Monash University

Undergraduate - Course

Students who commenced study in 2015 should refer to this course entry for direction on the requirements; to check which units are currently available for enrolment, refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course.

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This course entry applies to students commencing this course in 2015 and should be read in conjunction with information provided in the 'Faculty information' section of this Handbook by the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.

If you are seeking to commence your studies in 2016, please visit our new Find A Course for 2016.

Course codeM3002
Managing facultyMedicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Abbreviated titleBPT(Hons)
CRICOS code064804A
Total credit points required192
Standard duration of study (years)4 years FT

Full-time study only. This course must be completed in a minimum of 4 years and a maximum of 10 years. The course duration is inclusive of any periods of intermission.

Study mode and locationOn-campus (Peninsula)

The clinical component of this course requires students to travel to a variety of health services and agencies, including a rural placement. Students are required to be flexible, as hours of work and attendance days may vary.

Admission, fee and application details
Contact details

School of Primary Healthcare: telephone +61 3 9904 4466; email or visit

Course coordinator

Associate Professor Prue Morgan


  • Unit codes that are not linked to their entry in the Handbook are not available for study in the current year.


Monash physiotherapy education is built around five themes delivered within a fully integrated curriculum. Commencing first semester, the curriculum is structured around conditions for which people typically seek physiotherapy. In the later years of the course, the focus moves to learning in a clinical environment. This provides opportunities for students to apply knowledge and skills, and appreciate the relevance of ongoing learning in the context of supervised health service delivery.

Monash physiotherapy education facilitates development of skills through small group learning. Other features of this degree are opportunities to experience interdisciplinary service delivery and inter-professional education, in which students spend some time each semester learning and collaborating with students enrolled in other health science courses, including medicine, occupational therapy, nursing, ambulance and paramedic studies, medical imaging, nutrition and dietetics, and social work.

During the first and second years of the course, education in the biomedical and behavioural sciences (anatomy, biomechanics, kinesiology, pathology, pharmacology, physiology, psychology, radiology, sociology), foundations of physiotherapy practice and research, is provided on campus using a problem-based and patient-centred approach to learning.

On-campus learning continues in the early weeks of year three. The focus then changes to learning in the clinical setting. Clinical education aims to develop knowledge and practice in the delivery of physiotherapy services under the supervision of experienced physiotherapists. Clinical education will be undertaken in a diversity of settings, with challenges increasing across years three and four. Year four also includes paediatrics and the opportunity to undertake elective units in areas of interest. A mix of metropolitan and rural health services may be utilised for clinical education.

In the third and fourth years of study, the majority of time is spent in clinical education. Some flexibility may be required of students, both in terms of hours worked at clinics and scheduling of clinical education. Clinical practicum across all years of the course is compulsory.

Students may undertake rural clinical education during third or fourth year. Students should take these matters into consideration when considering casual employment.

Course themes

1: Personal and professional development

This theme focuses on the development of personal attributes and skills that assist the student in the transition from student to physiotherapist. It includes verbal and written communication skills and developing an understanding of the importance of relevant ethical and legal issues and the physiotherapy profession.

2: Population, society and health

This theme provides the structure to learn about and deal with broader society and population issues and is underpinned by an internationally accepted socio-ecological model of health.

3: Fundamental knowledge of health science

This theme provides the knowledge and skills required for physiotherapy clinical practice. It includes biomedical and behavioural sciences as well as the theory of physiotherapy practice.

4: Applied practice

This theme develops clinical competencies for physiotherapy practice. It focuses on the incorporation of the best available research evidence with the clinical reasoning skills of assessment, management, evaluation and health care across the lifespan and across a spectrum of patient environments and circumstances.

5: Research

This theme provides opportunities to gain the knowledge and skills to locate, interpret and critically evaluate research relevant to physiotherapy practice and to conduct and report quality research projects.


These course outcomes are aligned with the Australian Qualifications Framework level 8, the Bologna Cycle 1 and Monash Graduate AttributesAustralian Qualifications Framework level 8, the Bologna Cycle 1 and Monash Graduate Attributes (

Upon successful completion of this course it is expected that graduates will:

  • have a standard of knowledge, skills and technical competency appropriate for an entry level practitioner in physiotherapy
  • be prepared to maintain high standards in their professional life through a commitment to lifelong learning
  • demonstrate skill in accessing, critically appraising and applying the best available evidence to their everyday practice, and in conducting quality research.
  • be effective users of relevant technology
  • understand and show respect for the roles of other professionals and be able to work collaboratively and communicate effectively within the discipline of physiotherapy and as part of a multidisciplinary team
  • be client-centred in their approach, respecting the right of clients and their support networks to participate in decision-making with a tolerance for ambiguity and differing views
  • be able to supervise, manage and take responsibility, as appropriate, when working in collaboration with other professionals, students, clients and their support networks
  • be reflective and compassionate, with a concern for issues of equity, equality, humanity and social justice
  • possess appropriate oral, written and IT skills, including the ability to present coherent argument, negotiate effectively and manage conflict
  • be committed to the health of populations as well as individuals and be proactive in prevention-oriented physiotherapy practice and health promotion.

Special requirements

Students must refer to the information available on the special requirements outlined below. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure they have the correct documentation.

Police checks

Students must have a current Police check regarding their suitability to undertake placements. Refer to the faculty's police checkspolice checks ( webpage.

Working with Children checks

Students must have a current Working with Children check regarding their suitability to undertake placements. Refer to the faculty's Working with Children checksWorking with Children checks ( webpage.

Immunisation and infection requirements

In accordance with the National Health and Medical Research Council recommendations, this course requires that students comply with the faculty's Immunisation and vaccination policy and proceduresImmunisation and vaccination policy and procedures ( These are designed to provide maximum protection against the increased risk of some vaccine preventable diseases for students, patients and workers in a health care setting.

This policy, and the associated procedures require that students have certain specified vaccinations, and have their blood borne virus status determined, before they commence a clinical placement. Students who have not complied with this policy may not be able to undertake clinical placement, with the attendant academic consequences.

Prospective students are provided detailed information on the effect of blood borne virus infection on the scope of practice of health care workers. Students who test positive to a blood borne virus (including HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C) will be required to consult a specialist medical practitioner approved by the faculty to provide advice on any necessary restrictions on work practices to protect patients and others from infection.

First aid

In addition to the units outlined below, students will complete their 'Apply First Aid' certificate as part of their studies.


Clinical practice units

This course requires students to undertake off-campus rural and metropolitan clinical placements. In the clinical setting students will have an opportunity to apply theory to practice under supervision. Attendance is mandatory for the clinical component of each unit.

Where a student's skill or knowledge is found to be inadequate, access to the clinical component of the unit will be denied. A student may be withdrawn from a clinical practicum if required skills and knowledge are deemed inadequate, or on other grounds deemed appropriate by the head of school.

Clinical expenses

Students are responsible for all travel and accommodation expenses during clinical placement. Uniforms and accessories are required for clinical placements and students will be notified regarding purchase arrangements upon commencement.


This course consists of 14 compulsory units.


First year

Semester one

Semester two

Second year

Semester one

Semester two

Third year

Semester one

Semester two

Fourth year

Semester one

  • PTY4171 Physiotherapy 7A: clinical
  • PTY4172 Physiotherapy 7B: clinical

Semester two

Areas of study

Progression to further studies

Students who demonstrate exemplary performance in the first year of this course may be invited to apply to transfer to M3003 Bachelor of Physiotherapy Advanced - Research (Honours), which includes research units in the second, third and fourth years of the course, and provides a pathway to higher degrees by research in a masters or PhD. Note: Transfering students will be required to complete an additional 24 points of study in the Bachelor of Physiotherapy Advanced - Research (Honours).

Alternative exit(s)

Students may exit this course with a Bachelor of Human Sciences after successfully completing at least 144 points of study.


Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Honours)