Purpose: Clinical reasoning (CR) is the ability to integrate the knowledge of diagnoses with the use of supporting theories to create effective, client-centered interventions. One means of teaching CR to rehabilitation students is using standardized patient (SP) experiences. The relationship between faculty and student CR ratings after SP experiences has not been researched. The purpose of the study was to determine if there would be correlations between physical therapy (PT) and occupational therapy (OT) student and faculty ratings of CR skills after an SP experience. Method: The Clinical Reasoning Assessment Tool (CRAT) was used by students to self-reflect on their CR performance after an SP experience and compared to their respective faculty ratings. The CRAT includes three subsections: content knowledge, procedural knowledge, and conceptual reasoning, each with a visual analog scale. Correlations between students’ self-assessment of CR and faculty reviews were analyzed using Spearman’s rho correlations. Results: Seventeen PT and seventeen OT students participated. Spearman’s rho correlation coefficients for the PT students and their faculty were: content knowledge (r=.180; p=.488), procedural knowledge (r=.697; p=.002), and conceptual reasoning (r=.258; p=.317). Spearman’s rho correlation coefficients for the OT students and their faculty were: content knowledge (r=.103; p=.693), procedural knowledge (r=.676; p=.003), and conceptual reasoning (r=.505; p=.039). Conclusions: Neither PT nor OT student ratings was a statistically significant correlation in content knowledge ratings in relation to respective faculty ratings. Both PT and OT student procedural knowledge rating correlations with faculty were strong and statistically significant. PT student and faculty ratings were not significantly correlated in conceptual reasoning compared to faculty; however, OT students and faculty ratings were strong, had positive correlations, and were statistically significant. Further research is needed to assess students’ CR development longitudinally across curricula.

Author Bio(s)

Mary Anne Riopel, PT, DPT, PhD is the Program Director of the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program in the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences at Moravian University.

Sara Benham, OT, OTR/L, MOT is an Assistant Professor in the Master of Occupational Therapy Program in the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences at Moravian University.

Jennifer Landis, MA is the simulation technician responsible for management of the standardized patients at Moravian University.

Stephanie Falcone and Sarah Harvey are students in the occupational therapy program at Moravian University.


Acknowledgements; The authors extend their gratitude for the work of Dr. Colin Tomes in reviewing participant videos and to Nikita Gandhi, SOT for her assistance in the simulation experience.





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