Technical Standards

Technical Standards

Technical Standards

Students entering and graduating from DACC’s Nursing Program must be able to meet the technical standards of the academic program.  These technical standards enable all nursing students to carry out the technical standards of the nursing process throughout the nursing program and include, but are not limited to, the following abilities:


Functional Ability/Category


Representative Activity/Attribute

Motor Abilities

·         Physical abilities and mobility sufficient to execute gross motor skills, physical endurance, and strength, to provide patient care.

·         Mobility sufficient to carry out patient care procedures such as assisting with ambulation of patients, administering CPR, assisting with turning and lifting patients, providing care in confined spaces, such as treatment room or operating suite.

·         Move within confined spaces, sit and maintain balance, reach above shoulders (e.g., IV poles), and reach below waist.

·         Twist, bend, stoop/squat, move quickly (e.g. response to an emergency), climb (e.g., ladders/stools/stairs), and walk.

·         Push and pull 25 pounds (e.g., position patients), support 25 pounds (e.g., ambulate patient), lift 25 pounds (e.g., pick up a child, transfer a patient), move light object weighing up to 10 pounds, move heavy objects, defend self against combative patient, carry equipment/supplies, use upper body strength (e.g., perform CPR, restrain a patient), and squeeze with hands (e.g., operate fire extinguisher).

Manual Dexterity

·         Demonstrate fine motor skills sufficient for providing safe nursing care.

·         Motor skills sufficient to handle small equipment, such as insulin syringe and administer medications by all routes, perform tracheotomy suctioning, and insert urinary catheter.

·         Pick up objects with hands, grasp small objects with hands, write with pen or pencil, key/type using computer, pinch/pick or otherwise work with fingers (e.g., manipulate syringe), twist or turn knobs or objects using hands, squeeze with finger(s).


Sensory Ability

·         Sensory/perceptual ability to monitor and assess patients.

·         Sensory abilities sufficient to hear alarms, auscultate sounds, and hear cries for help, etc.

·         Visual acuity to read calibrations on 1 ml syringe, assess color (e.g., cyanosis, pallor, identify color of body fluids, etc.).

·         Tactile ability to palpate pulses, feel skin temperature, palpation veins, etc.

·         Olfactory ability to detect smoke or noxious odors

Behavioral/ Interpersonal/ Emotional

Ability to relate to colleagues, staff and patients with honesty, civility, integrity and nondiscrimination.

·         Capacity for development of mature, sensitive and effective therapeutic relationships.

·         Interpersonal abilities sufficient for interaction with individuals, families and groups from various social, emotional, cultural and intellectual backgrounds.

·         Ability to work constructively in stressful and changing environments.

·         Modify behavior in response to constructive criticism.

·         Capacity to demonstrate ethical behavior, including adherence to the professional nursing Code of Ethics for Nurses as identified by the American Nurses Association (ANA).

·         Establishes rapport with patients and colleagues.

·         Works with teams and workgroups.

·         Demonstrates emotional skills sufficient to remain calm in an emergency situation.

·         Demonstrates behavioral skills sufficient to the exercise of good judgment and prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients.

·         Adapts rapidly to environmental changes and multiple task demands.

·         Maintains behavioral decorum in stressful situations.

·         Establishes therapeutic boundaries, provides patient with emotional support, adapts to changing environment/stress, deals with the unexpected, focuses attention on task, controls own emotions, performs multiple responsibilities concurrently,  responds appropriately.

·         Represents the nursing profession in manner, dress, and behavior.

Safe environment for patients, families and co-workers

·         Ability to accurately identify patients.

·         Ability to effectively communicate with other caregivers.

·         Ability to administer medications safely and accurately.

·         Ability to operate equipment safely in the clinical area.

·         Ability to recognize and minimize hazards that could increase healthcare associated infections.

·         Ability to recognize and minimize accident hazards in the clinical setting including hazards that contribute to patient, family and co-worker falls.

·         Prioritizes tasks to ensure patient safety and standard of care.

·         Maintains adequate concentration and attention in patient care settings.

·         Seeks assistance when clinical situation requires a higher level or expertise/experience.

·         Responds to monitor alarms, emergency signals, call lights from patients, and orders in a rapid and effective manner.

·         Negotiates interpersonal conflict, respects differences in patients, and establishes rapport with co-workers



·         Ability to communicate in English with accuracy, clarity and efficiency with patients, their families and other members of the health care team (including spoken and non-verbal communication, such as interpretation of facial expressions, affect and body language).

·         Required communication abilities, including speech, hearing, reading, writing, language skills and computer literacy.

·         Communicate professionally and civilly to the healthcare team including peers, instructors, and preceptors.


·         Gives verbal directions to or follows verbal directions from other members of the healthcare team and participates in health care team discussions of patient care.

·         Elicits and records information about health history, current health state and responses to treatment from patients or family members.

·         Conveys information to patients and others as necessary to teach, direct and counsel individuals in an accurate, effective and timely manner.

·         Establishes and maintain effective working relations with patients and co-workers.

·         Recognizes and reports critical patient information to other caregivers.

·         Teaches (e.g., patient/family about health care), explains procedures, gives oral reports (e.g., reports on patient’s condition to others), interacts with others (e.g., health care workers), speaks on the telephone, influences people, and directs activities of others.

·         Conveys information through writing (e.g., nursing documentation).

Cognitive/ Conceptual/ Quantitative Abilities

·         Ability to read and understand written documents in English and solve problems involving measurement, calculation, reasoning, analysis and synthesis.

·         Ability to gather data, to develop a plan of action, establish priorities, monitor, and evaluate treatment plans and modalities.

·         Ability to comprehend three-dimensional and spatial relationships.

·         Ability to react effectively in an emergency situation.

·         Demonstrate critical thinking.

·         Analytical thinking


·         Calculates appropriate medication dosage given specific patient parameters.

·         Analyzes and synthesizes data and develops an appropriate plan of care.

·         Collects data, prioritizes needs and anticipates reactions.

·         Comprehends spatial relationships adequate to properly administer injections, starts intravenous lines or assesses wounds of varying depths.

·         Recognizes an emergency situation and responds effectively to safeguard the patient and other caregivers.

·         Transfers knowledge from one situation to another.

·         Accurately processes information on medication labels, and physicians’ orders, safely monitors equipment calibrations, printed documents, flow sheets, graphic sheets, medication administration records, other medical records for patient safety and understands current policies and procedures.

·         Identifies cause-effect relationships, plans/controls activities for others, synthesizes knowledge and skills, sequences information

·         Transfers knowledge from one situation to another, processes information, evaluates outcomes, problem solves, prioritizes tasks, uses long term memory, uses short term memory

·         Reads and understands columns of writing, reads digital displays, reads graphic printouts, calibrates equipment, converts numbers to and/or from metric system, reads graphs, tells time, measures time, counts rates, uses measuring tools, reads measurement marks, adds, subtracts, multiplies, divides whole numbers, computes fractions, uses a calculator, writes number in records.

Punctuality/ work habits

·         Ability to adhere to DACC policies, procedures and requirements as described in the nursing student handbook and course syllabus.

·         Ability to complete classroom, lab, and clinical assignments and submit assignments at the required time.

·         Ability to adhere to classroom and clinical schedules.


·         Attends class and clinical assignments punctually.

·         Reads, understands and adheres to all policies related to classroom, lab, and clinical experiences.

·         Contacts the instructor in advance of any absence or late arrival.

·         Understands and completes classroom, lab, and clinical assignments by due date and time.