and your graduate program handbook should serve as your main guide throughout your graduate career. The Graduate Student Handbook includes university information, policies, requirements and guidance for all graduate students. Your program handbook describes the details about graduate study and requirements in your specific program. While both of these handbooks are wonderful resources, know that you are always welcome to talk with faculty and staff in your program and in the Graduate College.
The central activities and missions of a university rest upon the fundamental assumption that all members of the university community conduct themselves in accordance with a strict adherence to academic and scholarly integrity. As a graduate student and member of the university community, you are expected to display the highest standards of academic and personal integrity.
The Physical Therapy faculty will also use the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice of the American Physical Therapy Association and the State of Florida Statutes governing the practice of Physical Therapy to address problems created when a student does not adhere to these standards.
The Program in Physical Therapy has established standards of admission, retention, and graduation in accordance with its mission and philosophy. The Physical Therapy curriculum has been designed to prepare its graduates to meet the levels of comprehension and competency expected of an entry-level physical therapist. Furthermore, standards of and conduct for students have been set to ensure appropriate professional growth during the student’s Physical Therapy education.
Grading Policies and Expectations
Each student’s academic progress is reviewed by both the Physical Therapy Program and the Division of Graduate Studies each semester. Students who have not met conditions or restrictions of their admission may be prohibited from further study in the program. Additionally, students who have not performed to academic standards of the program or university will be placed on Probationary Status or Dismissed from the program.
In accordance with the College of Graduate Studies’ Policies and with the minimum university standards for satisfactory performance to continue graduate study, the doctoral program in physical therapy maintains the following requirements for all DPT students:
Students must maintain a graduate status GPA of at least 3.0 or higher in order to maintain regular graduate student status, receive financial assistance, and quality for graduation. This GPA requirement cannot be waived.
A student may apply a maximum total of six semester credit hours of “C” grades, or the “C” grade credits associated with at most two classes, whichever is greater, to satisfy degree program requirements. “C” grades (C, C+, C-), as well as D, D+, D-, F, and U grades, are all considered unsatisfactory grades. Exceeding six semester credit hours of unsatisfactory grades is grounds for dismissal for all degree-seeking and non-degree students. A course in which a student has received an unsatisfactory grade may be repeated, however both grades will be used in computing the GPA. There is no forgiveness policy for any course taken while in graduate status.” Receive no more than 6 credits of C+ (or lower) grades in graduate-level coursework, or in two courses, whichever is greater.
Receiving a grade of D+ (or lower), a grade of U, more than six credits of C+ (or lower) grades or failing to maintain a 3.0 graduate GPA is grounds for Dismissal from the program.
If a student fails to meet the minimum grade standards as defined by the Program in Physical
Therapy, they must retake any courses for which they received unsatisfactory grades. The opportunity to re-take courses is at the discretion of the Department of Health Professions and the university and will not be granted if the student is dismissed from the program. In cases where courses are retaken, both grades are factored into the graduate GPA. There is no grade forgiveness in graduate programs.
The approval of the Director of Clinical Education and Physical Therapy Retention and Advancement Committee to enter into the clinical internship(s) in the program.
No grade of a “D” or “F” in a DPT curriculum course or a prerequisite course taken after a conditional admission to the program.
No ‘unsatisfactory’ grade in a clinical education course.
Any violation of these standards may result in the student being placed on academic probation or dismissal from the program.
Students who are dismissed for unsatisfactory progress will be removed from current semester courses and any future semester registration will be cancelled. Dismissed students will not be allowed to take additional courses in the program. After Dismissal, a student may only continue graduate study at UCF by applying as a non-degree seeking student or applying to another graduate program.
Probation and Dismissal Policy
Probationary Status in the Physical Therapy program means that the student is in difficulty (academic, professional or ethical) within the program. A student cannot graduate from the Physical Therapy program while on probationary status.
A student may be placed on Academic Probation by the Physical Therapy Program, and be notified if any of the following occur:
Current semester grade point average falls below the required 3.00 GPA. Students will be notified in writing if the semester grade point average falls below the required 3.00. The student will have one academic semester (9 credit hours) to bring the GPA above a 3.00 to be removed from probation. Within one week after having received the probation notice, the student must initiate consultation with the Program Director in order to analyze the reasons for academic difficulties. If the student is in his/her last semester of academic or clinical work, the student may be asked to meet with the faculty.
‘U’ grade is received in a Clinical Education Physical Therapy course. Any problems encountered by the student in a clinical education course must be identified in writing by the Clinical Instructor and/or the Center Coordinator of Clinical Education (CCCE) and shared with the student and the Director of Clinical Education of the program (DCE). Problems may include, but are not limited to practicing in an unsafe manner, causing harm or injury to a patient or staff member, lack of professional behavior, or failing to comply with ethical or legal standards of practice.
If a student fails or is requested to terminate a clinical affiliation by the affiliation site, the student’s performance will be evaluated by the Director of Clinical Education, who, in consultation with the Retention and Advancement Committee will provide a recommendation to the Program Director on the course of action. This may include either the dismissal of the student from the program, or a remediation of the clinical. A formal plan may also include didactic coursework and/or counseling.
If the clinical education course is allowed or mandated to be repeated, it will be at a different clinical facility during the subsequent academic year. The Director of Clinical Education, using feedback from the Clinical Instructor, will determine successful completion of the repeat experience. The time length of the remediated clinical will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Students may also be asked to sign a behavioral contract in remediation of a clinical affiliation. If the identified behavior is not corrected, the student will be dismissed from the program.
A student will be granted only one opportunity to repeat a clinical affiliation and reinstated in an alternative clinical site. If the student fails or is requested to leave more than one clinical site, the student may be summarily dismissed from the Physical Therapy program.
Removal of Probationary Status
Probationary status will be removed when:
The cumulative GPA is above a 3.00 in the following semester (≥ 9 credit hours).
In the case of a ‘U’ grade, when objectives and criteria for the repeat of the clinical experience are successfully completed for an ‘S’ grade.
Students will be notified in writing when probationary status has been removed.
The following may be grounds for dismissal from the Program in Physical Therapy.
Receiving a “D” or “F” grade in a course listed as a part of the DPT program’s curriculum. The student may be summarily dismissed from the program at that time.
A semester grade point average below a 3.00 in any semester places the student on academic probation. A second consecutive semester below a 3.00 is grounds for dismissal and the student will be reverted to non-degree status.
A graduate student may earn only six hours of “C” grades, or “C” grades in two courses, whichever credit hour total is greater. Exceeding this limit is reason for dismissal from the program. There is no forgiveness policy on graduate grades and students may not graduate with a GPA below 3.0. At such time, with approval of the faculty, a student may choose to retake any courses where they received a grade of “C”. However, the student will not be permitted to take any advanced courses until they have re-mediated the earlier courses.
Faculty may discuss student progress after mid-term exams. Students whose coursework is below “C” will initiate and discuss this problem with their instructor and their advisor. If a student earns more than 3 hours of “C” grades, he or she is expected to discuss academic performance with the Program Director.
The course in which the first “U” grade is earned must be repeated. The second “U” grade in the repeat experience or in any later clinical Physical Therapy course will be grounds for dismissal.
Cheating, which includes plagiarizing of materials from previously published sources. Students will not discuss the content of written or oral examinations or laboratory practical examinations until cleared to do so by the course instructor. See Golden Rule, UCF’s Student Handbook- Rules of Conduct.
Unprofessional behavior. Behavior that is inconsistent with a professional physical therapist or failure to correct unprofessional behavior as defined by the “Physical Therapy - Specific Generic Abilities” is grounds for dismissal from the Program. This includes failure to attend classes or unexcused absences.
DISMISSAL FROM THE PHYSICAL THERAPY PROGRAM DOES NOT MEAN DISMISSAL FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA.
Personal Leave of Absence
Should a student find it necessary to seek a non-academic leave of absence, he/she must submit a written request to the Program Director documenting:
A rational statement that supports the leave as being beneficial to the student’s personal growth and progress.
Period of requested leave of absence. Whenever possible, the request for a personal leave of absence should be submitted at least one month prior to the first day of the requested leave.
Leaves of absence will be handled on an individual basis; however, the student must be aware that the sequential nature of the curriculum will necessitate a leave of one (1) year’s duration.
The Program Director will notify the student in writing of the status of his/her request within ten (10) working days of the request. Any consideration for a refund of fees shall comply with the refund policies of the University.
Notification of a return from a leave of absence must be submitted to the Program Director at least three months (3) months prior to re-enrollment. An extension to a leave of absence must be requested by letter to the Program Director.
Withdrawl from the Program in Physical Therapy
Any students considering withdrawing from the Program in Physical Therapy should contact his/her (1) Physical Therapy Advisor (2) and the Program Director. Students will be asked to document this plan in a letter to the Program Director. Withdrawal from the Program does not constitute withdrawal from the University.
Grievance and Policy/Procedure
Due process for students’ complaints:
The Physical Therapy Program guarantees due process to students, assuring to the extent possible, safety and confidentiality in the process and its outcome. The faculty is charged to exercise their best judgment to attempt to obtain an optimal result for the student involved in this process. Faculty members and students owe each other mutual respect and civility. Student problems should be resolved, whenever possible, before the filing of a formal written grievance, and open communication is encouraged so that resorting to formal grievance procedures will not be necessary. Informal resolution of grievances may be continued throughout the process. Time limits specified in this section may be extended by mutual agreement of the parties. Upon failure by the university or its representatives to provide a decision within the time limits provided in this section or any extension thereof, the grievant may appeal to the next appropriate level. Upon failure of the grievant or counsel to file an appeal, or take prescribed action, within the time limits provided, the grievance shall be deemed to have been resolved at the prior level.
- It is the university policy to encourage the informal resolution of grievances directly between the parties. If this cannot be accomplished, the grievant is encouraged to continue informal resolution presenting the problem orally through appropriate administrative channels up to, but not including, the office of the vice provost in whose area the respondent is employed.
- The student must present the complaint to the lowest possible level. That is, if the complaint is related to a specific course issue, the complaint must be initially addressed to the faculty member(s) offering the course. If the student feels the situation has not been successfully resolved at this level, the student can request further consideration of the complaint at the level of the Program Director, through personal communication.
- Upon request, a Petitions & Grievances Committee (P&G committee) member will inform the grievant as to the appropriate administrative steps to be followed in an attempt to secure resolution.
Formal process: This process is recommended if the informal process does not solve the situation. Formal process is outlined in the UCF Golden Rule (http://goldenrule.sdes.ucf.edu/) and is summarized in the following:
Initiation of a complaint- The student must present the complaint at the level of the Program Director in writing. The student has the responsibility to give accurate and complete information about the situation expected to be addressed, including date, circumstances, and additional information that can assist in solving such situation. The grievant shall notify the P& G committee in writing the nature of their complaint and any informal steps taken to resolve the issue.
Within ten (10) working days the P & G committee shall schedule a meeting of the parties to hear the facts of the case.
Within five (5) days thereafter, the committee will issue a formal opinion as to the merits of the case. If the parties agree with the committee’s recommendations, the dispute will be considered resolved.
If the student feels that his or her complaint was not resolved, he or she may request a petition for exception through an appeals process. Requests for exceptions should be made in writing to the Petition and Grievance Committee. This committee will collect information on the factual basis of the grievance or petition and make a recommendation to the Program Director. The Program Director may approve or reject the petition or grievance.
Resolution of the complaint at the program level. The Program Director will inform the student in writing of the outcomes of the complaint no later than 15 calendar days after the written complaint has been received at the appropriate level. This may include a plan of action to solve the issue. The Program Director may inform the student on steps to follow in proceeding with the complaint, according to institutional policies and procedures.
If the student wishes to challenge this decision, he or she may then petition the Department Chair, in writing, that an exception be made. The petition or grievance may be further pursued to the Dean as outlined in the Golden Rule.
All petitions or grievances must be filed on the appropriate form and the committee will respond to the student within ten (10) business days.
Grievances pertaining to the following matters shall not be processed by this committee:
Disciplinary actions taken under UCF Rules of Conduct
Traffic and Parking Violations
The professional judgment of licensed practitioners in health-related professions
Complaints that fall outside of due process
When there is a complaint by a party that falls outside of due process, the complaint will be brought to the Program Director, who will then consult with the Petitions & Grievances Committee within ten (10) days of receiving the complaint.
Although the Program will aim to address and resolve issues that arise in this manner, based on the nature and scope of the complaint, the party may or may not receive a response by the Program Director or Petitions and Grievances Committee. All complaints will be held in a secure electronic file by the DPT Program Director.
If a Program policy differs from the University policy, the University policy will prevail except where Programs have the prerogative to establish policy.
Class attendance is a privilege and is mandatory for all students. If a student needs to be absent from class, the student must notify his/her instructor and be given permission to be absent. Notification of unexpected absences such as illness should be given to an instructor by leaving a message on their phone, email, or other appropriate means as outlined in course syllabus. The student must consult with the instructor immediately upon return. The student is responsible for arranging with his/her instructor for adequate make-up work immediately upon return. Each faculty member has the option of reducing the student’s course grade for each absence.
If a student has excessive absences in a semester, the student may be requested, at the option of the faculty and Program Director, to take a leave of absence from the Program. The student would then have to wait a year and rejoin the Program at the appropriate place in the curriculum.
Students are expected to be prompt and on time for classroom and laboratory experiences. Each faculty member has the option of reducing a student's course grade for repeated lateness. The total deduction for tardiness and absences will not exceed 10% of the final grade.
Students are responsible for reporting health, family or other problems that may necessitate absences to the Program Director.
The development of a healthcare professional is of utmost importance to the Program pf Physical Therapy. Professionalism encompasses areas of behavior and qualities that are expected of physical therapy students in the school setting and in the student clinical experiences. Attendance, timeliness and attire are all reflections of professionalism. When professionalism is assessed, instructors will also consider each student’s conduct in their class, the quality of content of interaction, the contribution to class discussion as related to preparedness. Students who are in violation of these behaviors will be cited and counseled. Repeated disregard or violation of these behaviors may constitute a serious problem. The faculty may then decide that the student is not yet capable of professional responsibility and the professional role. The faculty may recommend remedial action, a leave of absence, or may request that the student resign from the program. See Probation Policy.
Some of the criteria by which a student’s professional demeanor is measured are:
- Adherence to the rules and regulations as stipulated by the University of Central Florida and the Program in Physical Therapy.
- Attendance: It is required for students to attend each lecture and absences will not be excused unless previously determined by the instructor. In the rare instance that a student cannot attend class, it is their responsibility to obtain class information from a fellow classmate.
- Timeliness: Students are expected to be on time. Tardiness will be reflected in the professionalism portion of each grade.
- Being respectful and courteous to fellow students and to other professional and non-professional personnel. Respect to those presenting or speaking is expected.
- Guest Speakers / Presentations: The DPT Program often utilizes guest speakers from the community. Students in the program must demonstrate professional conduct, respect, and appreciation for these professionals’ donation of their time to further your education. Professional attire and conduct is required when guest speakers are present.
- Recognizing personal or professional limitations and requesting assistance when necessary.
- Class Participation: Asking questions at appropriate times to expand knowledge of the material. Pertinent student-to-student interaction is considered a valuable part of the learning environment and appropriate articulation of critical-thinking during class time will be viewed as efforts toward developing professional judgment.
- Inappropriate use of cellular phones, pagers, electronic devices, etc. in class and clinical settings. Inappropriate use of computers or electronic devices during class, (i.e. web searches, IMs, etc.) that is not part of the class discussion as deemed by the instructor will result in the device being turned off. Additionally, the student could be dismissed from class &/or receive a deduction in the final course grade.
- Appropriate non-distracting behavior while on campus, in hallways and in classrooms.
- Demonstrating honesty and veracity.
- Expressing or exhibiting interests in his/her profession.
- Accepting constructive criticism offered by instructors and others in an appropriate manner.
- Complying with the American Physical Therapy Association’s (APTA) Code of Ethics (for a more detailed overview of APTA Code of Ethics please refer to the APTA’s web site at www.apta.org).
- Complying with the APTA Professionalism Core Values of (for a more detailed overview of APTA Core Values please refer to the APTA’s web site at www.apta.org):
- Professional Duty
- Social Responsibility
Electronic media - students are not allowed to video record, audio record, or take photographs in classroom or lab experiences without written permission from the instructor of the course. This also applies to courses that are held off campus or in locations with adjunct faculty or other community partners. Students are prohibited from photographing or recording guests to the program who are serving in the capacity as patients to be evaluated or facilitate student learning unless written consent is obtained.
Social media websites - students are strictly prohibited from being on social media websites during class. Social media website posting is also discouraged when content involves information/communication about UCF physical therapy affiliations.
A. All Class Lectures/Patient Presentations
Students will dress in professional attire for all courses and announced guest lecturers and patient presentations:
a) Males: dress pants, UCF polo or collared shirt (tie optional) and dress or casual shoes.
b) Females: dress pants, UCF polo or collared shirt, and dress or casual shoes.
In summer months, dress shorts will be allowed for instructor lectures, not guest lectures, patient presentations, or field trips.
ALL Occasions: no excessively worn tennis shoes, open-toe sandals, caps, hats, excessive jewelry, or visible piercings or tattoos; for patient presentations - nametags will be worn. At certain times, students may be requested to wear UCF PT polo shirts or lab jackets.
At no time should a student’s mid section be visible during a presentation or with a guest lecturer unless it is required for examination purposes.
- Personal appearance should always be clean and neat.
- Do not wear inappropriate attire to class.
- Hair should be kept neat, groomed, and away from face.
- While at a clinical site, students must abide by the dress code of the facility.
- During professional activities off site, students are expected to maintain a
- Showers are available in the Arena, in the building next to the pool and in the
student exercise facility.
Clinical Laboratory Dress
- All students are required to keep lab clothes in the locker for lab use.
- Individual instructors will specify lab dress for each lab.
- Lab clothes are not to be worn in the hallways.
- Generally, lab clothes include the following:
(1) Elastic-waist shorts (no blue jeans or cut-offs with loose fitting pant legs).
(2) Short sleeve or tee shirt.
(3) Sports bra, halter top, or a bathing suit top, which allows complete exposure of the back.
(4) Tennis shoes
(1) Elastic-waist shorts with internal lining (no blue jeans or cut-offs with loose fitting legs)
(2) Short sleeve shirt or tee shirt.
(3) Tennis shoes
Anatomy Laboratory Dress
- A 3/4 length white lab coat or a complete set of scrubs will be required. They should be kept clean. Anatomy clothes are to be worn only in the Anatomy Lab and the student will not be allowed into the classroom or clinical lab areas while wearing this attire.
- Clinical Affiliations and class trips:
a) A short white lab coat is required with professional attire.
b) The lab coat must be neat, clean, and pressed.
Student ID Badge
Students are required to purchase a student ID badge. The ID Badge is to be worn during all clinical affiliations or class trips to area facilities in order to be readily identified as a UCF Physical Therapy student/intern. The letters 'SPT' should be included after the student's name. Instructions for ordering badges will be provided at or before New Student Orientation. Badges may be picked up from the UCF Office Plus- The SPOT store by the student when ready.
Safety and Security
University police can be reached by dialing 911 in an emergency, 3-5555 for any other matter. Students should always be concerned for their personal safety and security. The student should not provide any other person with the access code to the labs. Students may call the university escort service 24 hours per day to be escorted to their vehicle.
Student should keep personal effects with him/her or locked in his/her locker. Please do not leave any personal items in a hallway or conference room. If the student should see unfamiliar or suspicious persons in the Physical Therapy area, the student should not confront them personally, but should contact faculty or staff or the campus security immediately.
Fire extinguishers are located beside the Program Office (Room 256) and across from the Room 250 PT Skills lab door which has the coded lock. Another is located between offices 270 and 269 in the hallway where the anatomy lab is located.
If the fire alarm comes on (will emit sound and signal will flash), the speaker system is activated and instructions are given to evacuate the building. Please follow the instructions to evacuate even if in class.
At the beginning of each term, the student will receive class schedules. The possibility exists that additional changes may be necessary throughout the term. This flexibility is needed in order to provide the best possible class, laboratory, and field experiences. In all cases of schedule changes, the faculty will try to give several days’ notice.
It is the student’s responsibility to make any necessary arrangements in order to attend the re-scheduled class.
Food and Drink
There is no eating or drinking allowed in the classrooms during scheduled class lectures and labs including the anatomy lab. On specific occasions, eating and drinking may be permitted in a classroom. Eating and drinking is never permitted during Anatomy lab. Eating is never permitted in the dissection room whether class is in session or not.
All books should be purchased by the beginning of each term, even if some of the material may not be used until the latter part of the term. Several weeks into the term, the bookstore will return all unsold books, so the student should not procrastinate in purchasing his/her books.
Gross Anatomy Laboratory
It is a privilege for physical therapy students to study the human body. Under no circumstances is any student permitted to take anyone other than a UCF PT student into the anatomy lab. No photography is allowed in the cadaver lab without the permission of the program director.
From time to time, throughout the Physical Therapy program, it will be necessary for the student to attend classes and clinical affiliations off the University of Central Florida campus. In all such cases, it is the student’s responsibility to arrange transportation and be on time.
The use of cellular phones and other electronic devices is strictly prohibited during class meetings and written or practical exams.
The use of these devices is also prohibited during class sessions or laboratories unless maintained in a silent mode. If a student has a need to use these devices while a lecture or laboratory session is being conducted, he/she should notify the courser instructor in advance and do so outside the classroom.
A. Special Accommodations
The University of Central Florida is committed to providing reasonable accommodations for all persons with disabilities. Students with disabilities must contact the professor at the beginning/or prior to the semester to discuss the needed accommodations. No accommodations will be provided until the student has met with the professor to request accommodations. Students who need accommodations must be registered with the Student Disability Services, Student Resource Center, Room 132, Phone (407)-823-2371, TTY/TDD only Phone (407)-823-2116, before requesting accommodations from the professor.
B. Illness or Injury
It is the responsibility of each student to inform the program faculty of any illness or injury that may prevent him or her from performing any activity in the class or clinical setting. The instructor and the Program Director must agree upon any modification or postponement or required work.
Because of the unusual physical demands of the program, a student who becomes pregnant is obligated to inform the instructor if a contraindication to a PT procedure exists. The pregnant student should also consult with each faculty person at the beginning of each term to determine if any classroom, laboratory, or clinical experiences may be detrimental to the pregnancy. The instructor and the Program Director must agree upon any modification or postponement or required work.
Anatomy lab - Some of the chemicals used to preserve the cadavers may be harmful to a pregnant student. A pregnant student should consult with her physician and the Anatomy Lab instructor before attending the laboratory sessions.
The University offers a Health Insurance Packet. Students may contact Arlene Katz at 407-823-6426 in the Student Health Center for a specific details and an application. The APTA also offers Health Insurance for student members. Please refer to the APTA’s web site www.apta.org for further information.
Any student with a medical problem can be seen at the Student Health Center. If the student does not have health insurance, a payment plan will be worked out.
Students must contact the Program Director of any health problems that may interfere with their functioning in the program.
Because of the heavy workload and many individual and group assignments, any outside employment is discouraged.
Physical Therapy students are required to join the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) as student members and maintain membership throughout the curriculum. Verifications of membership are due to the Program Assistant by July 1 each year.
The benefits of membership:
- Includes subscriptions to the Physical Therapy Journal of the American Physical Therapy Association and PT Magazine of Physical Therapy.
- Includes subscription to the Florida Chapter Newsletter;
- Permits attendance at local, state, and national meetings;
- Provides information about continuing educational programs; and
- Provides a reduced rate registration for educational programs sponsored by the APTA.
- Provides access to resources on the APTA website which non-members do not have access to.
The National Student Conclave takes place in October and is a good event for understanding professional issues. Although we promote participation in national conferences, maintaining one’s grade point average comes first.
Physical Therapy students admitted into the physical therapy program are considered members of the Student Physical Therapy Association (SPTA) and are responsible for adhering to all requirements and bylaws as outlined in the SPTA Constitution and SPTA Handbook.
Students are expected to have grammar and writing skills at the level of graduate student status. Students who show less than average writing skills as evidenced by class assignments will be notified by their class instructor and a plan of action devised to correct this. Students who continue to have this problem may be referred to the University Writing Center for remediation.
Use of Laboratory Equipment
The Physical Therapy Program is committed to the development of optimal skills for the practice of the profession and the development of attitudes of self-learners. With this commitment in mind, the Program provides access to the students for independent study and practice, within the program facilities and use of equipment. Due to the level, in some cases, of technological sophistication, and the difficulty in acquiring or repairing such equipment, it is necessary for the student to assume responsibility of the proper use of equipment. The following procedures must be followed to assure proper accessibility for facilities and equipment:
- Students must be deemed ‘competent’ by the course instructor to utilize physical agents and modalities prior to checking them out when the course instructor is not available.
- The facilities and equipment are available for all students during normal operating hours of the building. The building is unlocked from 6:00am to 10:00pm each day except Sunday. A class officer for each cohort will be given a building key to provide access for after hours.
- Permission to check out equipment. The student must request permission by the professor in charge of the course for the use of the labs and/or equipment. Other equipment may be checked out in the program office with the office assistant. Removal of equipment from the designated area without proper permission will result in disciplinary action.
- Care of equipment and materials. It is expected that the student will make good use of the equipment and available materials and follow safety precautions. The student has to care for the equipment; dispose properly of used material; disconnect all electrical appliances; remove batteries from equipment; clean area and return furniture, turn off lights; and make sure that the doors are securely locked.
- Students must notify the course professor or the Program Director (if the professor in charge is not in the immediate premises) any problem or malfunction encountered with the equipment and/or facilities. If the course professor or Program Director cannot be reached, the student must submit a written statement to the Office Assistant of the Program, explaining the situation including a telephone number where he/she can be reached if necessary.
Philosophy and Purpose
The University of Central Florida is committed to the ideal that professional education requires a sound academic preparation that is enhanced and enriched by strong clinical experience. To this end, the clinical education program seeks to provide for its students those clinical experiences that offer a stimulating environment to further augment their professional development.
The primary focus of the clinical education program is to provide the entry-level physical therapy student an atmosphere that promotes the health and function of the patient/client(s). The maximum level of function will be advanced through scientific principles and treatment rationales. While problem solving often follows logical predetermined steps, students must learn that many solutions are created by innovative, abstract thought processes. The excitement of research and discovery will be nurtured.
The students’ goal in clinical education must be the achievement of the highest level of competency in all areas of patient care and related areas of physical therapy. The students are expected to actively participate, question, explore, teach, and motivate during their interaction with the clinical community to reinforce their learning experiences and thereby enhance their education.
The clinical environments will stimulate the student to look beyond the information learned in the classroom to discover new meanings and relationships within the profession. The clinical centers must also create learning situations that guide students to expand their knowledge, attitudes, and skills. The clinical centers will provide the students an awareness of personal responsibility as it impacts their clients and institutions. The clinical experience will include exposure to realistic environments that allow practice in interdisciplinary communication, documentation, problem solving, and medical and legal aspects of patient care with a variety of disabilities and ages.
Clinical Education Management
The Director of Clinical Education is a core faculty member who serves as the primary authority for management of the clinical education program. This includes, but not limited to the following: screening of clinical sites, assignment of students to clinical sites, serving as the liaison between the program and clinical education faculty, assessment of student preparedness to enter clinical education, assessment of student ability to meet clinical education objectives, and outcomes assessment. All policies and procedures regarding clinical education are included in the DPT Clinical Education Handbook.
The student will be responsible for transportation and all costs of living during these assignments. Each student may expect to complete one rotation outside of the Orlando area. In addition, costs for background checks, immunizations, or additional drug screenings or vaccinations as requested by clinical facilities will be at the cost of the student.
K. OTHER CLINICAL ISSUES
If a student fails to complete a clinical assignment because he/she has been asked to leave the facility due to inappropriate conduct, unprofessional behavior, safety issues, or inadequate clinical competency, the student may, upon recommendation of the faculty, be placed in a remedial clinical affiliation. Students who violate this program’s clinical regulations may be asked to sign a behavioral contract.
Additional Program Expectations
A. LAB FEES - The student will be responsible for payment of all lab fees for required courses.
B. PHOTOCOPYING/FACSIMILE USE and SCANTRONS - Students will be responsible for their own photocopying and faxing expenses. A photocopier is located on the first floor of the HPA 1 building and in the Classroom Building. The student may use a Copy Card purchased in the library at a reduced rate for library photocopiers. The copier and fax machine in the Program office are not for student use unless copying is authorized by program faculty. Please do not ask the staff to make copies of documents for you. Scantrons are provided for free by the UCF Student Government Association's office in the Student Union. Students are responsible for obtaining scantrons for their examinations either through this office or at their own expense at the bookstore.
C. LOCKERS - The students will be responsible for securing the contents of their lockers. No valuables should be stored there. Students will not have access to their lockers during class sessions.
D. “MAILBOXES” - Students will be assigned program mailboxes for distribution of program information. It is the student's responsibility to check the contents of his/her mailbox every day that the student attends class. The “mailboxes” are a file designated with each student’s name.
E. EMAIL - The primary mode of communication used by staff and faculty to contact students is email. The student is required to create a Knights email account and will provide their email address to the Program Assistant and to the Coordinator, Academic Support & Services. The student is responsible for updating their email address at all times. The student may update this information by email to the Program Assistant and to the Coordinator, Academic Support & Services. The student is required to check their email a minimum of once a day or more as outlined in course syllabus or by course instructor while classes are in session and while on clinical affiliations. The student is responsible for all information disseminated by email and will be held accountable. It is particularly important to update this at the time of clinical affiliations since changes may occur.
F. MAILING ADDRESS AND TELEPHONE NUMBER - The student is responsible for constantly maintaining the updated information on both local and permanent addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses as well as the address and telephone number of an emergency contact person.
1. The student may update this information with an email to the Program Assistant or hand it in to her on an 8 x ll sheet of paper.
2. The student should provide the mailing address, telephone number and email address of where he/she will be staying during each clinical affiliation.
3. The student should contact the program for any changes in contact information after graduation for program mailings.
G. CONTACTING FACULTY MEMBERS - Faculty members can be contacted regarding class or program information and discussion via email or phone as listed on course syllabus. All faculty have posted office hours.
H. PRESENTATIONS OFF-CAMPUS - As a part of coursework, the student may be required to make presentations to various community groups off-campus. At such times, students will be requested to wear professional attire that may include lab coats or UCF polo shirts with nametags.
I. USE OF RESOURCE MATERIALS - The student is required to check out resource materials from the Program if they are removed from the physical therapy area. This includes videotapes, books, journal articles, other published material, etc. Please see the Program Assistant if you would like to check out any equipment. Equipment may be checked out after students have been deemed “competent” to practice in the event faculty are not available during “check out times”. Any unauthorized use of equipment is prohibited. Do not remove any equipment from the labs, including the anatomy lab, without first getting permission of the instructor and filling out a check-out form from the Program Assistant.
J. MAINTENANCE OF PHYSICAL THERAPY PROGRAM AREAS - At the end of each class, laboratory session and study/practice session, each student will automatically assume responsibility for putting away all materials, changing bed linen, returning materials to the instructor, removing all food and trash from the area, and closing out (in the proper sequence) and putting away any audiovisual materials. All classrooms, labs, study areas and hallways will be maintained in a clean and orderly manner at all times. This is the responsibility of the students, not the faculty and staff.
K. LOCKING AND SECURING THE PHYSICAL THERAPY AREA - Any student in the building after the program office has closed for the day or over the weekend is responsible for insuring that all portable equipment is stored per program policy and that all doors to the classrooms, labs, research areas, office suite and conference room are closed and locked.
L. CURRICULUM INTENSITY – The curriculum of this program is designed to prepare the student for entry-level competencies as a generalist physical therapist. The intensity of the program is advanced and commensurate with a doctoral program. The faculty, in conjunction with the Program Director, are aware of the significant commitment required to succeed in this program. It is inappropriate behavior for a student to request a reduction in coursework or assignments. Courses are designed strategically as well as the complete curriculum.