PHS314 Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy Practice (8)

In this subject, students will further develop the fundamental principles and practical skills for the physiotherapy management of musculoskeletal conditions (including sports injuries). Students will continue to apply a problem solving approach in the assessment and management of specific conditions that may affect the musculoskeletal system. Learning in this subject will focus initially on the upper limb and progress to the cervical spine and systemic inflammatory conditions. Students enrolling in this subject are expected to have a substantive level of background knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the musculoskeletal system, foundation levels of knowledge of musculoskeletal physiotherapy assessment and management, and a developing knowledge of biomechanics. Students enrolling in this subject will have successfully completed PHS313: Foundations of Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy Practice.


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

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: PHS314. 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 restricted to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Physiotherapy and Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Honours).



Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to plan and apply a range of physiotherapy assessment and evaluation techniques using tests, tools and outcome measures relevant to the upper limb, thoracic and cervical spine
  • be able to demonstrate and articulate sound clinical reasoning processes which explore, explain and analyse assessment findings
  • be able to plan safe and effective physiotherapy intervention for disorders of the upper limb, thoracic and cervical spine
  • be able to justify situations in which physiotherapy intervention is no longer required and cease intervention or refer to another practitioner
  • be able to locate, evaluate and use evidence-based information to inform decision making and develop and guide their own knowledge, learning and practice
  • be able to apply professional standards of quality musculoskeletal physiotherapy practice
  • be able to make and act on informed and appropriate decisions about acceptable professional and ethical behaviours
  • be able to communicate effectively to involve the client and relevant others in the planning and implementation of musculoskeletal physiotherapy practice
  • be able to critically analyse resources, synthesise the information and communicate effectively according to the context and audience
  • be able to reflect on professional practice to determine the actions they need to undertake to continually improve; to recognise situations outside their competence; and to take timely and appropriate actions


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Theoretical principles of musculoskeletal management
  • Specific musculoskeletal history taking, imaging and physical examination procedures
  • Upper limb and cervical spine musculoskeletal disorders and their implications for physiotherapy assessment and intervention
  • The implications of signs and symptoms to the assessment and management of clients with disorders of the upper limb, thoracic and cervical spine
  • Appropriate application of physiotherapy skills in the management of upper limb and cervical spine musculoskeletal disorders
  • Outcome measures relevant to musculoskeletal physiotherapy intervention
  • Evidence-based practice in musculoskeletal physiotherapy

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of PHS314 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 %
Journal club presentation
Practical exam
Theory exam (online)

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.