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STEP Certificate Programs

STEP Stands for Skills, Training, Evaluation and Performance

AAPM&R's highly-regarded STEP Certificate Programs are designed by physiatrists, for physiatrists. The STEP Certificate Programs are multi-tiered training programs that teach and assess important physiatric skills using a progressive, competency-based curriculum. Participants move through a series of steps, completing each component through a combination of online and live learning formats. Participants who complete all of the required steps will earn a Certificate of Completion.

Successful completion of a STEP Certificate Program will clearly demonstrate to your patients, fellow healthcare professionals, employers, and the medical facilities you work with that you are a competent, expertly trained professional. 

When you earn a STEP Program Certificate, you:

  • Represent the highest standard in the field
  • Communicate a commitment to patient care and safety
  • Enhance your career opportunities
  • Gain visibility and credibility in the field
  • Reassure patients and employers that you are committed to excellence

What is a Certificate Program and Why is it so Important?

AAPM&R’s STEP Certificate Programs are modeled after the Institute for Credentialing Excellence’s (ICE) guideline document titled, “Standard for Assessment-Based Certificate Programs.” This type of certificate program is focused on providing comprehensive competency-based training in specific skills; it is not a "certification" that is only designed to test knowledge.  

Why AAPM&R Created the STEP Programs

Because training in clinical areas varies considerably, AAPM&R wanted to provide a centralized, standardized method of training for various skills. Our certificate programs provide a formal pathway for training for those who are out of residency or don’t have another avenue for developing and honing new skills. Holding a STEP Program Certificate distinguishes you in your field and demonstrates that you have the knowledge and skills needed to provide top-notch care to your patients.

CME and MOC Credit

Each STEP Certificate Program offers AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Explore your desired program below for more details. 




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This flagship STEP Ultrasound Certificate Program is designed to turn physiatrists from beginners to experts in musculoskeletal and neurologic ultrasound through two live courses, online learning, and an in-person skills assessment. 

Interventional Spasticity

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The STEP Interventional Spasticity Certificate Program will guide physiatrists through the fundamentals of spasticity diagnosis and interventional treatment options through online learning, a live course, and an in-person skills assessment.