Professional Standards

Standards of Conduct/Criminal Background Check Requirements

As a medical student and future physician, you are embarking on a professional career that requires a high standard of ethical conduct and integrity. It is expected that students admitted to Tufts University School of Medicine will make a personal commitment to abide by a standard of behavior that will establish a firm foundation for future professional conduct. This requires avoidance of any form of intellectual dishonesty as well as the demonstration of respect for the rights and well-being of others.

Prospective and current Tufts students are expected to be responsible citizens of their own community as well as the greater community. They are expected to comply with all university policies, local ordinances, and state and federal laws. Failure to uphold these requirements prior to enrollment at Tufts University School of Medicine may result in the rescinding of an Offer of Admission.

Disclosure of Criminal Arrests, Charges, or Convictions

All matriculated School of Medicine students must notify the Office of Student Affairs of any convictions, guilty pleas or “no contest” pleas to any felony, misdemeanor or other offense; or any arrests, charges against the student, or investigations by law enforcement or professional licensing authorities in which the student is a target. Such notice must occur as soon as possible, but in no event later than three (3) working days following the event or the student’s knowledge of the event. Nondisclosure or falsification of this information may be grounds for disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal from the school.

Students with any criminal convictions or past court appearances for any reason or pending criminal cases or past or pending disciplinary action against a professional license are advised that these events may affect their ability to secure clinical placement at TUSM and also may affect the students’ ability to obtain a state license for practicing medicine.

Criminal Background Checks

TUSM participates in the AAMC‐facilitated Criminal Background Check Service that procures a national background check on all Tufts applicants upon their conditional acceptance to the medical school. This is to ascertain the ability of accepted applicants to eventually become licensed physicians in the future, enhance the safety and well‐being of patients, and to ensure the public's continuing trust in the medical profession.

Any finding of concern will be reviewed by the School of Medicine and the applicant will be contacted for additional information. Possible outcomes include but are not limited to: referral to Massachusetts Medical Society’s Physician Health Services, behavior and/or substance use monitoring contracts and deferring or rescinding the Offer of Admissions.

TUSM affiliated sites also require that a current criminal background check be done on anyone who will be scheduled at their site. The Registrar’s Office will obtain a national background check through the Tufts University Human Resources Office prior to students entering their second, third and fourth year of medical school.

In the event that the Registrar is informed of a criminal background check finding of concern, the Dean of Students will be notified, and the situation will be managed on a case‐by‐case basis. Possible outcomes include but are not limited to: immediate removal from the curriculum, notification of the clinical site (which also has the right to remove a student from their site), appearance before the Student Ethics and Promotions Committee, and referral to Massachusetts Medical Society’s Physician Health Services.