An Odd Job That Makes a Difference

An Odd Job That Makes a Difference
Posted at 2:56 PM, Aug 25, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-25 14:56:25-04

The MSU Learning and Assessment Center, or LAC, is looking for individuals of all ages who are willing to serve as standardized patients. The LAC is a simulation training facility featuring recreated doctors’ offices and hospital rooms.

Standardized patients are trained to portray specific symptoms or conditions and answer questions so students from the colleges of nursing, human and osteopathic medicine and veterinary medicine can learn to interact with patients, conduct examinations and diagnose conditions in a safe, structured learning environment.

“The LAC is important in helping future health care professionals bridge their learning between the classroom and the clinical experience,” said Mary Kay Smith, LAC director. “They learn to interact with patients who might be nervous or upset, work with their colleagues in a team setting and build their confidence in providing quality care.”

Standardized patients can be between ages eight months and 88-years old. Once they are hired and trained, they get scripts to study before arriving at the LAC to act out their symptoms while the students interact with them. Instructors monitor the students from a centralized control room, providing feedback and guidance.

Standardized patients do not need to have any previous experience. Patients should have good memory and recall skills, possess excellent communication and interpersonal skills and be reliable and punctual. There are no set days or times for events, and they all take place on weekdays between 7:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.

To learn more about becoming a standardized patient, visit or call the LAC at 517-353-4997.