Courses & Requirements

The Advanced Health Care Practice program uses a variety of approaches to teaching and learning to link advanced clinical practice to critical appraisal of research evidence. Each field of study offers online courses and/or learning objectives, along with field-specific requirements including clinical mentorships, research projects, and in-person residency periods at Western University.

Comprehensive Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy

CMP Stream (Preparation for FCAMPT membership)

The Advanced Health Care Practice Comprehensive Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy (CMP Stream) program is an intense one-year program comprised of 7 online courses - two academic courses, three clinical specialty courses and two full-year courses. There are three intensive residency periods wherein students are required to be on campus at Western. Those periods take place in September, February and July.

Program Timeline

Advanced Standing Stream (For FCAMPT members)

The Advanced Standing stream is designed for physical therapists who already possess the Advanced Diploma in Manual and Manipulative Therapy will receive advanced standing for PT9620, PT9640, PT9650 and PT9680. Course requirements will focus on Research Methods (PT9600), Advanced Professional Practice (PT9610) and a Group Research Project (PT9630). This stream does not have a residency requirement.


Fall Term (Sept. - Dec.)

AHCP9600: Research Methods and Knowledge
This course is designed to provide participants with an introduction to quantitative research methods including:

  • Basic study design and critical appraisal of studies evaluating the effectiveness of an intervention (randomized trials and observational studies)
  • Validity of a diagnostic test
  • Identification of risk factors for disease development
  • Identification of prognostic factors for disease outcomes
  • The quality of a systematic review

AHCP9640: Advanced Orthopaedics
This course emphasizes the principles, rationale, effects, and practical application of advanced musculoskeletal clinical reasoning and the application of manual therapy involving the upper and lower quadrants, including:

  • Use clinical and deductive reasoning in the assessment and treatment of neuromusculoskeletal clients by considering the best available evidence, reflecting on clinical expertise and respecting the wishes of the patient
  • Recognize and differentially diagnosis patients presenting with neuro-musculoskeletal syndromes involving the upper and lower quadrants by triangulating data based on understanding pain mechanisms, clinical patterns (evidenced informed clinical history and examination), natural history, and prognostic indicators within the biopsychosocial framework
  • Identify indications and contraindications (red, yellow, blue flags) for manual therapy including manipulation

AHCP9620: Clinical Mentorship
One hundred and fifty hours of clinical mentorship will be completed in a designated clinical placement setting(s). If there is an eligible appropriate FCAMPT mentor close to the student’s permanent residence, the mentorship can be organized in the student’s locale. If an appropriate mentor is not available near the student’s home, the mentorship will be organized with a FCAMPT mentor in the London region for a one-week block (or timeline arranged by the student and the course manager) after each 3-week on-site block.

AHCP9630: Research Experience
Various research experience projects will be offered by researchers affiliated with Western University. The course will provide students with the opportunities to be part of a group project that may involve systematic reviews, knowledge translation, or data collection for a new or ongoing project related to orthopedics or manual therapy. This course will culminate in a presentation at Research Day in July.

On-Campus Residency Period: 3.5 weeks in September

Winter Term (Feb. - April)

AHCP9610: Advanced Professional Practice (March - May)
This course introduces medical diagnostic testing and pharmacology to the advanced orthopaedic physical therapy practitioner. It will also focus on:

  • Professionalism
  • Critical thinking and clinical reasoning
  • Reflective practice/experiential learning/lifelong learning
  • Leadership within the orthopaedic physical therapy practice
  • Pharmacology and MSK conditions
  • Diagnostic imaging and MSK conditions

AHCP9650: Advanced Manipulative Therapy
This course will be a continuation of PT9640 with further learning objectives including:

  • Recognize and differentially diagnosis patients presenting with complex neuro-musculoskeletal syndromes involving the upper and lower quadrants
  • Appreciate the interdependence and limitations of the patho-anatomical, biopsychosocial and functional model for hypothesis generation
  • Demonstrate advanced clinical reasoning and problem-solving skills in the treatment of patients with complex neuro-musculoskeletal problems which includes identifying dominant pain mechanisms and biopsychosocial issues
  • Discuss the impact of work-related injuries on prognosis and predicting rehab outcome and management strategies
  • Review recent scientific evidence pertaining to the treatment properties of manual therapy treatment techniques and understand how such information can be used to promote an evidence-informed approach in clinical practice

AHCP9620: Clinical Mentorship
See course description above.

AHCP9630: Research Experience
See course description above.

On-Campus Residency Period: 3 weeks in February

Summer Term (May - Aug.)

AHCP9610: Advanced Professional Practice (Cont'd until June)

AHCP9620: Clinical Mentorship
Completion of clinical mentorship hours and satisfactory performance on clinical exam (to be scheduled during summer residency period - July).
See course description above.

AHCP9630: Research Experience
Presentation of results from a supervised research experience at the School of Physical Therapy Research Day (to be scheduled in July each year).
See course description above.

AHCP9680: Clinical Consolidation (Manipulative Therapy)
This mandatory course consolidates theoretical knowledge and practical skills covered in PT9640 and PT9650 advanced orthopaedic courses. This course links the advanced orthopaedic courses, the clinical mentoring hours and the critical appraisal of the evidence that students accumulate during the prior academic year with a patient presentation from the student’s clinical caseload. There is also practical examination that tests practical, oral and clinical reasoning skills associated with spinal manipulation.

On-Campus Residency Period: 2 weeks in July

Wound Healing

The Advanced Health Care Practice (Wound Healing) program is comprised of 7 online courses - two research courses, three clinical specialty courses and two full-year experiences. There are three intensive residency periods wherein students are required to be on campus at Western. Those periods take place in September, January and July.

Students enrolled in the Wound Healing field must be able to devote 20 to 30 hours per week to program-related activities. While continued clinical practice throughout the program is encouraged, full-time work is not recommended. Students accepted into the program are encouraged to complete summer preparatory activities via an online course site before the September residency period.

Fall Term (Sept. - Dec.)

AHCP9600: Research Methods & Knowledge
This course is designed to provide participants with an introduction to quantitative research methods, including:

  • Basic study design and critical appraisal of studies evaluating the effectiveness of an intervention (randomized trials and observational studies)
  • Validity of a diagnostic test
  • Identification of risk factors for disease development
  • Identification of prognostic factors for disease outcomes
  • The quality of a systematic review

AHCP9660: Wound Management Principles and Assessment
This course provides the foundational knowledge and skills needed to optimize the wound environment and address individual needs of people living with acute and chronic wounds. The course uses an in depth understanding of pathophysiological processes involved in tissue repair to guide the assessment of the wound and the patient. It involves applying current best practices to patients with complex wounds to manage wound environment, identify and treat infection and other underlying causes of delayed healing.

AHCP9620: Clinical Mentorship
A minimum of 100 hours of clinical experience will be completed under the supervision of one or more approved mentors in a health care setting that is affiliated with this program and Western University. All prerequisite requirements must be fulfilled before commencing any mentorship hours at the health care organization of the mentor. Whenever possible, mentorship experiences will be based on student preferences, however, this could require additional travel expenses if an appropriate mentor cannot be arranged at a site located near the student’s home. This is a full-year course that is conducted across all three terms of the program (September to June).

AHCP9630: Research Experience
Students will be involved in research related to wound healing and appreciate the work required to plan, gather, and analyze original research data. Students will work in a group with an approved program supervisor to prepare an abstract, deliver a poster and podium presentation, and write a scientific paper appropriate for publication in a wound care journal. This is a full-year course that begins in September and culminates in the presentation of the group’s research work during Research Day in July.

On-Campus Residency Period: 2.5 weeks in September

Winter Term (Jan. - April)

AHCP9615: Professionalism and Leadership in Wound Care (January - May)
A course focusing on skills and attributes that promote professionalism and leadership needed for wound care including: advanced clinical reasoning and critical thinking, interprofessional and collaborative practice, business planning, client- centered practice, consultation skills, and the application of knowledge translation principles.

AHCP9670: Advanced Wound Treatment
This course will develop advanced clinical decision making and critical thinking skills needed to assess and manage common types of acute and chronic wounds including pressure ulcers/injuries, venous/arterial leg ulcers, and diabetic foot ulcers. Students will also experience advanced therapies used to enhance wound healing outcomes and practice using sound clinical reasoning to select an appropriate intervention for complex clinical scenarios.

AHCP9620: Clinical Mentorship
See course description above.

AHCP9630: Research Experience
See course description above.

On-Campus Residency Period: 2 weeks in January

Summer Term (May - Aug.)

AHCP9620: Clinical Mentorship
Completion of all requirements of the course by June 30.
See course description above.

AHCP9630: Research Experience

This supervised research experience culminates in the preparation of a research paper suitable for publication in an academic journal and the presentation of results during Research day (schedule in July).

AHCP9690: Clinical Consolidation (Wound Healing)
This course is designed  bring together knowledge, skills, and attributes acquired throughout the year.  Clinical competency will be evaluated in an objective standardized clinical exam (OSCE) and in a written test where students will demonstrate how and why they would manage complex clinical cases. 
Pre-requisites: Successful completion of Wound Healing course (PT 9660, PT9670, PT9615) and PT9620 (clinical mentorship experience).

On-Campus Residency Period: 1 week in July

Progression Requirements

In order for students to progress in the program, the following requirements must be met on an ongoing basis:
  1. Students must attain an overall average of no less than 70% on all required courses in the program and no less than 60% in any one course
  2. Completion of the requirements of the clinical mentorship course including required mentorship hours
  3. Passing grade on consolidation examinations administered during the summer residency period (July)
  4. Completion of the supervised research project (minimum 70% of PT9630 course requirements)
  5. Attendance at mandatory residency periods including Research Day in July

Interprofessional Pain Management

The Interprofessional Pain Management field is built upon a competency-based educational framework where learners are focused on the development of core competencies until they have accrued enough evidence to demonstrate mastery in the eyes of an independent reviewer.

With traditional approaches, time is fixed (usually a term or semester) while outcome is variable (the mark each student receives). In a CBE approach, time is variable (take as long as is needed to master the competency) but outcome is fixed (everyone masters the competency). In a pure CBE program, courses are replaced by learning activities, practice and implementation of entrustable professional activities. Evidence of mastery is accrued through direct observation, simulations, reflections, and other ways of showing that the learner has mastered the competency in a real-world setting.

Five-Key Competencies

Through successful completion of this program, students will have demonstrated mastery of five key competencies:

  1. Interprofessional Collaboration
  2. Self-Awareness and Reflexivity
  3. Critical Reasoning and Creative Problem-Solving
  4. Empathic Practice and Reasoning
  5. Pain Expertise

Clinical Mentorship

A key component to this program is the academic/clinical mentorship requirement. Students will be assigned their own academic mentor with whom they will meet for standing meetings every two weeks. They will be expected to work with the academic mentor and the program to identify a suitable clinical mentor from whom they would like to learn. This clinical mentor need not necessarily be an expert in pain management, but should be seen as a trusted and respected clinician with whom the learner can engage for a minimum of 15 hours (five hours per term). The nature of this engagement may look different for different learners dependent on context and geographic accessibility. Examples would be discussions of complex patient cases, shadowing, direct mentorship in the clinic, discussions about new clinical knowledge, or learning of new clinical techniques. Learners will maintain a log of each mentorship session, and the clinical mentors will receive a small stipend for their provision of mentorship hours.

Satisfying the clinical mentorship requirement includes:

  • Engagement with approved clinical mentors
  • Submission of an engagement log at the end of each term demonstrating the hours completed and the nature of the mentorship
  • A minimum of five hours per term (15 hours total) of direct interaction between student and clinical mentor
    • These critical interactions should also be captured throughout the student’s portfolio as evidence of mastery of one or more of the required competencies

Learning and Demonstrating Capacity

Although learners may elect to complete a course as a foundation for competency, this program recognized that learning can occur in far more contexts than the classroom. This program includes a series of entrustable professional activities that can be completed under real-world clinical contexts. These include recorded patient interactions and reflections, deep conversations with interprofessional colleagues and staff, capture and interpretation of clinical outcomes, creation of new clinical knowledge through rigorous case-based or N-of-1 type research, and oral conversations and defenses of ideas with experts and peers. Most of the evidence of mastery can be demonstrated in a routine clinical practice, the only difference is that during this program learners will be required to capture, interpret, and reflect upon much of what is traditionally lost as the 'data exhaust' of daily practice.

Instead of a thesis, through the program learners will add their growing evidence of mastery to an electronic (e-)portfolio. Through collaboration with the learner, academic and clinical mentors, the learning team will decide when enough evidence has been accrued for any of the 5 competencies, and that sub-portion of the e-portfolio will then be sent to an independent content expert examiner for review and a judgement of whether the information within demonstrates adequate mastery. There is no oral defense.

If the examiner deems that the content does not demonstrate adequate mastery, the learner has a second chance to bolster the evidence through additional learning activities and can resubmit one time.

Program Timeline

This program allows students to progress through the program at their own pace, taking the necessary time to master each of the five key competencies. While enrolled in the program, students should expect to dedicate an average of 5-10 hours per week to learning activities. It is anticipated that the majority of students will accrue evidence of mastery of the five key competencies within 10-12 months of starting the program. The maximum time allowed to complete the program is 18 months.

Please note:

Residency period dates for all three programs will be provided for each academic year once they have been determined.

Withdrawal from the program is mandatory for students who have failed any of the progression requirements (see above). Students may appeal to the School Director for relief from the requirement to withdraw.