Standards of Conduct

The American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) is the professional organization for physician assistants in the United States. There are many resources and benefits to being a member both as a student and professional.

AAPA Guidelines for Ethical Conduct 

The American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) has adopted Guidelines for Ethical Conduct for the Physician Assistant Profession.  It is the responsibility of the student to uphold this code and values in all situations. Failure to uphold the AAPA Guidelines could result in failure of a course or clinical experience.  Visit the AAPA website for the AAPA Guidelines for Ethical Conduct for the Physician Assistant Profession

Student Membership to PA Professional Organizations

Trine University PA students are expected to become student members of the AAPA (Student Academy of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, SAAAPA). The Indiana Academy of Physician Assistants (IAPA) is the Indiana state constituent organization to the AAPA. Students are highly recommended to join their state constituent organization or specialty related organization as student members.  Students will be highly encouraged to participate in state chapter and national activities.  As a student member, you may attend the state and national conferences at discounted rate. Students who have questions are encouraged to visit the AAPA website or the Indiana Academy of Physician Assistants and speak with their advisors for more information.

Professional Behaviors

Professional behavior is, without exception, required. It is expected that all students demonstrate behaviors consistent with those of healthcare professionals at all times.  Failure to demonstrate these behaviors could result in failure of a course, clinical experience, or summative evaluation. Professional behaviors include:

  1. Critical Thinking - The ability to question logically; identify, generate and evaluate elements of logical argument; recognize and differentiate facts, appropriate or faulty inferences, and assumptions; and distinguish relevant from irrelevant information. The ability to appropriately utilize, analyze, and critically evaluate scientific evidence to develop a logical argument, and to identify and determine the impact of bias on the decision-making process.
  2. Communication - The ability to communicate effectively (i.e. verbal, non-verbal, reading, writing, and listening) for varied audiences and purposes.
  3. Problem Solving – The ability to recognize and define problems, analyze data, develop and implement solutions, and evaluate outcomes.
  4. Interpersonal Skills – The ability to interact effectively with patients, families, colleagues, other health care professionals, and the community in a culturally aware manner.
  5. Responsibility – The ability to be accountable for the outcomes of personal and professional actions and to follow through on commitments that encompass the profession within the scope of work, community and social responsibilities.
  6. Professionalism – The ability to exhibit appropriate professional conduct and to represent the profession effectively while promoting the growth/development of the physician assistant profession.
  7. Use of Constructive Feedback – The ability to seek out and identify quality sources of feedback, reflect on and integrate the feedback, and provide meaningful feedback to others.
  8. Effective Use of Time and Resources – The ability to manage time and resources effectively to obtain the maximum possible benefit.
  9. Stress Management – The ability to identify sources of stress and to develop and implement effective coping behaviors; this applies for interactions for: self, patient/clients and their families, members of the health care team and in work/life scenarios.
  10. Commitment to Learning – The ability to self-direct learning to include the identification of needs and sources of learning; and to continually seek and apply new knowledge, behaviors, and skills.

All Trine University PA students will be expected to:

  1. Demonstrate safe performance of activities, sensitivity to individuals, appreciation for alternate points of view, respectful communication, concern for self, cooperation with others and acceptance of personal and corporate responsibility for the coursework should be demonstrated.
  2. Show respect for facilities and equipment in the Rinker-Ross School of Health Sciences and in the clinical education settings.
  3. Present an appropriate personal appearance in classrooms, laboratories and Clinical Education settings and at public meetings where their identity as Trine University PA student is apparent. Please refer to the Dress Code for details.

Professional behaviors are evaluated by self-assessment, clinical instructors, peers, and the faculty. Written clinical instructor comments and instructor observation of student performance provide the basis for counseling on professional behavior. It is expected that most cases of professional misbehavior can be successfully corrected by sensitive discussion and counseling between the faculty and the student. A plan for remediation will be developed and implemented if necessary.

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