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PPC condemns “No Review, No TOR for boards” policy; Psych dept explains side

Starting with the graduating class of 2019, the Psychology Department  implemented the “No Review, No Transcript of Records (TOR) for boards” policy requiring psychology graduates to take review classes in PRC-accredited review centers, following the institutional mandate from the administration requiring programs with licensure examinations to target an 80% passing rate for first-time takers, as per Psychology Department Chair Evangeline Ruga, PhD.

While the Psychology Program Council (PPC), in representation of affected students, has raised concerns on being unable to fulfill requirements in time for board exam application given the abrupt implementation of the policy, as the Office of the University Registrar (OUR) takes one to two weeks processing TORs.

“We (PPC) pointed out that the department’s failure to inform students ahead of time before the implementation of the new policy is one of the main reasons why there are many students, as well as parents, that are complaining,” the PPC addressed in a statement pertaining to the lack of consultation and representation of the students in deliberation of the policy.

However, the department has already coordinated with the OUR in monitoring of clearance to eligible graduates to take the board exam, along with negotiations and considerations with review centers to adjust schedules, such as conducting earlier mock pre-boards to provide results just in time for board exam requirements submission.

Despite improvements in performance from previous years, the sudden drop in the Psychometrician Licensure Exam rating last year caused the said measure as decided upon by the department.

Avoiding possible “close down”

Aside from certification, there is also a mandatory review policy of at least 80% score on the pre-board exam to which Ruga stated that the department, with the new policies, is preventing the possibility of continuous decline of the board exam performance in the upcoming years.

“If the department continues to perform that poorly in board exam, we might not be able to see a psychology department existing in few years’ time if we do not do measure as early as possible,” Ruga explained.

Addressing self-review

Psychology Department chair and College of Liberal Arts and Communication Dean George Christian Francisco, PhD have discussed in finality that self-review will not be allowed as there is ‘no basis for assessment’ in self-reviewing, according to Ruga.

“They (students) should be more realistic … our decision is based on benchmarking with  other institutions and with our observations regarding such professions which requires board exams …[that] normally, graduates are required to go through review classes,” she furthered.

As of press time, the PPC has elevated its concerns to the Vice Chancellor for Academics and Research through a letter requesting for temporarily holding off the implementation of the policy.

“While the council strongly agree that there is a need to address the issue of the decline of the passing rate, we believe that there are other solutions we could exhaust and we should work as one community in order to attain our goal of resolving this issue,” the PPC said.