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Instructional Strategies

The student and clinical instructor will design student learning activities based on student goals and objectives, student clinical performance and unique learning opportunities of the facility. The clinical education process is a coordination of communication and activity between the academic institution, the clinic facility and the student; therefore, each clinical practicum situation is unique. In all cases, students are expected to be involved in direct patient care via involvement in multiple aspects of physical therapy patient/client management.

Teaching methods include, but are not limited to: actual, supervised patient care delivery, simulated patient care delivery, structured and unstructured observation experiences, research, patient case presentations, formal in-service presentations, rounds, patient care conferences, formative evaluation meetings, self-evaluations and summative evaluation meetings, etc. The ratio of students to clinical instructors is pre-determined by the facility and the Director for Clinical Education (DCE). Generally, the ratio is either 1:1 or 2:1. In cases of 2:1 student to clinical instructor situations, peer-teaching learning activities will also guide the learning process.

For purposes of determining the final course grade, the APTA Clinical Performance Instrument form will be used to record, measure and interpret student performance. Formal, summative evaluations of student performance will be conducted at midterm and at the conclusion of the clinical practicum experience via the clinical instructor. In addition, communication from academic faculty with the student and the clinical instructor during the clinical practicum experience will augment the clinical instructor/student written evaluation process.