Physiotherapy clinical education in Australia: Development and validation of a survey instrument to profile clinical educator characteristics, experience and training requirements

Clint Newstead, Catherine L Johnston, Gillian Nisbet, Lindy McAllister

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Abstract

Clinical education (also termed “clinical supervision”) is essential for entry-level physiotherapy student training. Physiotherapists providing clinical education have a vital role in facilitating student learning and assessing performance, however research suggests that many assume this role due to willingness, availability or expectation rather than skills or experience. There is a lack of literature internationally describing the involvement of physiotherapists in clinical education, and currently no valid and reliable survey instrument with which to collect this information. The purpose of this study was to develop and validate a survey to explore physiotherapy clinical education in Australia. A draft online survey was developed and reviewed by expert physiotherapists, clinical education managers and clinical educators to ensure face and content validity. Following revision, physiotherapists employed in various healthcare facilities pilot-tested the survey. Survey utility and internal consistency were then evaluated. The final survey has 39 questions in five sections with categorical, Likert and free text response options. Internal consistency of the variables in the two Likert scale questions was acceptable (Cronbach’s alpha: 0.98 and 0.97, respectively). A valid and reliable survey has been developed and can be used to profile the professional characteristics of physiotherapy clinical educators, perceived barriers and training requirements related to the provision of clinical education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)154-169
Number of pages16
JournalNew Zealand Journal of Physiotherapy
Volume45
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2017

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