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Clinical thinking: does your choice of university make a difference?

By Matthew Harris


Currently two osteopathic courses exist in Melbourne. The course at RMIT, until last year offered a double Bachelors degree and has undergone several revisions, whilst the course at VU is a Bachelors degree followed by a Masters course. Whether a difference exists in the clinical thinking of students, depending on their choice of university, has not been investigated.\ud The objective of this study is to determine whether a difference exists between the clinical thinking of fifth year osteopathic students dependent on their university of choice.\ud Nine fifth year students, four from RMIT and five from VU, took part in the study. The study consists of two parts. An examination which followed the model of a Victoria University Clinical Practicum Four case history assessment and a focus group where the students discussed among their student peers the thinking and criteria they used to answer each of the sections of the examination.\ud Although students of both universities considered similar differentials for the given case, substantial differences existed in the thought processes behind the generation of the differentials. Several possible reasons were identified for this, furthermore, most participants focused upon a musculoskeletal osteopathic diagnosis and merely considered a pathological diagnosis fleetingly indicating the need for osteopathic examinations to be tailored to include not only biomechanical diagnosis but also systemic investigations.\ud This minor thesis was written by a post-graduate student as part of the requirements of the Master of Health Science (Osteopathy) program

Topics: 320000 Medical and Health Sciences, School of Biomedical and Health Sciences, Osteopathy Masters Project, osteopathic courses, clinical thinking, RMIT University, Victoria University
Year: 2003
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