Each section of this workbook includes chapters that cover the athletic training educational domains and is written based on the fifth edition of the Athletic Training Education Competencies, which may be found here: http://www.nata.org/sites/default/files/5th-Edition-Competencies-2011-PDF-Version.pdf. Within each chapter, the scenarios cover topics that athletic training students may encounter in the clinical setting. The scenarios are written to stand alone; therefore, they don't need to be completed in order. However, in each chapter model scenarios are included and outlined. These are example scenarios that lead the student through critical thinking exercises. Keep in mind that there may be variations in state laws and practices and variances in athletic training skills and protocols that may cause the answers to the practice questions to vary. Students should defer to their instructor for clarification or expansion on a topic; instructors should feel free to elaborate or add to the scenario's components. Information used to complete the scenarios should be gathered from textbooks and peer reviewed journal articles. Instructors can use their discretion as to what extent they require references for answers and the inclusion of evidence-based practice (e.g., evidence on sensitivity and specificity of special tests used). Repetition in component questions and content may be experienced because of the "pick and choose" nature of the chapter's scenarios as a learning tool. The workbook teaches the student to comprise a mental checklist to help identify an assessment or treatment plan when presented with a clinical scenario. This helps the student to become a better athletic trainer.
Each chapter begins with a vignette, or scenario, which is written by a clinician who has real world experience with that chapter's content. These experiences are meant to present the athletic training student with the information contained in the chapter and to show how this content is used by all professions under the athletic training umbrella. The intent is for the athletic training students to take something from the real world experiences and apply it to their future careers.
The learning outcomes present what the athletic training students will learn throughout the scenarios and activities in each chapter. They are based on the fifth edition of the Athletic Training Education Competencies. Following this section are the model scenarios and student scenarios. The model scenarios are formatted just like the student scenarios, but the model scenarios' activities are already completed. This serves as a template for students to follow while working through the subsequent student scenarios. The number of model and student scenarios vary depending on the complexity of each chapter's content.
The student scenarios are presented with blank answer spaces that the student is to complete. Various questions are presented after each scenario. The blank areas and/or bullets after the questions are to be filled in by the student. The number of bullets doesn't directly relate to the number of answers, but are to be used as a format guide. In some scenarios, students may write down more or fewer answers than the given number of bullets. Guidance for the assessment process and the scenario answers are provided in the corresponding instructor's guide.
The scenarios also include some special features: Brain Jolt, Conversation Buffer, and Treatment Detour. The Brain Jolts are bits of information that can help or "jolt" the student's memory and learning process. For example, in the injury evaluation section, the Brain Jolts are clues to the athlete's assessment. In other sections, the Brain Jolts serve as additional information to help signify important concepts or help the student with the transition from the assessment to the treatment plan. Conversation Buffers are written to give guidance with communication skills. This can pertain to communication between the athletic trainer and the coach, athlete, parent, or other medical personnel. A Treatment Detour is information that is related to the content of a particular scenario while presenting evidence-based information from published journal articles. These may include background information on a condition, new treatment protocols, or additional information that is useful for the clinician. It is a reminder that research is important to the profession and evidence-based practice helps to improve patient care.
The final aspect of the chapters is the knowledge checklist. This tool is based on the fifth edition of the Athletic Training Education Competencies, found in its entirety on NATA's website (http://www.nata.org/sites/default/files/5th-Edition-Competencies-2011-PDFVersion.pdf.). It can be used by instructors, preceptors, or peers to evaluate a student's proficiency of the chapter's content.
The back of the book includes tear-out flashcards. These flashcards encompass the content included in the scenarios. However, the flashcards are presented in a random order and can be used independently from the scenarios. The flashcards include information like signs and symptoms, special test results, vital sign values, or simple pictures or diagrams. The answers are presented on the back of each card. These flashcards have a rating system using stars as follows: 1 star signals a lower level or easier question; 2 stars signals a moderate level question; and 3 stars signals an upper level or difficult question. It is recommended that the students tear these flashcards out of the book, laminate them, and punch a hole in the corner of each card. Then the cards can be assembled on a key ring. This way, the flashcards are water resistant and more resilient so they may be kept in the student's or AT's medical kit. These flashcards are a simple way to spark conversation and quiz the student's knowledge of the content while in the clinical setting during "downtime" to further enhance learning and educational opportunities with peers and preceptors.