The programme focuses on training highly qualified physiotherapists with an in-depth understanding of physical therapy and the ability to successfully conduct research and further development of the speciality.
Programme Fact File
Professional Bachelor's Degree in Health Care
Study environment and methods
The study programme aims to ensure a comprehensive study process and research possibilities: comfortable and well-equipped classrooms and laboratories, e.g. Gait Laboratory, Rehabilitation Research Laboratory offering extensive research possibilities, IT infrastructure, a modern library enabling direct access to global databases and a contemporary Medical Education Technology Centre, other RSU structural units and cooperation partners.
Full-time studies involving multiple teaching methods: lectures, practical classes, workshops, discussions and independent work (group and individual projects and research project presentations). RSU has introduced an up-to-date e-study platform constantly offering new study opportunities.
The major part of the study programme consists of practical classes intended for the acquisition of professional competences. The practical part is implemented by working in small groups, thus ensuring an individual approach to all students. If necessary, individual consultations are provided and the recommendations and proposals of students are heard and taken into account. Students may use physiotherapy classrooms for independent practical training and this is a highly valued and option that students frequently make use of.
- 1st study year
Students master the basic disciplines of medicine – anatomy, physiology, biology and microbiology, as well as special subjects – basics of physiotherapy, sports pedagogy, biomechanics, first aid, medical terminology in foreign languages, philosophy and ethics, research methods, biometry, basics of economics and business, etc.
- 2nd study year
Students acquire the basics in clinical subjects – pathological physiology, propaedeutics of internal diseases, clinical pharmacology, clinical care, internal diseases, general surgery, and technologies of medicine. Special subjects include basic physiotherapy study courses – ergonomics, physical medicine, massage, sports pedagogy, assessment of functional ability limitations, general and communication psychology, environmental health, public health, etc.
- 3rd study year
Students master clinical disciplines – neurology, orthopaedics, paediatrics, infectious diseases. Special subjects include physiotherapy in orthopaedics, internal diseases and geriatrics, neurology and paediatrics, general rehabilitation, basics of research methodology, sports medicine, health promotion and prevention in physiotherapy.
- 4th study year
Students undergo clinical placement and prepare to write a research (Bachelor’s) thesis. The aim of the clinical placement is to strengthen the knowledge acquired during studies, to develop and improve practical skills in dealing with patients of different age groups and pathologies in preventing or reducing functional movement disorders and to acquire the competence in the selected profession that complies with the professional standards of proficiency for physiotherapists.Placement locations:
- Pauls Stradiņš Clinical University Hospital Riga
- East Clinical University Hospital
Students may also complete part of their placement, worth 5 CP, at a medical institution of their choice, provided it meets the requirements of the Placement Regulations, in this way, for example ensuring more placement opportunities in regional areas and the possibility of getting a job there in the future. Each student must undergo placement in 5 different fields which allows them to strengthen proficiency in work with children, adults and elderly people having various diseases: orthopaedic, neurological, cardiovascular, pulmonary and surgical and to work with post-trauma patients.
Students may also opt to complete part of the placement in another EU Member State within the framework of the ERASMUS+ mobility programme. ERASMUS+ is a student exchange programme via which students from other countries may arrange placement at medical institutions in Latvia as well. This allows students to meet their future colleagues from all over Europe during their studies.
- Children’s Clinical University Hospital
- Hospital of Traumatology and Orthopaedics
- Riga 2nd Hospital
- National Rehabilitation Centre "Vaivari",
- Children’s Rehabilitation Centre "Mēs esam līdzās",
- Rehabilitation Centres "Baltezers", "Sanare",
- Health Resort-Rehabilitation Centre "Jaunķemeri",
- Riga Health Centre.
At the initial stage of the study process emphasis is on learning the basic disciplines of medicine, nevertheless, the students also start learning professional subjects already during 1st semester and these will proportionally increase in the 2nd and 3rd study years. Additionally the students master general and elective courses and undergo a 26 week placement in the 4th study year. Placement is one of the most important parts of the study programme, followed by work on and defense of the Bachelor thesis. To obtain the professional qualification, students have to pass the state examination.
The study programme corresponds to the requirements of the Cabinet of Ministers Regulations of the Republic of Latvia No.512 “On the State Standard of the Second Level Professional Higher Education” and other applicable laws and regulations. The contents of the study programme have been improved on the basis of recommendations of professional associations (WCPT, WCPT ER, LFA) and ENPHE (European Network of Physiotherapy in Higher Education) which RSU is an active member of.
Job Opportunities after Studies
Graduates of our programme work at clinics, hospitals, outpatient rehabilitation and health centres, in private practice, social care institutions, schools, kindergartens, sports schools etc. They carry out preventive and educational work and help patients recover lost functions after illnesses or injuries or to mitigate the consequences. The number of physiotherapists working in the area of health promotion and prevention may significantly increase in the future, as it is one of the fields of activity that is included in the Physiotherapist’s profession standard.
The results of the latest employers’ survey show that almost all employers surveyed are looking forward to increasing the number of physiotherapists in their medical facilities, both public and private. It should be noted that currently the private sector in physiotherapy is experiencing rapid growth which is also confirmed by data from the register of the Latvian Association of Physiotherapists.
Our university teaches you to think and to be responsible. The decisions we make often define whether a person will be able to successfully restore his capabilities and return to society. It requires a tremendous amount of effort, but it also gives huge satisfaction when you see your patient taking his first steps for the second time in his life.
Jeļizaveta Lieldidža-Kolbina, physiotherapist, Salaspils Medical Centre
Studies may be continued in the following RSU Master's programmes (only Public Health, Health Management, Rehabilitation, Social Work with Children and Youth are offered in English):