Bachelor of Podiatry

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  • Objectives
    Graduates of CSU’s Bachelor of Podiatry find employment in the assessment, diagnosis, prevention and treatment of disorders of the feet and lower limbs.
  • Academic title
    Bachelor of Podiatry
  • Course description
    Bachelor of Podiatry (Honours)

    About the course

    This is the only podiatry course offered by a regional university in Australia and was developed in response to the shortage of podiatrists in non-metropolitan areas of Australia.

    Podiatry has a huge part to play in the health of Australia. Through screening of the feet of people with diabetes to risk prevention and providing foot care in a number of populations, podiatrists can delay and prevent hospitalisation for many patients. Podiatrists play an important role in the maintenance of mobility and general health and independence of many members of the community.

    Where it will take you

    Graduates work professionally as podiatrists in a variety of settings, both nationally and internationally.

    You can work in:

        * private practice
        * hospitals
        * community health centres
        * sports clinics
        * industry

    Professionals teaching you

    The course is taught by a team of dedicated professionals with over 90 years experience in a wide range of industry, clinical and international settings.

    Your course is recognised by industry

    The Bachelor of Podiatry program has been developed to meet the competency requirements of the Australasian Podiatry Council and all Registration Boards in Australia and New Zealand . The course is recognised by many prominent podiatrists for offering the best clinical education of any podiatry course in the country.

    The latest facilities

    To provide students with direct hands-on clinical experience, and to ensure that you are experienced at using the equipment and techniques found in the workplace, our facilities include:

        * state-of-the-art anatomy and physiology laboratories
        * first class clinical teaching laboratories
        * small group sizes
        * a ‘real life’on campus podiatry clinic where you will treat your first patients and obtain over 600 hours of clinical training. This clinic has over 3,000 patients currently registered and provides the basis of an excellent clinical education with hands-on training.

    Clinical experience

    Students will be required to complete over 1000 hours of clinical experience during the course. This will be undertaken in conjunction with a number of subjects throughout the course beginning in the first year.

    Students are responsible for any travel and accommodation expenses to and from clinical placements (see Clinical requirements section following).

    Course information

    The course has a strong emphasis on the clinical practices associated with podiatry and this is complemented with studies in anatomy, physiology, biomechanics, diagnostic imaging, health promotion and the social sciences. Please note that this course involves the use of human cadaveric material. Students will be required to undertake clinical practice throughout the course, including holiday periods.

    Graduation requirements

    To graduate, students must satisfactorily complete 256 points and meet fieldwork placement requirements. Fieldwork experience constitutes approximately one quarter of the course, the majority taking place during third and fourth years. Students will be required to meet the costs associated with fieldwork. Students will graduate from the Bachelor of Podiatry with the award BPodiatry or BPodiatry(Hons).

    Clinical requirements

    Refer to the Clinical requirements section following for information on fieldwork placement requirements:

        * Senior First Aid Certificate
        * Criminal Record Clearance
        * Immunisation

    Frequently asked questions about Podiatry

    1. What sort of things do podiatrists do?

    Interpret x-rays of the foot and ankle treat skin/nail diseases of the foot and leg assess blood and nerve supply to the foot and leg assess the muscles and soft tissue of the foot and leg assess and manage the feet of people who have diabetes manage ingrown toenails (and other toenail problems), and remove them surgically diagnose and treat corns and calluses manage (sports) injuries to the foot and ankle manage long-term foot and ankle problems (e.g. ‘heel spurs’, ‘metatarsalgia’) treat children’s foot problems plus much more

    2. What age people do podiatrists work with?

    Podiatrists work with all ages, from babies just learning to walk (and younger occasionally), right through to very elderly people. Most podiatrists work largely with people aged over 45.

    3. What personal attributes are useful for podiatrists?

    Good communicator enjoy working with people work well independently ability to make decisions.

    4. What specific areas are studied?

    Nail disorders, x-ray interpretation, diabetes medicine, vascular (e.g. venous leg ulcers) medicine, rheumatology (e.g. arthritis), human walking, foot problems of childhood (e.g. cerebral palsy, club foot), dermatology (skin diseases), problems of ageing (e.g. preventing broken hips by preventing falls), neurology (nerves, e.g. Parkinson’s disease), diagnosis and management of injuries (sports medicine), prescription of insoles (orthotics) and many others.

    5. How much practical work is involved in the course?

    Working with real clients: three to five days in the first year, building up to about 15 to 20 full-time weeks in fourth year. The Australian Podiatry Council suggests that approximately 1,000 hours is spent in clinical experience over the four years of the course.

    6. What are clinical placements?

    These are situations where you are given the opportunity to experience professional podiatric practice. Depending on the placement, you may be observing, assisting or taking responsibility for assessment and treatment. Through these activities you will experience almost the entire range of activities associated with podiatric practice before finishing your study.

    7. Where are clinical placements?

    60% of the time, these will be in the on campus clinic. Placements can be with podiatrists and related professionals locally or anywhere in Australia. International placements may be available, but they are not compulsory. Placements may be available in the UK , Singapore, and New Zealand.

    Students are required to meet their own travelling and living expenses while on placement. Scholarships may be available to help with costs associated with placement.

    To ensure that students are exposed to a wide range of placement situations, students are not normally given a choice of placement location.

    8. How hard is the course?

    There is a demanding workload. You need to work steadily throughout the semester. However, some students do manage part-time jobs on top of their university commitment.

    9. How many hours a week do I have to be on campus?

    Students normally have between 22-25 hours a week of class contact time. You also have clinical sessions. Each session takes four hours. Currently, first-year students complete one clinical session every three weeks, second-year students one session per week and third-year students two sessions per week. Fourth-year students rotate through six to eight clinical placement rosters per week, and have less lecture commitments than in other years.

    10. Are there many jobs in podiatry?

    Currently there is a major shortage of podiatrists and you will be able to find work easily. Most CSU graduates leave the University with up to three job offers in rural areas.

    11. Can I complete the course part time or through distance education?

    No. It is not possible to study podiatry part-time or by distance education.

    12. Can I work as a podiatrist overseas? What countries can an Australian trained practitioner work in?

    Your qualification allows you to work in all of the Australian states and territories. You can apply to work in NZ (no exam required), Britain (no exam required) and Canada (exam required). You cannot work in USA as a podiatrist, however, with a work permit, you can work as a podiatric assistant. CSU graduates currently work in the UK , Singapore , Ireland and Canada and are well respected for their high quality and clinical skills.

    13. How much manual dexterity /practical skills do I need to have to be a podiatrist?

    The podiatry course is very hands and requires effective use of scalpels, scissors, joint measurement instruments and eventually the use of hyper dermic needles. The course structure is such that these manual dexterity skills are developed in the student over each semester and competency assessment is then used to ensure each new skill is evaluated before they are let loose on patients.

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