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A systematic approach to learning aimed at graduate physiotherapists practicing in South West Victoria

conference contribution
posted on 2006-01-01, 00:00 authored by A Schoo, Karen StagnittiKaren Stagnitti, Kevin Mc NamaraKevin Mc Namara, James DunbarJames Dunbar
Mandatory standards developed by allied health professions for registration and accreditation purposes require continuing professional development (CPD) that can be accessed by all professionals, particularly those practicing in regions removed from the bigger cities. To improve and maintain competencies and standards of care CPD programs need to be accessible and provide opportunities for lifelong learning of efficacious evidence-based intervention. Despite the benefits of CPD, problems reported include access and lack of clarity on the usefulness of CPD in relation to clinical practice. The aim of this study was to develop a CPD program for physiotherapists in the south west of Victoria by employing a systematic approach that included a needs assessment as a vehicle to compose the 2004/2005 program and to optimise ease of attendance, relevance and perceived applicability to clinical practice. The education delivered was purposely in line with the principles of adult learning and presenters were instructed to focus for at least one-third of the workshop time on praxis. This study measured attendance levels throughout the program and satisfaction with the education received in terms of perceived clinical benefits in order to understand the benefits of employing detailed local needs assessments for rural professionals. All workshops and presentations were evaluated with regard to suitability of the venue, presenter style, content, applicability to clinical practice and overall impression by using 7-point Likert scales. Modes and medians both were 7, with seven being rated as highly successful. Attendance was high, 57.2% attended four or more sessions and 68.6% attended at least one workshop in the clinic over the period. In addition, 22.9% attended at least one of the two conducted courses that were held in that period. Although most physiotherapists (68.6%) reported some effect, 20% of the physiotherapists perceived that the CPD program had a large effect on their clinical skills and 29.4% found that patient demand had increased. This paper will discuss the results in light of approaches for allied health workplace learning.



Deakin Teaching and Learning Conference (2006 : Melbourne, Vic.)


Deakin University


Melbourne, Vic.

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[Melbourne, Vic.]

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E3 Extract of paper

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Connecting up : enhancing students’ learning experiences in higher education

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