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Concussion: prevention, detection and management

This MOOC demystifies concussion and explains how everyone can play a role in the prevention, identification, and management of this type of traumatic brain injury. The course also describes the revision and implementation of a concussion management protocol adapted to different environments. It was developed to meet the needs of parents, coaches, teachers and administrators of school and sport environments, health care professionals, and athletes/individuals that have experienced a concussion. The course is offered in collaboration with the University of Calgary.

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7 weeks from September 13 to November 8, 2021


Work required

1,5 à 2 hours/week



This MOOC is also offered in French. Check dates and Registration period.

Ce MOOC est aussi offert en français. Vérifiez les dates de la formation et la période d’inscription.

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Technical questions



  • Definition of concussion
  • Concussion and the spectrum of traumatic brain injuries
  • The pathophysiology of concussion
  • What are the potential residual effects and sequels of concussion
  • The objectives of a concussion management protocol
  • An introduction to the development and implementation of a concussion management protocol

Step 1: Prevention

  • Risk factors for concussion
  • Sports, recreational, and other activities at risk for concussion
  • Safer sport environments
  • Interventions that help to prevent concussions
  • Protection equipment: myths and realities
  • A synergy between stakeholders

Step 2: Detection

  • Signs, symptoms, and “Red Flags”
  • Detection technology: myths and realities
  • Initial management: Recognize, remove, re-evaluate, refer

Step 3: Management

  • Typical evolution of a concussion
  • Initial rest and gradual return to cognitive and physical activity
  • When should you refer on

Step 4: Access to care

  • Return-to-play recommendations
  • Rehabilitation
  • Reconsider elements that suggest a less favorable evolution
  • Conditions that should be recognized in the presence of persistent symptoms
  • The importance of an individualized and multidisciplinary treatment plan

Step 5: Adaptation, implementation and revision of protocols

  • Achieving the optimal result with consideration of available resources
  • Staying up-to-date and revising a protocol
  • Learning from your experience to improve your protocol
  • Planning your strategy to get every potential stakeholder involved 

Key recent developments integrated into this course

  • The recommendations, systematic reviews and tools published in the British Journal of Sport Medicine in 2017 following the 5th International Consensus Conference on Concussion in Sport held in Berlin, October 2016.
  • The Canadian Guideline on Concussion in Sport and related tools that were developed and informed by the 5th consensus on concussion in sport.


Kathryn Schneider, PT, PhD

Kathryn Schneider is an assistant professor and clinician scientist (physiotherapist) at the Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre, Faculty of Kinesiology at the University of Calgary. She researches the prevention, detection and treatment of sport-related concussion. Her previous work identified a large treatment effect using multimodal physiotherapy and vestibular rehabilitation in athletes who have persistent symptoms following concussion. She is a clinical specialist in musculoskeletal physiotherapy, a fellow of the Canadian Academy of Manipulative Physiotherapists, has expertise in vestibular rehabilitation. Her clinical practice focuses on treating recreational to elite/professional athletes with ongoing symptoms following sport-related concussion. She has developed and now instructs continuing education courses for physiotherapists and health care professionals in vestibular rehabilitation, cervical spine assessment/treatment and sport-related concussion.

She was recognized by Avenue Magazine as “Top 40 Under 40” in 2012 and was the recipient of the Vestibular Disorders Association (VEDA) Champion of Vestibular Medicine Award in 2015. She has been invited to speak at the 4th and 5th International Consensus Conferences on Concussion in Sport; International Olympic Committee (IOC) medical meetings at the Sochi, Rio and PyeongChang Olympic game; and many international and national sport meetings. Over the past seven years, she has worked with many local, provincial and national sport organizations and health care teams to develop and implement evidence-based concussion protocols and processes.  She represents the Canadian Physiotherapy Association on the Canadian Concussion Collaborative, is a member of the Federal Government Working Group on Concussion in Sport and Parachute’s Expert Advisory Committee on Concussion in Sport.

Pierre Frémont, MD, phD, FCFP (SEM)

Pierre Frémont is a professor in the Department of Rehabilitation from the Faculty of Medicine at Laval University since 1994. He is a past-president of the Canadian Academy of Sport and Exercise Medicine and represents the organization at the Canadian Concussion Collaborative since 2012. Since 2014, he is involved as a medical expert on concussion on several Canadian national and provincial (Quebec) initiatives to develop and implement concussion-related recommendations and policies in education, sport and leisure environments. As a clinician and researcher, he has developed a broad expertise on implementation issues related to the prevention, detection and management of concussions. He was involved in the implementation of concussion management strategies in environments ranging from youth development sports to international competition level. In 2016, he developed the first MOOC on concussion in French language at Laval University.

Carolyn Emery, PT, PhD

Carolyn Emery is a physiotherapist and epidemiologist. She completed her PhD (Epidemiology) at University of Alberta (2004), MSc (Epidemiology) at University of Calgary (1998), and BScPT at Queen’s University (1988). Carolyn is a Professor in the Faculty of Kinesiology at the University of Calgary and holds a joint appointment in Pediatrics and Community Health Sciences, Cumming School of Medicine. Carolyn is a full member of the Hotchkiss Brain Institute, Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute, and O’Brien Institute for Public Health. The focus of her research program is in injury prevention in youth sport, concussion, and pediatric rehabilitation; aimed to reduce the public health burden of sport injuries including their long-term consequences (e.g., reduced physical activity, chronic illness). Carolyn is the Chair of the Sport Injury Prevention Research Centre at the University of Calgary (one of the International Olympic Committee Research Centres for the Prevention of Injury and Illness in Athletes) and holds a Chair in Pediatric Rehabilitation (Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute). Carolyn is a fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences and a member of the Royal Society of Canada College of New Scholars.

Keith Yeates, PhD

Keith Yeates is a pediatric neuropsychologist. He is the Ronald and Irene Ward Chair in Pediatric Brain Injury and Professor in the Departments of Psychology, Pediatrics, and Clinical Neurosciences at the University of Calgary. He leads the University’s Integrated Concussion Research Program. He has a 30-year track record of funded research focused on childhood traumatic brain injury. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA) and National Academy of Neuropsychology. He has served as President of the Society of Clinical Neuropsychology of the International Neuropsychological Society. Dr. Yeates was previously Associate Editor of the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, and is the incoming Editor of Neuropsychology. He was co-lead author of the report from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Expert Panel on Acute Diagnosis and Management of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury among Children and Adolescents, an invited participant at the Workshop on Sports-Related Youth Concussions hosted by the US Institute of Medicine/National Research Council, and an invited expert panel observer at the 5th International Consensus Conference on Concussion in Sport.

For more information

Phone number: 418 656-2131, poste 403234

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