Program Competencies

The University of Florida School of Physician Assistant Studies competencies represent the knowledge, clinical reasoning, interpersonal attitudes, technical skills, and professional behaviors required for successful completion and graduation.  These program-defined competencies are informed by the PAEA “Core Competencies for New PA Graduates” and guided by the mission and values of the UFSPAS.

Clinical Knowledge

1.1 Distinguish normal and abnormal health states as applied to acute, chronic, and emerging disease  states

1.2 Elicit and understand patient stories and apply context when determining the health of patients  

1.3 Develop meaningful, therapeutic relationships with patients and their families

1.4 Synthesize information acquired from patient encounters to develop a differential diagnosis and  management plan

Patient Care

2.1 Incorporate needs, cultural norms, socioeconomic, environmental, genetic, and population-level  determinants affecting the health of individuals and communities into cost-effective care plans

2.2 Engage members of the healthcare team in determining the adequacy of community resources needed to sustain and improve health

2.3 Recognize the value of monitoring and reporting for enhancement of quality improvement 

2.4 Use appropriate literature to make evidence-based decisions on patient care


3.1 Demonstrate insight and understanding about emotions and human responses that allow one to manage  interpersonal 


3.2 Provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful communication and care that is  responsive to diverse cultural beliefs, preferred languages, and health literacy; and assures  understanding

Interpersonal Communication

4.1 Contribute to the creation, dissemination, application, and translation of health care knowledge and  practices 

4.2 Effectively communicate with and utilize health professionals to provide optimal care to patients and  populations including coordination of consultative care 

Clinically-based Learning and Personal Improvement

5.1 Articulate the professional role and standard of care practice of the PA as influenced by the regulatory  environment

5.2 Demonstrate respect for the dignity and privacy of patients while maintaining confidentiality in the delivery of  team-based care

5.3 Demonstrate responsiveness for patient advocacy that supersedes self-interest, and reflects on personal  and professional limitations

5.4 Demonstrate accountability to patients, society, and the profession, including admission of errors

System-based Practice and System Improvement

6.1 Recognize that healthcare is a business

6.2 Appreciate the value of the collaborative physician/PA relationship