Use of the Practice Exam and Assessment Tool (PEAT) to predict success on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE)

Purpose: The purpose of this investigation was to assess the ability of the Practice Exam and Assessment Tool (PEAT) to predict first time pass rate on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) for entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) students at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU).Methods/Description: Two hundred and two students (149 females and 53 males) who graduated from the VCU DPT program between 2009 and 2012 were included in the analysis.ÊAll DPT students completed the PEAT exam during their third year in the program. Students who were considered to be at risk were required to take the PEAT exam again.Ê The first score on the PEAT was used in the analysis. A record of each graduateÕs pass/fail status on the NPTE was obtained for comparison with the other variables. Confidentiality was maintained for each subject.ÊUnivariate logistic regression was used to evaluate possible predictor variables for NPTE success. The variables tested were verbal GRE, quantitative GRE, undergraduate GPA, DPT GPA, academic probation while in the DPT program and ethnicity. Receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) analysis assessed the ability of the PEAT to predict a passing score on the NPTE. A 2 by 2 analysis was used to calculate the sensitivity and specificity of the PEAT at the optimally established cut score. Positive and negative likelihood ratios were calculated.Ê Statistical tests with a p-value < 0.05 were considered significant.Results/Outcomes: The mean for the first time PEAT score for the group was 67.85, SD 6.19. Seventy-six students (37%) scored 65 or below on the PEAT on their first attempt. Sixteen students (8%) failed the NPTE on their first attempt. Univariate regression revealed that the PEAT was the only risk factor that was significant for predicting success on the NPTE in this study.Ê No other covariate tested in combination with the PEAT added predictive value. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis revealed the PEAT was a significant predictor of passing the NPTE (ROC curve area: 0.876, p<0.001). The optimal threshold value for the PEAT was 65 (94% sensitivity, 67% specificity). The PEAT with a cut score of 65 correctly classified 95% of the students (NPTE first time pass versus fail). Students who scored 65 or below were three times more likely to fail the NPTE on the first attempt. Students who scored above 65 were 10 times more likely pass on the first attempt of the NPTE.Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme: Shaping the Future of Physical Therapy Education: The results of the present study indicate that PEAT, as used in the Department of Physical Therapy at VCU, can correctly identify 95% of the students who will fail the NPTE on the first attempt. Performance on the PEAT exam using a cut score of 65 is useful to predict the first time pass rate on the NPTE. The PEAT exam given in the final year of the DPT program before the terminal clinical internships is useful to identify at-risk students. Early identification of students at risk for failing the NPTE is optimal so that remediation and preemptive measures can be provided.References: 1. Jewell, DV, Riddle, DL:ÊA method for predicting a student's risk for academic probation in a professional program in allied health. J Allied Health, 2005, 34(1):17-23. 2. Utzman RR1,ÊRiddle DL,ÊJewell DV:ÊUse of demographic and quantitative admissions data to predict performance on the national physical therapy examination.ÊPhys Ther.Ê2007 Sep;87(9):1181-93. Epub 2007 Jul 3. 3.ÊUtzman RR1,ÊRiddle DL,ÊJewell DV:ÊUse of demographic and quantitative admissions data to predict academic difficulty among professional physical therapist students.ÊPhys Ther.Ê2007 Sep;87(9):1164-80. Epub 2007 Jul 3. 4. Wheeler, E, Arena, R:The Impact of Feeder School Selectivity on Predicting AcademicÊSuccess in an Allied Health Professional Program.ÊJ Allied Health, Fall 2009, Volume 38, Number 3. Ê

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  • Control #: 1996377
  • Type: Poster
  • Event/Year: ELC2014
  • Authors: Thomas P. Mayhew
  • Keywords:

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