Full Course Description

This course will provide the PT clinical doctoral learner ways to utilize the Guide to PT Practice for effective and efficient clinical decision making. The Guide to PT Practice is an organizational tool that summarizes physical therapist rights, roles, and responsibilities in treating patients/clients and in providing the PT a framework for clinical decision making. The patient/client management model utilizing examination methods, evaluation, diagnosis, prognosis, intervention, length of visits/stay, outcome measures and discharge planning are covered in this course. Multiple case examples will be shown.

Case presentations by: Jason Craig, PT, DPhil, Cathy Elrod, PT, PhD, & Steven Tepper, PT, PhD


By the end of the course the student will be able to:

  • List and explain the basic purposes of the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice
  • List and explain what the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice is not intended to do
  • Discuss how the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice enables the therapist in clinical decision making
  • Explain the basic history of the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice
  • Describe the concepts that are essential to understanding the Guide
  • Compare and contrast physical therapist practice in general using various disablement models as the basis
  • Analyze the management model used in physical therapist practice for clinical decision making
  • Describe the relevance of diagnosis to physical therapist practice
  • Describe and apply the diagnostic process in patient/client management by physical therapists
  • Explain the basic components of the physical therapist  patient/client management model
  • Applies the components of examination and explain their importance to clinical decision making
  • Applies the components of patient/client history and explain their importance to clinical decision making
  • Describe the purpose of systems review and explain its importance to clinical decision making
  • Incorporate systems review into routine practice
  • Select the various tests and measures utilized by physical therapists and their importance to clinical decision making
  • Apply the following components of patient/client management and describe their importance to clinical decision making: Evaluation; Diagnosis; Prognosis; Outcomes.
  • Describe common PT interventions using standardized terminology
  • Select appropriate standardized tests and measures based on characteristics of the patient population and the psychometric properties of the instrument
  • Access current information by utilizing a “search engine” to justify examination, diagnosis, prognosis, intervention, and outcomes

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