacy’s Academic Standing Committee. The COP Academic Standing Committee convenes during the Fall, Spring and Summer terms. Upon dismissal, a student will complete the COP Request for Readmission Form and submit to the COP Office of Student Affairs Rm. 100.

If a student’s appeal for readmission is denied by the COP Academic Standing Committee, (s)he may submit an appeal to the University Academic Standing Committee that meets in July only, so a student who is academically dismissed after the fall semester is unable to file an appeal for readmission for the spring semester that immediately follows. The University readmission appeal form is located at:

 Academic Appeal Form

If a student is denied by both committees, the student may reapply as a new student and must update all program requirements including but not limited to immunizations, health insurance, criminal background checks, and drug screening. 

Matriculation into and Progression through the Didactic Phase
In order to successfully enter into and progress through the didactic phase of the PA program, each student must complete or meet the following requirements:
1) Successfully complete the admission requirements including submission of proof of a physical examination, profile information (phone number, address, emergency contact information), and required immunizations as well as successfully complete and pass the Xavier University of Louisiana Physician Assistant Program Orientation. 

  • Failure to complete these requirements prior to matriculation could result in dismissal from the program or failure to progress. 
  • A plan to demonstrate compliance with any outstanding requirements must be determined and approved by the program during orientation. 

2) Successfully complete each PA-designated course in the prescribed sequence. 

  • Course sequences are published on the University website and are sequenced as deemed appropriate by the faculty on a year-to-year basis.

3) Successfully achieve a minimum of 3.0 out of 4.0 GPA each semester (semester GPA) throughout the didactic phase of the PA program. 

  • Failure to achieve a GPA of 3.0 or better out of 4.0 during any didactic semester will result in dismissal from the program without the opportunity to reapply or re-enter. 

4) Earn a grade in any PA-designated course of “C” or better in every course during the didactic phase of the program. 

  • Grades of “F” are not acceptable for progression in the program and are grounds for immediate dismissal from the program with no opportunity to re-enter the program. 
  • Earning more than one grade of “C” or less any time during the didactic phase shall result in dismissal from the program. 

5) Attend all events noted as mandatory by the Physician Assistant program which may include but is not limited to conferences, meetings, and dinners; guest lectures; seminars; Xavier University of Louisiana and Physician Assistant program events including accreditation responsibilities, PA week; University convocations; and other activities unless officially excused.
6) Pay all fees associated with courses for supplies/etc. as stated in each syllabus or as notified by the program before progressing to the next semester. 


Matriculation into the Clinical Year

  1. In order to matriculate into the clinical phase of the PA program, each student must complete the following unless the timing of activities is altered by the PA program. Failure to complete the following will result in the inability to begin the clinical year and/or dismissal from the program. 
  2. Successful completion of all didactic Physician Assistant program coursework. 
  3. Successful completion of a comprehensive examination practical within one month of the beginning of the clinical phase of the program.
  4. Obtain current ACLS and BLS training that will remain current throughout the duration of the clinical phase of the program. 
  5. Successfully complete a background check. 
  6. Complete HIPAA compliance paperwork. 
  7. Successfully complete OSHA training. 
  8. Update his/her physical examination, including immunizations as required by the PA program and clinical sites. 
  9. Complete an emergency contact form. 
  10. Maintain proof of current health insurance coverage. 
  11. Pass a urine drug screen test. 
  12. Assure that they have the appropriate student ID badge. 
  13. Complete the Physician Assistant Clinical Knowledge Rating and Assessment Tool (PACKRAT) when so directed. 
  14. Attend all clinical orientation meetings as scheduled. 
  15. Demonstrate the development of professional and ethical maturity. 

Progression through the Clinical Phase of the Program

In order to successfully progress through the clinical phase of the Physician Assistant Program, each student must complete the following (unless the timing of activities is altered by the Physician Assistant Program): 

  1. Successful completion of Supervised Clinical Practice Experiences (SCPE)
  2. Maintenance of ACLS and BLS certification 
  3. Maintain a PA program overall GPA of a 3.0 or greater 
  4. Successful completion of courses that take place in addition to the SCPEs 
  5. Earn a grade in any PA-designated course of “C” or better in every course during the clinical phase of the program.
    > Grades of “F” or below are not acceptable for progression in the program and are grounds for immediate dismissal from the program with no opportunity to re-enter the program.
    > Earning more than one grade of “C” or less any time during the clinical phase shall result in dismissal from the program. 
  6. Attendance at all events noted as mandatory by the PA program which may include but is not limited to conferences, meetings, and dinners; guest lectures; seminars; Xavier University of Louisiana and PA program events including accreditation responsibilities, University convocations, and other activities unless officially excused.
  7. In order to select an elective SCPE, the student must be in good academic standing, otherwise the elective will be selected by the program in a discipline felt to best prepare the student for success. 


Graduation Requirements
The Master of Health Science in Physician Assistant Studies degree is granted to all students who have been recommended by the PA Program Professional and Academic Progression Committee through the Program Director and the Dean of the College of Pharmacy. In addition to the requirements set forth in the Xavier University of Louisiana Student Handbook, student will have successfully:

  1. Completed the program course of study within 4 years of the date of matriculation, 
  2. Completed the required curriculum of the PA Program with a minimum grade of “C” in all courses, 
  3. Attained a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 or higher, and 
  4. Passed the written comprehensive exam at the end of the didactic phase and the Summative evaluation at the end of the clinical phase. Requirements for a passing grade are described above. 

The successful completion of the above requirements demonstrates that the student has met the minimum requirements for graduation from the Xavier University of Louisiana Physician Assistant Program and is a candidate suitable to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination. Promotion and graduation is based on both academic and professional growth and development.
Students who fail to meet all promotion criteria may either be dismissed from the Program or be required to remediate any deficiencies at the discretion of the PA Program Professional and Academic Review Committee. The student must demonstrate acceptable levels of maturity, integrity, and other attitudes and behaviors expected of health professionals. The student must be free of any impediments to licensure or to performance as a Physician Assistant. Failure to meet these requirements will jeopardize continued enrollment in the program or graduation from the program.

Xavier University Physician Assistant program is designed as a comprehensive curriculum, and all learners are required to complete the prescribed didactic and clinical coursework. The PA program does not allow for exemption from courses, clinical skills, laboratories, or clinical education regardless of prior experience, degree or credential. The program does not accept credit for courses taken elsewhere for substitution for PA courses. Students must matriculate through all aspects of the program and successfully complete all program requirements in order to graduate.

  • Advanced placement is not granted into the Xavier University Physician Assistant program.
  • All students must complete the full PA program. 
  • No external course work will satisfy PA program requirements
  • Applicants who have graduated from, or attended, foreign or U.S. medical schools, or who have advanced degrees in biological sciences or similar programs, will not be granted automatic acceptance into the PA program. Nor will transfer credits from graduate or post-graduate programs be accepted.
  • Courses from other professional programs (nursing, medical technology, biomechanics) usually will not be accepted in lieu of traditional college courses
  • No transfer credit is accepted. No courses will be waived. 
  • No credit is granted for pre-admission experiential learning.
  • Persons who have been dismissed from another PA program are not eligible for admission to Xavier University of Louisiana PA Program.

A certified background check, fingerprinting, and possible child abuse clearance is required of all accepted applicants prior to matriculation into the program. Additional certified background checks and drug screenings may be required by clinical sites. Students will be required to pay for this process. 

Continuation within the Program is dependent on an acceptable background check that would allow completion of the Program and credentialing requirements and is at the discretion of the Program Director in consultation with the Office of the Dean. Further, any infractions may prevent continuation in the didactic phase of the Program, delay or prevent clinical placement and/or graduation. Should an incident occur any time during the program, the student must self-report the incident to the Program Director immediately. Positive criminal record and fraudulent application statements, are grounds for immediate dismissal from the program and may nullify admission to the program. Individuals who have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor may be denied certification or licensure as a health professional. Information regarding individual eligibility may be obtained from the appropriate credentialing bodies. More information will be provided at the time of matriculation and orientation to help students obtain criminal background checks (Accreditation Standard A3.21)

The Xavier University PA Program Strongly discourages any type of outside employment during our consecutive course of studies. Employment during the program may result in academic difficulties and may prevent the student from acquiring the level of knowledge needed to perform adequately as a physician assistant student during the didactic and clinical phases of the program. 

Working and outside activities are not considered to be valid excuses for poor academic performance or lack of attendance at required PA Program activities. 

During the clinical phase of the program, students must make themselves available to their preceptors on short notice for special learning opportunities outside of regular office hours. This requirement precludes the ability to work outside jobs. Failure to fully participate in all SCPE –related activities is considered abandonment of the SCPE and will result in failure of the SCPE unless it is an excused absence per program guidelines. 

  • Although working while in program is highly discouraged, if a student chooses to work note that didactic schedules and clinical rotation hours or schedules will not be altered to conform to your job schedule or requirements. Your education must remain your primary responsibility when balancing work and school.
  • Students who work are encouraged to make this known to their academic advisor.
  • Students who are working and find themselves in academic difficulty may be advised to consider terminating their job or adjusting their schedule at work in a manner that is more conducive to studying.
  • Students, along with their academic advisor, need to monitor their progress closely so that should an academic decline be perceived, the advisor and the student can work to remedy the situation before the student finds themselves on academic probation.
  • While a student may be invited by a faculty member to share his/her experience in a specific area with the class, a student may not be employed by the program or serve for or function as instructional faculty.
  • During supervised clinical experiences, students may not substitute for clinical or administrative staff. (Accreditation Standard A3.06) 
  • Students enrolled in the program cannot substitute for practicing physician assistants or provide unsupervised services common to a certified PA while at any employment site or learning site while enrolled in the program. 
  • Students credentialed as other non-PA professionals cannot substitute as staff in their credited discipline while in the role of a physician assistant student.
  • Students are not staff and/or employees of the program while in the role of a learning student and as a result must not be required to earn a stipend/salary for the services while a physician assistant student. 
  • Students must not be required to work for the program. (Accreditation Standard A3.04) 
  • Students must not substitute for or function as instructional faculty. (Accreditation Standard A3.05) 
  • Disciplinary action ranging from professional probation to dismissal from the PA program will be taken at the discretion of the PA program for those students who fail to comply with the above Student Employment Policies.


Academic Policies

  • A general overview of the Physician Assistant Program’s policies will be listed below. Program Policies must apply to all students, principal faculty, the Medical Director, and the Program Director regardless of location. (Accreditation Standard A3.01)


  • The Standards will be referenced throughout this section of the handbook as they inform and guide the curriculum, policies and procedures adopted by the Xavier University of Louisiana Physician Assistant Program. The Standards constitute the requirements to which an accredited program is held accountable and provide the basis on which the ARC-PA will confer or deny program accreditation. The program must inform students of program policies and practices. (Accreditation Standard A3.02)


  • The Program Director, the Medical Director, and the principal faculty cannot provide care to students except in emergency situations or access student health records but may facilitate referrals to health facilities. (Accreditation Standard A3.09)


  • Student advisors (Physician Assistant Faculty assigned to this role) will provide for timely access and/or referral of students to services addressing personal issues, which may impact their progress in the Physician Assistant program. Both on-campus and off-campus resources may be utilized to include the use of Xavier University counselors, local counselors, urgent care clinics, and primary care. Financial responsibility/insurance coverage for the cost of these referred services is the responsibility of the individual student. Under no conditions is the faculty advisor to assume the role of professional provider of needed mental health or counseling services for any student. (Accreditation Standard A3.10)

All PA Program students are REQUIRED to show proof of health insurance which provides coverage in the New Orleans metropolitan area. A student, who does not fulfill the criteria for a waiver, will be billed for the student health insurance. Any registered student is eligible to purchase this insurance. Please see insurance policy and waiver information: https://www.xula.edu/insurance 

Matriculated students of the PA Program must have medical/surgical and major medical (hospitalization) coverage. Students must provide the program evidence of current health insurance in the form of a photocopy of a current health insurance card with provider name, identification numbers, expiration date of hospitalization and medical/surgical plan in which the student is enrolled. This information is to be submitted to the PA program. Students must show proof of health insurance coverage annually and an absence of coverage will prohibit participation in supervised clinical activities.

Xavier University of Louisiana PA Program is committed to providing our students a safe environment for learning. To establish this environment the university follows the guidelines of the Louisiana Law (R.S. 17:170 - Schools of Higher Learning), Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for health professionals, and the American College Health Association immunization requirements/recommendations for students entering institutions of higher learning and a tuberculosis screening. In attaining this goal, students’ will be required to submit Louisiana State required immunizations and complete a tuberculosis screening.

The Program Director, medical directors and principal faculty cannot provide care to students except in emergency situations or access student health records but may facilitate referrals to health facilities.  (Accreditation Standard A3.09). 

Student health records are not to be accessible to or reviewed by program, principal or instructional faculty, or staff except for immunization and tuberculosis screening results, which may be maintained and released with written permission from the student. Subsequently, this written permission release form allows the program to release to SCPE sites. (Accreditation Standard A3.21)

Student physical examination and health screening data are confidential documents and are not kept in student or program files. All physical examinations results and immunization records are maintained at the CastleBranch https://discover.castlebranch.com

A summary sheet acknowledging your immunizations are completed is maintained electronically and accessed by the PA program and sent to clinical year preceptors as well as a general form that you are up to date with your annual physical exam

Students should be aware that some series of immunizations require several weeks/months for completion. 

To assure the matriculating student meets Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations for immunizations and health surveillance, the following are PA program health documentation requirements in addition to a complete physical examination: 

Immunization Policy 

The list of required immunizations includes: 

  • Hepatitis B: 3-dose vaccine series and records of a titer validating current immunity. If the quantitative titer is negative, another 3 dose Hepatitis B series should be completed, and a quantitative titer repeated according to guidelines. 
  • Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR): Record of titer validating current immunity or documentation of a 2-dose vaccine series administered according to guidelines. 
  • Polio: Documentation of the completed primary series of at least 3 vaccinations. 
  • Varicella: Record of titer validating current immunity or a 2 vaccine series administered according to guidelines. Note: History of previous infection is not sufficient evidence of immunity. 
  • Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis: Record of having received 1 dose of Tdap within the last ten years and Td boosters every 10 years thereafter. 
  • Seasonal influenza vaccine and additional vaccines for high-risk categories (i.e., H1N1 vaccine). Record of having received 1 dose of the influenza immunization preceding matriculation and provide proof of having received an influenza immunization no later than January 1 annually while enrolled in the program. 
  • Tuberculosis skin test (TST) or Interferon-Gamma Release Assays (IGRA - TB blood test): Must be completed within the four months preceding the 1st day of classes. BCG vaccination does not prevent testing. For students who have received the BCG vaccine, an IGRA, either Quanti FERON TB Gold (QFT-G) or T-Spot, is preferred. If TST or IGRA is positive or if there is a history of previous positive TB testing, a negative chest x-ray is required within the four months preceding the 1st day of classes. If a student is allergic to TB testing, a chest x-ray is required for screening. If a student has recently received a live virus vaccine, TB testing should be delayed for 4 weeks. 
  • Annual re-testing is required and must be the two-step TB test (unless contraindicated by a previous severe reaction) to meet clinical year requirements. Prior to start of clinical rotations, students must have documentation of completion of a two-step TB test. Students must maintain up to date annual two-step TB testing throughout their clinical year. If a recent TB test is positive, the program must have documentation of a negative chest x-ray according to guidelines. 

After a positive PPD or IGRA test result and subsequent chest x-ray, students must be evaluated by the Health Department. If the chest X-ray is positive, the applicant/student will not be allowed to enter or continue training until treated and cleared by an infectious disease specialist. 

Students entering the clinical phase of the program are required to have a current PPD prior to beginning SCPEs. 

It is recommended that students enrolled in the PA Program consider the following additional vaccines: Meningococcal and Hepatitis A. 

Tuberculosis Screening

To prevent fellow students, faculty, staff, and patients from exposure to active TB (tuberculosis), screening must be conducted prior to matriculating in to the program. 

  • In order to protect PA students, faculty, staff, and patients from being exposed to active TB, it is important to identify those students with TB infection without evidence of current (active) disease. All incoming and continuing PA students are required to provide annual proof that they are not infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB). Any CDC-approved screening methodology may be submitted as evidence. A two-step Mantoux PPD skin test (within the last two months) or two yearly consecutive negative PPD tests. If PPD conversion has been documented, a chest x-ray and a statement from the treating physician regarding evaluation for therapy are required. 
  • Those with a history of Bacille Calmette Guerin (BCG) vaccination also must have baseline screening performed. 
  • Individuals who have a documented history of a positive PPD test, adequate treatment for disease, or adequate preventive therapy for infection, should be exempt from further PPD screening unless they develop signs and symptoms suggestive of TB. The decision to screen in this situation will be made by the student’s primary care provider. 
  • PPD test results should be read by designated, trained employees between 48 - 72 hours after injection. Student self-reading of PPD test results will not be accepted. 
  • Pregnancy should not exclude female students from being skin-tested as part of a contact investigation or part of the regular skin-testing program. 
  • Should a student have a positive TB screening test, he or she must undergo a complete medical evaluation to rule out the possibility of current (active) disease and obtain an initial chest x-ray.

Withdrawal

A withdrawal may be requested by the student in writing with or without the recommendation of the Academic Progress Committee (APC). Any refund will be made in accordance with both the University’s and federal government’s refund policies. The appropriate paperwork for withdrawal from courses is provided by the University Registrar. Incurred expenses prior to withdrawal (including, but not limited to memberships, fees, equipment, and books) are not refundable. The student who withdraws while passing all coursework to-date may re-apply through the admissions process with the exceptions of extenuating circumstances, as determined by the Academic Progress Committee (APC). These may include, but are not limited to:

  1. Family emergency
  2. Prolonged illness
  3. Military activation
  4. Pregnancy
  5. Others (as validated by the APC)

Students who withdraw while failing coursework are not eligible for re-admission to the program.

Dismissal from the PA Program

Failure to meet Minimum Academic Standards

  • Students with semester GPA (grade point average) of less than 3.0 will be placed on academic probation and referred to the Academic Progression Committee. The academic probation will be in effect for the duration of the subsequent semester. At that time the probation will be removed, assuming the student’s performance has improved to the minimum expected cumulative GPA of 3.0. If the student’s GPA at the end of the subsequent semester remains less than a 3.0, then student is dismissed from program. 
  • Grades of “F” in any course are not acceptable for progression in the program and are grounds for dismissal from the program.
  • A "C" is a course grade that requires remediation and students can only remediate one course in the didactic phase and one SCPE. A second "C" in the phase results in dismissal.
  • Earning more than one grade of “C” or less any time during the didactic phase shall result in dismissal from the program. 
  • A second failed SCPE (either a repeat of an initially failed SCPE or a failed SCPE in another discipline) will result in the student’s dismissal from the XULA PA Program.

Failure to Comply with the Attendance Policy

  • Students who habitually disrupt the classroom with tardiness or who are chronically absent from class may be subject to dismissal from the PA program. At a minimum, the instructor is permitted to bar them (the student must leave) any session at which they are tardy.
  • Any unexcused absence may be grounds for dismissal from the program

Cases of Academic or Professional Misconduct

  • See Academic and Professional Violations/Sanctions

REFUNDS TUITION AND FEES

Refunds are available to students who have withdrawn officially from the University. The withdrawal date shall be determined by the appropriate University Official in the Fiscal Office. Please visit the following university page for more information at,  http://catalog.xula.edu/content.php?catoid=21&navoid=1030#refund-policy 

Two refund methods are used: the Xavier University Institutional Policy and the Federal Government Refund Policy.

If Student WithdrawsXU Policy
Before classes begin100%
Within week 175%
Within week 250%
Within week 350%
Within week 450%
After week 40%



The Master of Health Science in Physician Assistant Studies degree is granted to all students who have been recommended by the PA Program Professional and Academic Progression Committee through the Program Director and the Dean of the College of Pharmacy. In addition to the requirements set forth in the Xavier University of Louisiana Student Handbook, student will have successfully: 

  • Completed the program course of study within 4 years of the date of matriculation, 
  • Completed the required curriculum of the PA Program with a minimum grade of “C” in all courses, 
  • Attained a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 or higher, and 
  • Passed the written comprehensive exam at the end of the didactic phase and the Summative evaluation at the end of the clinical phase. Requirements for a passing grade are described above. 

The successful completion of the above requirements demonstrates that the student has met the minimum requirements for graduation from the Xavier University of Louisiana Physician Assistant Program and is a candidate suitable to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certification Examination. Promotion and graduation is based on both academic and professional growth and development.
Students who fail to meet all promotion criteria may either be dismissed from the Program or be required to remediate any deficiencies at the discretion of the PA Program Professional and Academic Review Committee. The student must demonstrate acceptable levels of maturity, integrity, and other attitudes and behaviors expected of health professionals. The student must be free of any impediments to licensure or to performance as a Physician Assistant. Failure to meet these requirements will jeopardize continued enrollment in the program or graduation from the program.

Student Counseling and Wellness Services (Accreditation Standard A3.10)

Xavier University of Louisiana PA Program students will have access to the Student Counseling and Wellness Services. The PA Program must provide for timely access and/or referral of students to services addressing personal issues which may impact their progress in the PA program. The mission of the Department of Counseling and Wellness Services is to provide support services to students, staff, and faculty. These support services include

academic, mental health, personal, couples, and group counseling for students provided by counseling staff psychotherapy and evaluation by campus clinical psychologist as well as referral for psychiatry services counseling, consultative and referral services to faculty and staff; a disability program Wellness and Recovery Outreach Program for the Xavier community.

These services enable the university to accomplish its mission to provide each student with a liberal and professional education experience...for the ultimate purpose of helping to create a more just and humane society.

Students who needs help with academic motivation, concentration, difficulty coping with increased course load, increasing academic performance, final exam preparation, goal setting, learning style, memory techniques, positive self- talk, note taking, perfectionism, procrastination, study skills, stress, test anxiety, test taking, and time management.

*Students who are on academic probation are strongly encouraged to attend counseling

You are encouraged to seek personal counseling for a wide range of issues whether feeling depressed, dealing with stress, issues with self-esteem or relationship conflict.

Individual counseling involves meeting with a trained behavioral health professional where confidentiality is essential. You will begin with an intake where you will be asked a couple of questions, address your treatment plan, and establish goals you want to accomplish. From there, you will schedule to follow up with a counselor to see how you are progressing and if meeting treatment plan goals or if want to adjust goals. For more detailed information please visit our university page at, https://www.xula.edu/student-health-services.

Student Grievances

Xavier University philosophically and in practice advocates providing optimum equality and opportunity in educational offerings, employment and in access to educational programs. Xavier does, however, realize that certain practices may be perceived to or may, in fact, unintentionally discriminate against certain members of the community which we serve, or do not meet satisfactory expectations. 

PURPOSE 

The University’s mission is to provide a mutually respectful environment conducive to student learning and development. In doing so, the University acknowledges that students can offer valuable information about the performance of the university in meeting goals and providing services as part of our mission. Consistent with this aim, the University invites feedback and is committed to addressing student dissatisfaction. When a problem or issue arises, students are advised to seek information and assistance through the various processes and procedures, including student governance organizations, instituted to receive and respond to student complaints regarding faculty/staff, another student, programs or services. 

When registering concerns or complaints, students must follow the appropriate procedures. If a student has any question about the applicable procedure to follow for a particular complaint, the student should contact the Office of the Associate Vice President and Dean of Students at (504) 520-7359 or studentservices@xula.edu. Discussions may remain confidential until a student decides to take more formal action. 

Student Grievances Policy:

 https://www.xula.edu/reportingstudentconcern

Student Grievances Policy 

page: 10-11 and 89-91 of Student Handbook

The XULA PA Program adheres to the university faculty grievance policy at the above link. At the initiation of employment, all faculty and staff are provided information about accessing the handbook, which is on the internal college website. Faculty also undergo Title IX training as a requirement of employment.

Faculty Grievances Polices

Page: 31 of University Faculty and Staff Handbook

In compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), Xavier University of Louisiana does not discriminate on the basis of sex in any of its educational programs, activities or employment. The university is committed to providing a safe environment for all of its members and therefore prohibits sexual misconduct. When sexual misconduct does occur, all members of the university community are encouraged to report it promptly. To read the university’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, visit 

Student:

Sexual Misconduct Policy and Response Procedures in full, page 1-14 

Title IX Policy

Report a Student Concern: Student Code of Conduct

https://www.xula.edu/reportingstudentconcern
https://www.xula.edu/complianceawareness

Faculty:

Sexual Misconduct Policy and Response Procedures in full, page 1-14 

Title IX Policy

Faculty Institutional Policies on allegations of harassment : page V6-V8

Faculty and Staff Handbook

The following matriculated student records will be maintained by the Xavier University Physician Assistant Program for the length of time specified. These records and others may be maintained by other departments within the institution. 

  • The PA Program - official application, didactic and clinical academic performance, remediation and academic actions, advising records, disciplinary actions, dismissal, malpractice and healthcare insurance documentation, drug screen, criminal background check, fingerprinting, immunization verification, and graduation requirements verification. 
  • The Registrar’s Office – official transcripts, dismissal 
  • Student Affairs Office- disciplinary actions
  • Xavier University of Louisiana Student Health Services – university immunization records.
  • Faculty Advisor – files on student counseling and advising. Once you graduate, these records are maintained by the PA Program.
  • CastleBranch- drug screen, criminal background check, fingerprinting, complete physical examination, and immunization verification
DocumentLength of Time
Educational TranscriptsPermanent
Admission RecordsPermanent
Didactic and Clinical PerformancePermanent
Clinical RotationsPermanent
Advising RecordsTen years after graduation
Remediation RecordsTen years after graduation
Disciplinary/ Dismissal RecordsPermanent
Health RecordsPermanent
Immunization Records1 year after graduation




Confidential health records are maintained in Student Health and cannot be accessed by PA Program faculty or staff. Complete physical examination and health screening requirements will be maintained by CastleBranch. CastleBranch will notify the program that the student has satisfied the medical record and health screening requirements of the program each year. With permission of the student, the program will maintain vaccination records and TB testing results. The program will have access to results of student drug screening; child abuse screening, fingerprinting, and criminal background check results. These results, as well as vaccination records, TB testing results, and verification of medical records and health screening requirements are stored, maintained, and access provided for the program via CastleBranch. (Standard A3.21)


DIDACTIC REMEDIATION POLICY 

Student progress is monitored and documented in a manner that promptly identifies deficiencies in knowledge or skills and establishes means for remediation as described herein.

Purpose of Remediation: To assist the student in mastering the area of study in which they have demonstrated a deficiency.

Guidelines for Remediation: The academic and clinical phases of the program have distinct policies and procedures related to remediation

Remediation is required for:

  • Any test score below 70% in the didactic year
  • Failing to meet minimum competencies during a skills exam
  • Remediation may be required for

Unprofessional Conduct

Remediation: Assessments and Exam failures, Academic Warning and Consequences

  • The Academic Progression Committee (APC) must determine if the student is eligible for remediation based on the student’s prior academic and professional program performance.
  • The Course Director or designee will offer a remediation plan with subsequent assessment within two weeks of an identified deficiency during the didactic phase of the program. Failing this remediation with a score below 80% will result in one additional opportunity to learn the material and re-present for a second remediation assessment. If the student fails second remediation testing, it will result in the student being referred to the Academic Progression Committee (APC) for a plan of action which may possibly include grounds for dismissal.
  • If the student remediates the assessment successfully, the student remains on academic warning for the semester. 
  • Students who earn a grade of a “C” in a course have the opportunity to remediate the course. An academic probation will be issued for the student for the semester in which the course grade of a “C” occurred.
  • A student is permitted to remediate only one course during the didactic year; a second “C” (either a repeat of an initially failed course or a failed course in another subject) will result in the student’s referral to the APC for possible dismissal from the XULA PA Program.
  • If a student earns a course grade of an “F”, then the student will be referred to the APC for possible dismissal. 
  • The responsible Course Director or faculty member will complete the Academic Warning form and submit it to the PA office, document remediation efforts and outcomes using the remediation form, and return the completed remediation form to the PA office for placement in the student’s official file.
  • The goal of this policy is to help the student identify and master the material, not to improve the numerical grade. The Course Director will be responsible for coordinating the remediation assessment.

CLINICAL REMEDIATION POLICY

Students who do not pass a SCPE with a grade of “C” will have the opportunity to remediate the course by repeating that SCPE at their own cost during their clinical education which must be completed during the next SCPE time period if possible (or as soon as possible/can be scheduled).

  • Remediation of assessments and End of Rotation examinations during the SCPE phase of the program will be made in a timely manner and re-evaluation or examination performed as designated by the Director of Clinical Education, taking into account the students clinical rotation schedule, return to campus days for proctored exams, and availability of rotations.
  • A student who earns a grade of 2 on the End of Rotation Evaluation of Student will be referred to the Academic Progression Committee for holistic review of SCPE performance and identification of deficiencies. A remediation plan will be formulated to correct deficiencies noted. 
  • A student who earns less than 70% on the EOR exam will be referred to the APC for holistic review of SCPE performance and identification of deficiencies. A remediation plan will be formulated to correct deficiencies noted. 
  • Remediation for a failed SCPE is as follows: the student will be required to repeat the failed SCPE in its entirety as his/her own expense (tuition plus any placement costs/fees/etc.). The student will review the syllabus and study any weak areas as noted on the EOR exam and review all assignments with his/her SCPE program faculty member.
  • A student is permitted to repeat only one SCPE during the clinical portion of the XULA PA Program; a second failed SCPE (either a repeat of an initially failed SCPE or a failed SCPE in another discipline) will result in the student’s immediate dismissal from the XULA PA Program.
  • Any student who is unable to complete a SCPE due to medical or personal reasons will receive a grade of incomplete (“I”) if appropriate. Written notification must be submitted to the program director and the clinical coordinator by the student. Contingencies for completing the SCPE will be planned by the program director and the Director of Clinical Education. A student who withdraws from a course under these circumstances may be subject to conversion of “I” to an “F” if the mutually agreed upon contingency plan is not successfully completed. See Student Leave of Absence Policy.
  • The Director of Clinical Education, Associate Director of Clinical Education, or faculty member will complete the Academic Probation form and submit it to the XULA PA Program Office, document remediation efforts and outcomes using the remediation form, and return the completed remediation form to the XULA PA Program Office for placement in the student’s official file.
  • The goal of this policy is to help the student identify and master the material, not to improve the numerical grade. The Director of Clinical Education or Associate Director of Clinical Education will be responsible for coordinating the remediation assessment.

Summative Remediation Policy

Clinical education phase PA students must achieve a 70% or higher on all three exams and a cumulative course grade of B or higher to successfully meet graduation requirements. Failure to achieve passing grades on any of the examinations will result in the student being required to meet with the course director and faculty advisor to identify area(s) of weakness, to determine a plan for remediation, and to be re-assed on any failed examinations and areas of deficiency. The student must receive a passing score by the end of PA 5231 Summative Course. 

A second failure on any examination(s) will result in the student being referred to the Academic Progression Committee for review of student performance. This review may result in the student having to complete additional remediation, thereby delaying graduation and incurring additional tuition and fees, or being dismissed from the Program.

Deceleration Policy

ARC-PA defines deceleration as “the loss of a student from the entering cohort, who remains matriculated in the physician assistant program.” The XU PA program does not decelerate for academic issues, professionalism issues or behavioral conduct issues. The only students who are eligible to decelerate are those who have been granted a leave of absence by the PA program (personal or medical).

Students must typically complete the PA program in 28-months. If a student has been granted a leave of absence (personal or medical) the time to completion of the program should not exceed 40-months (28-month program and up to 12 months for a leave of absence). Requests for a leave of absence to extend beyond one year are considered on a case by case basis. While on a leave of absence (personal or medical) students are not allowed to enroll in any PA program courses.

Leave of Absence

All requests for a Leave of Absence must be first submitted to the Program Director. The Program Director will advise the student on subsequent steps in the process. Please note that a leave of absence will not be granted by the Program Director if a student is failing a course at the time of the request. If a leave of absence is granted, students must report to the Program Director their intention to return to the program or at a date defined by the Program Director.

  1. Students will wear identification pins and/or badges bearing their name and Xavier University of Louisiana Physician Assistant student status on their short white lab coat (pocket or sleeve location). 
  2. Students will verbally identify themselves as a Physician Assistant student from the Xavier University of Louisiana Physician Assistant Program during all patient and professional encounters at the preceptor site or when representing the profession or the program. 
  3. Physician Assistant students must be clearly identified in the clinical setting to distinguish them from physicians, medical students, and other health profession students and graduates. (Accreditation Standard B3.01)
  4. Students are not required to provide or solicit clinical sites or preceptors. The program must coordinate clinical sites and preceptors for program required rotations. (Accreditation Standard A3.03)
  5. Coordinating clinical practice experiences involves identifying, contacting and evaluating sites and preceptors for suitability as a required or elective rotation experience. Students may make suggestions to principal faculty for sites and preceptors but are not required to do so.
  6. Student suggested sites and preceptors are to be reviewed, evaluated and approved for educational suitability by the program.
    The program will not rely primarily on resident physicians for didactic or clinical instruction. (Accreditation Standard A2.15)


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