Your Psychiatry Clerkship Grade is based on the following components and criteria:


Clinical Performance Evaluation (PDF)

NBME Shelf Exam

  • Honors (88 or higher)
  • Pass (87 to 64)
  • Fail (63 or below)


  • Honors
  • Pass
  • Fail



  • Honors on CPE
  • Honors on Shelf exam
  • Minimum grade of Pass on the OSCE


  • Pass on CPE
  • Pass on Shelf exam
  • Minimum grade of Pass on the OSCE


  • Shelf Exam failure or
  • OSCE failure
  • Incomplete will be removed when test(s) are retaken and passed

Clinical Performance Evaluation

  • Students will receive a Clinical Performance Evaluation from the attending physician(s) who supervise(s) them on their core clinical rotation.
  • If a student works with more than one attending on their core rotation, that student can request that each attending complete a CPE form and the grade for that portion of the rotation will be a weighted average based on the amount of time that the student worked with each attending.
  • Input from the multidisciplinary team (including the resident) will be solicited to help your attending(s) evaluate your clinical performance.
  • Modified CPE forms will be completed by attending physician on the ancillary services. These modified CPE forms will gather feedback and comments (which can be used for inclusion in the MSPE letters) but will not contain the 16 assessment questions.

The National Board Psychiatry Shelf Exam

  • The National Board Psychiatry Shelf Exam will be administered on the last day of the clerkship. Cutoffs for PASS and HONORS grades on this exam are established prior to the start of each academic year. Students in each rotation are not “competing” with one another with regard to the score that they will receive on the National Board Shelf Exam.
  • The exam is difficult.
  • There is a Shelf exam review as part of the didactic lecture series and a very helpful on-line review course and study guide available in your psychiatry syllabus.

Objective Standardized Clinical Evaluation (OSCE)

  • Each student will be administered an OSCE during the course of the rotation. You will be assigned a specific time to report to the Clinical Evaluation Center on the 2nd Floor of the Education Center Library (ECL) for your exam.
  • During the OSCE, you will be given twenty minutes to interview a simulated patient, during which you should perform a psychiatric “work-up”, including a mental status exam as appropriate. You need not perform a review of systems. Following the interview, you will be given 30 minutes to type a “write-up” the patient, including the chief complaint, history of present illness, prior medical history, family history, social history, prior psychiatric history, family psychiatric history, mental status exam, assessment, differential diagnosis on Axis I, multiaxial diagnosis, and treatment plan.
  • After you have turned in your write-up, you will have 20 minutes to review your videotaped interview and write a critique of your performance. This critique should include information about the adequacy of your interviewing techniques, and the topics covered in the interview and the mental status exam. You may consult a textbook when writing your self-critique. The quality of your performance on the self-critique will be assessed as an important part of your performance on the OSCE.
  • OSCE examiners will evaluate your OSCE performance, including your use of good interviewing techniques. Your written assessment of the patient will also be evaluated for its completeness, organization, legibility and accuracy.
  • Your OSCE performance will be evaluated using 5 categories: 1) Interview Technique and Interpersonal Skills demonstrated with the patient; 2) History Taking (as demonstrated by the content of the interview and the write-up); 3) Write-Up Content and Form; 4) Write-Up Assessment, Differential Diagnoses (including the multiaxial diagnosis), & Treatment Plan (to include appropriate psychopharmacologic and psychosocial interventions); and the 5) Self Critique. Each of these 5 categories will be assessed on a Honors/Pass/Fail basis.