University of Technology Sydney

96080 Clinical Assessment and Treatment Planning

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2022 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Health (GEM)
Credit points: 6 cp
Result type: Grade and marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.

Description

Students learn the process of clinical assessment and treatment planning to underpin physiotherapy management of clients with musculoskeletal and neurological conditions across the lifespan. Students revise anatomy in a wet-lab setting to underpin their developing diagnostic palpation skills and inform surface anatomy and impairment testing. Inquiry-based learning is used to critically appraise subjective and objective examination techniques following evidence-based practice applied to clinical cases. The ICF model is used to develop clinical reasoning skills to formulate a differential diagnosis, a problem list and an elementary treatment plan for common patient scenarios. Impairment, functional and behavioural outcome measures are introduced along with goal setting and treatment decision making in collaboration with clients and families. Learning assessment and treatment planning is reinforced and built upon in concurrent and subsequent subjects teaching intervention skills.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

01. Conduct a culturally responsive client interview/subjective examination
04. Assess client's problems with reference to the WHO ICF domains of impairment, activity limitation and participation restriction
06. Apply clinical reasoning to determine best physiotherapy care
07. Conduct a culturally responsive objective examination
08. Justify assessment selection with reference to the evidence for its clinimetric properties
09. Modify assessments based on restrictions imposed by a client’s condition
10. Demonstrate safe and sensitive therapeutic manual handling
11. Interpret assessment results
13. Prioritise the problem list
15. Establish goals with client and families/caregivers
16. Plan an intervention
19. Provide an evidence-based justification for intervention selection
35. Communicate effectively with the client, caregivers and other health professionals
37. Demonstrate empathetic active listening skills
39. Maintain professionalism in verbal and written communication
40. Engage in inclusive, collaborative, consultative, culturally responsive and client-centred model of practice
45. Gain and maintain informed consent
53. Evaluate own learning needs and direct own learning experiences

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs)

The learning outcomes for this subject are as follows:

  • Knowledge and skills: Integrate core biomedical and social health science knowledge across the breadth of physiotherapy practice to inform assessment and safe, competent and skilled practical care of individuals across the lifespan as an autonomous practitioner and as a member of an interprofessional team. (01.01)
  • Clinical reasoning: Identify impairment, activity and participation deficits in individuals in accordance with the International Classification of Function, Disability and Health framework and develop evidence-based care plans in accordance with best practice physiotherapy. (01.02)
  • Critical thinker: Critically analyse the evidence underpinning practice and effectively apply new knowledge to practice; conduct and disseminate high-quality research to improve professional knowledge and influence direction of future practice. (02.05)
  • Professional and ethical practitioner: Embody the physiotherapy profession, demonstrating globally relevant ethical and professional behaviour and social accountability, while utilising deliberate critical analysis, self-reflection and self-awareness to constantly improve practice. (03.04)
  • Communication: Communicate effectively using high-level interpersonal skills in both traditional modes of communication and when integrating advances in technology and methods of intervention delivery into patient care. (03.06)
  • Client focus: Provide empathetic, compassionate and respectful patient-focused care, facilitating client self-management, advocating for best practice care and empowering clients by education. (04.03)
  • Indigenous awareness and cultural competence: Demonstrate respect and value for diverse ways of knowing, being and doing, in particular recognising the diversity of Indigenous Australians and their health and wellbeing and integrating this knowledge into practice. (05.08)

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

Practice ready

Graduates of the Master of Physiotherapy are knowledgeable, practice-readyclinicians, skilled in providing safe and effective evidence-based care to clientsacross the lifespan, using a wide range of therapeutic approaches includingskilled hands on practice, and in a variety of clinical settings as both independentand collaborative practitioners.

Research-enabled

Graduates of the Master of Physiotherapy effectively integrate research evidenceinto practice, are proactive in identifying gaps in knowledge and are competentto undertake research to advance the evidence base and inform futurephysiotherapy practice.

Professionally Competent

Graduates of the Master of Physiotherapy embody professional and ethical practice, maintaining knowledge and competence at local and global standards. Graduates embrace opportunities for leadership and advanced roles, utilise deliberate practice to optimise physiotherapy care and advocate for the profession in interdisciplinary contexts.

Person-centred

Graduates of the Master of Physiotherapy are empathetic, person-centredpractitioners who empower client self-management and endorse preventativecare by forming and valuing partnerships with individuals, families andcommunities.

Culturally Competent

Graduates of the Master of Physiotherapy are culturally competent professionals, able to reflect on and explain their own cultural perspectives, accommodate cultural differences and achieve optimal outcomes through the adoption of a consultative approach to physiotherapy practice with indigenous Australians and other cultural groups.

Teaching and learning strategies

Prep work
Preparation (Prep) work is undertaken prior to masterclasses and workshops. Prep work can include watching a video, reading a blog entry/website/textbook chapter/journal article/magazine article and/or listening to a podcast/video/interview. Questions often accompany the prep work so students read with intent which encourages deep reading. Content covered in prep work is strongly linked to content covered in masterclasses and workshops. Please ensure prep work is carried out so that you have spent some time accessing and making sense of ideas. Attending the masterclasses and workshops will allow you to test these ideas and get feedback from your teachers and peers which will further consolidate your learning. Your knowledge and understanding of the prep work will be tested and applied using quizzes, group discussions and practical activities in masterclasses and workshops. (Prep work in this subject also includes attending anatomy wet lab classes. Activities in anatomy wet lab classes include guided group work where students are trained to observe, palpate and locate anatomical structures.)

Masterclasses
Masterclasses are conducted in groups of 60 or more. There is usually a presentation of content by the teacher followed by activities which build on the prep work and the content presented. These activities are varied and require students to work alone, work in pairs or work in groups of 3 or more.

Examples of these activities include short quizzes, group discussions and “One Minute Paper” where students reflect on what they have learnt in class and share this with the class. Group discussions often involve solving a problem or answering a question based on case studies or the content topic. All activities are facilitated by the teacher. Feedback is provided by the teacher where there is discrepancy in the knowledge and understanding of the content or disagreement in opinions between groups. Feedback can also be provided by peers.

Workshops
Workshops are conducted in groups of 15-35. Content in classes often include the practice of practical skills and further consolidation of information gained in masterclasses. These activities are varied and often require students to work in pairs or work in groups of 3 or more. Examples of these activities include the practice of practical skills, simulated role play of patients in case studies, group discussions, debates, brainstorming session and “One Minute Paper”. In the classes where practical skills are taught, the teacher demonstrates these practical skills and provide guidance on how feedback should be provided. After the demonstration, students work in small groups of 3 or more to practise. Feedback on their techniques are provided by the teacher or their peers. The content of feedback will cover professionalism, communication, equipment set-up, environment set-up, positioning of patient, positioning of therapist and manual handling/manual guidance. Feedback on common errors and suggestions for improvement will also be included. In the classes when theoretical content is consolidated and applied, feedback is provided by the teacher when there is discrepancy in the knowledge and understanding of the content or disagreement in opinions between groups. Feedback can also be provided by peers.

Content (topics)

The aim of this subject is to provide students with a fundamental understanding of physiotherapy assessment practice to support their subsequent learning of physiotherapy interventional skills. Students learn about assessment techniques, differential diagnosis, clinical reasoning and treatment planning using case studies. These case studies include patients with musculoskeletal and neurological conditions. Students consolidate their learning and skills during a clinical simulation week at the end of the semester. Clinical simulation links assessment and treatment skills (96082 Core Practice for Physiotherapists) at the end of the semester. Knowledge and skills gained in this subject underpin the learning in all subsequent clinical subjects.

Assessment

Assessment task 1: Online case study - Clinical reasoning for treatment planning

Intent:

This assessment task will give students the opportunity to demonstrate their clinical reasoning skills in taking a subjective history, assessing and planning a treatment for a patient. The content to be assessed includes all content learned from weeks 1 to 6.

Graduate attributes: Practice ready

Objective(s):

This task is aligned with the following subject learning objectives:

04, 06, 13, 15, 16 and 19

This task is aligned with the following course learning outcomes:

01.01 and 01.02

Type: Case study
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 20%
Length:

Completion of the case study will take ~1hr

Criteria:

Please refer to Canvas for the marking criteria for this assessment task. Marks will be allocated to clinical reasoning decision making responses through the case and input text for each screen of the assessment.

Assessment task 2: Musculoskeletal Practical Assessment

Intent:

This assessment task will give students the opportunity to explain and demonstrate their practical and clinical reasoning skills in conducting an objective or diagnostic assessment for a musculoskeletal condition. The content to be assessed includes all practical skills learned from weeks 1 to 8.

Graduate attributes: Practice ready, research-enabled, professionally competent, person-centred, culturally competent.

Objective(s):

This task is aligned with the following subject learning objectives:

01, 35, 37, 39, 40 and 45

This task is aligned with the following course learning outcomes:

01.01, 01.02, 02.05, 03.04, 03.06, 04.03 and 05.08

Type: Examination
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 40%
Length:

8 min including reading time

Criteria:

Please refer to Canvas for the marking criteria rubric.

Assessment task 3: Master Foundational Skills Record - MUST PASS

Intent:

This peer-based assessment task will give students the opportunity to demonstrate competence of essential assessment skills when conducting an intervention for a musculoskeletal condition.

Graduate attributes: Practice ready, research-enabled, professionally competent, person-centred

Objective(s):

This task is aligned with the following subject learning objectives:

10, 11, 39, 40 and 53

This task is aligned with the following course learning outcomes:

01.01, 01.02, 02.05, 03.06 and 04.03

Type: Exercises
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: Mandatory task that does not contribute to subject mark
Criteria:

Pass/Fail

Note: submitting a scanned version online is mandatory to pass the unit

Assessment task 4: Neurological Practical Assessment - MUST PASS

Intent:

This assessment task will give students the opportunity to demonstrate their communication, clinical reasoning, and understanding of practical skills in conducting an objective or diagnostic assessment for a neurological condition. The content to be assessed includes all practical skills learnt from weeks 10 to 14 in both masterclasses and workshops.

Graduate attributes: Practice ready, research-enabled, professionally competent, person-centred

Objective(s):

This task is aligned with the following subject learning objectives:

07, 08, 09, 10 and 11

This task is aligned with the following course learning outcomes:

01.01, 01.02, 02.05, 03.04, 03.06 and 04.03

Type: Examination
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 40%
Length:

12 mins (including 2 mins reading time)

Criteria:

Please refer to marking criteria on Canvas.

See rubric for breakdown of weighting.

Minimum requirements

Requirements to pass the subject

In order to pass the subject, you are required to

  • complete all assessments items,
  • pass the practical exam,
  • achieve an overall grade of ≥ 50, and
  • attend a minimum of 85% of classes

Required texts

Magee DJ (2013) Orthopedic Physical Assessment, 5e (Orthopedic Physical Assessment (6th edition). US: Elsevier.

Coursework Assessments Policy

Coursework Assessments Procedures

Graduate School of Health Policy, Guidelines and Procedures (login required)

Recommended texts

Petty N (2013) Neuromusculoskeletal Examination and Assessment: A Handbook for Therapists (4th edition). London, UK: Churchill Livingstone, Elsevier.

Brukner P and Khan K (2012) Clinical sports medicine. (4th edition). Sydney, Australia: McGraw-Hill.

Hattam P and Smeatham A (2010) Special Tests in Musculoskeletal Examination: An evidence-based guide for clinicians. London: Churchill Livingstone, Elsevier.

Lennon S and Stokes M (2008) Pocketbook of Neurological Physiotherapy. London, UK: Churchill Livingstone, Elsevier.

Higgs J, Jones MA, Loftus S and Christensen N (2008) Clinical Reasoning in the Health Professions (3rd Edition). US: Butterworth Heinemann, Elseiver.

Verhagen A, Alessie J (2018) Evidence based diagnostics of musculoskeletal disorders in primary care. Houten: Bohn Stafleu van Loghum.

Other resources

Wolters Kluwer (2016) Acland’s video atlas of human anatomy [Online]. Available at:

http://aclandanatomy.com.ezproxy.lib.uts.edu.au/Multimedia.aspx?categoryid=39464 [Accessed 11 March 2016].

NINDS (2016) The Internet Stroke Center [Online]. Available at: http://www.strokecenter.org/professionals/stroke-diagnosis/stroke-assessment-scales/ [Accessed 11 March 2016].

Canadian Partnership for Stroke Recovery (2016) Stroke Engine [Online]. Available at: http://www.strokengine.ca/ [Accessed 11 March 2016].

Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (2010) Rehabilitation Measures Database [Online]. Available at: http://www.rehabmeasures.org/default.aspx [Accessed 11 March 2016].