Technical Standards

While it is notable that academic standards be defined, understood and accomplished; the technical demands for graduation from Miami University’s Physician Associate Studies program also must be assumed.

Technical standards are those standards that refer to the holistic physical, cognitive and behavioral abilities required for satisfactory completion of the curriculum. These will differ from those identified as exclusively academic, possessing components that are considered: physical (motor/sensory), communicative, intellectual, behavioral and social.

Such technical standards are considered within the program, in each course, preparing students for student learning outcomes, framed within the professional competencies (A.3.13g).

For such professional requirements and conduct, may include the following:

  • Thinking critically, with sound judgment, emotional stability, maturity, empathy, and physical and mental stamina
  • Learn and function in a variety of didactic and clinical settings, displaying the ability to process, retain, comprehend, integrate, analyze, synthesize and apply large volumes of material related to the higher order art, practice and science of medicine, including those that are legal, ethical and moral in nature.
  • This often requires a commitment to long hours of class, laboratory, clinical and self-directed study situations and environments
  • Communicate effectively and professionally using both verbal and written communication means. Effectiveness often depends on using appropriate grammar, spelling, and vocabulary (as well as timeliness). Comprehend and immediately respond to auditory instructions or requests.
  • Think clearly and act appropriately, professionally, and calmly within stressful situations.
  • Work cooperatively, preserving relationships with other members of the education and health care team
    • Ex. Participation in educational activities including: examinations, demonstrations, simulations, presentations, evaluations, labs.

Observation/Sensation:

Students must be able to acquire information in all didactic and clinical settings through a variety of sources to include, but not limited to oral presentation, written material, visual media, and live presentations/demonstrations.

Students must possess the function of visual, tactile, auditory senses in order to perform necessary skills for physical examination.

  • Full range of motion including capabilities, including: patient movement, manual and finger dexterity and eye-hand coordination. (Ex. Perform fine and gross motor skills with both hands, including CPR)
  • Frequent, prolonged patient interactions and essential activities that include: standing and walking for prolonged periods (ex. surgical services, inpatient medicine)
  • Classrooms and laboratory experiences may require prolonged sitting - Corrected or normal visual and/or hearing acuity
  • Working effectively in physically and mentally stressful situations, within long and irregular hours.

Communication:

Students MUST be able to communicate, professionally and effectively. While various methods of communication (written and verbal) are required by the clinician to accomplish this, the fundamental expectations of courtesy and effectiveness are applied equally.

While nuances exist within healthcare, graduate level work requires the use of proper terminology and language, appropriate spelling and vocabulary.

Proper communication is essential to communicate patient evaluations, findings and conclusions. Additionally, students must communicate in a professional manner to all patients and their families, peers, and other members of a healthcare team.

Intellectual-Conceptual Abilities:

Students must be able to think critically, with sound judgment, in order to understand, assess and solve clinical problems. This includes the ability to collect, organize, prioritize, reason, analyze, integrate, learn, and retain information, often in a limited time frame. Students must also be able to comprehend two and three-dimensional structures, and understand spatial relationships of structures.

Motor Functions:

Students must possess the necessary motor skills to perform a physical examination, maneuver instruments or diagnostic tools appropriately to reach essential conclusions, and perform medical procedures. As noted in observation/sensation, students must also have the physical capabilities, strength and stamina to sit, stand, and move within the classroom, laboratory and clinical areas including, though not limited to examination rooms, treatment rooms/trauma bays, surgical suites, critical care and inpatient floors.

Behavioral/Social Aspects:

Students must demonstrate psychological and emotional stability at a level necessary to deliver sound patient care in all settings and to interact with the interdisciplinary healthcare teams. The students must be able to tolerate physical, emotional, and intellectual stress during the educational period while responding appropriately and professionally and tolerate the physically taxing workloads commensurate with clinical work.

*Students should also expect that they will perform physical examinations on each other during the program. Additionally, they are expected to perform sensitive male and female genital exams on guided learners during the didactic year and assess patients of all ages, sex, gender during their clinical rotation experiences (Supervised Clinical Practice Experiences, i.e. SCPE's).