Slippery Rock University Physician Assistant Program Technical Standards
A candidate for the Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies degree at Slippery Rock University must demonstrate the ability to acquire the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to complete the core educational requirements. The following abilities and characteristics, defined as technical standards, are requirements for admission, retention, promotion, and graduation.
The technical standards are not intended to deter any candidate from applying, for whom reasonable accommodation will allow the successful completion of the program. All students are asked to attest to their ability to meet the technical standards on a yearly basis.
Observation: Students should be able to obtain information from demonstrations and experiments in the basic sciences. Students should be able to assess a patient and evaluate findings accurately. These skills require the use of vision, hearing, and touch or the functional equivalent.
Communication: Students should be able to communicate with patients in order to elicit information, detect and succinctly and effectively document changes in mood and activity. Students must be able to be able to perceive and appropriately respond to the patient in order to establish a therapeutic relationship and to communicate in person and in writing via English. Students must be able to establish rapport and maintain sensitive, interpersonal relationships with individuals, families, and groups from a variety of social, emotional, cultural and intellectual backgrounds.
Motor: Students should, after a defined period of time, possess the capacity to perform a physical examination including diagnostic maneuvers. Students should be able to execute all motor movements with the strength and dexterity required to provide both general and emergent care to patients at a level consistent with currently accepted standards of medical practice. Such actions require coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements balance and equilibrium sufficient to safely provide this level of care.
Intellectual; Conceptual; Integrative and Quantitative: Students should be able to assimilate detailed and complex information presented in both didactic and clinical coursework, and engage in problem solving. As such, all students must be able to: measure, calculate, analyze, and synthesize subjective and objective data, comprehend three-dimensional relationships and understand the spatial relationships of structures, making decisions about patient care through the thoughtful deliberation and integration of all these elements, with the knowledge of the foundational biomedical and clinical sciences. Students must be able to read and search the medical literature independently, and apply findings to the diagnosis and treatment of patients. In addition, students should be able to adapt to different learning environments and modalities.
Social and Behavioral: Students must exhibit sufficient maturity and emotional stability to enable full utilization of their intellectual abilities, which includes, but is not limited to, the exercise of good judgment and the prompt completion of responsibilities associated with the diagnosis and care of patients. Students must exhibit integrity, honesty, professionalism, compassion, and are expected to display a spirit of cooperation and teamwork. Students should be able to tolerate physically taxing workloads and to function effectively under stress. They should be able to adapt to changing environments, to display flexibility and learn to function in the face of uncertainties inherent in the clinical problems of many patients. Students must accept responsibility for learning and exercising good judgment and are expected to contribute to collaborative, constructive learning environments; accept constructive feedback from others; and take personal responsibility for making appropriate positive changes.
Ethics and professionalism: Students should maintain and display ethical and moral behaviors commensurate with the role of a physician assistant in all interactions including physical and virtual platforms with patients, faculty, staff, students and the public. The student is expected to understand the legal and ethical aspects of the practice of medicine and function within the law and ethical standards of the medical profession at all times.
All students must meet the technical standards delineated above with or without accommodation. The Slippery Rock University Physician Assistant program recognizes the value that comes from a learning diverse student body, including students with disabilities.
Students who, after review of the technical standards determine that they require accommodation to fully engage in the program, should contact the ODS office to confidentially discuss their accommodations needs. All requests will be considered on a case by case basis. Given the clinical nature of the program, additional time may be needed to implement accommodations. Accommodations are never retroactive; therefore, timely requests are essential.
Office of Disability Services (ODS)
Dr. Natalie Burick