Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Physical Therapy (MPT)


Physical Therapy

First Advisor

Henry C. Wessman


Motor Activity; Motor Neurons; Physical Therapy -- education


The Motor Control Model or Theory is a conglomeration of recent studies by professionals and scientists from a wide variety of fields. This theory on motor control consists of concepts and ideas that can be used by therapists to treat neurologically impaired patients. Its theories are different from the traditional Facilitation Model theories which are based on Rood, Brunnstrom, PNF, and NOT. Because the Motor Control Theory is a new and valuable tool for physical therapists to use in the clinic, it is important that it be introduced to present and future physical therapists.

The purpose of this study was to determine if the Motor Control Theory is being incorporated into the present physical therapy programs across the country. To determine this, a questionnaire/survey was sent to the physical therapy program directors of the 122 United States physical therapy programs identified in 1992 by the American Physical Therapy Association. The survey consisted of 12 questions including an open-ended question asking for any additional comments on the Motor Control Theory.

The program directors or appropriate faculty members of 88 of the 122 surveyed PT programs returned completed questionnaires. The results showed that the number of hours devoted to the Motor Control Theory varied greatly, from 1 to 76. When this topic was added to the curriculum also varied in a range from 1992 to 1962. The most significant finding of the study was that it is apparent that there is not a consensus on the exact definition of the Motor Control Theory, nor how it relates to the older models of motor control.