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Technical Standards

The following abilities and expectations must be met by all students in our Ph.D. in rehabilitation science program.

As a graduate of the Ph.D. in rehabilitation science program, you must have the knowledge and skills to function in a broad variety of clinical, research, academic and industrial settings. Although not everyone will have the same experiences or require the same skills (some students may not work with laboratory chemicals or assist patients in transfers), it is still important each student has the necessary technical skills, in case they are placed in that situation. All students in the program must meet the following essential abilities and expectations with or without reasonable accommodations.

Essential Observational Requirements:

The Ph.D. student must be able to:

  • Observe and perform laboratory and/or clinical tests in which human subjects, chemical, and/or biological (body fluids, culture materials, and tissue sections) are tested for their physical attributes including, but not limited to, movement, force, texture, color, sound, odor, viscosity, immunological, microbiological and histochemical components.
  • Read and comprehend text, numbers, and graphs displayed in print and on video.
  • Perform comparative observations of text, movement, shapes, graphs, colors, etc.

Essential Movement Requirements:
The Ph.D. student must be able to:

  • Move freely and safely about a laboratory and clinic.
  • Lift a minimum of 25 pounds (depending on the Ph.D. dissertation project chosen by the student, some projects may not require any lifting, while others may require a minimum of 25 pounds weight lifting).
  • Travel to numerous laboratory/clinical sites.
  • Perform moderately taxing continuous physical work.
  • Control equipment and adjust instruments to perform laboratory procedures.
  • Manipulate a computer keyboard.

Essential Communication Requirements:
The Ph.D. student must be able to:

  • Comprehend technical and professional materials.
  • Follow verbal and written instructions.
  • Effectively, confidently, and sensitively converse with human research subjects.
  • Communicate effectively and efficiently with faculty members, fellow students, staff, and other members of the research and health care community to convey information essential for studying and conducting research.

Essential Intellectual Requirements:
The Ph.D. student must:

  • Possess these intellectual skills: comprehension, measurement, mathematical calculations, problem-solving, reasoning, integration, analysis, comparison, self-expression, and criticism.
  • Be able to exercise sufficient judgment to recognize and correct performance deviations.

Essential Behavioral Requirements:
The Ph.D. student must:

  • Be able to manage the use of time and be able to systematize actions in order to complete professional and technical tasks within realistic constraints
  • Possess the emotional health necessary to effectively employ intellect and exercise appropriate judgment.
  • Be able to provide professional and technical services while experiencing the stresses of heavy workloads, task-related uncertainty, emergent demands, and a distracting environment.
  • Be flexible and creative and adapt to professional and technical change.
  • Recognize potentially hazardous material, equipment, and situations and proceed safely in order to minimize the risk of injury to human subjects, self, and other individuals.
  • Support and promote the activities of fellow students and of health care and research professionals. Promotion of peers helps to furnish a team approach to learning, task completion, problem-solving, and patient care.
  • Be honest, compassionate, ethical, and responsible. The student must be forthright about errors or uncertainty. The student must be able to critically evaluate their own performance, accept constructive criticism and look for ways to improve. The student must be able to evaluate the performance of fellow students and tactfully offer constructive comments.

It is the student’s responsibility to notify the department if there is any reason they cannot meet the expectations of students in the Ph.D. in rehabilitation science program, with or without reasonable accommodations. Reasonable accommodation will be considered and may be made to qualified students who disclose a disability, so long as such accommodation does not significantly alter the essential requirements of the curriculum and the training program, or significantly affect the safety of others. Students may contact the University’s Office of Academic Accommodations to discuss accommodations.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply to the program. Applicants whose response indicates that they cannot meet one or more of the expectations will be reviewed further by academic accommodation services, with applicant and faculty input, to determine if any reasonable accommodations are possible to facilitate successful completion of the program requirements.

Academic Accommodation Services
913-945-7035 (711 TTY)
Room 1006 Dykes Library

Learning assistance, academic performance enhancement, and psychological services at KU Medical Center are free, confidential, and available at Counseling and Educational Support Services by calling 913-588-6580 or making an appointment through their website.

KU School of Health Professions

Physical Therapy, Rehabilitation Science, and Athletic Training
University of Kansas Medical Center
Mail Stop 2002
3901 Rainbow Blvd.
Kansas City, KS 66160