Technical Standards

Athletic training is an intellectually, physically and psychologically demanding profession. It is during the challenging 2-year curriculum that the student begins to develop the qualities needed to become an Athletic Trainer. Students acquire the foundational knowledge, attitudes, skills and behaviors needed to practice as an athletic trainer. Those abilities that athletic trainers must possess to practice safely are reflected in the technical standards that follow.

If a student cannot demonstrate the skills and abilities outlined in this document, it is the responsibility of the student to request reasonable accommodation. Reasonable accommodations refer to ways in which the university can assist students with disabilities to accomplish these tasks (e.g., providing extra time to complete an examination). Reasonable accommodations does not mean that students with disabilities will be exempt from completing essential tasks; it does mean the program will work with students with disabilities to determine whether there are ways that we can assist the student towards successful completion of the task(s).

Candidates for admission with a disability are not required to disclose the specifics of their disabilities, but prior to the start of athletic training classes, they must indicate that they can complete essential tasks, with or without reasonable accommodations. Students who cannot complete essential tasks even with accommodation are ineligible for admissions and so any previously made offer of admission, will be withdrawn. Once admitted, a student with a disability who requests reasonable accommodation must contact Accessibility Resources at 60 Capen Hall North Campus (716) 645-2608. An offer of admission may be withdrawn if it becomes apparent that the student cannot complete essential tasks even with accommodations, or that the accommodations needed are not reasonable and would cause undue hardship to the institution, or that fulfilling the functions would create a significant risk of harm to the health or safety of others.

Candidates for admission who have questions about this document or who would like to discuss specific accommodations should contact the Program Director for the Master of Science in Athletic Training Program. Candidates for the selection to the University at Buffalo Master of Science in Athletic Training Program must demonstrate the following:

  1. Observation skills.
    1. Students must possess sufficient observation function to elicit information from the patient.
    2. Candidates must have visual perception to observe patients to determine conditions and movements that may be abnormal.
    3. Examples in which observation skills are required include: palpation, visual tactile evaluation for areas of inflammation or edema and visual inspection of functional movement.
  2. Communication skills.
    1. Students must be able to communicate with patients effectively in order to obtain information relating to past medical history and the patient’s current condition.
    2. Students must be able to effectively document relevant patient interactions, including entering information into electronic records systems.
    3. Athletic training education presents challenges in the volume and breadth of required reading and the necessity to impart information to others (patients).
    4. Students must be able to communicate quickly, efficiently and effectively in oral and written formats.
  3. Motor/Psychomotor skills.
    1. Students must possess sufficient motor function to elicit information from the patient examination by palpation, auscultation, tapping and other maneuvers.
    2. Students must have the physical strength required for therapeutic interventions and have the physical strength to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation and emergency treatment to patients.
    3. Students must be able to execute movements required to provide general and therapeutic care, such as moving a large or immobilized patient, gait training using therapeutic aids, positioning and performing manual therapy techniques, performing non-surgical wound care and taping/bracing.
  4. Intellectual.
    1. Students must have the mental capacity to analyze, synthesize and integrate concepts and problems to formulate clinical decisions for the betterment of the patient.
    2. This includes incorporating didactic and clinical information with current research evidence to develop, implement and edit treatment care plans.
    3. Students must have the ability to use computers for searching, recording, storing and retrieving information.
  5.  Behavioral/Social Attributes and Professionalism.
    1. A student must possess the psychological ability required for the full utilization of their intellectual abilities, for the exercise of good judgment and for the prompt completion of all responsibilities inherent to patient care.
    2. Students must be able to tolerate physically and mentally taxing workloads and function effectively under stress. They must adapt to a changing environment and display flexibility.
  • Technical Standards – to be completed after receiving formal acceptance into the MS in AT