Technical Standards



Technical Standards

Physician Assistants (PAs) must possess the knowledge and skills to provide care to patients in a wide variety of health care settings. They must be able to integrate information quickly, accurately and consistently and must possess the intellectual capacity to learn, analyze, synthesize, integrate and communicate data. 

For this reason, the MPAS program outlines technical standards which identify the abilities students must possess to successfully complete coursework in preparation for medical practice.

Students must possess:

  1. The capacity for observation and participation in academic, clinical, and other medical settings; functional vision, oral-auditory and tactile sensation sufficient to observe and assess a patient’s condition and perform procedures regularly required during patient care.

  2. The ability to read, write, speak and understand English at a level consistent with successful course completion and development of positive patient-provider relationships; effective written and verbal communications skills sufficient for both academic and healthcare settings.

  3. Effective interpersonal skills necessary for productive classroom discussion, respectful interaction with classmates and faculty and the development of supportive patient-provider relationships.

  4. Gross and fine motor function to perform diagnostic maneuvers necessary for patient care, diagnosis and management; for movement in general and emergent patient care and between facilities and buildings in academic and healthcare environments; physical stamina to complete academic and clinical coursework.

  5. Intellectual ability to quickly learn, measure, calculate, integrate, critically analyze, synthesize and reason in the context of clinical medical problem-solving in both academic and patient care settings.

  6. Emotional health and stability required for exercising good judgment, full use of intellectual abilities and prompt completion of all academic and patient care responsibilities; the ability to be flexible, adapt to changing environments and face uncertainty, difficulties and/or sadness inherent in the practice of medicine.

Prior to enrollment, students must certify their ability to comply with the program’s technical standards, with or without reasonable accommodation, that are associated with attaining the knowledge and skills necessary to practice medicine as a physician assistant, which includes safe and effective patient care in a broad spectrum of clinical scenarios.

Reasonable Accommodation

St. Catherine University is committed to creating and promoting accessible and inclusive learning environments for all students. "Reasonable accommodation" refers to ways in which the University addresses any barriers to full participation in the academic and co-curricular experience.

Examples of reasonable accommodation include but are not limited to: instructional materials in alternative formats; alternative testing arrangements; and use of assistive technology such as text-to-speech software. While reasonable accommodation does not mean that students will be exempt from required tasks, it does mean that the Master of Physician Assistant Studies program is committed to working with all students to assure their completion of the required tasks.

After enrollment, students with disabilities who require reasonable accommodation should contact Resources for Disabilities Center at 651.690.6563, email or visit the O'Neill Center for Academic Development. Students should also provide appropriate documentation substantiating the disability, meet the requirements of a disability as described in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and identify the accommodation which is needed.

Reasonable accommodation in classroom and in practice settings cannot be provided without the formal request and the required documentation of the ADA-defined disability.