Medical Assisting Technical Standards

Purpose Statement

All students in the Medical Assisting program are expected to meet certain technical standards which are essential for the successful completion of all phases of the program, and which reflect industry requirements and standards. To verify the student’s ability to perform these essential functions, students may be required to demonstrate the technical standards below.

Meeting these technical standards does not guarantee employment in this field upon graduation. The ability to meet the program’s technical standards does not guarantee a student’s eligibility for any certification exams or successful completion of the program.


Technical Standard Definition of Standards Examples
Critical Thinking/Problem-Solving Skills Ability is sufficient for clinical judgment.
  • Prepare and maintain medical records.
  • Schedule and monitor appointments.
  • Recognize emergencies.
  • Maintain confidentiality.
  • Apply principles of aseptic technique and infection control.
Interpersonal Skills Abilities are sufficient to interact with individuals, families, and groups from a variety of social, emotional, cultural, and intellectual backgrounds.
  • Establish rapport with patients and staff that projects a positive attitude.
  • Treat all patients with empathy and impartiality.
  • Instruct patients with special needs.
Communication Skills Abilities are sufficient for interaction with others in verbal and written form.
  • Receive, organize, prioritize, and transmit information.
  • Explain treatment procedures.
  • Interview patients effectively.
  • Document procedures and patient responses, verbally, written, and electronically.
  • Adapt communication to individuals’ abilities to understand.
Coping Skills **Refer to the Emotional/Behavioral Technical Standard **  
Mobility/Motor Skills

Physical abilities are sufficient to move in one’s environment with ease and without restriction.

Gross and fine motor abilities are sufficient to provide safe and effective dental hygiene skills.

  • Perform medical scribing.
  • Prepare and administer medications as directed by a physician.
  • Operate equipment safely.
  • Assist physician with examinations and treatment, position and transport patients, possess the ability to maneuver, (lift, push, and pull), 25 Lbs. daily.
  • Physical abilities that are sufficient to move from treatment room to treatment room and maneuver in these small rooms.
  • Be able to stand, sit, and walk.
  • Prepare and maintain examination and treatment area.
  • Perform First Aid and CPR.
  • Prepare and position patients for procedures
  • Assist the physician with physical examinations and surgeries.
Auditory Skills Auditory abilities are sufficient to monitor and assess health needs.
  • Answering and use of proper telephone equipment.
  • Perform medical scribing.
  • Interview and take a patient history and listen to the patient.
  • Hear and correctly record heart and breath sounds.
Visual Skills Visual ability is sufficient for observation and assessment necessary in Medical Assisting.
  • Observe patient responses, patient physical condition, and patient nonverbal communication.
  • Differentiate urine colors, read a scale on a syringe, change in skin color, and read on a blood pressure gauge.
Tactile Skills Tactile ability is sufficient for physical assessment.
  • Performs palpation techniques (EO/IO exam), functions of a dental hygiene exam, and/or those related to therapeutic intervention, e.g. scaling, root planing, and deposit assessment.
Environmental Possess the ability to tolerate environmental stressors.
  • Prioritize work in order of importance.
  • Stay on task.
  • Be able to work in areas that are close, crowded, and/or noisy, and full of distractions.
Emotional/Behavioral Possess emotional stability sufficient to maintain composure in stressful situations and assume responsibility/accountability for actions.
  • Must be in control of emotions at all times for the benefit of the patients and office environment; there will be no emotional outbursts in the classroom, laboratory, or clinical site.
  • Receive corrective feedback calmly
  • Cope with families, clients, staff, and peers with calm emotions.


In the case of an otherwise qualified individual with a documented disability, appropriate and reasonable accommodations will be made unless doing so would fundamentally alter the essential training elements, cause undue hardship, or produce a direct threat to the safety of the patient or student.

Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College is invested in full compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Support Services is part of Student Services and is located in the K. Ray Bailey Student Services Center. For detailed information or to request accommodations visit Support Services. An appointment is recommended prior to enrollment in order to discuss any special concerns.