REVISED 2/1/2021

for the Class of 2022

In addition to the written guide/instructions below, there are two video presentations that you will find most helpful. The Lottery presentation may help you navigate DOCSS.

View the Video Part 1: 4th Year General Information

View the Video Part 2: Away Rotations and DOCSS/Lottery Process - Robin Smith

                  - Class of 2021 instructions; basic instructions are the same, dates have not been updated for 2022; Pathway forms for lottery are no longer required; PowerPoint for Class of 2021 is posted on WebCampus


This guide provides an overview of required fourth year rotations, a guide to submitting schedule preferences for the Drexel Online Curriculum Educational Scheduling System (DOCSS), and an outline of policies for changing established schedules.


I.          Overview of the Fourth Year

a.       Further Explanation

b.       General Information About the Pathways

II.      Required Courses

III.     Senior Elective Catalogue

IV.     Senior Block Start Dates

V.        The Drexel Online Curriculum Scheduling System (DOCSS)

a.       General Information

b.       Student Randomization and Scheduling Runs

c.       Preparation of Your Worksheet

d.       Entering Your DOCSS Scheduling Priorities On-Line

e.       DOCSS Features Not in Use

f.       Viewing Your Schedule on the Web

g.         Final Review/Other

VI.              Declaring Your Pathway

VII.            Deadlines

VIII.         Special Needs and Special Requests

IX.               Other

X.                 Schedule Change Policies and Procedures for the 4th Year


During the fourth year, each student must meet the posted graduation requirements in the Drexel University College of Medicine Student Handbook:

For 2021-2022, students are required to complete 36 weeks of graduation credit (34 weeks of calendar time). Students have a 11.5 blocks available to schedule (48 credit weeks/46 calendar weeks) prior to graduation. This does not include Winter Break. Scheduling requirements will be detailed in the 2021-2022 Medical Student Handbook.

Section 1. Academic Policies and Academic Progress
Guidelines for Promotion: From Year 4 to Graduation
(please note that Medical Student Handbook supersedes information below)

a.         Further Explanation

b.         General Information About the Pathways:


Please see “Required Rotations List”  for the list of courses that will meet requirements.



Course titles and numbers for all courses approved and registered by the various departments at Drexel University College of Medicine (including all clinical campuses) can be found on-line in the Senior Elective Catalogue (/clinicaleducation/SeniorElectives/).  The Guide will be updated throughout the year.  Contact information, report times, etc are all included in the catalogue. We strongly recommend that you use the Elective Catalogue as you can clearly see the details of an elective and when it is offered. Once you have this information, you are able to check for availability on DOCSS.


2021-2022 Senior Block Start Dates may be found here.
Four-week rotations must start on a bolded date. 
Two-week rotations can start on any date listed, provided the course is offered on that date.


The DOCSS is a computer program that assigns students to their clinical rotations. The scheduler for the fourth year is programmed with the following information: class roster, course offerings and locations as listed in the Senior Elective Catalogue, rotation start dates and start weeks and the number of available positions for each course and site.  The DOCSS is designed to allow students to enter their preferred rotations in order of priority.  The DOCSS does not let students create their actual schedules; rather, it provides students with an equal opportunity to achieve schedules closest to those they desire.

a.   General Information:

The DOCSS student-randomization and priority-based Scheduler Rounds described below provide each student with a comparable opportunity to get a schedule closest to that desired.

b.      Student Randomization and Scheduling Runs

The program matches students’ requests with available spaces in the following manner.  The list of participating student names is scrambled into a random sequence.  The computer then goes through the list of names in that sequence, enrolling each student into a course before it goes on to the next student.  The DOCSS will attempt to schedule each student into one course before any student is scheduled into a second.  One pass through the class roster is a “Scheduler Round.”  During the Scheduler Round the computer will look for a student’s highest priority choice (lowest number – see below).  If the computer can schedule the student into that course, it does so and moves on to the next student.  If the student’s highest priority course is not available, the scheduler moves to the student’s next priority listing.  The scheduler goes down a student’s list, by priority, until it can schedule a rotation.  Once it does so, it moves on to the next student.

After a Scheduler Round is completed, for each ensuing Scheduler Round the computer reshuffles the students into a new random sequence.  It proceeds through each student’s priority list in the same manner as it did for the previous round.

If you don’t get scheduled into one of your choices, it is due to one of the following reasons:

  1. The maximum number of students had already been assigned to the time or site slot.
  2. You were already scheduled into a rotation during that time slot.
  3. You were already scheduled for that particular rotation.
  4. The minimum number of students (if defined) for your choice site and time could not be met.

c.   Preparation of entries for Scheduling Rotations and Sites
Strategies and Hints
Establish a step-by-step approach.

  1. Print out the list of start dates and start weeks.  They are linked above in this document.
  2. Determine, in general, the times and order in which you would like to be scheduled for the rotations.
  3. Define what is the absolutely most important thing to you, e.g., having a certain rotation only at a certain time or site.
  4. Determine which of those is of utmost importance to you – time or place.
  5. Assign priority numbers. 
  6. If timing of a rotation is most important to you, increase your location options.
  7. If the site is of overriding importance to you, list all the dates
  8. See the Timeline for when the lottery will open and close.

d.  Entering Your DOCSS Scheduling Priorities On-Line 

Entering your DOCSS Scheduling priorities on-line via the web - BEGINNING February 10th  

e.   DOCSS Features Not in Use

Please note that not all features of DOCSS are being used by DUCOM at this time.  The Drop/Add feature will be used during the 4th year.
f.  Viewing Your Schedule on the Web

When completed, student schedules will be posted on-line (after the lottery has been run).  You may view and print your schedule from the web.  Go to the web site.  Log on with your user name and password and click on the Schedule Tab.

g.   Final Review/Other

If you need assistance, the staff in the Division of Clinical Education is available.  Please remember that Library and Student Affairs personnel are not familiar with DOCSS.

After entering your choices on-line, be sure that you also complete the Attestation on DOCSS that you have received advising by your Pathway Director.


You “declare” your pathway by selecting your Pathway ("Update your track") found under Announcements, reviewing you 4th year plans with your Pathway Director and completing the Attestation on DOCSS.  Additionally, when you log on to DOCSS you will select your Pathway.  At the time the lottery is run, the list of Pathway students will be matched up "Track" selected in DOCSS.


DEADLINE for choice entry on-line is Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 8AM Eastern Time.


Some students have special needs regarding the timing or locations of their rotations per the Office of Disability Resources.  A Deans Committee will evaluate Special Needs Requests in order to assist with student scheduling.  Special consideration regarding timing and sites of rotations will be granted for students with AVLs from the Office of Disability Resources.  It is imperative that students with AVLs turn in a special request form prior to the lottery deadline on March 2, 2021.  All special requests will be reviewed.

Requests due to disability must be accompanied by the Accommodation Verification Letter issued by the Drexel University Office of Disability Resources. For additional information regarding requests due to a disability, go to:

IX.              OTHER

a.   Viewing Your Transcript on the Web

Check Banner on the web at to see submitted/recorded grades.  Do not call the Division of Clinical Education for evaluations/grades. 

b.   Scheduling Away, International and Other Special Electives

Students may complete a maximum 16 weeks at other medical schools or clinical sites away from DUCOM and its educational affiliates.  Information on how to gather information about and to schedule away and international rotations is also on the web under General Information.

c.   Validating Graduation Requirements

In order to facilitate Drexel University College of Medicine’s validating that you will have met degree requirements before graduating and beginning residency training, WE REQUIRE THAT A FULL YEAR’S SCHEDULE BE COMPLETED WITH THE DIVISION OF CLINICAL EDUCATION NO LATER THAN FEBRUARY 1 OF THE YEAR OF GRADUATION.


DEADLINE for lottery choice entry on-line is Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021 at 8AM Eastern Time.  Special Needs Request Forms are also due to the Division of Clinical Education. Forms may be scanned to .

The Division of Clinical Education and the Clinical Departments reserve the right to change schedules at any time it becomes necessary due to circumstances beyond their control that would result in inadequate educational experiences for participating students.

Revised 21/2021