DN420 Physiotherapy (MDS5)

Physiotherapists provide services to people in order to develop, maintain and restore maximum movement and functional ability throughout their lifetime.

Curricular information is subject to change

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The physiotherapy (physical therapy) profession is concerned with maximising quality of life and movement potential within the spheres of promotion, prevention, treatment/intervention and rehabilitation.  The programme enables students to develop expertise on optimising health, wellness and performance across the lifespan.  The programme is designed to provide graduates with a sound academic and clinical foundation on which to build a career in any area of physiotherapy practice through the development of intellectual, creative and practical knowledge and skills. The BSc physiotherapy programme embraces a ‘student centred’ approach to learning, involving contextual and experiential learning (clinical placement and practice) in order that students have the opportunity to achieve excellence in professional practice. Throughout the programme students employ and develop their problem solving, research and critical thinking skills.  The development of critical thinking and the ability to apply this thinking in the professional setting is seen as essential for the development of autonomous innovative physiotherapy practitioners. Engagement of staff and students in a meaningful way, is achieved through, leveraging advances in teaching and learning technologies (blogs, wikis), small group teaching, problem based leaning, research dissertations, practical skills education and practice education.  Throughout the programme students complete a portfolio which facilitates the development of innovative reflective practitioners, reflection is a necessary skill for continuing professional development.


1 - Meet the Standards of Proficiency as specified by the national designated authority the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists/CORU and other international physiotherapy (physical therapy) regulatory bodies.
2 - Demonstrate detailed and advanced knowledge of the philosophy, values, skills, ethical responsibilities and theoretical basis of the physiotherapy (physical therapy) profession.
3 - Understand the health system.
4 - Have the ability to retrieve, analyse and apply the results of research.
5 - Provide physiotherapy (physical therapy) across the lifespan, particularly in the domains of cardiorespiratory, neurological, musculoskeletal and paediatric care.
6 - Integrate theory with practice to enable safe, effective and competent practice across the spectrum of primary and secondary healthcare, preventative healthcare, health promotion, rehabilitation and performance enhancement.
7 - Demonstrate evidence based practice and clinical reasoning skills.
8 - Have the ability to integrate knowledge and technology advances in order to examine, diagnose and treat patients effectively and evaluate the efficacy of interventions.
9 - Possess the skills to reflect on wider professional issues and social and ethical responsibilities in order to apply knowledge and adjust practice to respond to changing needs of healthcare provision and professional practice.
10 - Have the ability to organise and manage health care provision in public and private practice, including record maintenance and use of information technology with due regard for ethical and regulatory frameworks and data protection legislation.
11 - Practice as autonomous independent healthcare practitioners.
12 - Practice in a manner that demonstrates autonomous, reflective and innovative thinking.
13 - Communicate their clinical and academic conclusions, and the knowledge and rationale underlying these conclusions effectively to patients and fellow professionals.
14 - Collaborate with other professionals in health care teams in primary, secondary and tertiary care settings.
Physiotherapists provide services to people in order to develop, maintain and restore maximum physical health, movement and functional ability throughout their lifetime.

The full-time BSc Physiotherapy degree programme offered by the UCD School of Physiotherapy & Performance Science is accredited by the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists. To date, over 2,000 UCD-educated physiotherapists are working throughout the world. In addition to campus-based learning, you will also spend time on clinical placement in hospitals and clinical centres throughout Ireland.

UCD's Health Sciences Centre brings the research and teaching activities of physiotherapists, physicians, nurses and radiographers together under one roof.
The curriculum covers the broad spectrum of basic, applied and clinical sciences.

The programme is structured so that in Stage 1 you learn the basic and applied sciences. This teaching largely takes place in the UCD Health Sciences Centre. While lectures may take place in larger groups, all hands-on practical physiotherapy skills are taught in small groups of no more than 20 students. Practical skills teaching takes place with close supervision in specifically designed Clinical Skills Laboratories in the School.

Towards the end of Stage 1, you will spend time in the clinical setting where you will put your theoretical knowledge into practice. By the end of your degree programme you will have completed 1,000 hours of clinical practice, which is arranged for each student by the Clinical Co-ordinators in the School.

Clinical practice takes place in hospitals and clinical centres around Ireland, in collaboration with our clinical partners and the Health Service Executive.

Practice Tutors in Physiotherapy co-ordinate clinical education at St Vincent's University Hospital, the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Connolly Hospital, Beaumont Hospital, the National Rehabilitation Hospital, St Colmcille's Hospital, Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children, Our Lady's Hospice, Naas Hospital, Louth Hospital, South Infirmary Victoria Hospital Cork and the Midlands Regional Hospitals.

Professional skills are examined by continuous assessment. Graduates obtain a complete professional education and are ready to practise upon graduation.
Extensive international links offer you a variety of opportunities to widen your experience. You may choose to gain clinical experience in the USA, Botswana, Belgium or Canada.
Graduates in Physiotherapy have found employment in different roles across the world, in:

  • Hospitals and private practice
  • Primary care
  • Rehabilitation centres and nursing homes
  • Non-government agencies (e.g. Goal, Concern)
  • Education
  • Business, sport and leisure industries

    Graduates can also apply for a range of disciplinary and general graduate taught (graduate certificate, diploma, MSc) and research (MSc and PhD) programmes in Ireland and abroad.
  • UCD Health Sciences Programme Office Health Sciences Centre (Ground Floor) Belfield, Dublin 4 Tel: +353 1 716 6654 Email: healthscience@ucd.ie Web: www.ucd.ie/healthsciences
    Stage 1

    Students must register 60 credits of modules for Stage 1. 30 credits per Trimester. All modules in Autumn Trimester are core to the BSc Physiotherapy Programme. 6 core modules totaling 30 credits. In Spring Trimester students register to 5 core modules totaling 25 credits and First Year Elective Option PHTY10150 Personal Training in Physiotherapy for 5 credits. Total Spring Trimester 30 credits.

    Stage 2

    Students must register to all core modules in Stage 2 BSc Physiotherapy - 50 credits. Students can select either a general elective module value 5 credits outside of the programme or choose to register to one of the listed options which are allied to BSc Physiotherapy Programe in Autumn Trimester.

    Students must also register to Option module PHTY20110 Therapeutic Massage in Spring Trimester

    Stage 3

    Students must register to all core modules in Stage 3 of the BSc Physiotherapy Programme. There are 9 core modules totaling 60 credits. No elective credits will be available in Stage 3

    Stage 4

    Students must register to all core modules - 50 ECTS credits, and 10 elective/option credits. Students should be registered to a total of 60 credits in Stage 4 BSc Physiotherapy. 10 elective credits can be selected from options listed which are allied to BSc Physiotherapy Programme. Students may also choose to register to elective modules offered outside of the Programme area. Please note that elective modules must be taken in Autumn Trimester

    Module ID Module Title Trimester Credits
    Stage 1 Core Modules
         
    ANAT10110 Clinical Human Anatomy I Autumn

    5

    BIOC00010 Chemistry-Biochemistry Autumn

    5

    PERS10120 Science of Human Performance I Autumn

    5

    PHTY10080 Applied Physics Principles Autumn

    5

    PHTY10110 Introduction to Healthcare Practice Autumn

    5

    PHTY20090 Introduction to Massage Autumn

    5

    ANAT20010 Clinical Human Anatomy III Spring

    5

    PERS10090 Science of Human Performance II Spring

    5

    PHTY10040 Functional Anatomy and Kinesiology Spring

    5

    PHTY10100 Physiotherapy Professional Practice I Spring

    5

    PHTY10140 Applied Exercise Science Spring

    5

    Stage 1 Core Modules
         
    Stage 1 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Please select First Year Elective Option for Spring Trimester
         
    PHTY10150 Personal Training in Physiothe Spring

    5

    Stage 1 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Please select First Year Elective Option for Spring Trimester
         
    Stage 2 Core Modules
         
    PHTY20140 Physiotherapy Professional Practice II 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    5

    PERS20130 Psychology of Sport and Health 1 Autumn

    5

    PHTY20050 Strength and Conditioning Autumn

    5

    PHTY20070 Musculoskeletal I Autumn

    5

    PHTY20150 Cardiorespiratory I Autumn

    5

    PHTY20160 Neurology I Autumn

    5

    PHTY20010 Musculoskeletal II: The Lower Limb Spring

    5

    PHTY20020 Applied Physics and Biomechanics Spring

    5

    PHTY20030 Application of Physical Agents Spring

    5

    PHTY20040 Musculoskeletal III: The Spine Spring

    5

    Stage 2 Core Modules
         
    Stage 2 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Students must select minimum of 2 modules @ 5 credits each. Please select PHTY20110 for the Spring Trimester and another for the Autumn Trimester. Alternatively students may select a general elective place on a module not specified as an option for the Autumn Trimester and PHTY20110 for the Spring Trimester.
         
    PHTY20250 Tai Chi for Sport & Health II Autumn

    5

    PHTY20270 Evidence Based Practice Autumn

    5

    PHTY20260 Mindfulness for Health Autumn and Spring (separate)

    5

    PHTY20110 Therapeutic Massage Spring

    5

    Stage 2 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Students must select minimum of 2 modules @ 5 credits each. Please select PHTY20110 for the Spring Trimester and another for the Autumn Trimester. Alternatively students may select a general elective place on a module not specified as an option for the Autumn Trimester and PHTY20110 for the Spring Trimester.
         
    Stage 3 Core Modules
         
    PHTY30010 Physiotherapy Clinical Education III Autumn

    10

    PHTY30020 Physiotherapy Clinical Education IV Autumn

    10

    PHTY30030 Physiotherapy Clinical Education V Autumn

    10

    PHTY30090 Cardiorespiratory II Spring

    5

    PHTY30100 Neurology II Spring

    5

    PHTY30110 Clinical Exercise Spring

    5

    PHTY30120 Research Methods Spring

    5

    PHTY30320 Neuromusculoskeletal Physio Spring

    5

    PHTY30410 Health in a Global Society Spring

    5

    Stage 3 Core Modules
         
    Stage 4 Core Modules
         
    PHTY41020 Physio Clinical Specialties 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    10

    FLME41030 Legal Medicine (Physiotherapy) Autumn

    3

    PHAR20030 Pharmacology Autumn

    5

    PHTY30190 Physiotherapy Clinical Education VI Autumn

    10

    PHTY40790 Physio Practice III Autumn

    3

    PHTY40670 Physiotherapy Clin Ed VII Spring

    10

    PHTY40680 Physio Practice IV Spring

    10

    Stage 4 Core Modules
         
    Stage 4 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Please select option modules to the value of 10 credits. Options must be taken in Autumn trimester
         
    PERS20170 Optimisation of Human Performance Autumn

    5

    PERS30260 Sports Injury Management Autumn

    5

    PHTY41010 Physiotherapy Research Autumn

    10


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