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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - PAS6004
Tracking Number - 3016

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2013-07-01
Campus: Tampa
Submission Type: New
Course Change Information (for course changes only):
Comments: to GC 1/14/13. for MA in P.A.; Objectives need revision. Emailed faculty 1/25/13. Rec'd 1/28/13. GC Approved. to USF Sys 2/20/13. to SCNS 2/28/13. Apprd eff 4/1/13.

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2012-11-26
  2. Department: Graduate School
  3. College: MD
  4. Budget Account Number: HSC-10009-611600-000000-0000000
  5. Contact Person: Larry Collins
  6. Phone: 813-396-9424
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: PAS
  9. Number: 6004
  10. Full Title: Clinical Problem Solving/ differential diagnosis
  11. Credit Hours: 1
  12. Section Type: C - Class Lecture (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: N
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?:
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): CLINICAL PROB SOLV/DIFF DIAGNO
  19. Course Online?: C - Face-to-face (0% online)
  20. Percentage Online: 100
  21. Grading Option: -
  22. Prerequisites: N/A
  23. Corequisites: N/A
  24. Course Description: This class will apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes learned across the curriculum to individual patient cases. This course integrates evidence-based medicine into clinical decision-making.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: Needed for new program/concentration/certificate
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? Consistent with other Physician Assistant Degree Programs
  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? No
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) PA, MD, PhD, ARNP, MSW
  29. Objectives: Medical Knowledge

    1. Students must demonstrate knowledge of common disease processes encountered in the clinical sciences to a degree commensurate with their level of training. This includes a basic understanding of the pathophysiology, clinical presentation, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases in the following categories: acute and chronic respiratory disease, acute and chronic cardiac disease, central and peripheral neurologic disease, acute and chronic infectious disease, gastrointestinal bleeding, acute and chronic abdominal disease, hematologic and malignant disease, endocrine disease, musculoskeletal and rheumatologic disease.

    2. Students must demonstrate an understanding of the indications, contraindications, safe techniques, and complications for basic medical procedures.

    3. Students must be able to identify and apply principles of medical ethics and demonstrate an awareness of state and federal laws that provide the foundation for policies and practices that affect patient care.

    4. Students must demonstrate knowledge of healthcare services that are aimed at preventing health problems and maintaining good health.

    Patient Care

    1. Students must demonstrate the ability to gather appropriate patient information from patients via history taking and physical examination.

    2. Students must demonstrate the ability to make an accurate diagnosis of common conditions listed above using skills of clinical problem solving.

    3. Students must demonstrate the ability to perform basic procedures in accordance with best practice standards for patient safety and patient comfort.

    Practice Based Learning and Improvement

    1. Students must demonstrate the ability to find, review, and evaluate appropriate sources of medical information to answer clinical questions related to disease prevention or treatment.

    2. Students must know how to appraise medical literature using critical thinking skills, knowledge of study design, and basic understanding of statistical methods.

    Interpersonal Relationships and Communication

    1. Students must demonstrate effective working relationships and communication with team members when finding, evaluating, and presenting answers to clinical questions.

    Systems Based Practice

    1. Students must demonstrate a basic understanding of the healthcare system as a whole, the types of delivery systems, differing payment methods, the roles of other health care providers, and the use of systems methods to reduce errors and improve patient safety.

    Professional Behavior

    1. Students must maintain integrity and personal responsibility in adherence to course policies and completion of course requirements.

    2. Students must demonstrate dependability, respectfulness, and responsibility to their colleagues when collaborating on work assignments. This includes contributing to the education of classmates and honestly assessing the performance of other team members.

  30. Learning Outcomes: By the end of this course, the student should be able to:

    Formulate a differential diagnosis

    Use an anatomic and/or physiologic approach, with the support of references, to list possible diagnoses that explain common problems identified by a patient’s presenting symptoms

    Use information obtained in the history and physical examination, biomedical knowledge and references to weigh competing possibilities for common diagnoses and attempt to prioritize differential diagnosis alternatives, providing some justification for the order of priority

    Create a relevant and comprehensive patient problem list

    Use an anatomic and/or physiologic approach to develop a complete patient problem list that incorporates information obtained from the patient’s history; physical examination, medical record, and ancillary studies such as tests, imaging and procedures.

    Formulate an appropriate, cost effective treatment plan, based on their differential diagnosis

    Analyze patient preferences, needs, and beliefs when formulating a treatment plan. Students will also consider societal and socioeconomic needs that may constitute barriers to effective patient care

    Communicate effectively with all patients and colleagues, across all cultural and socioeconomic divides, using appropriate body language and empathetic listening skills

    Demonstrate culturally sensitive care to all patients

  31. Major Topics: • Differential diagnosis

    • Patient problem list

    • Treatment plan

    • Patient preferences

  32. Textbooks: Clinical problem solving for physician assistants. J Dennis Blessing. Philadelphia, PA : F.A. Davis Co., 2002.
  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases:
  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy: Students will be required to write and submit 4 patient evaluations and work up plans that demonstrate clear formulation and justification of the differential diagnosis and creation of a thorough bio psycho-social treatment plan.
  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests: 4 written evaluations
  36. Attendance Policy: Course Attendance at First Class Meeting – Policy for Graduate Students: For structured courses, 6000 and above, the College/Campus Dean will set the first-day class attendance requirement. Check with the College for specific information. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, Open University (TV), FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, practica, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty. (See USF Regulation – Registration - 4.0101,

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Blackboard, Elluminate, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. It’s the responsibility of the student to monitor Blackboard site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information.

  37. Policy on Make-up Work: Didactic Attendance Policies

    Students are encouraged to attend all scheduled hours of instruction. Mandatory sessions and participation requirements are listed on the final page of this syllabus. Recognizing that situations arise which require students to miss time from course responsibilities, the procedures presented below will be followed when absence is necessary.

    1. Religious Observances

    All students, faculty and staff at the University of South Florida have a right to expect that the University will reasonably accommodate their religious observances, practices and beliefs. Students are expected to attend classes and take examinations as determined by the University. The University will attempt, at the beginning of each academic term, to provide written notice of the class schedule and formal examination periods. The University, through its faculty, will make every attempt to schedule required classes and examinations in view of customarily observed religious holidays of those religious groups or communities comprising the University’s constituency. Any student who believes that he/she has been treated unfairly with regard to the above should contact the Office of Student Affairs.

    2. Lectures

    a. Emergencies for Personal Illness, Family Illness, etc.

    The student must contact both the Course Directors by e-mail or telephone and Student Affairs by e-mail or telephone to report his/her absenteeism on the first day of being absent. He/she should indicate the nature of the emergency or unexpected illness. The student must also complete and submit the Absence Report Form. Specifics on planned and unplanned absences, as well as unexcused absences, are listed below.

    b. Exam Attendance Procedures

    Students are expected to attend all scheduled hours of instruction. However, attendance at all examinations is mandatory, and all students should take the examinations on the day and time scheduled.

    Planned Absence

    Absence for attendance at a professional meeting or other educational or research related activity should be submitted for approval to the Course Directors at least 6 weeks prior to the event. Each request for absence will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Personal travel plans should not be considered valid excuses for missing an exam.

    To receive an excused, planned absence, the student must submit a completed Exam Absence Request form to the Course Directors. A copy of the written request must also be submitted to the Office of Student Affairs as soon as possible before the exam occurs. The Course Directors or designee will make the final determination to grant or deny the request and will inform the Office of Student Affairs of the decision. The Office of Student Affairs will subsequently notify the student and the Office of Educational Affairs.

    Unplanned Absence

    If the student has an unanticipated, unplanned absence on the day of an exam, he/she must contact Student Affairs by 8:30 a.m. on the day of the exam. When the student returns to school he/she must fill out and sign the Absence Report form. Documentation for the absence to be excused (e.g. physician’s note, accident report, etc.) will be at the discretion of the OSA.

    Students who miss an examination for any reason are required to contact the Office of Educational Affairs (974-2435) prior to returning to class to determine the date and time of the make-up examination. Dates and times of make-up examinations are determined by the Program Director in consultation with Course Directors.

    In general, make-up examinations must be taken within 48 hours of the original examination date. If a student’s absence from an examination is unexcused, the grade recorded for the exam will be the student’s actual score or 69, whichever is lower, and will not include a group score. A second unexcused absence will result in a grade of “0” and action taken by the Academic Performance Review Committee (APRC) regarding professionalism.

    3. Mandatory Course-Specific Events

    In addition to examinations, the following are all considered mandatory events:

    a. Laboratories

    b. Small group conferences

    c. Problem-solving sessions

    d. Team Based Learning sessions

    e. Large group/Active Learning sessions

    Planned Absence

    In general, in order to be excused from one of these events, the same procedure for examinations is followed. The student must first directly contact the Course Directors with a copy of the request to Student Affairs. The Absence Request form should be completed and given to the Course Directors as soon as possible for planned absences. The Course Directors will make the determination to grant or deny a request in addition to any required remediation.

    Unplanned Absence

    An unanticipated absence on the day of an event requires notification of the Course Directors and Student Affairs. Upon returning to campus, the Absence Report form should be completed and given to the Course Directors. The Course Directors will make the determination to grant or deny the absence in addition to any required remediation.

    Students who miss course-specific mandatory events are expected to acquire the same level of competency as other students involved in the course. Therefore, students with an excused absence may be assigned work to complete by the Course Directors in order to remediate. In the case of an unexcused absence the Course Directors may assign a “0” or no credit for the missed work and/or require other remediation at their discretion. Multiple absences, or a prolonged absence, could result in failure of the course or a grade of “Incomplete”, at the discretion of the Course Directors. In any event all absences for course-specific mandatory events and the outcome should be reported to the OSA by the Course Directors.

    Sign-in sheets will be used for laboratories, case studies and group discussion conferences to determine attendance (Sign-in sheets WILL NOT be used for lectures). Signing an attendance roster when you didn’t attend or arrive late to a lab, or signing the roster for another student is considered an unprofessional act and a violation of the honor code.

  38. Program This Course Supports: Physician Assistant
  39. Course Concurrence Information: n/a

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