Clinical reasoning is essential to physical therapist practice. Solid clinical reasoning processes may lead to greater understanding of the patient condition, early diagnostic hypothesis development, well-tolerated examination and intervention strategies, and mitigate the risk of diagnostic error. However, the complex and often subconscious nature of clinical reasoning can impede the development of this skill. Protracted tools have been published to help guide self-reflection on clinical reasoning but might not be feasible in typical clinical settings.
The Systematic Clinical Reasoning in Physical Therapy (SCRIPT) tool, presented in the context of a clinical case, illustrates how an expedient form can be used to guide the clinical reasoning process and prompt a physical therapist to search the literature to answer a clinical question. It is a useful tool for formal mentorship sessions in post-professional physical therapy training programs.