RHSC 509 – Facilitating Learning in Rehabilitation Contexts

Leader handing out resources to class

Course Description

Approaches to creating positive and innovative learning experiences for clients, families, colleagues and students in rehabilitation. Incorporates the critical review of adult learning theories, assessment of learning needs, learning styles, plain language, instructional design and evaluation methods.

Intended Learners

This course is intended for practitioners in a variety of rehabilitation roles who want to be able to:

  • Play a greater role in facilitating effective learning for clients, family members, other professionals and students
  • Enhance their use of educational programs as a component of rehabilitation services
  • Better assess learners’ needs
  • Apply current learning theories to the design of educational activities and programs so that they are more effective in meeting the needs of targeted learners
  • Evaluate educational programs effectively to inform program changes and enhance accountability.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course learners should be able to:

  • Analyze the education role of the health professional in providing rehabilitation services.
  • Apply adult learning theories to the rehabilitation health care environment.
  • Utilize education research ‘evidence’ in facilitating adult learning in health care settings.
  • Assess educational need(s) in collaboration with a learner or group of learners in rehabilitation.
  • Assess, and discuss the implications of different learning styles and multiple intelligences in developing learning experiences.
  • Develop instructional plans for educating clients, families, colleagues or students in a range of informal and formal learning contexts.
  • Use a variety of strategies to promote and foster client, family, colleague or student learning.
  • Implement instructional strategies that reflect the age, culture, language and learning style(s) of the learner(s) in face-to-face, distance and e-learning contexts.
  • Apply the principles and purposes of authentic evaluation in education in evaluating the effectiveness of learning experiences.
  • Discuss the concept of lifelong learning and the role of continuing professional education in promoting this concept to health professionals.

Course Overview

This course is designed to examine the professional role of rehabilitation practitioner as educator. Rehabilitation practitioners facilitate learning for clients and their families as they work to overcome the challenges that rehabilitation bring. They also share their experience, disseminate new knowledge and guide colleagues and students alike as they acquire new skills. This course is designed to examine these ‘educator’ roles in rehabilitation and stimulate a critical analysis of taken-for-granted assumptions about this integral aspect of practice.

Throughout the course learning will be situated in the health rehabilitation environment and focus on the provision of rehabilitation service through education of clients and families, and instruction of colleagues and students. In completing course readings and interacting with others, participants will apply current learning theories and effective teaching strategies to the design, implementation and evaluation of creative, innovative and positive learning experiences for these targeted learners. The course is based on the assumptions that instruction is learner-centered and that effective learning is the outcome of a collaborative process between learner and facilitator.


In addition to online discussions, learners assess the learning needs of a target population, critique a website for use as an educational resource, and develop an educational program profile for critique by other learners. Collectively, these assignments are designed to assist participants to apply education concepts and principles and obtain feedback while developing their major course assignment — an education program or course proposal that meets the learning needs of a target population.

Course Readings

The course readings consist of the textbook below as well as journal articles and resources that are available through the course website once the course opens. The textbook can be purchased through online distributors/booksellers such as Chapters-Indigo.

Required Textbook

Bastable, S., Sopczyk, D, Gramet, P., Jacobs, K., & Braungart, M. (2020). Health professional as educator: Principles of teaching and learning, (2nd Ed). Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett. Note: Some sources use 2019 as the publication year; ensure that you purchase the Second Edition.