Tulane Home Tulane Shield logo linking to site home page

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 portray an actual patient for teaching and assessment purposes. SP's 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 and SP's provide approximately 10,000 hours of practical testing and teaching at the School of Medicine each year.

Standardized Patients:

  • Measure medical learner's clinical application of knowledge
  • Evaluate medical learner's communication and interpersonal skills
  • critique medical learner's patient management skills
  • Act as both instructor and patient
  • Utilize his/her own body to instruct and evaluate medical learner's techniques clinical application of knowledge during student encounters that include history taking and interviewing, physical examination and physical exam etiquette, communication and interpersonal skills, and patient management.