Provide the means and support for every student to develop professionalism

Action Steps and Accountability Metrics

As stated in the PA Competencies, “Professionalism should be part of the essence of a person, not something that magically happens when a person puts on a white coat. Professionalism is acting in the best manner possible, following ethical principles, doing the right thing when no one is looking. It involves respect for the dignity of human life along with compassion for the patient as a fellow human being. Professionalism also involves an understanding of the patient’s cultural background and lifestyle choices.” To achieve this goal, the University of South Dakota PA program provides students with professionalism curriculum. Additionally, faculty model professionalism and monitor professionalism during the didactic phase. Finally, clinical faculty evaluate students on professionalism standards.

PA students are evaluated on professionalism by their clinical faculty:

  • Five year (2013-2017) average: 99.73 percent of evaluations report student professionalism; as measured by: 
    •  Truthfulness
    • Punctuality
    • Completes tasks in a timely manner
    • Awareness of limitations
    • Appropriate reaction to criticism 
    • Seeks learning opportunities 
    • Team player 

We demonstrate achievement of our goals by compiling data from the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants (NCCPA), continuous program evaluation and graduating students.