DEVELOPMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION OF CLINICAL CURRICULUM FOR PHYSIOTHERAPY STUDENTS IN A TERTIARY TEACHING HOSPITAL

Samuel Kirubakaran Durairaj, Andrew Babu

Abstract


Background

There is a pertinent need for a structured learning method for Physiotherapy students in clinical postings during the undergraduate degree program. The objective of this study was to develop, implement and evaluate a model clinical curriculum for Physiotherapy students posted in Neurology and Acute PMR postings.

Methods

A structured curriculum was planned and developed according to the six-step approach proposed by David Kern at al.

Firstly, the curriculum outline and objectives were outlined. There were discussion with clinical faculty for their input in designing the specific learning objectives, evaluation methods, and expected outcomes. Next, the student feedback form was designed. There were discussions with clinical faculty to scrutinize and reform the student feedback form. The new clinical curriculum was presented; specific learning objectives and student feedback form were ratified by head of the department. Preliminary orientation to the students about the clinical requirements, specific learning objectives, evaluation methods, student feedback form and outcome measures were given to the students. The clinical curriculum in the clinical postings were implemented by staff and supervised by the post graduate clinical facilitator. There was evaluation of student based on formative and summative assessment methods. Formative – periodic feedback on clinical knowledge, attitude and performance. Summative – End of posting test, student evaluation form, clinical attendance log, Student feedback questionnaire. Feedback from clinical staff on the merits and limitations of the clinical curriculum was obtained. The outcome measures and student and staff feedback forms were analyzed for a comprehensive conclusion on the efficacy of the clinical curriculum. The long term goal is to Initiate similar curriculum across all clinical posting for Physiotherapy students.

Results

The clinical curriculum has clearly defined goals and objectives covering the knowledge, attitude and skills. Both structured and informal teaching methods were used during the course of the study. The implementation is planned over the second, third and fourth year of the Physiotherapy under graduate education program. The curriculum evaluation includes, end of posting test marks, attendance percentiles, student evaluation form, student feedback questionnaire and staff feedback questionnaire.

Conclusion

There were positive results in the outcomes. The completion rates of specific learning objectives were over 85%. The clinical attendance rates were over 90%. We have developed a longitudinal clinical curriculum for Physiotherapy students in Neurology and Acute PMR postings. Similar curricula are required for other clinical areas. A rigorous evaluation of the impact of clinical curriculum is required. 


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References


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