Feasibility of Use of the Clinical Internship Evaluation Tool (CIET) in Full-Time Clinical Education Experiences


The Clinical Performance Instrument (CPI) is the most widely used clinical education assessment tool in DPT education. Anecdotal reports of excessive completion time, redundant items, and technical issues have led educators to seek other options. The Clinical Internship Evaluation Tool (CIET) is an alternate assessment tool with proven reliability and validity in one academic program. The CIET potentially decreases CI burden while retaining the ability to accurately document student performance during a full-time clinical education experience (CEE). The purpose of this study is to investigate the feasibility of the CIET to measure DPT student performance in full-time CEE across the United States.


Clinical instructors and DPT students engaged in full-time CEE were recruited using non-probability convenience sampling from 5 geographically diverse DPT programs. The studentÕs grade in the course was determined based on the programÕs course syllabus. Participants completed a CIET training module and then completed the CPI and CIET at the midterm and final evaluation. Participants completed a post-survey that collected demographic data and asked questions related to tool feasibility and ease of use. Researchers performed descriptive statistics using Spearman correlation for the majority of the survey questions and KendallÕs tau-c for comparison of CEE in relation to curricular timing.


Eighty-seven participants (49 DPT students; 38 CIs) ranging in age from 27-82 completed the study. More CIs and students had previous experience with the CPI (82.8%) than the CIET (6.9%). The majority of CIs (92.1%) and students (89.8%) indicated that the CIET completion time was < 45 minutes. Less CIs (31.6%) and students (26.8%) reported CPI completion time of < 45 minutes. CIs were more likely than students to agree or strongly agree that the time to complete the CPI is appropriate (p < .05). There was no statistically significant difference between CIs and students in the actual minutes spent to complete the CPI. Students (67.3%) and CIs (68.4%) preferred the CIET to the CPI. Students did not have different perceptions of how well the CIET or CPI detected change or defined their current status regardless of the curricular timing of their CEE. Students and CIs stated in qualitative comments that the CIET and CPI items are relevant but there are item redundancies more so in the CPI than the CIET.

Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme:

Results from this study suggest CIs and students are interested in assessment tools that have less redundancies and can be completed in < 60 minutes while still retaining the ability to accurately measure student performance in clinic. Clinical education requires innovative, efficient assessment tools to match the dynamic needs of a changing healthcare environment. Decreasing the administrative burden on CIs will provide more time in patient care and mentoring students.

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  • Control #: 26539
  • Type: Platform Presentation - Research Type
  • Event/Year: ELC2020
  • Authors: Marisa Birkmeier
  • Keywords:

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