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Clinical Two: Amended Goals

In one of my early posts, Pre-Clinical Jitters, My Goals for Clinical Number One , I wrote three obtainable goals that allowed me to reflect on my daily experience in the clinic as well as the experience as a whole. These goals continue to be at the forefront of my mind for clinical number two: acute inpatient rehabilitation. While I didn't know what to expect going into my first rotation, I feel energized and enlightened heading into this experience. Taking what I learned from my first rotation, both professionally and personally, and applying it to this internship will be my priority.

1. Be receptive and welcoming of feedback from my CI

During my first rotation, I feel as though I was both receptive and welcoming of feedback but I wonder if I played too passive of a role in our communication. In this rotation, I hope to be able to communicate with my CI more effectively. At the hospital, they use weekly goal sheets for both student and CI to fill out. While I attempted to utilize something similar in my first clinical, the mandated reflection will provide both of us the chance to communicate on my strengths and weaknesses. In addition to the opportunity to reflect, I want to be more active in the learning process. As a student, I prefer to be more passive & watch the instruction, take notes and eventually do it myself. This was reflected in my first clinical experience, and I wonder if this effected both my confidence and my CI's confidence in me. With two years of didactic work completed, this is an opportunity to grow. Instead of being a fly on the wall during the first few evaluations & treatments, I'd like to be an active participant. Communicating this to my CI will hopefully boost both my confidence and his confidence in me. As for the feedback, communicating my needs as far as learning style and preference is a priority. I want to feel comfortable treating patients and I want my CI to feel comfortable critiquing me.

2. Show integrity when I am feeling unsure of myself

During my first rotation, my uncertainty was a barrier in my confidence. Uncertainty also makes it difficult to build patient rapport -- would you trust a physician saying, "umm, uhh"? In order to avoid clinical error, it's necessary for students (and clinicians) to understand the boundaries of their personal scope of practice. Especially in the inpatient setting, a lot of the diagnosis I encounter may be unfamiliar or require attention to certain/different details. It's important to recognize I will not always know the answer or exactly what to do, but I want to trust myself more. I hope to come into this rotation willingness to try and fail, while maintaining patient safety.

3. Make good clinical decisions

Broad...but necessary.

Along with my uncertainty in the first rotation came me occasionally falling into cookie cutter exercise routines. For this experience, I want to challenge myself to be more creative, and use my clinical judgment and skill to enhance patient healing. I'm going to challenge myself to ask more questions, and make an effort to go home and answer them myself. I'll work hard to not only be the best PT I can be, but continue to be a good student: stay up to date on literature, treatment techniques, and current best practice.

I am so looking forward to beginning clinical number two, and to continue growing as a person and a physical therapist. I hope to continue updating this site with musings and teachings along the way.

If you haven't heard from me in a bit, I'm always tweeting @SPTKlee or if you have questions for me you can reach me at

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