Clinical Education - Real World Experiential Learning & Professional Development

Deliberate and progressive experiences to practice and apply skills and proficiencies taught in the classroom and labs.

Our Philosophy on Clinical Education

Our clinical education program is designed to provide students with deliberate, progressive and supervised experiences in which they are required to be active and intentional learners, to reflect and build upon their learning, and to progress from novices to intermediate, and over the course of the senior year, to entry-level capabilities. The concerted goal of our program is for students to transfer their knowledge and experiences from the classroom to current and ongoing events and situations in professional contexts, and in different and taxing situations, both experienced and yet to be experienced. Critical to this experiential learning process and development is for the students to reflect and evaluate their experiences throughout the process, to practice deliberately, and to receive constructive feedback throughout. This philosophy and direct approach is best captured in our Progression of Expertise approach to teaching, learning and development, a best-evidence approach that all students are introduced to and subject of over their 4 years here at IC.

Clinical Education & Experiences

Course Requirements

Clinical experiences begin with on-campus assignments as part of the academic coursework in the sophomore year. Prior to graduation, you will complete:

  • Six (6) .5 - 1 credit Clinical Experience in Athletic Training courses, CE I through CE VI

  • Eight (8) 1 - credit Internship in Athletic Training courses, Junior Internship and Senior Internship in AT

The majority of clinical education occurs on campus working directly with the highly competitive and accomplished Bombers Athletics Program, winners of 15 Division III National Championships and numerous individual National Champions. Other locally-based clinical rotations for each athletic training student occur at Ithaca College, Cornell University, Ithaca High School, Cornell/Gannett Physical Therapy, Cayuga Medical Center, local orthopedic physician offices, the Ithaca College Hammond Health Center, and a nearby hospital-based medical center where numerous professionals are contracted to provide care for high school athletes.

Junior and senior athletic training students are typically assigned to two clinical rotations per year both on and off-campus. Potentially, they may be assigned to any of our many Clinical Preceptors at any of our on campus or affiliated sites. Rotations are set up to assure that each student gains significant experience with sports having a high percentage of upper extremity injuries, lower extremity injuries, equipment intensive requirements, and general medical experiences. All clinical experiences are gained under the direct supervision of our program's trained and dedicated Clinical Preceptors (ATs, PTs, MDs). Students are also assigned at least one rotation where they will gain clinical experience with student athletes, or patients of the opposite gender.

Role of Clinical Preceptors

All Clinical Preceptors that supervise our students are licensed health care professionals and are aware of the clinical experience level of each athletic training student, and the overall structure, mission and philosophy of our education plan. Through their participation in various workshops and tireless dedication to the program, they are able to assist with the teaching and evaluation of clinical skills and proficiencies required for each of the students assigned to them, as well as the professional development and maturation of each and every student.

Additional Costs for Athletic Training Majors
  1. a. Student Liability Insurance—Beginning with your sophomore year and continuing throughout your time in the major, your Ithaca College bill will include a fee for “professional liability insurance”. This insurance covers you and Ithaca College from liability associated with your clinical education duties and activities. Typically around $15.00 for the entire academic year.

    b. Clinical Education Travel (Gas, Mileage, Parking)—There is a very good likelihood that for at least one rotation, you will be assigned to an off site clinical rotation that will require you to travel to/fro that location 3-5x/week for practices and games. Our typical off site rotations include Ithaca High School, Cayuga Medical Center and Cornell University. If you will not have access to a car, or the funds necessary to complete an off site clinical rotation, you will need to let the Clinical Exp. Coordinator of the program know that as far in advance, as is possible and accommodations will be made without penalty. If you complete a rotation at Cornell University, the Department of Athletics at Cornell provides our program with funds to reimburse you fully for your parking permit, and partially for your gas/mileage for the duration of your rotation. Be SURE to keep (make a copy) of your receipt for your Cornell University Parking Permit and submit it to the AT Director as soon as you make payment. Reimbursement typically takes 2-3 weeks to complete, but it cannot occur without a receipt. You do not need to keep or turn in receipts for gas or any other associated travel expenses—remaining funds are divided up at the end of the year and an equitable refund is given to each student who completed a rotation at Cornell in April of each year. Parking tickets received while at Cornell (or other locations) are NOT reimbursable.


Patrick McKeon
G66 Hill Center
Ithaca College
953 Danby Road
Ithaca, NY 14850