Students must successfully complete a total of 14 weeks of elective credit in order to graduate. For those students in the InterACT Program, a total of 10 weeks is required due to longer clerkship weeks required for the program.
Students may take clinical electives during the third and fourth years at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, our affiliates, or at off-campus scholarly institutions. Students may also design clinical or research electives or seek out international experiences via Global Health electives.
The following guidelines apply to all types of electives:
- Forty hours are required to receive one week of elective credit.
- For the 2020-2021 AY, there is no restriction on the number of one-week electives you are permitted to take one or more longitudinal electives that are listed in the Icahn School of Medicine electives catalog (Empower). There is no restriction on the number of longitudinal elective you can complete.
- You cannot take an elective concurrently with a required clerkship. Longitudinal electives may be taken concurrently with another non-required rotation (e.g. another elective) as long as the hours do not conflict.
- For the 2020-2021 academic year, there is no restriction on the maximum number of research or non-clinical electives
- Elective application forms must be submitted to the Office of the Registrar, with all required signatures, no less than two weeks prior to the desired start date of the elective.
- No retroactive credit will be granted for an elective.
- If a student wishes to repeat an elective that has already been taken, it is possible to do so, however, elective credit will not be given for the subsequent course(s).
- Any request for an elective greater than four weeks in length requires additional approval by the Senior Associate Dean for Student Affairs.
- Preparation for USMLE Step 1 by completing the Step 1 Board Review Course attended remotely or completed asynchronously on-line with attestation, can count as two weeks of elective credit. Empower registration is required.
- Preparation for USMLE Step 2 CK is built into the Year 4 schedule with a Step 2 CK Board Review course that, if attended in its entirety or completed on-line with attestation, counts as two weeks of elective credit. Empower registration is required..
- Work completed for remediation (including remediation for Step 1 and/or Step 2) is not eligible for elective credit.
- Students on a Scholarly year or on the PHD portion of their MD/PhD training cannot receive elective credit.
To receive full credit for an elective you must complete each step of the elective process:
- Select and register for the elective.
- Complete the elective.
- Ensure that your mentor/preceptor has submitted an evaluation of your performance.
- Complete your evaluation of the elective.
Selecting and Registering for an Elective
Icahn School of Medicine Electives
- Browse the online electives catalog.
- Select the elective for which you wish to apply and click the “Register for Electives” button on the detailed view screen
- You will receive three emails generated from the system during the registration process:
- An email informing you that you have requested the elective and it is PENDING DEPARTMENTAL APPROVAL
- Next, an email informing you that the department has approved the elective and it is PENDING REGISTRAR APPROVAL
- A final email informing you that your request to add the elective has been APPROVED BY THE REGISTRAR
- You must receive the final email to be fully registered for the elective and receive credit; no retroactive credit will be applied.
- Your login is your student email address and your password is your life number. You should change your password once you have successfully logged into the EMS under Account Management.
- You may access your account anytime online
- If you have any issues with the approval process, contact the Assistant Registrar or the Director of Student Electives.
Clinical Tailor-Made Electives
- Students wishing to design their own clinical elective(s) with a specific Icahn School of Medicine faculty member or a faculty member from an outside institution may do so by submitting the Elective Registration: Clinical Tailor-Made form to the Office of the Registrar. The form can be accessed online via the Medical School Forms web page.
- Once you have completed the form, it needs to be reviewed and approved by the following: Office of the Registrar, Mentor/Preceptor, and the Director of Student Electives.
Tailor-Made Research Electives
- Students wishing to design a research or a non-clinical elective with a specific Icahn School of Medicine faculty member or mentor from an outside institution may do so by submitting the Elective Registration: Tailor-Made Research Elective form (MD, MD/PhD, or MD/MPH)to the Office of the Registrar. The form can be accessed via the Medical School Forms web page.
- Once you have completed the form, it needs to be reviewed and approved by the following people: Assistant Registrar, Mentor/Preceptor, and the Director of the Medical Student Research Office.
Electives at Other Schools and Institutions
VISITING ELECTIVES ARE SUSPENDED FOR ACADEMIC YEAR 2020-2021
In accordance with AAMC guidance and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students are not permitted to participate in electives at institutions outside of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Some schools are offering virtual electives, which are listed in the VLSO catalog or on their school website.
Tailor-Made Electives at Other Schools
ELECTIVES AT OTHER SCHOOLS ARE SUSPENDED for ACADEMIC YEAR 2020-2021
Global Health Electives
GLOBAL HEALTH ELECTIVES ARE SUSPENDED FOR ACADEMIC YEAR 2020-2021
Year 3 Students and Away Electives
Note: Away electives are suspended for Academic Year 2020-2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in accordance with the AAMC guidance.
In general, the Icahn School of Medicine students wishing to do away electives will do so in the fourth year. From time to time, a student may have a reason to do an away elective during elective time in Year 3. The following should be considered:
- Students must meet the prerequisites set by the institution they are visiting.
- Students should recognize that they may not be as prepared as they would be in Year 4 with the benefit of all or most of the clinical clerkships. In general, assessments done at the away elective is set at a standard for a Year 4 student.
- Students may not know the “system” and logistics at an away location and with a shorter allotment time of elective in Year 3, it may be difficult to acclimate to new systems in time to be able to have an effective elective.
- Any elective done outside of an LCME-approved school must have the approval of an Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Director of Student Electives and that approval must acknowledge that this mentor approves the elective for the student in Year 3.
- If there are any questions or concerns, students are encouraged to meet with the Director for Student Electives or their Faculty Advisor to discuss.
Ensuring that your Mentor/Preceptor has Submitted an Evaluation
Electives at Icahn School of Medicine
Towards the end of your elective, including away electives, you must deliver to the mentor/preceptor the Elective: Evaluation/Grade Form, available on the Medical School Forms web page, which the mentor/preceptor will complete and return to the Registrar's Office at the conclusion of the elective. It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that this form is completed and returned to the Office of the Registrar (Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or Fax: 212-369-6013) at the conclusion of the elective.
Electives at other schools
If you are doing an elective at another institution and they wish to use their own institution’s form for evaluation rather than the Icahn School of Medicine form, the mentor/preceptor may complete their institution’s form and submit that to the Office of the Registrar. It is the student’s responsibility to follow-up with those schools to receive your grade and communicate that to the Office of the Registrar.
How Electives are Graded
All electives are graded Pass, High Pass, Honors or Fail.
Completing an Evaluation of the Elective
Electives at Icahn School of Medicine
All third- and fourth-year students are required to evaluate each elective experience AND the preceptor through our evaluation system using their existing login and password. Evaluations assist us in understanding and evaluating the effectiveness of the electives. Evaluations must be completed no later than four weeks after receiving a notification via email. If a student does not complete the mandatory evaluation four weeks after receiving notification, the student will receive an Incident report and no credit for the elective. Please refer to Student Conduct section of Handbook on Incident reports. If the MSPE has been submitted, it will be amended and re-uploaded to reflect this breach of professionalism. The evaluations must be filled out in order to receive credit for the elective.
Electives Review System
Students are encouraged toensure that they are on track with meeting their elective requirements for graduation by logging in to their Empower account.
Medical Liability Coverage
The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai provides medical students with medical liability when providing medical services as a part of approved educational activities. Students are not covered while participating in unapproved activities or rotations. During students’ third and fourth years, coverage does not apply for an activity unless the entire registration process has been followed and the activity has been officially listed on your schedule. To assure that you are covered for a specific activity, inquire in the Office of the Registrar’ or view your student transcript on the Empower Student Information System. When rotating outside the School of Medicine, you may be requested to provide a letter from the School showing proof of coverage; that letter may be obtained from the Office of the Registrar, by completing the document request form on the Registrar web page.