Sample Curriculum

The Physical Therapy Faculty Program at the Parkinson's Foundation offers interactive trainings where physical therapy educators learn from the best in the field about Parkinson’s.

The program is offered as a four-day course and offers Continuing Competence Units (CCUs) to participants who complete all requirements. The academic curriculum below is supplemented by clinical work with people with Parkinson’s and independent study.

Curriculum includes the following topics:

  • Differential diagnosis highlighting both the motor and non-motor features of typical and atypical Parkinsonism.
  • The role of imaging and the clinical examination in diagnosing Parkinson’s.
  • A contemporary evidenced based overview of the pharmacological, surgical and rehabilitative management of people living with early, moderate and advanced Parkinson’s disease.
  • An evidence-based approach to examination, diagnosis, prognosis and intervention in Parkinson’s (via lecture, discussion and clinical observations).
  • Recommendations for implementation of standardized outcome measures across the participation, activity and impairment level domains.
  • A contemporary multidisciplinary model of care to optimize the management of persons with Parkinson’s across the continuum of the disease.
  • Most current research supporting essential elements of physical therapy care in Parkinson’s disease – including gait and balance training, strategies to improve functional mobility and reduce falls, the benefits of external cueing, treadmill training, cardiovascular fitness training, strengthening and flexibility exercises.