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Online: Professionalism Module 3: Ethical Compass
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Author(s): APTA Task Force on Professionalism and APTA Staff

Laura Lee (Dolly) Swisher, PT, MDiv, PhD

Price: $0 Member | $72 Nonmember
CEU: 0.3 CEUs (3.0 contact hours/CCUs) will be awarded upon successful completion of a multiple choice test. You must complete the online posttest with at least 70% accuracy in order to claim CEU credit.
Publication Date: August 2008
Delivery Method:
Online Course: This course consists of a narrated PowerPoint® presentation and a posttest. Handouts, when made available by the presenters, are available as downloadable PDFs within the course. Computer System Requirements.
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Overview | Objectives | Presenters Bios | CEU Information | System Requirements

Module 3: Ethical Compass addresses ethics terminology and history, ethics versus. law, the role of ethics in professionalism and business relationships, the RIPS ethical decision-making model, and application of the model to case situations. This module will help you approach ethical situations with confidence that you can make ethical decisions and implement a course of action.

This module helps fulfill the professionalism prerequisite requirement for completing APTA's Advanced Clinical Instructor Education and Credentialing Program. You do not have to be enrolled in the Advanced CIECP to take this course and earn CEU credit.

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Goal The purpose of this module is to provide information about approaching ethical situations to assist physical therapists and physical therapist assistants in:
  • Recognizing ethical situations.
  • Making ethical decisions.
  • Implementing a course of action.

In addition, you will reflect on some of the ethical behaviors expected of physical therapists and physical therapists assistants.


After completing this module, you should be able to:

  • Identify the correct ethical term outlined in the scenario, provided with a scenario and a list of ethical terms.
  • Identify definitions of commonly used ethical terminology.
  • Apply the steps of the RIPS model of ethical decision-making to an ethical situation.
  • Determine a course of action in response to an ethical situation presented by a case scenario
  • Identify the correct ethical principle used for each given example of commonly encountered ethical situations in physical therapy.

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Presenter(s) Bios

Laura Lee (Dolly) Swisher, PT, MDiv, PhD is Associate Professor, Coordinator of Professional Education, Assistant Dean for Interprofessional Education at University of South Florida School of Physical Therapy And Rehabilitation Sciences

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CEU Information

On successful completion of the examination, 0.3 CEUs (3.0 contact hours/CCUs) and a certificate of completion will be awarded. The American Physical Therapy Association has been approved as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET), 1760 Old Meadow Road, Suite 500, McLean, VA 22102. Provider (#380).

Many state agencies recognize APTA as a recognized or approved provider for continuing education. The following state agencies have granted prior approval for this continuing education offering:

  • California Physical Therapy Association: CPTA2014-2015
  • Nevada Board of Physical Therapy Examiners: 0.2 Units
  • Ohio State Board of Physical Therapy: 15S0163
  • Oklahoma Board of Medical Licensure & Supervision: 2 Category B Hours
  • Pennsylvania: Approved - Meets Ethics requirements - 3 hours
  • Texas Physical Therapy Association: 1609016TX (does not meet Texas ethics requirement)

-more CEU information-

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System Requirements

Online Course: This course consists of a narrated PowerPoint® presentation, interactive knowledge checks, and a posttest. You must complete the online posttest with at least 70% accuracy in order to claim CEU credit.

Computer System Requirements

Keywords: Professional Issues (Non-Clinical), Education, Practice Administration

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$72.00 $0.00