ASSESSMENT OF EFFECTIVENSS OF PATIENT INTEGRATION IN A NEUROMUSCULAR COURSE

Miguel Garcia, Sunddip Panesar-Aguilar, Kristen Johnson

Abstract


As part of a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) curriculum, students are exposed to a variety of courses that will create the basic competencies to become a safe physical therapist. Within a neuromuscular course in a large private DPT program spanning four campuses in the United States, one of the methods utilized is a patient integration lab experience. Patient integration labs incorporate the theory of experiential learning by allowing students to apply learned didactic knowledge within a specific course in its lab and actively problem solve and critical think to attain clinical knowledge that will be necessary during patient encounters. The purpose of this study was to determine if various forms of patient integration teaching methods used within a neuromuscular course may impact students’ perceived confidence and performance when completing a physical therapy examination on a patient with a neuromuscular pathology. The study also aimed to determine if there was a significant difference between the various teaching methods being evaluated. A quantitative correlational design study was used. Six groups varying in the type of patient integration experience were assessed for student performance and student self-perceived confidence. Student assessment data was collected in the form of a standardized documentation assignment and final course grade averages. Student self-perceived confidence was assessed utilizing two validated surveys. Data analysis was completed in three parts. All study variables were presented using descriptive statistics. Second, a series of bivariate tests were used to produce inferential findings. A Pearson’s r zero-correlation, independent-samples t-test and a One-Way ANOVA were all used to assess for possible relationships between the continuous explanatory variables and the dependent variables. Finally, a multivariate model, specifically a multiple linear regression model, was used to model each dependent variable as a function of the explanatory variables significantly related to that dependent variable in bivariate analysis. Through the multivariate models, a relationship was found between students’ self-perceived confidence and student assessment as measured by the final course grade. The results also indicated significant differences in the means of students’ self-perceived confidence and the documentation assignment between the various categories of student integration.

Keywords


Physical therapy curriculum, health science education, patient integration experience, doctor of physical therapy program, curriculum, education.

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References


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