Physical Therapy Electives

A unique aspect of the program is the opportunity to take at least 2 credit hours of an elective in your third year. The electives allow students to explore a new topic or go more in depth on topics presented in the core curriculum. Electives may include:

Advanced Examination and Treatment of the Spine: This course is designed to teach manual therapy as applied to the lumbar, thoracic, and cervical spine and related soft tissue. Skills are built upon those manual therapy concepts initially introduced in PT 7314 and PT 7318 . Particular attention is paid to the subjective, objective, and neurological examination, diagnosis of musculoskeletal pathology, its associated problems, appropriate intervention strategies, and modification of the intervention plan. This course fulfills an elective requirement in the physical therapy program.

Pediatric Physical Therapy: This course provides students with advanced knowledge of physical therapy practice in the areas of pediatrics and developmental disabilities. Case studies, group discussion, self-directed learning, field trips, and experiences with pediatric clients in various practice settings (including NICU follow-up clinic, specialty clinics, school-based therapy, aquatic therapy and hippotherapy) encompass medical/educational diagnoses and conditions, administration of pediatric examinations, evidence-based and evolving interventions, documentation, working in teams, and service delivery models in medical, educational, and early intervention settings. This course fulfills an elective requirement in the physical therapy program.

Physical Therapy for Older Adults: This course provides students with the directed study of the practice of physical therapy with the older adult client. Individual, self-directed research, small group discussions, presentations and clinic experiences will cover the following topics specific to the physical therapy management of the older adult: examination tools, evaluation, physical therapy diagnosis, plan of care, coordination, communication and documentation related to client services, working in teams, service delivery models, and priorities and issues across the continuum of care for the older adult. This course fulfills an elective requirement in the physical therapy program.

Special Issues in Women's and Men’s Health: This course will explore current issues in women’s and men’s health and the role of physical therapists in their management. The following gender-related topics will be included: the role of hormones across the lifespan, osteoporosis, pelvic pain and pelvic issues, incontinence, athletic conditions, oncological conditions, lymphedema, and issues related to obstetrics and gynecology. Active learning experiences include physical therapy examination and intervention skills. This course fulfills an elective requirement in the physical therapy program.

Principles of Sports Medicine: This lecture/laboratory course incorporates principles of theory and practice in prevention, assessment, and treatment of injuries incurred during athletic participation. The work in this course is in the context of clinical and field/court decision making. This course fulfills an elective requirement in the physical therapy program.

Examination and Treatment of the Running Athlete:  This lecture/laboratory course will provide the student with a comprehensive approach to the examination and treatment of the running athlete. The content addrressed in this course will focus upon running mechanics as they relate to performance and injury potential.  An emphasis on the utilization of video gait analysis as a key diagnostic and treatment tool will be incorporated throughout the course.  The most recent evidence-based practice guidelines for treatment intervention will be presented.  Laboratory sessions will focus on performing a functional biomechanical examination specific to runners, performing and interpreting selected special tests for the lower extremity, and development of specific therapeutic interventions for a variety of common running injuries.  This course fulfills an elective requirement in the physical therapy program.

Examination and Treatment of Vestibular Disorders:  This elective course will provide the student with a comprehensive approach to the examination and treatment of individuals with vertigo and disequilibrium from vestibular causes.  The course will emphasize diagnostic procedures, PT assessment skills, and treatment skills to effectively manage individuals with vestibular deficits. Concussion evaluation and management will be covered secondary to the role of the vestibular system dysfunction in post-concussive syndrome.  Neuropsychological testing as well as vestibular-visual interaction will be addressed because of the importance of a multi-modal approach to recovery.  The most recent evidence-based practice guidelines for treatment intervention will be presented and opportunities will be provided for assessment and treatment of individuals with vestibular deficits.