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Altus Assessments

                                                                  and ProFitHR:
                                                                  Testing Success

                                                                  Innovative character tests designed by
                                                                  McMaster professors are helping medical
                                                                  schools choose and train the best
                                                                  candidates are now licensed by two private
                                                                  Altus Assessments provides research-
                                                                  based, reliable and validated methods
                                                                  for identifying, selecting, and nurturing
                                                                  exceptional learners. A key assessment is
                                                                  Casper, an online situational judgment test
                                                                  that presents applicants with a series of
                                                                  hypothetical scenarios that gauge non-
                                                                  academic skills, such as professionalism,
                                                                  communication, ethics, empathy,
                                                                  collaboration, and motivation. Casper
                                                                  has been in use by McMaster’s School of
                                                                  Medicine since 2010.

                                                                  When other schools expressed interest in
                                                                  using Casper, founders Prof. Kelly Dore and
                                                                  Prof. Harold Reiter, with help from McMaster
                                                                  University’s Industry Liaison Office (MILO)
                                                                  and Innovation Factory, commercialized the
                                                                  Now, Altus assessment tools are in use at
                                                                  more than 400 schools around the world
                                                                  and taken by more than 200,000 applicants
                                                                  a year, including more than 90 per cent of
                                                                  all those applying to Canadian and American
                                                                  medical schools.
          an investment committee of entrepreneurs,               Altus recently acquired One45, an
          investors and sector experts, all external to the       assessment platform start-up out of the
          university, will make investment decisions.             University of British Columbia, and now has
                                                                  140 employees in Canada and Australia.
          in addition, Hamilton’s regional accelerator,
          innovation Factory, is managing a $6-million            Another test used at McMaster’s medical
          investment from the Canadian government to              school since 2004, the Multiple Mini
          accelerate the commercialization of life science        Interview (MMI), was commercialized
          innovations through the Southern ontario                through ProFitHR, located at McMaster
          Pharmaceutical and Health innovation Ecosystem          Innovation Park. The MMI uses many short
          (SoPHiE). as a result, 45 ontario-based life            independent assessments, typically in a
          sciences companies work directly with an academic       timed circuit, to obtain an aggregate score of
                                                                  each candidate’s skills. Today, MMI is used
          or hospital partner in the Hamilton ecosystem to        at nearly all medical schools in Canada, and
          leverage the facilities and infrastructure needed to    in one-quarter of all medical schools in the
          accelerate their commercialization efforts.             United States.

          “Synapse’s strategic vision, collaborative approach     The Synapse Consortium proves that putting
          and concierge services for investors, researchers,      egos aside and working together drives
          clinicians, and life sciences entrepreneurs, start-     momentum, says Dore. “I think one of the
          ups, scale-ups and unicorns are unique and              coolest things is that we’ve been able to put
          transformational,” says Jeff mcisaac, Dean of           ourselves on the map, not due to one entity,
          research at mohawk College.                             but by asserting our superpowers collectively
                                                                  and bringing them together for a common
          “i’ve yet to see anything like what Synapse does
          anywhere else. it is incredibly powerful.”

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