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About Us

The UC Irvine School of Medicine's Clinical Skills Center (CSC) provides students with a supportive approach to clinical assessment and reasoning that ultimately improves patient care.

Our mission is to enhance the medical education of students and residents through experiential learning utilizing standardized patient training, simulation and telemedicine to help produce competent, communicative, caring clinicians of strong ethical character.

Located in the Medical Education Building on the university campus in Irvine, CSC has 17 patient rooms, including three high-fidelity rooms suitable for simulation scenarios. The center can record all student encounters, both summative and formative. This allows faculty to remotely access CSC’s system to review student performance and allow students to review their work with faculty or staff. 

CSC’s core activities revolve around the Standardized Patient Program to develop skills in physical exams, communication, taking patient histories and other aspects of clinical practice. The Standardized Patient Program allows students to work with individuals trained to portray the roles of patients, family members or others. It is integrated across all four years of medical education. Students in UC Irvine’s graduate nursing and resident programs also participate in CSC’s Standardized Patient sessions.

In addition, CSC works closely with the Ultrasound Center, which offers hands-on learning experiences in bedside ultrasound. CSC helps in the assessment of students’ progress in mastering ultrasound skills.

CSC programs also incorporate the School of Medicine’s iMedEd Initiative, which offers students Apple iPads to facilitate technologically advanced medical education and practice. At the center, students use iPads to video-chat with Standardized Patients and to teach Standardized Patients using DrawMD — an iPad program — during exam scenarios.

About CSC »

The Clinical Skills Center was developed to teach and assess the clinical skills of medical students, residents and physicians in an environment that simulates the clinical setting. It occupies the second floor of the Medical Education Building. The $40-million, 65,000-square foot center incorporates innovations in interactive medical instructional technology with 17 clinical patient rooms equipped with PTZ cameras, microphones, laptops and bedside ultrasound machines.

Three patient rooms are set up for high-definition capture with an in-room 42[inch monitor with VGA capability. These rooms are designed to simulate acute-care settings with a head wall that includes gases and suction. All patient rooms are linked to a control room that captures encounters digitally.

There is also a clinical skills laboratory, a faculty development conference center and separate waiting areas for students and standardized patients. The most recent innovation is the integration of telemedicine for teaching physical exams to large groups in  distant settings. 

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Curriculum »

The Clinical Skills Center curriculum stretches across all four years of medical school.

It is designed to enhance the clinical education of medical students and residents through experiential learning, using training with standardized patients, simulation and telemedicine. The goal is to produce competent, communicative, caring clinicians of strong ethical character.

View the year-by-year CSC curriculum »

Calendar »

Standardized Patient Program »

A standardized patient (SP) is a person who has been trained to portray a patient by simulating a clinical condition.

The use of SPs is a proven technology to helping the learner gain skills in interpersonal interactions, communication, interviewing, counseling, assessment, physical exam and patient management.

The Clinical Skills Center recruits people to portray patients for various curricular activities and assessments. SPs receive compensation based on training and performance. Ideal candidates are motivated, disciplined, and have excellent cognitive recall of facts. Punctuality and reliability are imperative.

If you are interested in the standardized patient program, please read more about the program. You may also complete our Standardized Patient Profile form, and submit with a recent photo.