Workplace Issues in Physical Therapy

I.     Course Prefix/Number: PTA 241

       Course Name: Workplace Issues in Physical Therapy

       Credits: 1 (1 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

PTA 162 with minimum grade of C; concurrent enrollment in PTA 207, PTA 210 and PTA 211.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course introduces pertinent issues of physical therapy work environment. Content includes work expectations; administrative and departmental organization; various types of clinical treatment pathways and progressions.

IV.   Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course the student is able to:

  1. Identify differences in the work expectations at various types of physical therapy facilities.
  2. Follow appropriate lines of communication based on organizational structure.
  3. Recognize selected types of reimbursement for physical therapy services.
  4. Describe appropriate treatment progressions for selected clinical problems.
  5. Utilize various methods of documentation.
  6. Develop and present an in-service training program.
  7. Discuss how to productively contribute to society with the knowledge and skill of a Physical Therapist Assistant.
  8. Develop good professional communication.
  9. Utilize the medical record and extract pertinent information needed to carry out the plan of care.
  10. Review HIPAA and Standard Precaution material as required annually.
  11. Complete accurate documentation that follows guidelines and specific documentation formats required by state practice acts, the practice setting and other regulatory agencies.
  12. Display professional behaviors as mandated by the APTA/IPTA.

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
www.oakton.edu/studentlife/student-handbook.pdf

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. Administrative organization of various types of physical therapy facilities.
    1. Work expectations
    2. Formal lines of communication
    3. Informal lines of communication
  2. Reimbursement Methods
    1. Types of insurance
    2. Medicare
  3. Treatment progression principles
  4. Functional goals and outcomes
  5. Reading and understanding the medical record.
  6. Elements of in-service training
  7. Documentation methods and practice
  8. Review HIPAA and Standard Precautions via MedCom

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Primarily lecture/discussion supplemented by appropriate audio-visual materials.

Course is taught face-to–face.


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

VIII. Course Practices Required

  1. Students are expected to attend all class sessions 1 hour per seek.
  2. Participate in class discussions and activities.
  3. Present a sample in-service training module.
  4. Do all assigned readings and homework.
  5. Course may be taught face-to-face.
  6. Renew HIPAA and Standard Precaution certification.

IX.   Instructional Materials

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

Selected handouts and articles and audiovisuals.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

  1. Exams and quizzes
  2. Written assignments
  3. Oral presentations
  4. Active participation in class discussions and activities

Grades will be determined based on percentage of total scores as follows:
A: 90-100%
B: 80-89.9%
C:70-79.9%

XI.   Other Course Information

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.

Students who inform the instructor in advance (at the beginning of the semester) of an intended absence for a MAJOR religious observance will not be penalized. However, instructors are not responsible for teaching material again and missed work, exams, or quizzes must be made up either in advance or immediately following the intended absence.



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 www.oakton.edu/title9/.

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at www.oakton.edu/lgbtq.

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.