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Elevating Practice in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy Course Description and Objectives

Course Description: 

This is a comprehensive intermediate-level course in orthopaedic physical therapy. It encompasses commonly encountered disorders of the spine and extremities.

The emphasis will be on the integration of current scientific literature and clinical practice into developing clinical reasoning skills and proficiency in the execution of manual therapy, and motor control, and exercise-based intervention procedures. 

The course will include home study anatomy modules, weekly cases, lecture and lab with an emphasis on active learning. The majority of class time will be spent in lab-based activities. Written and practical examinations will be given for each of the 3 modules in order to help participants assess their competence with the material and skills.

The three-module course provides 120 hours of continuing education.

The entire course (three modules) is structured to provide participants with the opportunity to gain a thorough body of knowledge based on the APTA's Description of Specialty Practice (DSP) in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy.

Course Objectives:

Upon completion of this course, the participant will be able to:

  1. Apply knowledge of relevant region-specific anatomy and biomechanics to the evaluation and treatment of musculoskeletal dysfunction from a movement science and manual therapy perspective.
  2. Recognize and distinguish musculoskeletal disorders commonly encountered by physical therapists by appropriately categorizing clusters of signs of symptoms.
  3. Appraise the various classification systems, including treatment-based and impairment-based, that have been described and studied in the scientific literature in order to determine their validity and clinical value.
  4. Distinguish typical or critical medical conditions that might be present in the orthopaedic physical therapy patient population, and determine the appropriate referral to another medical practitioner or further diagnostic testing.
  5. Implement and interpret commonly used functional and/or disability scales relevant to the orthopaedic physical therapy patient population.
  6. Apply critical thinking in order to synthesize orthopaedic physical therapy examination information, determine an appropriate classification of common musculoskeletal disorders and select the most appropriate intervention based on the principles of evidenced-based medicine.
  7. Demonstrate proficiency with performing a region-specific comprehensive patient examination integrating manual therapy and movement-based assessment tools that have been validated by the literature or supported by clinical experts.
  8. Demonstrate proficiency with region-specific manual therapy, motor control, and exercise-based interventions established to be effective based on the best available evidence.

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Register for Elevating Practice

Module 1 - Spine

Due to COVID-19 this module was not offered in 2020.

Module 2 - Upper Quarter: January 10, 2021 - March 20, 2021

Module 3: Lower Quarter: 3/21/21 – 5/29/21

Please email us with any questions