Undergraduate physiotherapy student perceptions of teaching and learning activities associated with clinical education

Steve Milanese, Susan Gordon, Aya Pellatt

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    Clinical education presents a unique learning experience in contrast to the classroom-based teaching approach. Clinical education represents a less controlled learning environment than the classroom, making it difficult for educationalists to plan a stable and equitable clinical education experience for all students. Given the issues associated with clinical education understanding the experience from the perspective of the student may help identify strategies to improve the learning process, and facilitate engagement. This study surveyed a cohort of final year physiotherapy students from James Cook University, Townsville, Australia, about their perceptions of teaching and learning activities during clinical placements. Students reported that the most valuable activities involved individual patient-centred learning activities with adequate discussion and immediate feedback which included information about the student’s limitations, skills, knowledge, and attitude. The least valuable learning opportunities in clinical education were those which were not directly related to patient care and which involved being tutored by, observing or being examined by other students. The results of this study indicate that clinical educators may need to reframe teaching activities to ensure that the students see the value of them as learning opportunities within the clinical education experience.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)439-444
    Number of pages6
    JournalPhysical Therapy Reviews
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2013

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2013, © W. S. Maney & Son Ltd 2013.

    Copyright 2018 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


    • Clinical education
    • Physiotherapy
    • Teaching and learning opportunities


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