PHS250 Evolving Physiotherapy Clinical Practice (8)

'Evolving Physiotherapy Clinical Practice' is the second in a series of subjects utilising a problem based learning pedagogy to progressively develop students' knowledge and skills of physiotherapy practice. This subject will further develop students' skills in physiotherapy practice with emphasis on orthopaedic physiotherapy practice. It will also prepare students for the safe and effective use of electro-physical agents in clinical practice. Students will further develop professional communication skills, becoming more analytical of the complexities of inter-personal and cross cultural communication, and developing skills in reviewing and adjusting their interview and interpersonal communication in a culturally responsive way. Students will advance their skills in evidence based physiotherapy and the use of a strengths-based approach within the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) framework. Specific learning objectives relating to professional values, culture and ethical responsibilities in practice will be embedded in the subject, including: consideration of Australia's historical and ongoing dominant cultural approaches; students' personal cultural preferences and values and how these inform their own approach to healthcare; and how the Western values embedded in physiotherapy and the health system will impact on the experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders using the services. The concept of resilience, as it applies to health professionals and the people they work with, will be addressed. Students enrolled in this subject will complete 20 days of workplace learning experience. This work experience may include simulation, community projects, working in a health care setting, or a combination of these.


Session 2 (60)
On Campus
Albury-Wodonga Campus
Orange Campus
Port Macquarie Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: PHS250. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Community Health

Enrolment Restrictions

This subject is only available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Physiotherapy and the Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Honours).

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to plan and apply a physiotherapy assessment using relevant tests, tools and outcome measures across selected clinical scenarios in orthopaedics and in the use of electro-physical agents
  • be able to use clinical reasoning processes to explore and explain assessment findings
  • be able to set goals and plan and apply safe and effective physiotherapy intervention for selected case scenarios in orthopaedics and in the use of electro-physical agents
  • be able to demonstrate professional behaviour appropriate to physiotherapy, including critical appraisal and reflection
  • be able to describe the concept of strengths-based knowledge and communication, evaluate their communication skills with a particular focus on culturally respectful and responsive communication, and develop strategies for improvement through self-reflection
  • be able to examine their own cultural values, and the culture of Physiotherapy, and analyse the impact of these and the broader health system on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health service experiences
  • be able to research and apply evidence to a physiotherapy scenario and create and share the information in a multimodal digital format


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Clinical reasoning integrating applied anatomy, applied biomechanics, physiology (especially pain), social and psychological factors, and responses to illness and pain, in the management of orthopaedic conditions
  • Comprehensive client management approaches for orthopaedic physiotherapy, including inter-professional collaboration, goal setting, and chronic pain management
  • Introduction to foundational cardiorespiratory assessment and treatment skills
  • Background theory, evidence and practical applications of electro-physical agents as relevant to the practice of orthopaedic physiotherapy
  • Rural and Indigenous Australian health issues, with reference to impact of geography, access to services, and culture and personal values on health service delivery
  • Ethical and professional practice as relevant to clinical practice including: advocacy for Indigenous Australian peoples; ensuring culturally safe and responsive practice, including cultural humility and the development of respectful relationships; self-assessment of scope of practice and referral of clients to other health professionals as required; and reflection on own practice and development of attributes
  • The use of evidence-based practice to support decision making in orthopaedics and use of electro-physical agents
  • Communication skills: culturally respectful and responsive communication, communicating with other health professionals, and documenting client notes using accepted procedures and to professional standard
  • Digital literacy and capacity to research evidence, including consideration of relevant: search terms, databases/sites, search strategies, type of evidence sought, quality and applicability of findings

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of PHS250 in Session 2 2020. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Teamwork and collaboration
Reflective practice: culture and communication
Epa competencies
Practical assessment - enhancing mobility
Clinical placement - enhancing mobility

Workplace Learning

This subject contains a 20 days Compulsory Workplace Learning component.

Students enrolled in this subject will complete 20 days of workplace learning experience.  This work experience may include simulation, community projects, working in a health care setting, or a combination of these.

Special Resources

Students may undertake a workplace learning experince and  will be responsible for any associated accommodation and transportation costs.

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.