Lyon-Murphy, Alison (2016) Facilitation: It’s not as easy as you think - A novel approach to teaching handling skills, in neurology, to undergraduate physiotherapy students. In: Inspire Conference 2016, 21st June 2016, University of Huddersfield, UK. (Unpublished)

This paper discusses a learning intervention designed to help second year students bridge the practice/ theory gap as a basis for developing clinical reasoning skills in movement re-education.
Physiotherapists working in neurology aim to re-education movement dysfunction, often through the use a ‘hands on’ approach to facilitate muscle activity. This involves a high level of clinical reasoning requiring analysis ‘of’ and reflection ‘on’ the effects of handling based on theoretical principles, an area students’ find challenging.
The intervention consisted of students randomly selecting and facilitating a movement task. No communication of any kind was allowed whilst the task was being facilitated, and only the facilitator was aware of the task selected.
The findings suggest that the exercise contributed to an improvement in students’ confidence in clinical reasoning and that the link between theoretical knowledge and practical application was clearer. Student engagement in learning was enhanced, suggesting that this approach is an effective way of promoting clinical reasoning skills in regard to re-education of movement.


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