1. Practical examinations are a critical component of the grading for all Physical Therapist Assistant laboratory courses. Including:
PTA 106 Therapeutic Measurement
PTA 210 PTA Techniques
PTA 211 Physical Agents
PTA 212 Therapy Clinic
The Practical Examination for PTA 210 and PTA 211 is a combined activity that is graded separately following the objectives for the two classes. This allows the student/learner the opportunity to perform skills without attempting to segregate their knowledge while also facilitating the integration of his or her knowledge, which is appropriate. The single practical examination also reduces the student/learner stress level and time commitment, by having to schedule only one Practical Examination instead of two.
2. A copy of the score sheet for the practical examination is included in each course handbook that has a practical exam.
3. Student/learners receive written notification of the Practical Examination Test Schedule at least two days prior to the actual test date.
- This notification includes the schedule, clinician assignments, patient assignments and instructions specific to the course(s) in which the examination is being graded.
4. Student/learners are assigned patients (fellow classmates) for the scheduled time slots in the official Practical Examination Test for a given class.
5. A student/learner will not be assigned patient responsibilities for the classmate that they were assigned to treat. (Switching) (Except for a re-examination, when this might occur)
6. The amount of time that student/learners will be required to be available for official Practical Examination Tests will be dependent upon the number of student/learners in the class and will be kept to a minimum as long as patient “switching” does not occur.
7. Student/learners will select their patient scenario “blindly” from the choices available for the course.
- Patients are then assigned a given diagnosis to portray based on the scenario selected by his or her clinician.
8. Patient scenarios remain the property of the PTA program and will not be permitted to leave PTA program faculty offices or MS 352 under any circumstances.
9. Student/learners must pass the Practical Examination by earning a passing grade AND a minimum grade of “8” on items 9 & 10 on the Practical Examination score sheets. (Those learners who are unsuccessful may not proceed to the next clinical education course until they pass the practical examination.)
10. Student/learners may review the score sheet with one of the PTA program faculty by appointment after completion of the Practical Examination.
- Student/learners will earn the numerical score for the Practical Examination which will be calculated into the total numerical grade for the individual course. This number in combination with the other graded activities in the course will determine whether or not the individual has either passed or failed the course.
12. Student/learners who are re-taking the Practical Examination, will not be permitted to use the same patient scenario with which they were previously unsuccessful.
13. In the event that there has been a significant time lapse from the successful completion of a lab based course or courses and the beginning of a clinical education course, the student/learner must successfully pass the Practical exams for the courses that have transpired during the lapse of time in order to progress into the clinical education course.
In the event that a student/learner has had a delay in his or her academic progress within the PTA program curriculum, and is planning on re-entering the program and continuing with clinical courses, the following additional criteria apply.
• Student/Learners must meet with the Program Coordinator to determine the necessary Practical Examinations that must be passed.
• The student/learner must demonstrate competence in clinical skills through the
successful completion of one or more practical exams that encompass the
curriculum that had been completed prior to the departure from the PTA program
and consistent with what is required of all student/learners to enter the next
scheduled clinical education course.
• The student/learner must schedule an appointment with the Program Coordinator to determine what other steps if any should be taken to help ensure successful re-entry/continuation in the PTA program. There is no guarantee that a space will be available in the PTA program or clinical education sites if a student/learner does delay his or her progress within the program for personal reasons.
All practical exams must be successfully completed prior to the start of the next academic semester in which the student/learner is planning on re-entering or continuing the PTA program. There will be NO re-takes for Practical Exams for re-entry into the program.
These policies represent the decisions of the faculty members of the Physical Therapist Assistant program. The decisions made reflect the best interest of the safety of patients and the integrity of the program. 2/03, 2/04, 5/04, 9/04, 11/04, 11/06, 1/07, 12/07.