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Technical Standards

Students selected to progress to the Miami Dade College Physician Assistant Program must possess the capacity to complete the entire curriculum in order to achieve the AS-Health Sciences + BAS- Health Sciences with a Concentration in Physician Assistant Studies and the Masters in Health Science degree from the affiliated institution.

The PA curriculum requires demonstrated proficiency in a variety of cognitive, affective, and psychomotor skills. These are essential qualities considered necessary to achieve the knowledge, skills and levels of competency stipulated for graduation by the faculty and expected of the professional program by its accrediting agency, the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant, Inc (ARC-PA).

All students selected to progress to the PA program must possess the following abilities and expectations and must maintain these standards throughout the student's progress through the PA program. During the educational process, in the event that a student is unable to fulfill these technical standards – with or without reasonable accommodations – the student may be dismissed from the program.


Students must be able to observe demonstrations, exercises and patients accurately at a distance and close at hand and note non-verbal as well as verbal signals.


Students should be able to speak intelligibly, hear sufficiently; elicit and transmit patient information in oral and written English to members of the healthcare team. Communicate effectively and sensitively with patients. Students must possess demonstrated reading skills at a level sufficient to accomplish curricular requirements and provide clinical care for patients.

Sensory and Motor Coordination and Function

The student must be able to perform gross and fine motor movements with sufficient coordination needed to perform complete physical examinations utilizing the techniques of inspection, palpation, percussion, and auscultation, and other diagnostic maneuvers. A student must develop the psychomotor skills reasonably needed to perform or assist with procedures, treatments, administration of medication, management and operation of diagnostic and therapeutic medical equipment utilized in the general and emergent care of patients required in practice as a physician assistant. The student must be able to maintain consciousness and equilibrium; have sufficient levels of postural control, neuromuscular control, and eye-to-hand coordination; and to possess the physical and mental stamina to meet the demands associated with extended periods of sitting, standing, moving, and physical exertion required for satisfactory performance in the clinical and classroom settings.

Intellectual, Conceptual, Integrative, and Quantitative Abilities

The student must be able to develop and refine problem-solving skills that are crucial to practice as a physician assistant. Problem solving involves the ability to comprehend three-dimensional relationships and understand the spatial relationships of structures; to measure, calculate reason, analyze, and synthesize objective and subjective data, and to make decisions that reflect consistent and thoughtful deliberation and sound clinical judgment. A student must have the capacity to read and comprehend medical literature. Each student must demonstrate mastery of these skills and the ability to incorporate new information from peers, teachers, and the medical literature to formulate sound judgment in patient assessment and diagnostic and therapeutic planning.

Behavioral and Social Attributes

Flexibility, compassion, integrity, motivation, effective interpersonal skills, and concern for others are personal attributes required of those in physician assistant practice. Personal comfort and acceptance of the role of a dependent practitioner functioning under supervision is essential for training and practice as a physician assistant. The exercise of good judgment; the prompt completion of all responsibilities in the classroom setting, as well as those in the clinical setting attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients; and the development of mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with patients and other members of the health care team. Each student must have the emotional stability required to exercise stable, sound judgment and to complete assessment and interventional activities. The ability to establish rapport and maintain sensitive, interpersonal relationships with individuals, families, and groups from a variety of social, emotional, cultural and intellectual backgrounds is critical for practice as a physician assistant. The student must be able to tolerate physically taxing loads and still function effectively under stress; adapt to changing environments; graciously accept constructive criticism; manage difficult interpersonal relationships during training; and learn to function cooperatively and efficiently in the face of uncertainties inherent in clinical practice.

ADA Standards (Americans with Disabilities Act)

In keeping with its mission and goals, and in compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Medical Campus promotes an environment of respect and support for persons with disabilities and will make reasonable accommodations. The definition of individuals with disabilities are those who currently have, have a record of having, or are regarded as having a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity. Major life activities include caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, breathing, and working

An individual who poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others or themselves may be denied admission, progression or graduation. The college's determination that a person poses a direct threat will be based on an individualized assessment that relies on current medical evidence or on the best available evidence to assess the nature, duration, and severity of the risk and the probability that the potential injury will actually occur.

*Due to the unique responsibilities involved in all School of Health Sciences Allied Health professions, each department reserves the right to require that the student who appears to be unsuited for any program therein withdraw from the program and be guided into another curriculum of study at the college.