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The 18-unit Graduate Certificate in Musculoskeletal Medicine and 36-unit Graduate Diploma in Musculoskeletal Medicine are offered by the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences.

Both courses are open to health and allied health professionals to develop skills in the diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of patients.

The clinical topics are offered in 5-day intensive in-service blocks with a specific vocational bias and may also be taken on a non-award basis.

Admission requirements

Applicants who do not hold the Graduate Certificate in Musculoskeletal Medicine must hold an approved degree or equivalent qualification in a health-related area, eg medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, and have a minimum of two years'' clinical experience in
their relevant field.

Course aims

By participating in the topics that constitute this course, medical and other health professionals will:

  • Further extend and utilise their knowledge of the anatomy, physiology, pathology and biomechanics associated with the functions and disorders of the musculoskeletal system
  • Further develop their understanding of the impact of biological, psychological and social factors on musculoskeletal health, work and social engagement
  • Efficiently diagnose patients'' needs, and develop and evaluate appropriate courses of investigation and treatment that facilitate a return to normal function and participation
  • Further their ability to locate their own practice within the broad professional community associated with the care of patients requiring treatment for a wide range of musculoskeletal injuries and disorders, and prevention of these injuries and disorders.

Learning outcomes

At the completion of the course the candidates are expected to be able to:

  • demonstrate a sound knowledge of the structure and function of the musculoskeletal system; demonstrate a sound knowledge of common and dangerous diseases and trauma affecting the musculoskeletal system; distinguish the numerous aetiologies of musculoskeletal disease; understand the interrelation between the biological, psychological and social aspects of injury, disease, treatment, rehabilitation and long term recovery.
  • systematically examine all aspects of the musculoskeletal system and identify possible sources of pain/dysfunction; assess the evidence for different clinical practices and analyse examining procedures of the musculoskeletal system; integrate a knowledge of the musculoskeletal system with a knowledge of biomechanics, occupational factors, and mechanisms of injury.
  • arrive at a rational functional diagnosis of the patient and devise appropriate further cost effective investigations and management; suggest and where necessary implement a course of treatment which will hasten return of normal function and occupation; assess effectiveness of treatment and alter treatment if necessary.
  • understand the role and impact of medical, surgical and non-surgical treatments; know how and when to refer to appropriate specialists in a cost-effective, efficient and informative manner; have a clear understanding of the extent and limits of their professional competence; be able to interpret the needs of patients who have been referred by other professionals; write a comprehensive medico-legal report and be prepared to give expert evidence.
  • critically evaluate their practice through systematic audit and reference to published guidelines; investigate the evidence base for particular approaches to diagnosis, investigation, treatment and rehabilitation; search the existing literature on a specific topic and present an analysis that could be developed for publication in a relevant refereed journal; develop skills and experience in communicating with colleagues and other professionals.

Program of study

To qualify for the Graduate Diploma in Musculoskeletal Medicine, a student must complete the 36 units as set out below with a grade of P or NGP or better in each topic.

Not all topics are necessarily available in a given year.

Except with permission of the Faculty Board no topic may be attempted more than twice.

Core - Year 1 topics


 MSKM8011  Management of Upper Limb Dysfunction  (4.5 units)
 MSKM8012  Management of the Lower Limb Dysfunction  (4.5 units)
 MSKM8013  Management of Vertebral Column Dysfunction  (4.5 units)
 MSKM8014  Evidence-Based Medicine Practice Portfolio  (4.5 units)
 MSKM8015  Management of Upper Limb Dysfunction: Advanced  (4.5 units)
 MSKM8016  Management of Lower Limb Dysfunction: Advanced  (4.5 units)
 MSKM8017  Management of Vertebral Column Dysfunction: Advanced  (4.5 units)
 MSKM8018  Evidence-Based Medicine Practice Review, Audit and Research Project  (4.5 units)