This is an Independent Home Study Course for Individual Continuing Education.

Course Overview

Successful aging is hard to define, yet it is something that each person hopes to achieve. This monograph will explore various models and theories of health, illness, and disability as they apply to the older adult and physical therapy practice. The biopsychosocial dimensions of successful aging will be discussed with an emphasis on the role of the physical therapist to support longevity and contribute to an older adult’s freedom from disability and disease. The second part of this monograph explores environmental dimensions of successful aging and the role of the physical therapist in reference to financial security, housing options, adaptive equipment/technology,leisure activities and social networks. Case studies illustrate how physical therapists have the knowledge and skills to assist patients or clients in adapting to their changing circumstances, whether that is through primary prevention and risk reduction measures, direct interventions, advocacy in public policy, or consultation.

Meet our Author

Mary Thompson, PT, PhD, GCS, is the Director of Post Professional Programs and professor at the School of Physical Therapy, Texas Woman’s University, Dallas. She is a native Floridian and completed her undergraduate degree in physical therapy from the University of Kentucky, followed by her advanced masters in geriatric physical therapy from Texas Woman’s University. Dr. Thompson later completed her PhD in higher education with a minor in aging studies from the University of North Texas. She has been a physical therapist for 37 years.

Clinically, Dr. Thompson has worked primarily in home health with time in skilled nursing facilities and hospice. She is an American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties (ABPTS) Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Geriatrics. In the professional program at Texas Woman’s, Dr. Thompson teaches health promotion and wellness courses using a service-learning model and teaches in the professional management course sequence. In the post professional program, she collaborated with others to develop the curriculum for the Baylor-TWU Women’s Health Residency program and the Academic Certificate in Geriatric Physical Therapy. Dr. Thompson teaches PhD students how higher education institutions work and the roles of faculty and department heads. She enjoys mentoring PhD students in both qualitative and quantitative research methods.

Editor: Barbara Billek-Sawhney, PT, EdD, DPT, GCS

Course Code:




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Type:E-Learning Course
Credit Categories
Domains:biopsychosocial, Geriatrics Focus 2018, aging, Mary Thompson, Falls
Available discounts:
  • Non Member
    (until 12/31/2030)
  • Member
    (until 12/31/2030)
  • Geriatrics
    (until 12/31/2030)
* Prices in US Dollar