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Letters of Evaluation Workshop

Letters of Evaluation Workshop

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Letters of Evaluation Workshop

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  1. Letters of Evaluation Workshop Texas Association of Advisors for the Health Professions 40th Annual Meeting Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine Hilton Hotel and Conference Center, College Station February 5, 2009 Filomeno G. Maldonado Associate Dean of Admissions

  2. Letter of Evaluation Workshop—2009 Overview • The Letter of Evaluation or Recommendation • The Health Professions Advisory Committee Evaluation (HPAC-E) • Individual HP Evaluations/Recommendations • The Evaluation Form • A Definable Scale of Recommendations • The Body of the Evaluation • Significance of the Evaluation • The Issues

  3. Appropriate faculty input and representation Evaluate suitability for professional school Give a multidimensional perspective Interview to discern attitudes and personality Establish a relationship to yield an informative evaluation If unfamiliar with applicant, submit only letters from faculty who can appropriately advocate or evaluate the applicant Submit a HPAC packet with a summary letter (in the range of 1-2 pages). Discuss academic promise Highlight accomplishments, activities, experiences Be honest, and evaluate Hone in on personality, ability to communicate and interact, altruism, depth/breadth of medical exposure Overall suitability for medical school Include at least two professor letters with evaluation forms (set a limit for more) Use a definable scale of recommendations Include an Evaluation Form Be timely in submitting packet Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009 Letters of Evaluation The Health Professions Advisory Committee Evaluation

  4. Write a health professions advisor letter (in the range of 1-2 pages) discussing the following: Academic background Communication skills and ability to interact Breadth and depth of interests & activities Extent of medical experiences Community service and/or altruistic activities Personality Promise or suitability for medicine Include an evaluation form TMDSAS Version Include at least one additional professor letter with your evaluation form (preferably two) Additional letters are acceptable but set a limit One extra letter can be sent to TMDSAS above the required two professor letters or HPCE. Additional letters must be mailed directly to the schools Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009 Letters of Evaluation The Individual HP Evaluation/Recommendation

  5. TMDSAS Version Your Version or borrow from others. Some good examples: UT Dallas Baylor Texas A&M Rice Devise a scale of measurement Exceptional (Highest 5%) Unusually Good (Next Highest 15%) Very Good (Next 15%) Average (Middle 25%) Below Average (Lowest 40%) Focus on Applicant’s Achievements, Characteristics and Experiences: Communication Skills Interpersonal Skills Social Values Reliability Leadership Self-discipline Problem-solving skills Motivation to professional school Mastery of fundamental knowledge Overall Assessment Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009 Letters of Evaluation The Evaluation Form Include with individual letter of evaluation but not in lieu of a letter.

  6. Letters of Evaluation A Definable Scale of Recommendations Important if you are evaluating to rank your applicants. Determine as a committee or individual evaluator a set of definable recommendations, such as Tulane’s model, provided you have a basis to compare: Exceptionally Recommend – one of few superior applicants each year. An applicant that stands out from all other applicants. Strongly Recommend– an applicant who clearly can handle the rigors of medical school and possesses outstanding personal qualities. Recommend – A good applicant that is capable of meeting the standards of medical school. Recommend with Reservation – an applicant that is weak in academic performance or is lacking motivation, maturity, community service, medically related exposure, etc. Do not Recommend– Serious weaknesses or deficiencies, not prepared for medical school. Important to support or justify your ranking of the applicant. Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009

  7. Letters of Evaluation A Definable Scale of Recommendations UT Dallas’ model is also another excellent example of the committee’s level of endorsement: Recommended with Enthusiasm– exceptional intellectual and personal qualities; strong evidence of professional motivation; reserved for a minority of candidates each year. (Highest 10%) Recommended with Confidence– strong academic and personal qualities indicative of highly desirable medical school candidates; broad understanding of and commitment to the profession. (Upper 33%) Recommended – Academic capability that is likely consistent with successful professional school performance; personal characteristics appropriate to healthcare career. (Middle 38%) Recommended with Reservation – Marginal academic and/or personal qualities; may experience difficulties in professional school. (Lower 17%) Not Recommended– Questionable personal and/or academic qualities; unlikely to succeed in professional school; unsuitable for a career in healthcare. (Bottom 2%) Important to support or justify your ranking of the applicant. Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009

  8. Letters of Evaluation The Body of the HP Evaluation Packet Write a health professions committee packet or an HP Individual letter (in the range of 1-2 pages) which includes the following: The Committee Letter of Evaluation Introduce committee members along with titles Identify applicant using entire name, middle initials, etc., along with TMDSAS and/or AMCAS PIN’s (DO NOT USE SSN’s) Introduce the applicant Highlight academic record and potential for success in professional school (MD and MD/PhD programs of study) Highlight personality (potential for service to the public), extracurricular activities, including school, community, medical and research Highlight unusual or extenuating life experiences (if applicable) Submit committee’s recommendation based on your defined scale of recommendations Concludewith the following: A statement of academic and personal integrity A waiver statement unless included in the evaluation form Faculty Evaluations Solicited by the Student – have criteria and limits Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009

  9. Letters of Evaluation The Significance of the Evaluation Provides legitimacy and credibility Assures authenticity in terms of Credentials Activities Experiences Circumstances Accomplishments Influences decisions regarding applicant’s promise for medicine Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009

  10. Letters of Evaluation The Issues Lack of consistency Lack of organization Weak development from point to point No logical development from point to point Ineffectual separation of ideas Crowded paragraphs Poor syntax and diction Consistently repetitive Asking questions instead of getting to the point Misleading statements or use of platitudes Poor content Fails to answer questions Fails to get to the point efficiently Too long or too short Lack of a definable scale of ranking Unclear of committee’s or individual’s support Not communicating with Deans’ of Admissions Lack of faculty input or representation on the committee or in the process of evaluation Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009

  11. Letters of Evaluation Workshop—2009 THANK YOU! • Filomeno G. Maldonado, M.A. Associate Dean of Admissions Texas A&M HSC College of Medicine Office of Admissions 159 Joe H. Reynolds Medical Building College Station, TX 77843-1114  (979) 845-7743 (Office) • Leila E. Diaz, M.A., M.Ed. Director of Admissions Temple Campus Office of Admissions 2401 South 31st Street Temple, TX 76508  (254) 724-6480 (Office)