Essential abilities and technical standards
Updated June 25, 2021
The essential abilities and technical standards listed below are expected of all students in the following programs:
- Master of Science — Family Nurse Practitioner Degree Program
- Doctor of Nursing Practice — Family Nurse Practitioner Degree Program (proposed)
- Master of Health Services — Physician Assistant Studies Degree Program
- Master’s Entry Program in Nursing
Students with disabilities may request appropriate accommodations from UC Davis Student Disability Center in order to achieve these expectations.
Individuals admitted to the entry-level nursing, physician assistant and family nurse practitioner programs must possess the capability to complete the entire curriculum and graduate as a nurse practitioner, physician assistant or nurse. This curriculum requires demonstrated proficiency in a variety of cognitive, problem-solving, manipulative, communicative and interpersonal skills. Therefore, the following abilities and expectations must be possessed by all students admitted in the clinical programs. If you have questions regarding these standards or your ability to meet these standards, you should contact your graduate adviser.
Students must have sufficient motor function to be able to execute physical movements required to provide general care and treatment to all patients in all health care settings.
Students must be able to meet all physical requirements of clinical rotations and patient care. Examples include performance of basic life support; to function in an emergency situation, to safely assist a patient in moving from one place to another, or to stand for extended periods of time.
Students must be able to acquire information presented through demonstrations and experiences in the basic, nursing, and medical sciences.
They must be able to observe a patient accurately, at a distance or close at hand; to observe and appreciate non-verbal communications. This includes perceiving signs of disease and/or infection as manifested through physical examination. Such information is derived from visual images of the body surfaces, palpable changes in various organs and tissues and auditory information (patient voice, heart sounds, bowel and lung sounds).
- Students must have sufficient use of the senses of vision, hearing and smell necessary to directly perform a physical examination.
- Students must be able to perform inspection, palpation, auscultation and percussion.
- Students must be able to observe and participate in all demonstrations and experiments in the basic sciences, including computer assisted instruction.
Students must communicate effectively and sensitively with other students, faculty, staff, patients, families and other professionals. This includes clear expression of personal ideas and feelings, demonstration of bidirectional feedback, and sensitivity to persons with ideas and experiences that differ from their own.
Students must be able to comprehend and communicate information on the patient’s status with accuracy in a timely manner to the patient and their family, and members of the health care team. The appropriate communication may also rely on the student’s ability to make a correct judgment in seeking supervision and/or consultation in a timely manner.
- Students must be able to communicate effectively in both oral and written modes.
- Students must be able to convey or exchange accurate information in a clear and efficient manner that permits the development of a health history, problem identification, explanation of alternative solutions, and provision of health education and directions during treatment and post-treatment.
Students must be able to measure, calculate, reason, analyze, integrate, synthesize and problem solve in the context of the level and the focus of their curricular program. Students must be able to evaluate and apply information and engage in critical thinking in the classroom and clinical/research settings. Students must possess and demonstrate factual, conceptual, procedural and metacognitive knowledge. Students are expected to be able to access and seek consolation where appropriate, accept and apply constructive criticism by adopting appropriate modifications in their behavior.
- Students must be able to read and comprehend extensive written material in a timely manner.
- Students must be able to learn to analyze, synthesize, solve problems, and reach diagnostic and therapeutic judgments.
Students’ cognitive abilities must permit them to reach accurate diagnostic and therapeutic judgments.
- Students must be able to learn to respond with precise, quick, and appropriate action in emergency situations.
Students must be able to learn to respond with quick and appropriate action in emergency situations.
- Students are expected to be able to learn and perform routine laboratory tests and diagnostic and therapeutic procedures.
Students are expected to be able to accept constructive feedback and adopt appropriate modifications in their behavior.
Students must possess the qualities, skills and experience necessary for effective and harmonious relationships in diverse academic, cultural and work/study environments. This includes emotional health as required to exercise good judgment and fully utilize intellectual abilities. Students must have the emotional stability to function effectively under stress and to adapt to an environment that may change rapidly without warning and/or in unpredictable ways. Students must understand that their values, attitudes, beliefs, emotional and experiences affect their perceptions and relationships with others, and use that knowledge in interpersonal communications. Students must be willing and able to examine and change their behavior when it interferes with productive individual or team relationships.
- Students must be able to relate reasonably to patients and establish a sensitive, professional and effective relationship with patients.
Students must be able to create and maintain mature, sensitive and effective relationships with patients, other students, faculty, staff and other professionals under all circumstances, including highly stressful situations.
- Students must be able to complete all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients, families, populations. This includes the experience and effective expression of empathy for the situations and circumstances of others.
Students are expected to be able to communicate the results of the examination to the patient and to their colleagues with accuracy, clarity, and efficiency.
- Students are expected to possess the perseverance, diligence, and consistency to complete their respective program’s curriculum and enter the health professions as a licensed and certified member of the interprofessional patient care team.
Students must possess attributes that include compassion, empathy, altruism, integrity, honesty, responsibility, respect, accountability and tolerance. Students are expected to possess the ability to work collaboratively with all members of an interprofessional health care team. Students must be able to reason and practice nursing and medicine in an ethical manner. Students must be willing to learn and abide by the professional standards of practice defined by the discipline.
- Students must be able to engage in patient care delivery in all settings to patients with a variety of medical conditions; to deliver care to all patient populations including but not limited to children, adolescents, adults, developmentally challenged persons, medically compromised patients and vulnerable adults.
- Students are expected to be able to display good judgment in the assessment and treatment of patients, in addition, the student must be able to learn and demonstrate the ability to recognize limitations in their knowledge, skills and abilities and to seek appropriate assistance with their identified limitations.
Students are expected to be able to display accurate judgment in the assessment and treatment of patients. This includes the ability to recognize limitations in their knowledge, skills and abilities and to seek appropriate assistance as indicated.