What is a Standardized Patient?

Standardized Patients (SPs) are specifically recruited and trained with realistic case materials to portray the patient in simulated encounters accurately and consistently. Our program provides the opportunity for learners to exercise their patient care and communication skills through role playing and receiving feedback. These experiences are designed to fill the gap between learning in the classroom and real-life interactions. We believe students learn best through practice and experience. Simulated interactions between the learner and one or more SPs provide the educational opportunity to practice new or difficult situations. These simulated interactions also allow faculty to assess learners’ skills as part of their education.

Who can become a Standardized Patient? What are the requirements?

Standardized patients are paid an hourly wage and there is no required qualifications, acting or medical experience to apply. The Clinical Skills Education and Assessment Center hires and trains a diverse and comprehensive group of SPs. We strongly encourage anyone age 18+ of any racial, ethnic, or religious background, as well as those of any ability, gender, or sexual orientation to apply. 

Being a standardized patient requires active listening skills and concentration while being interviewed and examined. You must be able to maintain accuracy regarding the patient's history as well as simulate physical condition during an encounter. When the encounter is over, you must recall the student's performance and record it on an evaluation form. You will repeat these tasks many times in succession without change. Being an SP takes energy, memorization, discipline, concentration, and excellent communication skills. It is important that you are comfortable with your body and letting others touch and examine you. Strong written and verbal communication skills are required. Ideal candidates have a desire to participate in healthcare education, have the ability to learn how to consistently simulate patient cases, and posses personal dependability.

After reviewing your application one of our program coordinators will reach out to schedule you for our next upcoming orientation. Orientation for new SPs is scheduled according to availability. Once a new SP is added to the program most of the events occur during the academic year (August-May). Typically, events are scheduled during business hours, Monday through Friday.

Where is the Standardized Patient program located?

The standardized patient program is located in the Clinical Skills Education and Assessment Center, located in the lower level of Prior Hall.

Driving and parking directions

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions