Technical Standards for Respiratory Therapy

Our program technical standards have been developed to help students understand nonacademic standards, skills, and performance requirements expected of a student in the Respiratory Therapy Program.

If an accommodation is necessary to participate in the program, it is imperative to identify a reasonable accommodations to those students who qualify under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Reasonableness is determined by the Accessibility Resources and the program on a case-by-case basis utilizing the program technical standards. The accommodation needs to be in place prior to the start of the program, or it may delay your ability to start the program. It is the student’s responsibility to contact Accessibility Resources and request accommodations.

Skills Description Specific Examples
Sensory Visual, auditory, and tactile senses must be sufficient enough to provide patient care, monitor and assess health needs, and to maintain a safe environment.
  1. Visually distinguish data from instruments/machines such as microcomputers, monitor screens, gauges, control panels, and other electronic and digital equipment.
  2. Perceive color variations and depth.
  3. Observe an individual’s presentation (appearance).
  4. Distinguish the pitch, intensity, quality, duration, and clarity of sounds (i.e., auscultation of the chest, recognizing various audio alarms and identifying various percussion tones).
  5. Perceive a variety of odors (i.e., smelling overheated equipment, changes in sputum odor, etc.).
  6. Perceive variations of touch (i.e., texture differences, hot/cold, pulsations, etc.).
Communication Communication abilities sufficient for interaction with faculty, students, physicians, etc. in verbal and written form. Candidates will be required to communicate with and respond to patients, physicians and other health care professionals

as well as observe patients.

  1. Elicit information (i.e., questioning of the patient and other healthcare workers).
  2. Describe changes in mood, activity, and posture.
  3. Perceive nonverbal communication.
Motor and Function Abilities Requirements of a candidate include gross and fine muscular movements, equilibrium, strength, and functional use of the senses of touch and vision for the safe handling of patients, self and equipment
  1. Elicit information from patients by palpation, auscultation, percussion, testing muscle strength and function, penetration of the skin, and other diagnostic maneuvers.
  2. Safely perform therapeutic procedures and/or laboratory procedures.
  3. Provide other patient services and patient-associated services.
  4. Safely lift, manipulate, and use equipment.
Intellectual: Conceptual, Integrated, and Quantitative Abilities The candidate must have these abilities to accurately calculate, analyze, synthesize, and report appropriate physiologic patient/equipment data
  1. Solve problems (i.e., mathematical computations and patient care problem solving).
  2. Comprehend three- dimensional relationships (i.e., anatomical relations).
  3. Understand the spatial relationship of structures.
Behavioral and Social Skills The candidate must have these abilities to provide empathetic support to patients and to interact with patients and their families, colleagues and all customers in health care.
  1. Ability to develop mature, sensitive and effective relationships with patients, clients, and fellow workers (interpersonal skills).
  2. Tolerate physically and mentally taxing workloads.
  3. Function effectively under stress.
  4. Adapt to changing environments (i.e., flexible schedules).
  5. Display flexibility and ability to function during uncertainty inherent in health care (i.e., emergency conditions).
  6. Display compassion, empathy, integrity, concern for others, interest and motivation, and professional demeanor.
Technological The candidate must be able to effectively use a computer through the use of a manual keyboard, mouse, and viewing a monitor/screen.
  1. Review, record, research patient information from electronic medical record

All of the above abilities, skills and knowledge in a candidate will be continually tested by evaluation during the educational process of this program.

This document is intended to serve as a guide regarding the physical, emotional, intellectual and psychosocial expectations placed on a student. This document cannot include every conceivable action, task, ability or behavior that may be expected of a student. Meeting these technical standards does not guarantee employment in this field upon graduation. Ability to meet the program’s technical standards does not guarantee a student’s eligibility for any licensure, certification exam, or successful completion of the degree program.