Course Title: Differential Diagnosis and Management for Chiropractors 1

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Differential Diagnosis and Management for Chiropractors 1

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


Bundoora Campus


150H Health Sciences


Sem 1 2016


Bundoora Campus


173H School of Health and Biomed


Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2018

Course Coordinator: Dr Rick Ames

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 7394

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 202.04.067

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

System Enforced Pre-requisites (Enforced by SAMS)


Course Description

This course will provide for you an opportunity to review the clinical presentation and management of common neuromuscular and skeletal disorders in the patient presenting to the chiropractic clinical setting. You will be expected to recognise, assess and manage the common neuromuscular and skeletal disorders, develop a working and differential diagnosis for these conditions and to be cognisant of the risk factors associated with these presentations.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Program Learning Outcomes

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes in the BP280 Bachelor Health Sciences, Bachelor of Applied Science (Chiropractic) program:


  • PLO1: provide specialised health care within a patient-centred, evidence-based framework;
  • PLO2: gather clinical information to make accurate differential diagnoses, assessment and management plans and carry out effective treatment;
  • PLO3: practice as a competent health care professional in a safe, ethical and legally responsible manner;
  • PLO4: demonstrate cultural awareness and sensitivity in the provision of specialized health care;
  • PLO5: communicate effectively in a range of forms (written, online, oral) and with diverse audiences (patients, community/public, agencies and health professionals);
  • PLO6: work independently and in teams, specifically to lead and contribute to inter-professional care partnerships

On successful completion of this course you will be expected to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the pathophysiology and assessment of common neuromuscular and skeletal disorders that present in the chiropractic clinical setting.
  2. Identify management options available for neuromuscular and skeletal presentations to the chiropractic clinic.
  3. Develop a working diagnosis and a differential diagnosis for patients presenting with these conditions.
  4. Identify and elaborate risk factors associated with these conditions.
  5. Differentiate between when to treat and when appropriate referral to another health professional is required.

Overview of Learning Activities

This course will use a range of learning activities. Throughout the course you will work both individually and in groups to solve problems involving key concepts and clinical scenarios.

Blended learning principles are employed by providing face to face and online presentations. These are supported by online Powerpoint presentations and study guides for prescribed texts This approach will present you with the key concepts and theories relevant to the understanding of core content.

Self-directed learning is available via the online material at the myRMIT site and the recommended texts. This will enable you to better develop your independent learning skills and support the material covered in the theoretical sessions.

Assessments are designed to require you to demonstrate a critical analysis of the core principles presented in the course. Assessment completed in the first half of the semester will provide feedback on your progress. Ongoing feedback on your skills will be provided from peers and staff.

You will undertake the six hours per week of face to face and/or on-line presentation. In addition you can expect to spend a minimum of four hours per week in independent study. Total study hours 120.

Overview of Learning Resources

Lectures, on-line presentations and on-line material: The lectures and reading material provided are intended to be supported by the recommended readings. However, they do not substitute for wider reading but provide an opportunity to focus on specific details, complex areas and life examples. The learning resources associated with this course will include targeted readings taken from a range of both primary and secondary sources. All material to be chosen will be digitally available to you. See and health sciences. Advice will be provided on which sections are relevant for each topic. Advice will also be given about additional and/or alternate reading resources. Practice learning activities will be provided in a variety of ways including simulated learning activities and the Chiropractic clinic. RMIT will provide you with additional resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems.

A subject Library Guide is available at:

Overview of Assessment

This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment Tasks:

Early Assessment Task:  PeerWise Activity

Weighting 5%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5

Assessment Task 2:  Intra-semester Written examination

Weighting 30%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5

Assessment Task 3: Intra-semester Group Assignment

Weighting 15%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5

Assessment 4: End of semester Written Examination

Weighting 50% 

This assessment supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4, & 5