Policy 300.00


Technical Standards for Admission, Advancement and Graduation


Policy Statement

The Larner College of Medicine’s Technical Standards include the following domains: 1) essential academic and non-academic abilities, attributes, and characteristics in the areas of intellectual-conceptual, integrative, and quantitative abilities; 2) observational skills; 3) physical abilities; 4) motor functioning; 5) emotional stability; 6) behavioral and social skills; and 7) ethics and professionalism.

A medical school applicant or enrolled medical student must possess or be able to acquire, with or without reasonable accommodation, these technical standards in order to be admitted to, be retained in, and graduate from our medical educational program.

The Larner College of Medicine is committed to diversity, and understands the importance and value in educating all students and collaborates with students, faculty and staff, to provide access and establish a respectful, accountable culture via confidential and specialized disability support services. We encourage students with disabilities to disclose and seek accommodations. See the Support for Disabilities Policy 310.00 for procedures on requesting an accommodation.

Policy Elaboration

  1. The faculty of the Robert Larner, M.D. College of Medicine at The University of Vermont believe that earning a Doctor of Medicine degree requires mastery of a coherent body of knowledge and skills as well as the ability to integrate, synthesize, and apply that knowledge and skills in a broad-based practice. The undifferentiated Larner College of Medicine M.D. degree affirms any recipient holds the general knowledge and skills to function in a broad variety of clinical situations and the capacity to enter residency training and qualify for medical licensure. Medical students must acquire substantial competence in a number of areas throughout their medical education, including understanding and appreciating the principles and practices of several fields of basic medical science and clinical medicine, including the ability to relate appropriately to patients and other health care professionals.
  2. The Larner College of Medicine’s seven Technical Standards include 1) essential academic and non-academic abilities, attributes, and characteristics in the areas of intellectual-conceptual, integrative, and quantitative abilities; 2) observational skills; 3) physical abilities; 4) motor functioning; 5) emotional stability; 6) behavioral and social skills; and 7) ethics and professionalism. 
  3. The following minimum technical standards must be met for admission, advancement and graduation:
    1. Intellectual-Conceptual, Integrative, and Quantitative Abilities
      1. Students must possess and demonstrate the analytical, conceptual, integrative, quantitative and reasoning skills that are critical to a physician’s ability to assimilate and integrate large volumes of information from diverse sources.
      2. Students must be able to use these skills in a timely manner to solve medical problems in order to deliver appropriate patient care.
      3. Students should be able to comprehend, understand, and adapt to different educational environments and learning modalities.
    2. Observational Skills
      1. Students must be able to participate in all activities requiring observation and processing of information. The ability to observe is required for all educational environments and learning modalities.
      2. Students should be able to assess a patient and evaluate findings accurately. These skills require the ability to perceive and interpret visual, auditory, and tactile information.
    3. Physical Abilities
      1. Students should, after a reasonable period of time, possess the capacity to perform a physical examination and diagnostic interventions on patients in accordance with currently acceptable medical practice. This activity may require sufficient coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements, balance and equilibrium.
    4. Motor Functioning
      1. Students should be able to execute sufficient motor movements required to provide general care to patients and provide or direct the provision of emergency medical care. This activity may require sufficient coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements, balance and equilibrium.
    5. Emotional Stability
      1. Emotional stability is essential throughout the curriculum. Thus, students must:
        1. Display mature and respectful interactions with patients and with members of the medical school community and health care teams.
        2. Attend to personal wellbeing.
        3. Tolerate physically, emotionally, and mentally demanding workloads. 
        4. Function effectively under stress, tolerate physically demanding workloads.
        5. Adapt to changing environments, display flexibility, and be able to learn in the face of uncertainty, inherent in the clinical problems of many patients.
        6. Possess the emotional health required for full utilization of their intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, responsibility for behavior, the prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients, and the development of mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with patients, fellow students, faculty, and staff.
    6. Behavioral and Social Skills
      1. Communication skills (verbal and non-verbal) are essential throughout the curriculum. Thus, students must:
        1. Be able to communicate using the English language effectively and sensitively with patients, their families and the health care team during clinical encounters.
      2. Be able to transmit information effectively and efficiently to patients, their families and all members of the health care team.
      3. Communicate with, examine, and provide care for all patients, including those whose gender, culture, sexual orientation, ability, or beliefs are different from students' own.
      4. Compassion, integrity, concern for others, interpersonal skills, professionalism, interest, and motivation are all personal qualities that are expected during the education processes.
    7. Ethics and Professionalism
      1. Students must:
        1. Consistently display integrity, honesty, empathy, caring, fairness, respect for others, diligence, and dedication.
        2. Consistently appreciate and preserve patient confidentiality.
        3. Maintain sobriety in all academic and clinical environments.
        4. Abide by local, state, and federal laws, as well as all University of Vermont and Larner College of Medicine codes of conduct.
        5. Maintain a professional demeanor especially in clinical settings (e.g. use of identification, appropriate attire and appearance, and respectful language).
        6. Maintain and display ethical and moral behaviors commensurate with the role of a physician in all interactions with patients, faculty, staff, students and the public.
      2. The student is expected to understand the legal and ethical aspects of the practice of medicine and function within the law and ethical standards of the medical profession

Applicability of the Policy

  • All students and applicants

Related Policies

Reviewed and Approved

  • Medical Curriculum Committee, on December 18, 2018

Previous | Next