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PACKRAT to stop me from being able to take the PANCE


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So my particular PA school uses the PACKRAT to determine if students are ready to take the PANCE or not at the end of clinical year (this is new and never counted like this before). This year's most recent PACKRAT version national average is apparently a 167, 20 points higher than the last 3 averages on PAEA's website and 40 points higher than last years national average of 128 (according to my PA school). They have informed us that if we do not get within the 2 point standard deviation, they will not allow us to take the PANCE until we reach an adequate grade on the PACKRAT. Can they legally do this?

According to PAEA, the PACRAT can be done open book so these scores are skewed and shouldn't count for my class.

There is nothing in our program handbook about the PACKRAT being a requirement for graduation.

PLEASE HELP!!

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Sounds like you're already fighting a war that hasn't started yet!

I suspect your program is trying to get you guys to study for the PANCE, which is something that some students fall down on in the rush of clinicals and EORs. Schools want you to pass; if you don't they look bad.

As a practical matter, if passing the PACRAT isn't in the documentation for completion, I suspect they might have to call you done whether you pass it or not and thus you would be able to take the PANCE. 

Why not just chill and do what they say: start studying before the PACRAT? This will all be over soon enough.

Edited by UGoLong
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I'm confused...You can't take the PANCE until you graduate.  Once you graduate, your program can't prevent you from taking the PANCE.  They need to inform NCCPA you are eligible upon completion of your program.  Are they preventing you from graduating until you do well enough of the PACKRAT?  

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9 hours ago, UGoLong said:

Sounds like you're already fighting a war that hasn't started yet!

I suspect your program is trying to get you guys to study for the PANCE, which is something that some students fall down on in the rush of clinicals and EORs. Schools want you to pass; if you don't they look bad.

As a practical matter, if passing the PACRAT isn't in the documentation for completion, I suspect they might have to call you done whether you pass it or not and thus you would be able to take the PANCE. 

Why not just chill and do what they say: start studying before the PACRAT? This will all be over soon enough.

I think you may have misunderstood so I'll try to add more info! We have already taken the PACKRAT, next is the PANCE, we've been studying all along. As per googled information, a 111 on the packrat equates to a passing score of 350 on the PANCE. 

What I'm saying is that we are 2 weeks away from graduation and most of us have our PANCE date already set. The PACKRAT was supposed to be an exit exam. Now, because of this year's high PACKRAT average, our school has informed us that until we get within 6 points of 167, they will redact our release to take the PANCE. what I'm asking is if this is legal to do? We will have already graduated and just in a holding pattern to take our PANCE after graduation. 

Hope I gave a better explanation this time.

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7 hours ago, DizzyJ said:

I'm confused...You can't take the PANCE until you graduate.  Once you graduate, your program can't prevent you from taking the PANCE.  They need to inform NCCPA you are eligible upon completion of your program.  Are they preventing you from graduating until you do well enough of the PACKRAT?  

This is what I'm asking.  We will have graduated and fulfilled all requirements for completion of the program, but will not be eligible to take the PANCE. Is this legal? The PACKRAT is not meant to be used in this way and states on the PAEA page it should not be used as a grade and can be taken open or closed book, proctored or unproctored. 

Edited by LOLfPAschool
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So what your saying is that the school decided that you can't graduate until you get a certain PACKRAT score since they used it as their exit exam? I suspect they could do that. If they do, you can change your PANCE date, or at least you could when I graduated.

I still say: play the game for a couple of more weeks and it will be over. Anything else is just wasted energy and you need all you can muster. 

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1 minute ago, UGoLong said:

So what your saying is that the school decided that you can't graduate until you get a certain PACKRAT score since they used it as their exit exam? I suspect they could do that. If they do, you can change your PANCE date, or at least you could when I graduated.

I still say: play the game for a couple of more weeks and it will be over. Anything else is just wasted energy and you need all you can muster. 

Thanks!

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16 hours ago, LOLfPAschool said:

This is what I'm asking.  We will have graduated and fulfilled all requirements for completion of the program, but will not be eligible to take the PANCE. Is this legal? The PACKRAT is not meant to be used in this way and states on the PAEA page it should not be used as a grade and can be taken open or closed book, proctored or unproctored. 

If you will have graduated, degree issued/program complete, and they refuse to advise NCCPA you are eligible for PANCE, then I would fight that hard.  If they are holding back your graduation until you hit a certain score on the PACKRAT, I'm not sure how I would feel about that.  If you have a few more weeks until graduation, certainly sit back and see how it plays out.  If graduation day comes and they won't let you graduate, then I would be reviewing graduation requirements and see if this PACKRAT specific score is listed.  If it isn't, then I'd be fighting it.  

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That seems a little messed up.  Could always reference the original documents you signed starting PA school to see if you can argue against.  Unless there is some vague language in there that makes it so that they can do that kind of thing.  

If you scored slightly above the average on EOC exam you should hit about 167 on PACKRAT2.

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12 hours ago, DizzyJ said:

If you will have graduated, degree issued/program complete, and they refuse to advise NCCPA you are eligible for PANCE, then I would fight that hard.  If they are holding back your graduation until you hit a certain score on the PACKRAT, I'm not sure how I would feel about that.  If you have a few more weeks until graduation, certainly sit back and see how it plays out.  If graduation day comes and they won't let you graduate, then I would be reviewing graduation requirements and see if this PACKRAT specific score is listed.  If it isn't, then I'd be fighting it.  

I agree with this. Schools don't have any right to hold you from taking the PANCE because they have to let NCCPA know you are eligible UNLESS it mentions specifically in the handbook that you have to get a certain PACKRAT score. 

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Your school can certainly hold your eligibility prior to graduation and after the graduation date for several reasons. I guarantee if you read your student handbook that will be in there. Also, I would use the PACKRAT to your advantage and try to do very well. The PANCE is much more difficult now compared to a couple years ago. Students who struggle with the packrat, get average scores, classically do not perform well on the PANCE.  

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15 hours ago, ANESMCR said:

Your school can certainly hold your eligibility prior to graduation and after the graduation date for several reasons. I guarantee if you read your student handbook that will be in there. Also, I would use the PACKRAT to your advantage and try to do very well. The PANCE is much more difficult now compared to a couple years ago. Students who struggle with the packrat, get average scores, classically do not perform well on the PANCE.  

Do you have any resources/supporting documentation that says a PA program can prevent you from taking the PANCE AFTER you have graduated???  My street smarts says that if you completed all requirement to graduate from the program, AND you officially graduated, that preventing someone from taking the PANCE would be lawsuit.  

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2 hours ago, DizzyJ said:

Do you have any resources/supporting documentation that says a PA program can prevent you from taking the PANCE AFTER you have graduated???  My street smarts says that if you completed all requirement to graduate from the program, AND you officially graduated, that preventing someone from taking the PANCE would be lawsuit.  

I do not. My point would be, what the particular school deems as official graduation. As in you may be permitted to walk/receive white coat with your class with outstanding requirements of the program. Any lawsuit against a PA program by students are typically frivolous. If the PACKRAT is at all part of the curriculum, they will likely have whatever grounds they please to manipulate passing this.

Edited by ANESMCR
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I'm not 100% sure I read your original post correctly, but if you are 2 standard deviations below the mean on the PACKRAT, your chance of passing the PANCE is extremely small. 

As noted above, the program is required to report a graduation date to NCCAP for you and you are eligible to take the PANCE 7 days after that. If they propose to delay you, they'd better be doing so in order to provide you with resources to improve your likely performance on the PANCE. If you bomb the PANCE, you'll lose 3 months of your life waiting to take it again.

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13 minutes ago, Batman said:

My school will not allow us to graduate if we do not "pass" the packrat exam as well. 

Programs are pretty free to make any policies they want as long as they enforce them fairly. A policy with such serious consequences would need to be in writing somewhere, probably in your student manual. If they are making this up out of thin air, well, they just can't do that. At the same time, this is also not the way that the PAEA intended the PACKRAT to be used. 

On the other hand, your program hopefully has your best interests at heart. You are taking the PACKRAT "against" the same people you are taking the PANCE against. If you have a bad PACKRAT score you need to do something about it or you will not pass the PANCE. Think of it this way - once you graduate, you are no longer the program's problem and they need not do a thing to help you. Before you graduate, they are responsible for remediating you. Use this to your advantage. You are better off pushing the PANCE back a few weeks and passing instead of failing it and getting stuck for 3 months and hundreds of dollars.

Edited by CJAadmission
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