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Health Sciences Information and Admissions Office
Eastview Campus
Building 8000, Room 8356
3401 Webberville Road
Austin, TX 78702
Phone: 512.223-5700 or
toll-free 888.626-1697
Vocational Nursing Department

Technical Standards and Essential Functions

Health Sciences programs establish technical standards and essential functions to insure that students have the abilities required to participate and potentially be successful in all aspects of the respective programs. Students are required to meet technical standards and essential functions for the Vocational Nursing program as indicated below. If an applicant or student is unable to meet all of the outlined standards, he/she may be withdrawn from the program.

The student must demonstrate the following abilities:

Categories of Essential Functions Definition
Example of Technical Standard
(Not Limited to)

Observation Ability to participate actively in all demonstrations, laboratory exercise, and clinical experiences in the professional program component and to assess and comprehend the condition of all clients assigned to him/her for examination, diagnosis, and treatment. Such observation and information usually requires functional use of visual, auditory, and somatic sensations.

Visual (corrected as necessary)

  • Able to visually discriminate increment readings on syringes, sphygmomanometers and other various medical equipment.
  • Able to visually discriminate different colored objects.
  • Recognize and interpret facial expressions and body language.
  • Assess the environment at a distance.

Auditory (corrected as necessary)

  • Recognize and respond to soft voices or voices under protective garb
  • Distinguish between normal and abnormal lung and heart sounds, evaluate blood pressure.


  • Palpate a pulse and detect changes or abnormalities of surface texture, skin temperature
Communication Ability to communicate effectively in English using verbal, non-verbal and written formats with faculty, other students, clients, families and all members of the healthcare team.
  • Able to elicit information
  • Assess nonverbal communications
  • Transmit information to clients, fellow students, faculty and staff, and members of the healthcare team.
  • Receive, write, and interpret written communication in both academic and clinical settings.
Motor Sufficient motor ability to execute the movement and skills required for safe and effective care and emergency treatment.
  • Demonstrate adequate coordination, balance, speed and agility to assist and safely guard clients who are walking, exercising or performing other activities.
  • Move, adjust and position clients or equipment.
  • Able to provide emergency treatment to clients.
  • Lift up to 30 lbs.
  • Stand for long periods of time (6-8 hours).
  • Possess finger and manual dexterity necessary to manipulate equipment and to perform patient care procedures  (i.e. starting IVs, dressing changes).
Intellectual Ability to collect, interpret and integrate information and make decisions.
  • Read and comprehend relevant information in textbooks, medical records and professional literature.
  • Measure, calculate, reason, analyze and synthesize.
  • Utilize intellectual abilities, exercise good judgment and complete tasks, within required time limits.
  • Retain information.
  • Apply knowledge to new situations and to problem solving scenarios.
Behavioral and Social Attributes
  • Possess the emotional health and stability required for full utilization of the student’s intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, the prompt completion of all academic and patient care responsibilities and the development of mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with clients and other members of the healthcare team.
  • Possess the ability to tolerate taxing workloads, function effectively under stress, adapt to changing environments, display flexibility, and learn to function in the face of uncertainties inherent in clinical settings with patients.
  • Possess compassion, integrity, concern for others, and motivation.
  • Possess the ability to demonstrate professional behaviors and a strong work ethic.
  • Manage heavy academic schedules and deadlines.
  • Perform in fast paced clinical situations.
  • Display flexibility.
  • Sustain professional activities for protracted periods under conditions of physical and emotional stress.
  • Demonstrate emotional health required for full utilization of intellectual abilities and exercise of good judgment.
  • Demonstrate integrity, concern for others, interpersonal skills, interest and motivation.
  • Accepts responsibility and accountability for one’s own actions.
  • Develop mature, sensitive and effective relationships with clients and others.
  • Comply with the professional standards of the Nurse Practice Act.

Qualified applicants with disabilities are encouraged to apply to the program. It is the responsibility of the student to contact the Student Accessibility Services (SAS) Office if they feel they cannot meet one or more of the technical standards listed. Students can obtain complete information from the SAS website at   or through the Student Accessibility Services (SAS) office on the campus where they expect to take the majority of their classes; for locations see

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