College-Level Courses Coming to O&P Community

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The O&P community will soon have access to college-level core science courses not connected to any products.

The Kassel Group Inc., Adrian, Michigan, was formed to offer courses at this level to provide the opportunity for practitioners to enhance their understanding of anatomy, physiology, and the movement sciences, according to the company. The courses will fill a gap, Kassel said. Although many product presenters do provide some background in such sciences as anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, biomechanics, and kinetics, "the accusation has been made that most of that information is geared to the concept of the product being presented," the company noted.

No Product Interests

"In looking at the practitioners in O&P, the newer individuals have had these courses in college-level programs in order to become certified by the American Board for Certification in Orthotics & Prosthetics (ABC)," the company said. "However, there are many ABC practitioners and even more BOC practitioners who have learned the core sciences only when that science has related to a specific product or company service. Kassel has no product interests. Its only function is to sponsor educational seminars for the sake of pure education."

Coming This Fall

Coming this fall are two courses under Kassel's "SOP Courses" banner: Course 110, Anatomy and Physiology, taught by Jeff Falkel, PhD; and Course 210, Movement Sciences, taught by Dan Cipriani, PhD. Falkel, who has a PhD in exercise physiology from the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is currently a physical therapist with the Denver Visiting Nurse Corporation, Denver, Colorado. Cipriani earned a PhD in research and measurement (applied statistics) at the University of Toledo, Ohio. He is currently an associate professor in The Medical College of Ohio, Toledo.

"The plan for Kassel is to develop more courses designed specifically for the O&P community that will be presented under the "SOP Courses" banner, and to present those courses each spring and fall," the company stated. "There are plans for over 200 contact hours in their curriculum. Most will be taught by PhD-, MD-, or DPM-level instructors, but some courses will be taught by recognized industry experts who do not have any product or commercial company interests, Kassel added.

"Most of the courses are geared to the certified or licensed practitioner or those preparing for certification and licensure-not for the entry-level individual," the company continued. "As a result, most of the courses will have prerequisites to exclude entry-level individuals." Courses this fall will be conducted in San Juan, Puerto Rico; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Cherry Hill (Philadelphia), Pennsylvania, areas. All courses will have 20 contact hours and will run Friday, Saturday, and Sunday morning. Twenty Category 1 credits have been applied for from both ABC and BOC, the company said.

For detailed course schedules, course director CVs; and the calendar of events, go to