A standardized patient (SP) is trained from a standardized case to present a social and emotional history, as well as specific findings on physical examination with such realism that even an experienced clinician can rarely detect the simulation. They are people from the community who perform four roles: portray a patient case, document learner performance, provide feedback on clinical and interpersonal skills and represent patient satisfaction.

Each SP receives intensive training (24+ hours) on case portrayal, how to facilitate learning, how to complete checklists and how to provide specific and individualized behavior-based feedback using a validated communication instrument.

Please note: The word standardized may be misleading. SPs are trained from a standardized case developed to meet course objectives. However, SPs are also trained to respond to interviewing and communication techniques (not standardized). As in real-world situations, good interviewing and communication techniques will result in a more productive relationship. These sessions are reactive to individual performances and individual skills in the encounter.

See a full list of SP capabilities.