Clinical Practicum II

I.     Course Prefix/Number: PTA 162

       Course Name: Clinical Practicum II

       Credits: 2 (1 lecture; 12.5 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

PTA 107, PTA 110, PTA 161 and BIO 232 with minimum grade of C in all courses.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course is a five-week clinical experience consisting of 40 hours a week in a clinical facility and weekly class meetings. Content includes opportunities for establishing and following individual patient treatments and programs, performing consecutive treatments; gaining insights into medical, departmental, and institutional functions and organization. On-campus sessions include reinforcement of techniques and skills, communication skills and discussion of the PTA role.

IV.   Learning Objectives

  1. Upon completion of the clinical experience the student is able to:
    1. Apply previously learned skills and knowledge to a clinical environment.
    2. Perform patient care interventions with the appropriate supervision of a licensed physical therapist and/or physical therapist assistant in a safe, legal and ethical manner.
      1. developing proficiency with simple and some complex tasks
      2. read and follow the physical therapy evaluation and plan of care prior to treating the patient
      3. share patient care workload with the clinical instructor. Begin to carry own caseload of routine or uncomplicated patients as appropriate
      4. contribute to discharge planning and follow-up care
    3. Adapt treatment to the needs of the individual patient on a continuing basis and within the established treatment plan.
    4. Maintain safety of self, patient and others in the provision of care in all situations.
    5. Know the clinical facility’s organization, standards, policies and procedures including those for health, safety, and confidentiality of patients and staff.
    6. Display awareness of the PTA role in the clinical facility.
    7. Demonstrate ability to communicate in a professional manner with patients, families, colleagues and other personnel.
      1. display appropriate verbal and nonverbal communication skills
      2. compose documentation for patients treated utilizing format of the clinical facility
      3. utilize correct medical terminology and abbreviations
    8. Recognize the physical, emotional and social effects of diagnoses commonly treated in the facility.
    9. Maintain professional appearances and behavior;
      1. adhere to facility dress code
      2. display punctuality, industry and self-discipline
      3. accept responsibility for own behavior
      4. place patient’s needs above own self-interest
    10. Practice cooperation with other health professionals, support staff, patients and families and maintain a good working relationship with the clinical instructor and other members of the health care team.
    11. Organize self with respect to time management and efficient planning. Demonstrate industry, punctuality and self-discipline.
    12. Initiate self-directed problem solving for clinical issues. Make appropriate use of facility resources and staff for own learning. Present an in service or perform a project for the facility.
    13. Demonstrate awareness of own abilities and strive to improve knowledge and technical skill.
    14. Display sensitivity to cultural, age and gender differences of patients, families, and other professionals encountered in the clinical setting.
    15. Participate in additional duties as assigned.
  2. Upon completion of the lecture the student is able to:
    1. Utilize objective communication skills.
    2. Describe relevant employment legislation and employee rights.
    3. Describe the role of the PTA in the current clinical affiliation.
    4. Describe the role, responsibilities and interdepartmental functioning of the manager of the current clinical affiliation facility.
    5. Display recognition of and sensitivity to cultural differences.
    6. Relate first year physical therapy study to concrete situations.
  3. Throughout both the clinical and lecture portions of the course, the student will:
    1. Demonstrate understanding and acceptance of their own strengths and weaknesses and the scope of their abilities in the delivery of patient care.
    2. Display an understanding of and respect for patients’ rights to privacy, confidentiality, safety and choice.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

Lecture Component of the course:

  1. Documentation:
    1. Review of SOAP format
    2. Guidelines for reimbursement
    3. Intro to Medical coding systems
  2. Employee Rights:
    1. Legislation and practices
    2. Examples from physical therapy
  3. Role of Facility Manager:
    1. Relation to PTA role
    2. PTA responsibilities
  4. Ethics in Health Care:
    1. Making ethical decisions applying standards of conduct
    2. PTA responsibilities for protection of patient privacy
  5. Discussion of clinical experiences reflecting concrete situations and PTA role.

VII.  Methods of Instruction

The lecture portion of the course will be online using D2L format requiring posting, independent study assignments, journal writing and discussion. Clinical portion of course is taught off campus at assigned clinical facility by clinical staff.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

  1. Course lecture component is taught online.
  2. Students must attend 40 hours of clinical affiliation time (or the full-time equivalent for the facility) per week for 5 weeks. Any missed clinical time must be made up at the convenience of the facility supervisor and could extend the clinical experience beyond 5 weeks if necessary.
  3. Students must participate in D2L online class activities, complete assignments, and post accordingly.
  4. Students must submit a written evaluation of their clinical facility at the end of their rotation.
  5. Interview the facility manager and prepare typed report, as scheduled.
  6. Post assignments and discussions.
  7. Keep a daily journal describing interventions performed, treatment outcomes and personal reflections. Compose progress notes as directed.
  8. Meet with supervising academic faculty and clinical instructor to communicate information about the program and student clinical performance.
  9. Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Online or web based materials only. No text required.

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

  1. Attendance in clinic and participation online
  2. Interview assignment
  3. In service assignment
  4. Progress Notes
  5. Log Book/Journal
  6. Midterm clinical visit by OCC faculty member
  7. Final course grade composite of 40% class work and 60% clinical evaluation
  8. Note: Grades will not be “rounded-up” for clinical or class work.

XI.   Other Course Information

Attendance mandatory at clinical facility. Missed clinical time must be made up. Active participation in on-line course activities is required.

Students found guilty of plagiarism/cheating are subject to dismissal from program and/or disciplinary action under the Code of Student Conduct.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at