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Raising the Bar in Rehab

Continuing Education Courses

Published July 17, 2014 3:38 PM by Lisa Mueller

A few years ago, I had the opportunity to teach a continuing education course on early mobility with three other physical therapists. We met for several weeks, reviewing the content along with the training and presentation materials. It took a lot of thought and effort to review every detail of the course to make sure it flowed well and the learning objectives had all been explained thoroughly.

Teaching that course was one of the highlights of my professional career. I loved sharing my enthusiasm and knowing patients would benefit from other therapists learning the skills and tools specific to acute mobilization. The 4-hour course was perfect to not completely overwhelm the course participants or cause any of the presenters to lose their voices! Afterward, several of the participants connected with me on LinkedIn and we were able to continue sharing our experiences and learning from each other.

Shortly after our course was completed, we were sent a message from an out-of-state hospital system asking if our 4-hour course could be expanded to a 16-hour, two-day CE course. Our team discussed the option and decided against it for a number of reasons -- logistically to travel with the needed equipment to another state, the time to develop the content to four times the original, and balancing that with our regular full-time jobs. Although we didn't say it out loud, I know I also thought that being responsible for a full weekend CE course was a little too outside my professional comfort level -- I was a PT, not a course instructor! Four hours were much easier to commit.

Looking back, I wish I would have said yes to that weekend course. I wish I had pushed myself to at least try. Even as I write this, the barriers we debated about the logistics and work don't seem to be the daunting challenges they were at the time. It would have been an awesome experience.

There are many times physical therapists have to consider making professional changes. We change employers, or change facilities or settings, or change the type of work we are doing. Only we know what is best for our own careers. What about you? Do you have any professional regrets? At what point in your career have you said, "I should have" or "I wish I would have?"

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2 comments

I teach a 6 hour course once a month.  It's amazing how much information you need to fill that amount of time.  It's possible your topic might not have lended itself to 16 hours.  

Otherwise there isn't that much difference.  Since you're teaching in a group you're only responsible for your portion of the presentation which may be only 4 or 5 hours of actual lecturing.  Plus you have the advantage of having already taught the short  version.  You know your weakness as a speaker and can design your material to prevent them.  

It is always better to have too much information than not enough.  Including examples of the main points will help.

Give a try.  You'll be pleasantly surprised.

Toni Patt July 17, 2014 6:58 PM

What's stopping you now?!

Get in contact with them and see if they still want you. Worst case scenario is they say "No thanks"….no worse off than you are now.

GO FOR IT!

Dean Metz July 17, 2014 5:52 PM

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