Simuality 360 Video/Audio Immersive Simulation in Virtual Reality: An Innovative Academic Strategy to Improve Dpt Student Preparedness


Academic advising is a common practice in most if not all doctor of physical therapy (DPT) programs to promote student success, review academic progress, improve retention, and address professionalism issues.1 Many programs use a standardized form or have a list of items faculty are to cover with the students during these academic advising sessions. Typically, faculty are afforded the freedom to decide how to conduct their academic advising sessions with little direction on how this advising session should be completed.2 This non standardized approach to academic advising creates variability between faculty advisors and within DPT programs. Most academic advising is directed by the faculty advisor, not the student. Faculty advisors discuss how the students are doing, providing directives for how the student can improve. This type of advising is not driven by the student and often the advisement session is prescriptive and focused on what the faculty member feels is important rather than what the student would like to focus on.3 Despite the prevalence of academic advising in DPT programs, little to no research is present in the literature regarding academic advising and its overall effectiveness. Furthermore, no research has been done on the overall effectiveness of various methods of academic advising in PT programs.1 This lack of research results in faculty and DPT programs relying on personal preference and anecdotal experiences to inform their academic advising preferences. This investigation looks to explore the benefits of applying health coaching principles to academic advising in a DPT program, No research to date has been conducted applying health coaching principles to academic advising in DPT programs. Health coaching principles such as motivational interviewing, positive psychology, appreciative inquiry, and the development of SMART goals is well supported in the literature related to positive behavioral change and the benefits of these coaching techniques have in helping individuals improve their wellness and motivation to be well.4Ð8 More recently colleges and universities are beginning to provide health or success coaches to help students increase their success academically and improve their overall motivation.9 Applying coaching principles to academic advising shifts the session from more prescriptive to collaborative, meaning the student is more in control of the advising session. This coaching approach focuses on creating a collaborative environment for improving what the student feels is important. Emphasis is placed on increasing motivation by focusing on the studentÕs long term goals. In the case of DPT students, that means creating a clear vision and goal of becoming a doctor of physical therapy. Considering the rigors of DPT programs and the challenges students face it is hypothesized that pulling in the principles of health and wellness coaching to academic advising in DPT programs will be beneficial to students and their overall success in the DPT program. The purpose of this investigation is to determine if applying health coaching principles of motivational interviewing, positive psychology, appreciative inquiry, SMART goals, and the structure of a health coaching session positively impacts the academic advising sessions. The aims of this investigation include: ¥ÊIdentification of the perceived benefits of using a coaching approach for academic advisement. ¥ÊUnderstand the student perceptions and experiences of participating in an academic advisement session that uses a health coaching principles.


This is a longitudinal comparative study, using a mixed method approach. Students assigned to the investigators for academic advising are invited to enroll in this study. Subjects are randomized using an every other student approach into either a standard protocol advising group or a group using health coaching principles. After the advising session subjects receive a link to a survey to complete related to the advisement session. The survey focuses on the overall effectiveness of the session, their relationship with their faculty advisor, and the overall value they experience from the advisement session. Subjects are then invited to participate in a semi-structured interview to further explore their perceptions and experiences related to the advisement session. The interviews are recorded and transcribed. All transcribed interviews are analyzed using Nvivo, a qualitative data manager. Using a phenomenological framework all qualitative data is coded and common themes are identified. The survey data will is analyzed quantitatively based on which group the participant was randomized to; standard protocol or the coaching protocol. The following statistical tests are used to derive relevant information from the data Ð descriptive statistics, Cronbach-Alpha, Mann-Whitney U test, ANOVA, and regression analysis. The statistics are run through SPSS. Both data sets are then reviewed, compared, and triangulated looking for convergence or divergence of themes.


Preliminary data suggests higher rates of satisfaction and value in the coaching group. Data is currently still being collected thought June of 2020. A full analyses of all data sets will take place in July and be presented in this poster presentation.

Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme:

Making adjustments to academic advising appears to create stronger relationships between advisor and advisee. Shifting control of the advising sessions to the student appears to foster enhanced satisfaction and ownership of their performance in the classroom. Clear evidence of improved motivation and an enhanced link to the students long term goals was noted in the coaching protocol groups.

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  • Control #: 26844
  • Type: Platform Presentation - Research Type
  • Event/Year: ELC2020
  • Authors: Kelly Green
  • Keywords:

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