PPTA annual conference recap and professional development opportunities for DPT students
This year’s Pennsylvania Physical Therapy Association’s (PPTA) Annual Conference was held the last weekend of October in Lancaster, PA.
The event featured speakers who included authors and award-winning experts in their specialized fields of physical therapy, with interest areas ranging from pediatrics to neurology and neurosurgery to women’s health to hospital orthopedic physical therapy and beyond.
The weekend included breakfasts and luncheons to network with other professionals, open exhibits featuring new innovations in Pennsylvania, research platform presentations, and award ceremonies. But the majority of the conference was focused on specialized seminars for DPT students and professionals alike, taught by the experts listed above.
Many of the seminars were interactive, including a combination of lectures, small group activities and discussions, and lab sessions — a unique opportunity for DPT students to gain hands on learning and to work, and hold discussions, side-by-side with practicing physical therapists in the field.
Through the Alvernia Doctor of Physical Therapy curriculum, students cover an assortment of material, from learning techniques for educating and communicating with patients, to working in clinical settings and following current events and issues happening in the physical therapy and health care industry.
Being a physical therapist means always learning and evolving throughout your career, and there are numerous opportunities for professional development outside of the classroom.
Conferences, as we mentioned, are one of the resources available to DPT students. Beyond PPTA’s annual conference that students can attend, there are several other workshops and events held in Pennsylvania by PPTA or across the country and online by the national association, the American Physical Therapy Association.
For those who don’t have the time or money to physically attend a conference, podcasts are another great resource for DPT students who want to dive deeper into new research, debates on current issues, special topics and areas of focus in physical therapy and more. A few of the most popular physical therapy podcasts include:
- Journal of the APTA podcast – covers a wide range of issues and topics in PT
- PT Inquest – a new scholarly article is reviewed and discussed each week
- Move Forward Radio – a product of APTA, this podcast features interviews with physical therapists and healthcare experts discussing various public interest topics
To keep up with the latest studies and issues in physical therapy, there are several free academic journals, blogs and news sources you can follow, some including:
- Journal of the American Physical Therapist Association
- APTA’s blogs, #PTTransforms and The Pulse
- The Manual Therapist (winner of Therapydia’s best overall blog in 2014)
Effective November 12, 2014, Alvernia University has been granted Candidate for Accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (1111 North Fairfax Street, Alexandria, VA, 22314; phone: 703-706-3245; email: firstname.lastname@example.org). Candidacy is not an accreditation status nor does it assure eventual accreditation. Candidate for Accreditation is a pre-accreditation status of affiliation with the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education that indicates the program is progressing toward accreditation.