M.D. Program Technical Standards for Admission, Retention, Promotion, and Graduation

The medical degree awarded by the College of Medicine at the completion of the undergraduate medical education process certifies that the graduate has acquired a broad base of knowledge, skills, and attitudes requisite to the practice of medicine. To achieve this end, all courses in the curriculum must be completed successfully. The technical (non-academic) standards listed here are required for admission, retention, promotion, and graduation and are intended to insure that candidates, with or without reasonable accommodation, can fully participate in all parts of the curriculum.

Essential abilities and characteristics required for completion of the MD degree consist of certain minimum physical and cognitive abilities and sufficient mental and emotional stability to assure that candidates for admission, retention, promotion, and graduation are able to complete the entire course of study and participate fully in all aspects of medical training. The College of Medicine intends for its graduates to become competent and compassionate physicians who are capable of entering residency training (graduate medical education) and meeting all requirements for medical licensure. The avowed intention of an individual student to practice only a narrow part of clinical medicine, or to pursue a non-clinical career, does not alter the requirement that all medical students take and achieve competence in the full curriculum required by the faculty. For purposes of this document and unless otherwise defined, the term "candidate" means candidates for admission to medical school as well as medical students who are candidates for retention, promotion or graduation.

The College of Medicine has a societal responsibility to train competent healthcare providers and scientists who demonstrate critical judgment, extensive knowledge and well-honed technical skills. Although students learn and work under the supervision of the faculty, students interact with patients throughout their medical school education. Patient safety and wellbeing are therefore major factors in establishing requirements involving the physical, cognitive, and emotional abilities of candidates for admission, promotion, and graduation. The essential abilities and characteristics described herein are also referred to as technical standards. They are described below in several broad categories including: observation; communication; motor/tactile function and coordination; intellectual abilities - conceptual, integrative, and quantitative; and social and behavioral attributes. Candidates must adhere to universal precaution measures and meet safety standards applicable to inpatient and outpatient settings and other professional activities. Individuals whose performance is impaired by use of alcohol or other substances are not suitable candidates for admission, retention, promotion or graduation.

Delineation of technical standards is required for the accreditation of U.S. medical schools by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). The following abilities and characteristics are defined as technical standards, are requirements for admission, retention, promotion, and graduation. Candidates and current students who have questions regarding the technical standards or who believe they may need to request reasonable accommodation(s) in order to meet the standards are encouraged to contact the Office of Student Accessibility Services.

Technical Standards

A. Observation/Perception: Sensory skills necessary to perform a physical examination are required. These include functional vision, hearing, smell, and tactile sensation. All senses must be adequate to observe a patient’s condition at a distance and close at hand, and to elicit information through procedures regularly required in a physical examination such as inspection, auscultation, palpation, and percussion. Students must be able to perceive by the use of their senses and mental abilities all information presented or conveyed in one-on-one interactions (including patient encounters), diagnostic values and findings, laboratory demonstrations, large group lectures, small group sessions and team-oriented exercises, and in written, audiovisual, and computer-based formats.

B. Communication: Candidates must be able to speak and hear clearly. They must be able to use observational skills to describe changes in mood, activity and posture, and perceive non-verbal communications. They must be able to effectively and sensitively communicate in English in both written and oral modalities in order to interact with faculty members, classmates, other members of the healthcare team, patients, families, and others in order to elicit, convey, and clarify information, to work collaboratively, and to develop therapeutic relationships.

C. Motor/Tactile Function and Coordination: Candidates must have motor function adequate to elicit information from patients using inspection, palpation, auscultation and percussion, and to carry out diagnostic maneuvers. Such skills require coordination of gross and fine muscular movements, equilibrium, and sensation. An individual must be able to perform motor activities required in providing general and emergency treatment to patients, such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation, administering intravenous medication, applying pressure to stop bleeding, opening obstructed airways, suturing simple wounds, and performing routine obstetrical maneuvers. Such actions require both gross and fine muscular movements, equilibrium, and coordinated use of the senses of touch and vision. Candidates must have sufficient postural control, neuromuscular control, control of the extremities, and eye-hand coordination to examine patients, provide appropriate patient care, and to attend and participate in all classes, small group sessions and team activities that are part of the curriculum.

D. Intellectual Abilities: Conceptual, Integrative and Quantitative: Candidates must be able to assimilate the detailed and complex information presented in the medical student curriculum. They must be able to learn through a variety of modalities including, but not limited to, classroom instruction; small group, team and collaborative activities; individual study; preparation and presentation of reports; simulations and use of computer technology. Candidates must be able to memorize, measure, calculate, reason, analyze, synthesize, and transmit information. They must recognize and draw conclusions about three- dimensional spatial relationships and logical sequential relationships among events. They must be able to formulate and test hypotheses that enable effective and timely problem-solving in diagnosis and treatment of patients in a variety of clinical settings and health care systems.

E. Behavioral and Social Attributes: Candidates must exercise good judgment, communicate in a clear and timely way with others, and promptly complete all responsibilities attendant to the study of medicine and to the care of patients. They must display characteristics of integrity, honesty, attendance and conscientiousness, empathy, a sense of altruism, and a spirit of cooperation and teamwork. Candidates must be able to interact with patients and their families, health care personnel, colleagues, faculty, staff, and all other individuals with whom they come in contact in a courteous, professional, and respectful manner. They must understand the legal and ethical aspects of the practice of medicine and function within the law and adhere to the ethical standards of the medical profession. Candidates must be able to tolerate physically taxing workloads, to function effectively under stress, and to display flexibility and adaptability to changing environments. They must have the emotional health to fully use their intellectual ability, exercise good judgment, and to carry out all responsibilities related to patient care. Candidates must possess sufficient emotional health to withstand stress, the uncertainties inherent in patient care, and the rigors intrinsic to the study and practice of medicine. They must be capable of regular, reliable and punctual attendance at classes and perform their clinical responsibilities in an equally dependable fashion. Candidates must be able to contribute to collaborative learning environments, accept and process constructive feedback from others, and take personal responsibility for making appropriate positive changes. Core attributes of professionalism defined by the faculty of the FAU College of Medicine include altruism, honesty and integrity, respect for others, empathy and compassion, responsibility and dependability.

Ability to Meet the College of Medicine’s Technical Standards

All candidates for the College of Medicine will be required to complete a Technical Standards Attestation form on a yearly basis. If at any point an enrolled candidate ceases to meet the technical standards of the College of Medicine, they must notify the Office of Student Accessibility Services, who will determine what accommodations are reasonable.

If, after all reasonable accommodations are made, there is concern that the student remains unable to meet the technical standards, the student will be referred to the Medical Student Promotions and Professionalism Standards Committee (MSPPSC), who will review the student’s performance. It is the responsibility of the MSPPSC to determine whether a student can or cannot meet the described standards after reasonable accommodations have been made. The MSPPSC will determine any necessary actions on a case-by-case basis.

Residency for Tuition Purposes

Florida Residency for Tuition Purposes refers to whether you are an in-state Florida resident or an out-of-state resident, and this classification determines your tuition cost as defined by Florida state statute 1009.21 and the State Board of Education Rule 6A-10.044. Students are encouraged to review the following documents for additional information.

All applicants must complete the Residency Classification for Tuition Purposes section of the application and submit the required documentation, regardless of the duration of their presence in Florida. A Florida resident for tuition purposes is defined as an individual who has resided in the state for 12 consecutive months while not enrolled in an institution of higher learning, prior to the beginning of classes, and who has established legal ties in Florida according to Florida Statute 1009.21.

Florida Legislature recently updated Florida Statute 1009.21. Review updated Florida Statute information. Please see the FAU Registrar Definitions for clarity.

Reclassifying your Florida Residency Status and Residency Appeals. For more information, please review at www.fau.edu/registrar/residency/

Additional Information
The Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine offers students a variety of educational programs and degrees.
Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine
Florida Atlantic University
777 Glades Road, BC-71
Boca Raton, FL 33431