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Doctorate of Physical Therapy Course Descriptions

PT 503/603 Human Anatomy    6 sem. hrs.
Human Anatomy is a foundational course in normal human anatomy, both gross anatomy and surface anatomy, using a regional approach. Classroom and laboratory experiences are designed to promote methods of learning that minimize memorization. Incorporation of basic biomechanical principles enhances learning by association. Emphasis is given to the neuromusculoskeletal system and is pre-sented as consistent with physical therapy clinical practice.

PT 504/604 Foundations of Neuroscience    4 sem. hrs.
This course is designed to expand on previous science courses in order to provide a more in-depth understanding of the structure and function of the human nervous system in normal and pathological conditions. Material presented in this course provides the founda-tional science background for future applied courses related to phys-ical therapy management of patients with conditions affecting the neuromuscular system. The course presents classroom and laboratory learning experiences that build from an understanding of basic nervous system functions at molecular and cellular levels to more complex functions involving whole systems. Structural changes in the nervous system are related to functional changes that occur during development, following injury, and with aging. A problem/ case study approach to learning is emphasized in order to further develop the student's critical inquiry and clinical decision-making abilities.

PT 506/606 Foundations of Pharmacology    2 sem. hrs.
This course presents the foundational concepts of pharmacology emphasizing basic mechanisms of drug action such as pharmacoki-netics, pharmacodynamics and pharmacotherapeutics. Drug classes illustrated using prototypic drugs. Examples are drawn from various body systems.

PT 511/611 Foundations of Clinical Science    4 sem. hrs.
This course introduces the student physical therapist to the process of clinical examination including problem solving and clinical deci-sion-making as well as introduction to foundational interventions. Using the Guide to Physical Therapist Practice the course focuses on physical therapy examination, evaluation, and basic treatment inter-ventions as preparation for individuals with functional limitations related to movement. The course includes an introduction to ex-amination techniques (tests and measures) common to the evaluation process (history, upper and lower quarter screens). Instruction also includes foundational intervention techniques and concepts such as patient communication and documentation; transfers; gait training with assistive devices; body mechanics; positioning and draping inte-gral to examination and intervention; range of motion and manual muscle testing assessments; electrotherapeutic and heat/cold physical agents.

PT 515-1A/615-1A Biomechanics I    2 sem. hrs.
Material in this course includes 1) the basic principles of biome-chanics related to stability and movement; 2) biomechanics of biologic structures and function of the musculoskeletal system, with in depth description of the structural and functional features of ma-jor joints of the human body; and 3) an introduction to human movement analysis.

PT 515-1B/615-1B Biomechanics II    2 sem. hrs.
Material in this course includes 1) biomechanics of biologic struc-tures and function of the musculoskeletal system, with in depth de-scription of the structural and functional features of major joints of the human body; 2) human movement analysis; and 3) normal human gait.

PT 605 Motor Learning/Motor Control    3 sem. hrs.
This course is a foundational course applicable to entry-level physi-cal therapy practice pertaining to acquiring, controlling, and perfect-ing movement skill. The course will explore the application of the principles of motor control and motor learning as they apply to healthy individuals and those individuals with a variety of physical therapy impairments. In addition, students will explore motor control across development with an emphasis on reflexes and functional postures; general motor learning principles specific to the pediatric population will be introduced. This foundational knowledge will form a framework for both assessment and treatment of the neuro-logically involved child or adult and serve as a transitional course to expand on prior knowledge of neuroscience, therapeutic activities, and therapeutic exercise in preparation subsequent course work.

PT 608 Foundations of Clinical Exercise    4 sem. hrs.
This course examines in depth the mechanisms of muscle function, the principles of therapeutic exercise, and the practical application of exercise. The basic skills of clinical interventions including range of motion, stretching and flexibility, strengthening (strength, endurance and power training), balance, and aerobic training will be covered in depth. This information will prepare the student to critically think about, evaluate, and implement a simple plan of care for paper and live patients involving a variety of diagnoses in PT 613/614.

PT 612 Physical Therapy Management of Musculoskeletal Impairment I    3 sem. hrs.
This course is the first in a series of three courses on evaluation and treatment of general musculoskeletal conditions. All relevant physio-logic, anatomic, pathologic, medical and therapeutic concepts related to general musculoskeletal conditions are integrated into this course. Information in this course includes the general physical therapy evaluation process, basic pathology, tissue injury and the healing process, and the integration of previous information covered in the curriculum. The course utilizes classroom and laboratory experiences to expose the student to simple problems in order to begin to devel-op the clinical reasoning skills required in entry-level practice. Em-phasis is on basic evaluation technique in orthopedic and manual physical therapy and the implementation of therapeutic intervention techniques learned in other courses. This course provides the foun-dation for PT 613/PT 614.

PT 613 Physical Therapy Management of Musculoskeletal Impairment II    5 sem. hrs.
An integrated approach to the study of all relevant physiologic, ana-tomic, pathologic, medical and therapeutic concepts related to en-try-level physical therapy practice. This course is the second course in the continuation Musculoskeletal Impairments series and includes the physical therapy evaluation process, physical therapeutic inter-vention techniques and procedures, and patient care plan develop-ment for spinal impairments and upper quarter. This course is to build on foundational skills in neuro-musculoskeletal assessment. The course presents classroom and laboratory experiences to develop simple to complex problems to assist the student in developing the necessary clinical reasoning and clinical skills. Emphasis is on basic evaluation techniques in orthopedic and manual physical therapy with an introduction to special test diagnostic accuracy and interpre-tation. It provides the foundation for selection of appropriate as-sessment and treatment planning in orthopedics. Students learn an evidence based approach to screening, examination, and evaluation which all involve a critical thinking process to establish an orthope-dic impairment based physical therapy diagnosis.

PT 614 Physical Therapy Management of Musculoskeletal Impairment III    5 sem. hrs.
An integrated approach to the study of all relevant physiologic, ana-tomic, pathologic, medical and therapeutic concepts related to en-try-level physical therapy practice regarding the upper and lower extremity. The course is a continuation of PT 612/613 Musculoskel-etal Impairments I/II and includes the physical therapy evaluation process, physical therapeutic intervention techniques and procedures, and patient care plan development. The course presents classroom and laboratory experiences building from simple to complex prob-lems to assist the student in developing the necessary competencies in physical therapy. Emphasis is on basic evaluation techniques in orthopedic and manual physical therapy with an introduction to special test diagnostic accuracy and interpretation. It provides the foundation for selection of appropriate assessment and treatment planning in orthopedics. Students refine their approach to screen-ing, examination, and evaluation of extremity impairments with inte-gration of spinal screening. This involves the critical thinking pro-cess to establish an orthopedic impairment based physical therapy diagnosis and subsequent treatment plan.

PT 701 Professional Issues I    1 sem. hr.
This course is an introduction to the profession of physical therapy. Distinguishing factors of a profession, including the history of the profession and responsibilities of health care professionals are cov-ered. Students are introduced to national, state and regional profes-sional organizations. The topics of legal and ethical considerations are also covered. Students are guided through the discovery of practice expectations and the growth of the profession over the past century. Students are also expected to participate in professional development activities.

PT 702 Professional Issues II    1 sem. hr.
The course is designed to prepare the student physical therapist for clinical practice. Students build upon knowledge and skills gained in Professional Issues I. Students are introduced to the roles of various participants in clinical practice and the assessment tools utilized during clinical education. Issues related to legal and ethical clinical practice are covered.

PT 703 Professional Experience I    4 sem. hrs.
This is the first of four clinical education experiences within the curriculum. Professional Experience I introduces the student to the general organization of a physical therapy practice that pertains to the care of individuals with musculoskeletal dysfunction within either an inpatient or outpatient setting. Students are responsible, under the direct guidance of a licensed physical therapist/clinical mentor, for the examination, evaluation, diagnostic, prognostic and interven-tion components for patient care. The specific content will vary depending upon the learning experiences available and the perceived or declared readiness of each student.

PT 704 Professional Experience II    4 sem. hrs.
This is the second of four clinical education experiences within the curriculum. Professional Experience II provides the student the op-portunity to participate in a physical therapy practice that pertains to the care of varied individuals across the lifespan. Primary emphasis is on those who experience acute or chronic neurological dysfunc-tions and/or acute cardiopulmonary and/or integumentary dysfunc-tions. Professional Experience II primarily occurs in an inpatient acute, post-acute or rehabilitation settings. Some students may par-ticipate in an outpatient neurological or general medicine rotation. Under the direct guidance of a licensed physical therapist/clinical mentor, students are responsible for the examination, evaluation, diagnostic, prognostic and intervention components for patient care. Students are expected to function as part of a multi-disciplinary team and to participate in practice management activities. The specific content will vary depending upon the learning experiences available and the perceived or declared readiness of each student.

PT 705 Professional Experience III    5 sem. hrs.
This is the third of four clinical education experiences within the curriculum. Professional Experience III provides the student the opportunity to participate in a physical therapy practice that pertains to the care of individuals across the lifespan, with emphasis on those who experience acute or chronic neurological and/or cardiopulmo-nary dysfunctions. Professional Experience III primarily occurs in an inpatient acute, sub-acute, or other rehabilitation practice setting. Some students may participate in an outpatient pediatric or a com-munity based neurological rotation or a combined inpa-tient/outpatient rotation. Students are responsible, under the direct guidance of a licensed clinical instructor/clinical mentor, for the examination, evaluation, diagnostic, prognostic and intervention components for patient care. Students are expected to function as part of a multi-disciplinary team, and participate in practice man-agement activities. The specific content will vary depending upon the learning experiences available and the perceived or declared readiness of each student.

PT 706 Professional Experience IV    6 sem. hrs.
This is the fourth and final clinical education experience within the curriculum. Professional Experience 4 is scheduled after the comple-tion of all didactic coursework in the basic, behavioral and clinical science courses. This course provides the student the opportunity to participate in a physical therapy practice that pertains to the care of individuals across the lifespan who experience neuro-musculoskeletal, cardiopulmonary or integumentary dysfunctions. Practice settings may vary based upon a student’s clinical interests. Students may be given the opportunity to focus on an area of interest involving either a specialized patient population (i.e. geriatrics, pediatrics), practice management or clinical research application. During this experience, students have the opportunity to function behaviorally as would pro-fessional physical therapists, with the exception that the clinical in-structor is responsible for the student’s provision of service and monitors the student’s decision-making process during the examina-tion, evaluation, diagnostic, prognostic and intervention components for patient care. Students are expected to function as part of a mul-ti-disciplinary team, and participate in practice management activi-ties. The specific content will vary depending upon the learning experiences available and the perceived or declared readiness of each student.

PT 710 Health Care Business Management I    2 sem. hrs.
The course is the first course addressing health care business man-agement issues impacting physical therapy practice. Students are introduced to special topics related to access, cost and quality of care. Particular emphasis is on the United States Health Care delivery system, the continuum of care, reimbursement, interdisciplinary team management, direct access and autonomous practice.

PT 711 Health Care Business Management II    2 sem. hrs.
This course provides the student with an enhanced view of the healthcare system in the United States. The primary aim is to ensure that students are prepared to enter the healthcare system with an ability to contribute in the administration of contemporary and eth-ical physical therapist practice. The course includes requisite knowledge and application activities to develop an appreciation of public health, including a working understanding of health promo-tion and wellness as well as a physical therapist’s role in primary prevention. Activities are included to enhance the learners’ appreci-ation of a variety of health care professionals and their respective roles in modern interdisciplinary patient care. Students will also acquire an awareness of business principles, including resource and financial management principles required for the administration of a physical therapist practice.

PT 712 Community Health in Physical Therapy    3 sem. hrs.
This course introduces the concept of community health care in relation to physical therapist practice. Physical therapists role in health prevention, promotion and wellness across the lifespan in community based and non-traditional settings are addressed. Stu-dents develop a community health program that meets a community need that prepares them for their role as primary health care pro-viders. Students also prepare for the role of clinical teaching.

PT 713 Service Project    1 sem. hr.
A commitment to community service is an inherent part of the mis-sion at Walsh University and the Physical Therapy Program. Stu-dents provide direct community service as part of their academic experience within the physical therapy curriculum. During this course, students deliver the community program that was approved during semester 7 in conjunction with PT 712 Community Health in PT.

PT 720 Research Methodology I    3 sem. hrs.
This course helps students learn to evaluate elements of research design, to understand the hierarchy of evidence, to critically evaluate research, and introduces students to the performance and interpreta-tion of descriptive and inferential statistics. The course involves one large project (the initiation of a systematic literature review)

PT 721 Research Methodology II     2 sem. hrs.
This course is the second in a series of four that immerses students toward the ability to read, write, participate, and understand research. The classes will include the following types of learning experiences: lecture, small group discussion, independent and guided library re-search, and written tests.

PT 722 Research Methodology III    1 sem. hr.
This course helps students learn to evaluate elements of research design, to understand the hierarchy of evidence, to critically evaluate research, and introduces students to the performance and interpreta-tion of descriptive and inferential statistics.

PT 723 Research Methodology IV    2 sem. hrs.
This course is the last of a series of four that immerses students to-ward the ability to read, write, participate, and understand research. The classes will include the following types of learning experiences: lecture, small group discussion, independent and guided library re-search, and written tests. The primary purpose of this class is to complete the groups’ research projects and effectively present their works on Research Seminar Day.

PT 730 Physical Therapy Management of Neuromuscular Impairment I    6 sem. hrs.
This course is the first within a series of two neurological courses presenting an integrated approach to relevant physiologic, anatomic, theoretical, medical, and therapeutic concepts related to entry-level neurologic physical therapist practice in both adult and pediatric populations. The two Physical Therapy Management of Neuro-muscular Impairment courses will operate from a top-down model across the neural axis, focusing initially on central nervous system diagnoses of cortical dysfunction, injury, and recovery. Students will gain knowledge, skills, and the capacity for the clinical reasoning necessary to complete a comprehensive neuromuscular examination and develop a comprehensive plan for intervention based on current motor control and learning theories. Pediatric content is interwo-ven within the course.

PT 731 Physical Therapy Management of Neuromuscular Impairment II    6 sem. hrs.
This course is the second within a series of two neurological courses presenting an integrated approach to relevant physiologic, anatomic, theoretical, medical, and therapeutic concepts related to entry-level neurologic physical therapist practice in both adult and pediatric populations. It is a direct extension of PT 730 (Physical Therapy Management of Neuromuscular Impairments I), continuing with diagnoses along the neural axis, progressing from the central nervous system and moving to more of a focus on peripheral nervous system dysfunction. Students will continue to gain fundamental knowledge to develop the clinical reasoning and critical thinking necessary to complete a detailed neuromuscular examination and develop a com-prehensive plan for intervention based on current motor control and learning theories. Pediatric content is interwoven within the course.

PT 732 Physical Therapy Management of Multi-System Impairment    4 sem. hrs.
Many patients that Physical Therapists encounter often have multiple systems that are impaired that ultimately affect their functional capa-bilities. This course integrates the many areas that have been dis-cussed previously in the curriculum and aims to help the student focus their management strategies in the areas of medical screening and differential diagnosis. Complex patient cases involving mul-ti-systems will be utilized throughout the course and the student will be responsible for demonstrating sound decision making processes based on best available evidence. In essence this course will help prepare the student physical therapist for autonomous practice.

PT 734 Physical Therapy Management of Cardiovascular and Respiratory Impairments I    4 sem. hrs.
An integrated approach to the study of all relevant anatomic, physi-ologic, pathological, medical and therapeutic (invasive and surgical) concepts related to physical therapy practice in the area of cardio-vascular, pulmonary, endocrine (diabetes) and integumentary im-pairments. The course includes commonly used physical therapy examination and therapeutic techniques and procedures, along with patient-care program development focused on the inpatient setting. Emphasis is placed on thorough review of medical history to help ensure safety during patient care.

PT 735 Physical Therapy Management of Cardiovascular and Respiratory Impairments II    5 sem. hrs.
An integrated approach to the study of all relevant physiologic, ana-tomic, pathological, medical and therapeutic concepts related to physical therapy practice in the area of cardiovascular, pulmonary, integumentary, endocrine, hematology, immunology, oncology, geni-tourinary and gastrointestinal impairments.The course includes the physical therapy diagnostic process, physical therapeutic techniques and procedures, and patient-care program development. The course presents classroom and laboratory expe-riences building from simple to complex problems to assist the stu-dent in developing the competencies necessary for practice as a generalist in physical therapy. Experiences related to psychological, social, cultural, economic, and vocational aspects of illness and disa-bility are included. Concepts are cumulative throughout the sys-tem(s) and continued enrollment depends upon mastery and use of previous concepts.

PT 736 Capstone Seminar: Clinical Decision Making    2 sem. hrs.
A capstone course is usually taken in the final year of a program and is meant to showcase a student's comprehensive knowledge of the subject they have studied in various courses over their academic career. This is usually done through a comprehensive test and as-sessment of the DPT academic portfolio, which represents the cul-mination of all of the student's learning.
This course has 2 credit hours, and is taught in a condensed format over 4 weeks (6 hours weekly). During the capstone experience, the student will be engaged in the following four activities: (1) taking a comprehensive exam as part of the program evaluation and prepara-tion for licensure; (2) working, refining and assessment of the DPT academic portfolio (3) preparation and presentation of the student’s five year professional development plan and finalized resume; (4) class lectures/presentations grouped into 3 phases of time in the DPT’s professional career presented as Part I-III.

PT 740 Special Topics    1 sem. hrs.
This elective course involves advanced study (beyond entry level) of selected examination and/or intervention techniques. Topics vary from semester to semester and from year to year.

PT 740-01 Special Topics: Pediatrics    2 sem. hrs.
This course is designed to provide an overview of general pediatric practice, including developmental parameters and legal historical perspectives. It will progress through a foundational basis for pedi-atric premises and proceed to overview of assessment, evaluation, and intervention approaches for specific diagnoses in the specialty practice with pediatric patients. While depth of all diagnoses will not be explored, different case studies will be used to clarify the contextual basis of evidence based practice across settings and within relevant services provision models. This class will build on the pedi-atric diagnoses and evaluation/intervention process covered in neu-rologic rehabilitation PT 730 & PT 731.

PT 740-06 Special Topics: Diagnostic Imaging    1 sem. hrs.
This course includes the study of the common diagnostic and thera-peutic imaging studies such as radiographs, CAT, MRI, and musculo-skeletal imaging as they pertain to patient/client management in physical therapy.

PT 742 Life Span    3 sem. hrs.
Life Span prepares students to understand the physical, social, emo-tional and intellectual growth and development throughout the life span. Instructional content includes child development theories and research; adulthood; geriatrics; and death and dying.

 

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