Standardized Patient Program

The Tulane University School of Medicine has extensively used Standardized Patients in its curriculum for over 20 years.

A Standardized Patient (SP) is a layperson trained to utilize their own body to instruct and evaluate learners on correct basic physical examination techniques, doctor-patient communication, and other clinical skills in a simulated clinical environment. They also present learners with faculty-defined clinical scenarios that include extensive patient histories and physical symptoms. SP interactions allow medical learners to apply newly acquired attitudes, communication skills, physical skills and knowledge in a controlled environment, thus reducing patient risk. Currently SPs provide approximately 10,000 hours of practical teaching and testing at the School of Medicine each year.


Standardized Patients:

  • Measure a learner's clinical application of knowledge
  • Evaluate a learner's communication and interpersonal skills
  • Critique a learner's patient management skills
  • Act as both instructor and simulated patient