Making the most of your placement

Abdul Wahab Bseiso, a final-year physiotherapy student at the University of East London, offers some advice on coping with placements

Making the most of your placement
Making the most of your placement

Abdul has had a range of placements, including one at the CSP, and his experiences are varied.

You are strong, you have the power, knowledge, and skills to make a difference

Shadow as many professionals as you can while on placement, remember this opportunity might not come again

Professionalism is paramount at all times. Even when not on placement

Always read patients’ notes carefully and check that vital signs are stable before proceeding with physiotherapy, and make sure patients can tolerate treatment 

Making mistakes is part of learning, you can only improve yourself if you know what mistakes you’ve made

Treat everyone with respect and equality and treat them the way you would like to be treated

You will get through this placement – just think of the lives you’re improving

Have lots of patience, as you will deal with people who are impatient 

Talk to people in a soft and calming tone - in essence this is a type of therapy

Seek constructive feedback from your educators and colleagues 

Be aware of the contraindications and know your red, blue and yellow flags

Make sure you write down notes constantly - most of your notes will be useful to you throughout your education and career

Always start the day when on placement with the aim of making a difference to patients’ lives

Keep a reflective diary to always seek ways of improving on your clinical reasoning

Never feel shy or embarrassed to ask for help or to speak up

Tell your educators what new things you have learnt at the end of each day – it will impress them

Make sure you set meaningful goals for your patients – remember SMART goals 

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