INTERNATIONAL PHYSIOTHERAPY: WHAT IS IT AND WHO IS IT AIMED AT?
The aim of this course is to teach students the different aspects of Physiotherapy (evaluation, diagnosis, design and development of treatments) while working in English and taking advantage of the synergy between the University of Health and Sport—a centre affiliated with the University of Girona (henceforth referred to as EUSES-UdG)—and the School of New Interactive Technologies—a centre affiliated with the University of Barcelona (henceforth referred to as ENTI-UB)—to work on cross-curricular skills of academic excellence and the integration of new technologies applied to the field of Physiotherapy into the curriculum.
ENTI-UB’s involvement in the Bachelor’s Degree in Physiotherapy will allow the students to benefit from experiences that only a pioneer university course in new technologies can provide: developing the tools for physiotherapeutic evaluation, applying new technological advances, and even having the possibility of working on the creation of new technological applications (mobile apps, computer software or 3-D modelling) in the field of Physiotherapy.
Nowadays, new technologies are gradually becoming increasingly prevalent in all aspects of our society and especially in the field of Physiotherapy. The physiotherapist has gone from using purely manual treatments to taking advantage of all the available technological resources, thereby both increasing the effectiveness of diagnosis as well as the results of therapies and the patient’s adherence to treatment.
There are a number of devices that are often found in Physiotherapeutic centres—such as electromyographs, biomechanical sensors, force plates, instrumented treadmills, pressure measurement platforms, pressure insoles, movement capture systems, cardiopulmonary analysis systems, movement capture based on optical technology, thermography, etc.
However, not only has strictly medical technology been included, but this has also produced a synergy between different fields of the new technologies. For instance, physiotherapy can share resources with architecture (three dimensional studies of reconstruction using laser technology that have enabled us to treat pathologies associated with a deviation of the spinal column, such as scoliosis), virtual gaming (the use of the Wii Fit Board, which has changed the approach to proprioception exercises in joint injures in ankles and knees, while developing more comfortable treatments for patients and creating more adherence and thus more assiduity and better results), and many others.
The symbiosis between EUSES and ENTI is therefore a natural and logical combination, especially considering that by combining both branches of knowledge students are given extra opportunities not only to broaden their learning experience but also in the use and creation of new resources for Physiotherapy. The horizons of their professional career are extended not solely in terms of their approach to health matters but also in the way they train in and think about things from an overall perspective within their academic career and their future, learning that any idea can be improved upon by thinking in a multidisciplinary way.
EUSES – ENTI students will not become mere users of new technologies but will rather gain an in-depth knowledge of them and have the capacity to know what to draw upon when creating those technological elements that are essential to their professional development and specialisation.
If we perceive a future graduate of EUSES – ENTI as an international professional, and we also add knowledge of new technologies to their studies (something which is not included at present in any university school for physiotherapy in the way that we offer it), then what we will have is a new professional who will not only add value to the care service, but will at the same time be someone who creates new resources.
The courses are taught exclusively in English. English is such an important language that mastering it is not only a requirement in today’s society but a basic skill for understanding scientific production and achieving an optimal professional level.