Academic Progression Policies

Late Assignment Penalty

In accordance with common UBC procedures, an academic penalty of five percent (5%) per day will be applied to late submissions. The deduction is calculated off the assignment total and a day constitutes 24 hours, or portion thereof. Weekends are included in the calculation of days.

Example: If an assignment is worth 10 marks, the student will lose 0.5 marks for each portion of a 24 hour period, for which it is late. If the student’s paper grade is 8/10, and the paper was submitted 22 hours late, the student receives a grade of 8 – 0.5 = 7.5 marks. If it was 36 hours late (equivalent of 2 days late) late the mark is 8– 1 = 7/10.


Extensions are discouraged as they create unequal opportunities among students. In addition, compliance with deadlines is a crucial link in faculty being able to plan their workloads, return marked papers promptly and submit grades as per University requirements. For these reasons, requests for extensions should be limited, and reserved for extenuating circumstances only. For further information on what constitutes extenuating circumstances, please see the Extenuating Circumstances tab below.

A request for extension must be made at least 48 hours prior to the due date of the assignment. Weekends are not included in this calculation. For example, if a paper is due on a Monday, the request for extension must be made by the previous Thursday.

An extension may be granted on a case by case basis, and at the discretion of the appropriate faculty member. Extensions should be for a limited time; generally one to five days. Extensions beyond five days are discouraged, and are typically only acceptable on medical or compassionate grounds. The duration of an extension is at the discretion of the faculty member who will be marking the assignment. The faculty member is entitled to request documentation in order to support a request for extension.

Certain assessment processes such as midterm and final exams, OSCEs, and presentations are not eligible for extensions.

Grace Days

Students may use a total of 3 grace days (72 hrs) per course for penalty free late submissions for eligible assignments. It is the student’s responsibility to communicate with the faculty member who is marking the assignment in writing, at least 48 hours prior to the assignment deadline (see above) of their plan to use grace days. The communication should include the number of days requested.

Grace days may not be used in certain assessment processes such as midterm and final exams, OSCEs, and presentations. It is the student’s responsibility to determine in advance whether or not grace days will be accepted for any given assessment.

**Last revised July 7, 2019.

Extenuating circumstances exist when a student experiences exceptional, unforeseeable, short-term circumstances which affect their ability to study or take assessments. In this instance, a student may request an extension. Please see Late Assignments tab above. Requesting an extension is the student’s responsibility and should be reserved for times when there is/ has been a genuine, significant and demonstrable negative impact on student ability to complete an assignment.

The examples provided are not exhaustive and each decision is at the discretion of the responsible Faculty member. Upon making a request, the student may be asked to provide independent evidence to support their claim(s).

To be eligible for an extension, the circumstance should fit the following criteria:

The circumstance was out of your control; it could not have been prevented.
If a personal or other commitment (external to the Midwifery Program) has caused the student to be unable to complete an assignment or attend an examination, this is NOT an acceptable reason to grant an extension. It is important for students to ensure they have a reasonable contingency plan to meet assignment deadlines and be present for assigned examinations. An exception to this might be a situation where the student has been called for jury duty which cannot be deferred and this falls on an examination day.

The circumstance must have had a significant and negative impact on your ability to study or to undertake an assessment.
Students are expected to manage their health and minor illnesses or disruptions alongside their studies. Requests for an extension should be reserved for serious situations. For example, when the student has been a victim of crime or when there is a sudden significant illness, bereavement, separation or divorce affecting the student or a close family member. Short-term issues such as a cold or migraine are NOT acceptable reasons to grant an extension for an assignment when the student has had several weeks or months to complete this work.

The timing of the circumstances must be relevant to the claimed impact.
The timing of an event should match the claim of impact. For example, if a student's house flooded in early January and they had to abruptly relocate, this might be relevant if requesting an extension to an assignment due in January, but would NOT be relevant if requesting an extension for an assignment due in April.

A note about Long-term illness and Disability
If a student has an ongoing, re-occurring or chronic health condition whereby the condition is repeatedly affecting their ability to complete assignments, then further support may be needed. These conditions do not generally fall under Extenuating Circumstances. Other support measures may be more appropriate and students should be encouraged to speak with their Course Tutor for advice. The UBC Centre for Accessibility may be able to offer additional support. In some cases it may even be appropriate to consider a Voluntary Leave of Absence.

Other Examples of circumstances which are NOT appropriate for an extension request:
• Child care problems which could have been foreseen
• Disruption from housemates
• Computer problems
• Misreading an assignment deadline/examination location

University of Nottingham, What are Extenuating Circumstances?

**Last revised July 7, 2019.

Academic Misconduct is viewed seriously by the Midwifery Program and the University. Students and faculty are required to review the UBC Academic Calendar, specifically the section on Academic Misconduct.

The Midwifery Program fully supports the University’s view that plagiarism represents academic misconduct of a most serious nature. The UBC Library provides resources to help students understand what constitutes plagiarism and how to avoid it.

Students are encouraged to approach their instructors if in any doubt regarding the academic integrity of their own work. The UBC Learning Commons has excellent resources and more information on Academic Integrity, as well as the many student support services available at UBC. Additional detailed information and policies are available on the UBC webpage for Academic Integrity.

All cases of confirmed plagiarism will result in an automatic, temporary or permanent suspension from the University.

Students must use either APA or Vancouver Style formatting when submitting written work for Midwifery Program courses. The Library, website has guidelines for all major referencing styles.

For details on APA style, please click here.
For details on Vancouver style, please click here.
For details on citing Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers, please click here.

Spelling Consistency
Students have the choice of either the British or American spelling provided that they use the same style consistently within their papers. Student responses on exams will not be graded according to spelling consistency.

Academic Support Services at UBC
There are several resources on campus which are available for students to access as needed. The UBC Learning Commons is an excellent, student-curated centralized resource and we encourage students to review this website. You will find links to many support services, workshops, events and resources including:

• Borrowing equipment
• Academic integrity
• Writing support
• Skills for class
• Skills for life
• Academic support

The Centre for Accessibility
The Centre for Accessibility facilitates disability-related accommodations and programming initiatives designed to remove barriers for students with disabilities and ongoing medical conditions. Such services include exam or assignment accommodations, academic concessions, priority housing access, and awards. It is necessary to register with the Centre for Accessibility in order to arrange for an academic accommodation of any kind. To book an appointment with an Accessibility Advisor, go in person to the Centre for Accessibility front desk at Brock Hall, or contact them by phone at 604 822 5844.

**Last revised July 7, 2019.

All courses with the prefix MIDW are required for the degree. Academic performance is reviewed at the end of each term. Students must achieve a grade of 65% in all MIDW courses and achieve a Pass/Satisfactory performance in the clinical portion of each MIDW course at each review to continue in Good Standing in the Midwifery Program.

A student is considered to be in Good Standing when all of the following criteria are met:

  • Achieves a cumulative average of 65% in graded courses.
  • Achieves a minimum grade of 65% in all MIDW courses
  • Achieves a Pass/Satisfactory performance in the OSCES, Specialty Certification courses including NRP, FHS, ALARM, MESP and ACORN and clinical portion of all courses.
  • Receives a passing grade (minimum 50%) in all other university-graded courses.

The Midwifery Program reserves the right, at any point during the term, to remove a student from a clinical placement or laboratory setting if the student exhibits unsafe clinical practice or behavior that places clients or others at risk and/or violates the by-laws of the British Columbia's College of Nurses and Midwives or the University Code of Conduct. Such removal will lead to in the student receiving an “F” grade and may result in dismissal from the Midwifery Program.

The Midwifery Program reserves the right at any point during the program to terminate the student’s participation in the program. Although satisfactory academic performance is prerequisite to advancement, it is not the sole criterion in the consideration of the suitability of a student for promotion or graduation. The Program reserves the right to require a student to withdraw from the program if considered to be unsuitable to proceed with the study or practice of midwifery.

Students should discuss academic issues about specific Midwifery Program courses with their Course Leader, and overall program issues should be discussed with the Program Director. Appointments can also be made with the Student Services Manager, as appropriate.

A student will be required to withdraw from the Midwifery Program for any of the following criteria:

  • Fails two courses in an academic year.
  • Fails any two clinical courses at any time throughout the Midwifery Program.
  • Fails the second attempt at a course.

In instances where a student does not agree with a decision regarding a course or program fail relating to academic standing as determined by the Program Director, a student has recourse to an appeal process within the Faculty of Medicine.

Students are encouraged to resolve complaints informally by direct communication with Midwifery faculty and staff before using the formal procedures contained in the University Student Appeal Procedures.

Informal Mechanism
  • Bring the concern to the person who is directly involved in the complaint as soon as possible after the event and preferably in private. Take responsibility for the reaction and use respectful and non-threatening language. Experience shows that the majority of problems and complaints can be resolved through informal mechanisms.
  • If the issue remains unresolved with an Instructor / Tutor / Preceptor, bring the issue to the attention of the Program Director if that is a different person from the Instructor / Tutor / Preceptor.
  • The Program Director may meet and/or convene a meeting that includes the student, a support person identified by the student and the persons involved in the complaint in order to facilitate a resolution.
  • In addition to these informal approaches, the Midwifery Student Support Committee as part of their review process may consider academic issues. It may be possible to submit documentary material to the Midwifery Student Support Committee for their consideration.

When a student fails a course during their Midwifery education, the course instructor may choose to grant the student the option to write a supplemental examination or do extra course work in an attempt to receive a passing grade. Failure to pass a course does not guarantee a student the option to write a supplemental exam or do additional course work. Please see the policies and regulations regarding this option below:

  • Permission to write a supplemental exam or complete extra course work must first be approved by the Course instructor. If approved by the instructor, the student will be asked to present a letter requesting permission to do supplemental work to the Midwifery Student Support Committee for approval.
  • If approval is granted, all possible costs to sit the supplemental exam such as invigilator, room booking or other expenses will be the responsibility of the student. UBC Midwifery Student Services will be available to assist the student with these arrangements.
  • All supplemental work must be completed prior to the start of the next term, with the exact date to be determined by the instructor and Academic Support Committee.
  • Students who pass the supplemental exam or course work will receive a passing grade (65%) for the course.

Student evaluations of Program, Faculty, and Preceptors

Students are required to evaluate courses, instructors, tutors, preceptors, peers, and themselves. Student evaluations will be integrated in an ongoing way in periodic reviews of the curriculum and development of courses. With the exception of Student evaluation of clinical preceptors, evaluations are anonymous and cannot be traced to any student. These evaluations are very valuable to the program and are critical for curriculum development, faculty development, as well as appointment and promotion purposes. They are reviewed by the Program Director each term and by the Head of the Dept. of Family Practice and University Deans of the Senior Appointments Committee when faculty are being considered for promotion or tenure.

Program Evaluations of Students

Students will be formally evaluated as they progress through the program.

Academic courses

Each course syllabus provides a detailed marking guide for that course. The passing grade for all midwifery courses is 65%. There may be components within each course that require a higher pass mark such as the ALARM, ACORN, NRP and Fetal Health Surveillance courses.

Clinical Courses

A Pass/Fail is assigned for each clinical course. The following process ensures that the clinical course evaluations by the Preceptors and Students are completed in a timely way.

Student Responsibilities
  • Provide the course evaluation tool to the preceptor at the beginning of every term.
  • Take primary responsibility for scheduling the midterm and final evaluations several weeks in advance based on the course syllabus. This must be done with the preceptor and course tutor.
  • Complete a self-evaluation at least 48 hours prior to meeting with the clinical preceptor.
  • Provide examples to substantiate evaluation.
  • Confirm all births are entered in T-Res including
    • Births attended: all Observed, 2nd attendant, or primary total.
    • Continuity from all births attended (COC = attended birth plus 6 other visits)
    • Births in Primary role: student hands on baby at delivery as expected for level of program, or student managed care and intended to deliver but a transfer of care was required;
    • Place of Birth of all Primary births: Home or Hospital
    • Ensure year to date and term birth numbers are accurately recorded on evaluation tool.
  • Provide copy of the self-evaluation to the preceptor.
  • Review preceptor evaluation of student received from the preceptor.
  • Meet with the preceptor to discuss both self-evaluation and preceptor evaluation of student prior to meeting with the Course Tutor.
  • Ensure evaluations are completed and verified on T-Res at least 24 hours prior to formal evaluation with Tutor.
Preceptor Responsibilities
  • Review the Preceptor Evaluation of Student tool provided by the student at the beginning of the term.
  • Work with student to schedule the midterm and final evaluations at the beginning of the term based on the course syllabus.
  • Verify the student’s experience log weekly, just prior to completing mid-term and final evaluations. This must include confirming all births based on the definitions outlined on the evaluation tool:
    • Births attended: all Observed, 2nd attendant, or primary total.
    • Continuity from all births attended (COC = attended birth plus 6 other visits)
    • Births in Primary role: student hands on baby at delivery as expected for level of program, or student managed care and intended to deliver but a transfer of care was required;
    • Place of Birth of all Primary births: Home or Hospital
  • Review the student’s self-evaluation on T-Res. The student is required to post this 48 hrs prior to meeting with the preceptor.
  • Complete the preceptor evaluation of student form on T-Res at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled meeting with the course tutor.
    • Comments and examples should be documented.
    • Ensure Birth numbers accurately reflect verified T-Res log.
    • Recommend Pass, P minus, or Fail.
      • Ensure all concerns are clearly documented with descriptive examples are provided.
  • Meet with the student to review the evaluation PRIOR To meeting with tutor.
  • Meet with the course tutor and student as scheduled. Review materials, make revisions as needed, ensure mid-term and final grade noted. Sign the final page.
Course Leader / Tutor Responsibilities
  • Schedule the formal evaluation in person or by teleconference:
    • Formal evaluations periods are established in the course syllabus twice per term.
  • Review the written appraisal of the student and preceptor.
  • Meet with the preceptor and student for the midterm and final evaluations in person or via teleconference.
  • Ensure the adequacy of the supporting documentation including clinical experience log tally.
  • Assign the final course grade.
  • Ensure all signatures are on the preceptor evaluation of the student and arrange to have placed in the student’s file.
  • Ensure student learning plan reflects any issues identified during the evaluation process.
Grade Categories

Pass - (minus)

Meets requirements. Student consistently performs at the appropriate level; has few areas where competence is deficient; shows steady progress in addressing competencies not yet achieved.
Requires improvement. The student requires significant improvement in any area. This triggers remedial attention to assist the student to improve. If the student cannot address this in the timeline indicated it will result in a fail.
Does not meet requirements. Serious, consistent deficiencies in any one area will result in a fail.

See Midwifery Clinical Evaluation Process

See Marking Criteria Level 1 (Year 1 & 2), Marking Criteria Level 2 (Year 3), and Marking Criteria Level 3 (Year 4) Tables.

Formal Mechanisms to be Followed in Cases of Decisions Related to Academic Standing

In instances where a student does not agree with a decision regarding a course or program fail relating to academic standing as determined by the Program Director, a student has recourse to an appeal process within the Faculty of Medicine.

Students are encouraged to review The Appeal Process for Appeals on Academic Standing for Undergraduate Medicine, Undergraduate Medical Laboratory Sciences, and Midwifery Programs in the Faculty of Medicine.