McMaster University

McMaster University

Code of Conduct For Postgraduate Teachers


This Code of Conduct for postgraduate teachers has been developed from the Queen's University's Guide to Ethical Behaviour of Clinical Teachers. This document must be viewed in context with the Canadian Medical Association of Code of Ethics, which is appended.

The Code of Conduct is applicable to all individuals who accept the responsibility to train postgraduate medical trainees.

Responsibilities to students

The ethical clinical teacher will:

  1. Treat students with respect regardless of level of training, race, creed, colour, gender, sexual orientation, or field of study, recognizing that there is a power differential between the teacher and student.
  2. Refrain from the intimidation and harrassment of student in any fashion — emotional, physical or sexual.
  3. Maintain a professional teacher/student relationship at all times and avoid the development of sexual and/or financial relationships with students.
  4. Be willing and able to see patients under their own care or under the care of their service when so requested by students.
  5. Teach the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviour and provide the experience that the student requires to become a physician in his/her chosen career.
  6. Supervise students and allow them responsibility as is appropriate to their level of training and commensurate with their ability, as well as to the extent that is allowed by law.
  7. Support and encourage students in their endeavours to learn, and to develop their skills, attitudes and a sense of enquiry.
  8. Demonstrate to students the rational basis for clinical decision making from investigation to diagnosis and to treatment, based on the best evidence available.
  9. Assess carefully and accurately with a minimum of personal bias, the student's abilities and provide timely verbal and written feedback to the student and to the sudent's program.
  10. Support and facilitate remedial teaching when it is necessary.
  11. Conduct herself/himself as exemplary physician.
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