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Facilitating effective methods of physical therapy student learning during shadowing experiences

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Title: Facilitating effective methods of physical therapy student learning during shadowing experiences
Author: Bennett, Jami; Aiers, Jen; Chicoine, Anna; Gagne, Erin; Gardiner, Susan; Bainbridge, Lesley
Subject Keywords shadowing;clinical placement;physical therapy;socialization;clinical education
Issue Date: 2012-08-10
Publicly Available in cIRcle 2012-09-18
Series/Report no. University of British Columbia; PHTH 572
Abstract: Purpose: Shadow experiences have been identified as valuable learning opportunities that help students become more comfortable in the clinical setting and subsequently more effective learners in the classroom. Shadowing provides students with the opportunity to access and observe leadership behaviours and characteristics demonstrated by practicing therapists. A highly effective and satisfying shadow experience that socializes the student to the profession and increases confidence in clinical environments is currently not well defined. Methods: Student perspectives were evaluated using post-shadow experience surveys and focus groups to explore attitudes towards and satisfaction with the shadowing experience. Preceptors contributed their perspectives in a focus group addressing themes identified through student surveys. Faculty members involved in coordinating clinical education for health profession students at the University of British Columbia participated in interviews. Qualitative analysis was used for all data. Results: We identified five essential themes contributing to the shadowing experience: structure of the experience, curriculum and assignments, preceptor, socialization, and inter-professional practice. Conclusion: The themes and findings from all stakeholders inform specific recommendations for improvement of the shadow placement experience. We suggest shadow experiences undertaken with multiple students focused on exposure to varied physical therapy practice areas followed by guided reflections to maximize transformational learning.
Affiliation: Physical Therapy, Dept of
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/43222
Peer Review Status: Unreviewed
Scholarly Level: Graduate

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