Can Clinical Performance be Predicted By Reading and Analyzing Admissions Letters of Recommendation?


Physical therapy students participate in clinical education experiences which are essential to the development of entry-level clinicians, however, variability in the quality of clinical education experiences across clinical sites has implications for student readiness for clinical practice. Stakeholders from 2 regional consortia collaborated to develop an assessment self-study tool that articulates clinical education attributes of excellence. The purpose of this educational session is to introduce and discuss the potential uses of the self-study tool, Sites of Excellence in Clinical Education: Physical Therapy (SECE:PT), to develop, sustain and recognize excellence in clinical education.


Development of the SECE:PT was broken down into several steps: 1) identification of the attributes of excellence informed by a review of the literature and professional documents, 2) pilot use of self-study tool by 2 clinical sites, review of completed self-study responses, followed by interviews with the 2 SCCEs to elicit additional information, 3) presentation of the SECE: PT self-study tool to elicit stakeholder input at the 2018 Educational Leadership Conference, and 4) comparison of the SECE:PT items with the recently APTA published, Guidelines to Promote Excellence in Clinical Education Partnerships.


Changes were made to the initial version of the SECE:PT self-study tool through an iterative process. Information obtained from SCCEs after using the initial self-study tool informed revisions required to promote desired breadth and depth of responses. Academic and clinical educator input at the 2018 ELC provided validation of items included in the self-study and offered additional exemplars as indicators of excellence. Comparison of content to the APTAƕs, Guidelines to Promote Excellence in Clinical Education Partnerships, resulted in the addition of an item related to the provision of services in a legal and ethical manner and supported the need for assessment of the clinical education program by external reviewers.

Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme:

The SECE:PT provides a framework describing clinical education excellence. It can be used by clinical sites that aspire to attain these standards. Academic education partners and regional consortia would play a critical role in supporting the development of clinical sites using the information obtained from completion of the SECE: PT. Authors envision that this tool could be used as part of a voluntary process to attain national recognition as a SECE:PT. Development and sustainment of a formalized process that promotes recognition of SECE will require the active engagement of all members of the Education Leadership Partnership as part of an ongoing initiative to grow a culture of excellence in clinical education. *This session has direct relevance to 2 themes...1) innovating education to improve the clinical environment and 2) promoting student, clinician and faculty leadership and professional development.

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  • Control #: 26776
  • Type: Platform Presentation - Research Type
  • Event/Year: ELC2020
  • Authors: Yvonne Colgrove
  • Keywords:

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