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At the very core of medicine are the principles of altruism, accountability, excellence, duty, service, honor, integrity, and respect for others. These core principles have been collectively referred to as professionalism by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM-1995). The OU College of Medicine defends these principles and expects the same of its students.

Students' Rights and Responsibilities

This policy states:

“As a student at The University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, I understand that it is a great privilege to study medicine. Over the course of my training, I will assume responsibility for the health and wellbeing of others. This undertaking requires that I uphold the highest standards of ethical and professional behavior. Accordingly, I have adopted the following statement of principles to guide me throughout my academic, clinical, and research work. I will strive to uphold both the spirit and the letter of this code in my years at the College of Medicine and throughout my medical career.”

The policy addresses:

  • Honesty
  • Confidentiality
  • Respect For Others
  • Responsibility
  • Student Expectations of Faculty, Residents, and Fellows

COM Policy 318

Mistreatment and Misconduct

Academic Integrity/Professionalism Policy

OU College of Medicine students are expected to hold themselves to the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct. Professionalism is a core Educational Program Objective.

The OUHSC has established the Student Professional Behavior in an Academic Program Policy and adopted procedures for addressing standards of ethical and professional behavior for OUHSC students. College of Medicine students should familiarize themselves with that policy.

COM Policy 319

Academic Misconduct Code

Academic misconduct includes any act that improperly affects the evaluation of a student’s academic performance or achievement, including but not limited to:

  1. Cheating—The use of unauthorized material, methods, or information in any academic exercise, including improper collaboration.
  2. Plagiarism—The representation of the words or ideas of another as one’s own.
  3. Fabrication—The falsification or invention of any information or citation in an academic exercise.
  4. Fraud—The falsification, forgery, or misrepresentation of academic or clinical work, including the resubmission of work performed for one class for credit in another class without informed permission.
  5. Destruction, misappropriation, or unauthorized possession of University property or the property of another.
  6. Bribery or intimidation.
  7. Assisting others in acts proscribed by this Code.


Suspected instances of academic misconduct are to be communicated to the Dean in writing and should include a brief description of the evidence. Notification shall be made within ten University business days after discovery of the incident.

Upon notification, the Dean shall initiate academic misconduct procedures as required by University policy.

  • The accused shall be informed in writing.
  • The Vice-Provost for Academic Affairs is informed in writing.
  • The accused must contact the Vice-Provost for Academic Affairs within five University business days after being notified of the alleged misconduct and schedule a meeting to discuss the matter.
  • If the accused denies the charges, the student must submit a written request to the Vice-Provost within five days requesting a formal academic misconduct hearing. A Board, consisting of faculty and peer members, will conduct a hearing and submit its findings to the Dean and Vice-Provost.

OUHSC Faculty Handbook 4.18

Guidelines for the Teacher-Learner Relationship

This policy describes the standards of conduct between students (including OU College of Medicine MD program students and visiting students) and those individuals with whom students interact during the medical education program.

The policy defines:

  • The principles of a positive learning environment
  • The responsibilities of teachers
  • The responsibilities of learners (including the expected professionalism attributes)
  • Behaviors that impair education and erode the ideal teacher-learner relationship
  • The definition of student mistreatment

Please also refer to the Zero Tolerance Policy.

COM Policy 416 (See also COM Policy 417: Medical Student Mistreatment)

Medical Student Mistreatment

This policy defines the policy and procedure for reporting student mistreatment. It applies to OU students and visiting students.

The definition of mistreatment may be found in Policy 416: Guidelines for the Teacher-Learner Relationship.

NOTE: Issues related to Sexual Harassment/Assault (Appendix H), Consensual Sexual Relations (Appendix I), or related to Racial or Ethnic Harassment (Appendix J) are specifically addressed in the Health Sciences Center Faculty Handbook and are to be reported to the University Office of Equal Opportunity, Room 113 of the Service Center Building, 405-271-2110. They are not explicitly incorporated into this policy.

Please also refer to the Zero Tolerance Policy.

COM Policy 417 (See also COM Policy 416: Guideline for the Teacher-Learner Relationship)


Policy on the Interaction between Vendors and Medical Students

OU College of Medicine students should maintain ethical relationships with vendors. This policy parallels similar policies developed by OU Physicians and the OU College of Medicine Graduate Medical Education Committee. This policy applies to all MD students when they are acting within the course and scope of their role as students and future medical professionals. For the purposes of this policy, a vendor refers to any corporation or entity external to The University of Oklahoma which provides or may provide goods or services for administrative or clinical operations. This includes (but is not limited to): pharmaceutical organizations, home health care agencies, hospice organizations, durable medical equipment providers, laboratories, office supply organizations, consultants, etc.

COM Policy 322


An ombudsperson is a "designated neutral" dispute resolver. The University Ombuds Office facilitates understanding, communication and conflict resolution among University faculty and staff. The office serves as a prompt, impartial and confidential means of facilitating dialogue between parties, and as a means, apart from the formal grievance procedures, of resolving differences. The mission of the Ombuds Office is to assist in ensuring that all faculty and staff receive fair and equitable treatment within the university.

What is a Professionalism Concern Report (PCR)?

A Professionalism Concerns Report is prepared when a student exhibits behavior not consistent with the OUHSC Student Professional Behavior in an Academic Program Policy. It is intended as an educational opportunity to assist the student in meeting professionalism expectations in academic, professional, or administrative settings. Improvement may be required in the following areas:

  • Integrity and Honesty
  • Patient-Centered Care and Patient Safety
  • Respect
  • Service and Working within the Team
  • Responsibility
  • Responsiveness, Adaptability and Self-Improvement