Technical Standards

The M.D. Program educates physicians who are capable of entering residency training (graduate medical education) and meet all requirements for medical licensure. All candidates are evaluated according to the same standards and criteria.

Delineation of technical standards is required for the accreditation of U.S. medical schools by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). The technical standards describe the essential abilities required of all candidates.

Reasonable accommodation in achievement of the standards is defined under federal statutes applied to individuals with disabilities. Such accommodations are intended to support the successful completion of all components of the M.D. degree.

The technical standards for the M.D. degree are applied in concert with other policies of the university, including academic policies, academic standards established by the faculty, and student conduct policies.

The technical standards include the following:

  • The M.D. Program supports a broad, undifferentiated degree attesting to the acquisition of general knowledge in all fields of medicine and the basic skills requisite for the practice of medicine.
  • The guidelines for admission as set forth by LCME must continue to govern the decisions of medical school faculties.
  • The medical education process, which focuses on the safety and well-being of patients, differs markedly from post-secondary education in fields outside the health sciences.
  • The primary responsibility for the selection of students and the content of the curriculum rests with the medical school and its faculty.
  • All candidates in the M.D. Program must possess physical, cognitive, and emotional capabilities required to undertake the full curriculum and to achieve the levels of competence required by the faculty.
  • Candidates who meet the academic criteria and who demonstrate the ability to meet the technical standards listed in this document are eligible for consideration for admission, progression, and graduation.

Admission to M.D. Program is conditional based on the ability to meet these technical standards, with or without reasonable accommodation. Candidates are asked to certify that they are able to meet the technical standards of the program.

Individuals with questions regarding technical standards are encouraged to contact the College of Medicine associate dean for students. UCF Student Disability Services (SDS) provides strategies to candidates with disabilities. Case-by-case consideration of alternate styles of achievement are applied to candidates in advanced stages of screening for admission and those who are enrolled.

Standards in five areas must be met by all candidates: Observation, Communication, Motor Function, Cognitive, and Professional.

Observation

Candidates are reasonably expected to:

  • observe demonstrations and participate in experiments in the basic sciences
  • observe patients at a distance and close at hand
  • demonstrate sufficient use of the senses of vision and hearing and the somatic sensation necessary to perform a physical examination
  • integrate findings based on these observations and to develop an appropriate diagnostic and treatment plan

Communication

Candidates are reasonably expected to:

  • communicate in verbal and written form with health care professionals and patients, including eliciting a complete medical history and recording information regarding patients’ conditions
  • perceive relevant non-verbal communications such as changes in mood, activity, and posture as part of a physical examination of a patient
  • establish therapeutic relationships with patients
  • demonstrate reading skills at a level sufficient to individually accomplish curricular requirements and provide clinical care for patients using written information

Accommodation through use of a trained intermediary or other communications aide may be appropriate when this intermediary functions as an information conduit.

Motor Function

Candidates’ motor and sensory functions must be sufficient to diagnose and deliver effective patient care by consistently, quickly, and accurately integrating all data gathered through whatever sense(s) employed.

Candidates are reasonably expected to:

  • perform physical examinations and diagnostic procedures, using such techniques as palpation, auscultation, and percussion
  • complete routine invasive procedures as part of training, using universal precautions without substantial risk of infection to patients
  • perform basic laboratory tests and evaluate routine diagnostic tools such as EKGs and X-rays
  • respond in emergency situations to provide the level of care reasonably required of physicians
  • participate effectively in physically taxing duties over long hours and complete timed demonstrations of skills

Cognitive

Candidates must have sufficient cognitive abilities and effective learning techniques to assimilate the detailed and complex information presented in the medical curriculum.

They are reasonably expected to:

  • measure, calculate, analyze, synthesize, extrapolate, and reach diagnostic and therapeutic judgments
  • recognize and draw conclusions about three-dimensional spatial relationships and logical sequential relationships among events
  • formulate and test hypotheses that enable effective and timely problem-solving in diagnosis and treatment of patients in a variety of clinical modalities
  • understand the legal and ethical aspects of the practice of medicine
  • remain fully alert and attentive at all times in clinical settings

Problem-solving, the critical skill demanded of physicians, requires all of these intellectual abilities.

Professional

Candidates are expected to demonstrate behavior and social attributes that enable the effective practice of medicine.

Candidates are reasonably expected to:

  • demonstrate the judgment and emotional stability required for full use of their intellectual abilities
  • possess the perseverance, diligence, and consistency to complete the medical college curriculum and prepare to enter the independent practice of medicine
  • exercise good judgment in the diagnosis and treatment of patients
  • complete all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients within established timelines
  • function within both the law and ethical standards of the medical profession
  • work effectively and professionally as part of the health care team
  • relate to patients, their families, and health care personnel in a sensitive and professional manner
  • participate effectively in physically taxing duties over long work hours, function effectively under stress, and display flexibility and adaptability to changing and uncertain environments
  • maintain regular, reliable, and punctual attendance for classes and clinical responsibilities
  • contribute to collaborative, constructive learning environments, accept constructive feedback from others, and respond with appropriate modification

Compassion, integrity, interpersonal skills, interest, and motivation are all personal qualities that are assessed during the admission and educational processes.

All candidates are responsible for meeting acceptable standards for behavior and intellectual functioning. Only minimal accommodation is foreseen with regard to the professional section of the technical standards.