Technical Standards

WMed is committed to diversity.  The WMed community actively collaborates to support a safe and inclusive environment. To this end, WMed provides reasonable accommodations for candidates with disabilities via the Office of Student Affairs and the Accommodations Committee.

The faculty at WMed 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 such knowledge and skills in a broad-based practice. Graduates are prepared to excel in any chosen specialty field. Accordingly, every medical student must complete all aspects of the curriculum and achieve all the competencies as determined by the faculty, with or without reasonable accommodation. The WMed MD degree affirms that 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 several areas throughout their medical education, including understanding and appreciating the principles and practices of several fields of basic medical science and clinical medicine, and have the abilities and characteristics to relate to patients, families, and other health care professionals compassionately and comprehensively.

In conjunction with the academic standards, the following technical standards are requirements for admission, promotion, and graduation. The Technical Standards at WMed include essential academic and non-academic abilities, attributes, and characteristics in the areas of:

  1. Cognitive abilities
  2. Observation
  3. Motor
  4. Communication
  5. Behavioral and Social attributes
  6. Ethics and Professionalism

Applicants and students must continually meet the following technical standards for admission, advancement, and graduation, and must review and sign the technical standards at the start of each academic year and when they return from a leave of absence. Accommodations granted by the Accommodations Committee may be applied to achieve the following technical standards. The process for requesting an accommodation is detailed in policy UME710.

  1. Cognitive Abilities
    1. Possess and demonstrate the analytical, conceptual, integrative, quantitative, and reasoning skills that are needed to assimilate and integrate large volumes of information from diverse sources.
    2. Apply the skills outlined in 1a independently and in a timely manner to solve medical problems to deliver appropriate patient care.
    3. Comprehend, understand, and adapt to different educational environments and learning modalities.
    4. Capacity to demonstrate sound judgment in patient assessment, diagnosis, and therapeutic planning.
  2. Observation
    1. Collect, use, and interpret information from demonstrations, from diagnostic and assessment procedures and tools, and from all other modes of patient assessment in the context of laboratory studies, medication administration, radiologic studies, and all other patient care activities (candidates must be able to document these observations and maintain accurate records).
  3. Motor
    1. Demonstrate the physical capacity to perform physical examinations and diagnostic interventions on patients in accordance with currently acceptable medical practice.
    2. Demonstrate sufficient motor movements required to provide general care to patients and provide (or if appropriate, direct the provision) of emergency medical care.
    3. Demonstrate adequate physical stamina and energy to perform taxing duties over long hours.
    4. Possess the ability to comply with all safety standards in all clinical settings, including but not limited to universal precautions.
    5. Be capable of moving within and between clinical treatment environments without compromising the safety of patients, members of the healthcare team, or others.
  4. Communication
    1. Communicate effectively and efficiently with patients, their families, health care personnel, colleagues, faculty, staff, and all other individuals with whom they come in contact.
    2. Obtain a medical history in a timely fashion, interpret non-verbal aspects of communication, and establish therapeutic relationships with patients.
    3. Record information accurately and clearly; and communicate effectively and efficiently in English with other health care professionals in a variety of patient settings. 
    4. Communicate with, examine, and provide care for all patients, without discrimination or bias.
  5. Behavioral and Social Attributes
    1. Display mature and respectful interactions with patients and with members of the medical school community and health care teams.
    2. Contribute to collaborative, constructive learning environments; accept constructive feedback from others; and take personal responsibility for making appropriate positive changes.
    3. Demonstrate emotional maturity and stability to manage stressful and demanding workloads.
    4. Adapt to changing environments, display flexibility, and learn in the face of the uncertainty inherent to the clinical problems of many patients and clinical settings.
    5. Demonstrate the emotional maturity and stability required for full utilization of 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. Ethics and Professionalism
    1. Model professionalism and a professional demeanor consistent with WMed’s Code of Professional Conduct and Educational Pledge.
    2. Adhere to the WMed Student Guidelines for Dress and Appearance (see policy UME517).
    3. Consistently appreciate and preserve patient confidentiality.
    4. Maintain sobriety in all academic and clinical environments.
    5. Abide by local, state, and federal laws, as well as all WMed policies.
    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. These include but are not limited to integrity, ethics, responsibility, accountability, compassion, empathy, tolerance, responsiveness to patient needs that supersedes self-interest, respect for others, commitment to excellence, and motivation.
    7. Understand the legal and ethical aspects of the practice of medicine and function within the law and ethical standards of the medical profession.


WMed welcomes applicants with disabilities who may need accommodations. Consistent with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act as Amended 2010, and Michigan law, the school of medicine does not discriminate on the basis of disability. Applicants seeking accommodation should utilize the technical standards in guiding a request for accommodations. Questions about the technical standards, reasonable accommodations, or the accommodations process may email the Director of Student Life and Well-Being at Applicants with disabilities should begin discussions with the Director of Student Life and Well-Being as soon as the offer of admission is accepted. Prior to matriculation, a candidate must attest that they have read the school’s technical standards and to the best of their knowledge can meet them with or without reasonable accommodation.