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Essential Requirements for Student Education PDFDownload to print

Kent State University College of Podiatric Medicine is committed to the admission and advancement of all qualified students. College policy prohibits discrimination against anyone solely based on race, gender, Veteran’s status, color, national origin, religion, age, handicap, disability or sexual orientation. The college has adopted the following essential requirements to be met by all students for advancement and graduation. The essential requirements for obtaining the degree of Doctor of Podiatric Medicine reflect the college’s highest commitment to the safety of its students and patients and recognition of the essential functions of the profession of podiatric medicine.

Essential requirements for completing the Doctor of Podiatric Medicine degree are requirements or functions that are essential to the program of instruction, or directly related to the licensing requirements; and directly related to those physical abilities, mental abilities, skills, attitudes and behaviors that students must evidence, demonstrate or perform at each stage of education. Each student is expected to undertake the full curriculum and to achieve every level of competence required by the faculty and the academic policies and procedures of the college. Each student must be able to achieve these essential requirements unaided or with reasonable accommodation, and in a reasonable amount of time.

In accordance with section 504 of the Rehabilitative Act of 1973 (PL 93-112) and incorporating the guidelines of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA PL 101-336) enacted by Congress in 1990, the College of Podiatric Medicine has adopted standards of the assessments of admission, scholastic advancement, clinical expertise and graduation for its professional degree program. Because the Doctor of Podiatric Medicine degree signifies that the holder is fully prepared for the entry into podiatric residency, it follows that graduates must have the knowledge, skills and demeanor to function in a broad variety of healthcare situations and to conduct a wide spectrum of clinical care activities.

Visual Observation and Integration

Candidates and students must have sufficient vision to observe demonstrations, video materials, slides through a microscope and computer screens. They must acquire information from written documents, radiographs, photographs, charts and diagrams. They must be able to observe a patient accurately close at hand and at a distance to assess asymmetry, range of motion and tissue/texture changes.


Candidates and students must be able to communicate, using the English language, in oral and written settings, and in settings where time span is limited. This includes communication with patients, their families and other members of the health care team. Candidates and students must be able to accurately elicit information and describe a patient’s condition to the patient and to others in the diagnosis and treatment process.

Other Sensory Capacities

Students must have sufficient auditory sense to take an oral history, do stethoscopy and communicate while wearing a surgical mask. Students must also have sufficient somatosensory capacity to palpate pulses, use a tuning fork and assess skin temperature.

Motor Functions

Candidates and students must have sufficient motor function reasonably required to undertake classes, laboratories and demonstrations, to provide general patient care as well as emergency treatment to patients. This includes cadaver dissection, microscopy, aseptic technique and safe handling of microbiological specimens. Also included is the motor capacity for chart and prescription writing, palpation, percussion, auscultation and other diagnostic maneuvers. Examples of common daily treatments include, but are not limited to, palliative care of foot and ankle problems, injections, orthotic impressions, taking and processing of pedal radiographs, and performance of soft tissue and osseous tissue surgical procedures. Examples of emergency treatments include CPR, administration of intravenous medications, the opening of obstructed airways, and hemostasis techniques. It is imperative that emergency care be given promptly. Both general care and emergency care require the combination of gross, as well as fine muscular movements, and sufficient upper body strength and mobility.

Intellectual, Conceptual, Quantitative and Integrative Abilities

Students must assimilate a large number of biomedical facts and principles and use them in diagnosing and treating patients. These abilities include quantitative and qualitative measurement, calculation, inductive and deductive reasoning, analysis of patient data, and synthetic problem-solving skills for the diagnosis and treatment of patients. Students must be able to perform the above in a reasonable amount of time.

Behavioral and Social Attributes

Candidates and students must possess the emotional health, stability and maturity required for full utilization of their intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, timely and appropriate completion of all responsibilities associated with the diagnosis and treatment of patients. Students must demonstrate mature, sensitive and effective relations with patients and other health care professionals. In addition, students must tolerate taxing workloads, adapt to changing conditions and environments and be flexible in dealing with varying personalities and the uncertainties inherent in patients’ problems. Compassion, integrity, concern for others, interpersonal skills and motivation are all necessary qualities for the study and practice of podiatric medicine, as well as adherence to the ethical standards of the profession.

Involvement in Invasive and Exposure-prone Procedures

Candidates and students must be qualified to be personally and actively involved in invasive and exposure-prone procedures without being a danger to patients, other health care professionals or fellow students. They must demonstrate adherence to the universal precautions as defined by the Center for Disease Control. As part of the essential requirements to matriculate at the college, the following statement shall apply: If the student is HIV seropositive, the student may be restricted by the State Medical Board or Kent State University from performing procedures required for graduation. Any questions regarding these requirements should be directed to the senior associate dean.