Is that continuing education course evidence based…or worth the $$$?

Con Ed is readily available these days and a majority of it is on line. How, as a student or new grad do you know what is best? That is a tough question, especially, if you are like me and can learn something from everyone. Here is a quick list of things that may raise a red or at least a yellow flag:

1. Extensive social media posting to create a level of familiarity with the presenter that is not backed up by their publications, experience, or level of degree achievement.

2. A promise that “you did not learn this in PT school” and this course will set you straight.

3. A misinterpretation of the evidence (requires work on your part) where works are cited or even linked and the instructor has misinterpreted the results, fails to understand the data, or blatantly misrepresented it to fit their narrative.

4. The instructor has little teaching experience or no involvement in new research or teaching strategies. Facebook talks from your basement are not evidence based. Repackaging others research without proper interpretation or the time needed to truly understand it leads to a familiar…they don’t know what they don’t know. Check their CV!

5. Finally, a bashing of other methods, a push for things that are new or not researched and reliance on false comparisons and quotes that simply don’t add up. They are throwing you off track!

Let me be clear, you don’t need multiple publications to be a good teacher, or a fellowship, or certification, or ten years of teaching experience, or extensive clinical experience, or the respect of the majority of the profession, or multiple continuing education classes, or national awards, or experience as an editor, or time spent at a University, or impressive knowledge of anatomy and biomechanics, or a firm handle on the majority of the literature…but you DO NEED A FEW OF THESE! Expertise and the ability to effectively translate knowledge takes time and a variety of experiences. Don’t be fooled into taking a course that is not well thought out by high level faculty just because it is conveniently packaged and shiny. As they sang in Chicago, “Long as you keep ’em way off balance, How can they spot you’ve got no talents?”

Its your money, its your time, and you have lots of choices. Choose well.

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