Event Title

Integrated clinical assignments: Seeing the big picture

Speaker's Credentials

Alicia Fernandez-Fernandez, PT, DPT, PhD

Jennifer Canbek, PT, PhD, NCS

Shari Rone-Adams, PT, MHSA, DBA

Brian Russ, PT, DPT, COMT, FAAOMPT, OCS

Location

Auditorium B

Format

Podium Presentation

Start Date

21-1-2017 10:00 AM

End Date

21-1-2017 10:30 AM

Abstract

Introduction: In health care sciences education, curricular design is most commonly spread into individual courses which emphasize specific content areas. As a result, students often have difficulty integrating information for complex patient management. Purpose: The purpose of this project was to introduce an assignment requiring students to integrate information across subject areas in order to assess a patient, make clinical decisions, and communicate their rationale. Innovation: Physical therapy students take four courses in their final semester prior to full-time internships (neuromuscular II, prosthetics/orthotics, business of physical therapy, and applied clinical decision-making). We designed a joint assignment in which students would assess and treat a patient with a neurological disorder, justify a choice of orthosis, and write a letter of medical necessity to support continuation of therapy or orthotic prescription. The quality of their rationale and supporting references was also evaluated. Outcomes: 47 students completed the assignment. Students were able to integrate clinical knowledge from all courses and to practice clinical decision-making and communication. A survey will analyze their perception of the impact of this assignment on their understanding of didactic content, as well as on their perceived clinical ability at the start of internships. Discussion: The integration of knowledge and skills learned in various classes into an integrated assignment mimics the complexity of a real life situation. This approach potentially increases retention of material, improves understanding, and better prepares students for clinical practice across different disciplines. Integrated assignments can be developed to link courses across individual curricula or interprofessional educational experiences. Keywords: Integrated knowledge, clinical decision-making, educational outcomes

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Jan 21st, 10:00 AM Jan 21st, 10:30 AM

Integrated clinical assignments: Seeing the big picture

Auditorium B

Introduction: In health care sciences education, curricular design is most commonly spread into individual courses which emphasize specific content areas. As a result, students often have difficulty integrating information for complex patient management. Purpose: The purpose of this project was to introduce an assignment requiring students to integrate information across subject areas in order to assess a patient, make clinical decisions, and communicate their rationale. Innovation: Physical therapy students take four courses in their final semester prior to full-time internships (neuromuscular II, prosthetics/orthotics, business of physical therapy, and applied clinical decision-making). We designed a joint assignment in which students would assess and treat a patient with a neurological disorder, justify a choice of orthosis, and write a letter of medical necessity to support continuation of therapy or orthotic prescription. The quality of their rationale and supporting references was also evaluated. Outcomes: 47 students completed the assignment. Students were able to integrate clinical knowledge from all courses and to practice clinical decision-making and communication. A survey will analyze their perception of the impact of this assignment on their understanding of didactic content, as well as on their perceived clinical ability at the start of internships. Discussion: The integration of knowledge and skills learned in various classes into an integrated assignment mimics the complexity of a real life situation. This approach potentially increases retention of material, improves understanding, and better prepares students for clinical practice across different disciplines. Integrated assignments can be developed to link courses across individual curricula or interprofessional educational experiences. Keywords: Integrated knowledge, clinical decision-making, educational outcomes