Topics in Rehabilitation


Course Objective

This course provides an overview of contemporary insights, methods and
research questions in the field of rehabilitation from a human movement
sciences perspective. The topics range from abnormal motor development
in children to rehabilitation after physical or neurological impairments
in adults. After this course students should be able to identify,
summarize, critically evaluate and expand upon topics regarding these
issues. Specifically, students get acquainted with different types of
qualitative motor assessments, instruments and methods to quantify motor
performance. The students learn to understand the relevant issues,
terms, concepts, mechanisms, and models relevant to human movement
science in the context of rehabilitation, and relate those to various
aspects of motor development, functional recovery, adaptation,
compensation, training and learning of function and activities in the
framework of restoration of mobility and upper-limb performance in
persons with neurological and musculoskeletal impairments. They learn to
understand the contexts as well as the practical process of scientific
research and communication in the combined fields of rehabilitation and
human movement sciences. They also appreciate clinical decision-making
and acknowledge the importance of the ICF-framework (International
Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health) in rehabilitation

Course Content

During a part of this course, the understanding of abnormal motor
development and developmental disorders in fetuses, infants and young
children is deepened. Lectures and a tutorial provide insight into
actual problems in the research and practice of disorders in which motor
problems are the defining characteristics (i.e., cerebral palsy and
developmental coordination disorder). Being the key issue in physical
rehabilitation of adults, this course subsequently concentrates on the
restoration of motor performance, and its underlying mechanisms, at the
different levels of the International Classification of Functioning,
Disability and Health (WHO 2001). Primarily a biophysical approach is
taken: biomechanical, motor control and exercise (neuro)physiological
principles, techniques and research findings will be discussed in
specific patient populations, such as those with stroke, spinal cord
injury, lower-limb amputation, Parkinson’s disease, breast cancer and
arthrosis. Aspects of functional recovery, neuroplasticity, adaptation,
compensation as well as concepts of learning and training mechanisms
will be addressed. Research in this field will be presented and
discussed in the format of ‘Capita Selecta’.

Teaching Methods

11 lectures of 2 hrs in which the current issues and state-of-the-art
research in normal and abnormal motor development and in different
patient populations is discussed; 2 site visits (4 hrs each) to
rehabilitation centers Reade and Heliomare; 1 tutorial of 2 hrs.
Attending the site visits and tutorials is compulsory. Six 2-hr meetings
in which each student-pair gives a 15-minute presentation on a current
rehabilitation topic. Each student should attend at least 3 of these

Method of Assessment

Multiple choice examination counting for 80% of the final grade. The
mark for the presentation determines the remaining 20%.

Entry Requirements

Students should have basic knowledge and understanding of
neuro-physiology, neuroanatomy, biomechanics, and exercise physiology.


A selection of scientific papers and a reader.

Custom Course Registration

For more info on workgroups, laboratories, (computer) practicals etc. please see CANVAS. This course has a limited capacitiy, due to the practicals.

General Information

Course Code B_TOPICS
Credits 6 EC
Period P1
Course Level 500
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Fac. of Behavioural and Movement Science
Course Coordinator prof. dr. T.W.J. Janssen
Examiner prof. dr. T.W.J. Janssen
Teaching Staff dr. J.H.P. Houdijk
dr. E.E.H. van Wegen
prof. dr. T.W.J. Janssen
dr. A. Ledebt

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Teaching Methods Lecture, Practical*, Computer lab*

*You cannot select a group yourself for this teaching method, you will be placed in a group.