Standardized Patient with Disability Program

Help Our Nurses Do Better

You can work directly with nursing students to help improve care for persons with disabilities. Duquesne University School of Nursing is seeking people with disabilities to participate in our Standardized Patient with Disability Program. Through this program, nursing students learn to provide competent and comprehensive care to people with disabilities through simulated health care scenarios.

What is the Standardized Patient with Disability Program?

This program provides a safe environment to teach, enhance, and assess the knowledge, skills, and behaviors of future nurses. Most programs use trained actors to serve as "disabled patients" during simulated educational exercises. At Duquesne, we aim to give persons living with a disability a stronger voice. Instead of actors, individuals living with a disability serve as Standardized Patient Consultants (SPC). This provides students with a more authentic experience and provides the SPC with an active role in shaping the care future nurses will provide.

What does a Standardized Patient Consultant (SPC) do?

As a SPC, you will portray yourself or role-play an additional condition to provide students an accurate recreation of what you encounter in a health care setting.

  • All SPC encounters are respectful, non-invasive and may help students practice physical exam skills, communication skills and history taking.
  • No acting experience is required — mostly you just need to be yourself!
  • After training and instruction, SPCs may be contacted several times a year. You can participate based on your availability.
  • All SPCs are paid for their time.

Who Should Participate?

Any person with a disability interested in helping nursing students develop the skills to properly care for persons with disabilities.

Contact Information

If you are interested or have questions, please contact Kellie Dalton at or 412.396.5203.