Colleen Sleik PT, DPT, NCS 

Jack Cervantes PT, DPT

Part 1: Foundation

Nearly 40% of adults will experience vertigo at least once in their lives, and over 50% of adults over age 65 years of age will experience vertigo that can be treated and resolved with a simple treatment. 

Dizziness and vestibular conditions become increasingly more common in the aging population, leading to falls, fear of movement, decreased social interactions, and ultimately loss of independence. There are many causes of dizziness, which is why skill development in differential diagnosis is pertinent to the successful treatment of patients with dizziness.

This course will provide the clinician with the foundational knowledge to improve understanding of vestibular function and the effects of vestibular dysfunction in patients presenting with dizziness, imbalance, and falls. 

Specific emphasis will be placed on understanding of peripheral and central causes of dizziness, including benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), vestibular hypofunction, stroke, neurodegenerative diseases, and multisensory dizziness. 

Principles of assessment and differential diagnosis will improve the clinician’s efficiency in examination and translation of exam findings into the development of an effective, evidence-based treatment plan. 

Instructional Methods: Demonstration, skills-check, large and small group discussion, video, case studies

Educational Level: Introductory; Delivery method: Online, Self-paced

Approved by WI Chapter of the APTA and by the AOTA for .8 CEU's (8 Contact Hours) 

Part 2: Clinical Application


The goal of continuing education is to enhance the clinician’s knowledge and understanding of a topic in a way that that they will be able to incorporate the evidence-based concepts and techniques that were presented to their clinical practice. 

This course is designed to do just that. It will help to solidify the learning that was done in Part 1: Foundations, through hands-on practice, instructor feedback, large and small group discussion, individual work, and applying concepts to case studies.

Some features of this course include instructor feedback on assessment and treatment techniques, large and small group activities to demonstrate application of the principles of differential diagnosis, and clinical application to real patient cases. 

Understanding of the vestibular rehab concepts will be brought to a higher level of understanding as they are applied to complex cases, such as multiple canal BPPV and mixed central and peripheral conditions. 

Clinicians will have an opportunity to develop a personalized assessment template specific to their clinical setting and patient population with guidance from instructors and group discussion. 

They will also create a ready-to-follow clinical plan to incorporate the evidence-based treatment strategies to patient care based on their exam findings. Clinicians will walk away from this course series with knowledge, confidence in their technical skills, experience in differential diagnosis and a plan in place to evaluate and treat patients with dizziness upon returning to the clinic on Monday.

Instructional Methods: Demonstration, skills-check, large and small group discussion, video, case studies

Educational Level: Intermediate; Delivery method: Live

Approved by the WI Chapter of APTA and by the AOTA for .14 CEU's (14 Contact Hours) 

Learning Objectives

1. Develop skills to perform canalith repositioning manuevers for posterior, horizontal, and anterior canal BPPV with proper technique.

2. Apply differential diagnosis in clnical decision-making utilizing special tests and screening assessments.

3. Develop vestibular rehab treatment plan for patients with vestibular hypofunction based on clinical practice guidelines.

4. Develop personalized evaluation template for utilization in patient care.

5. Apply vestibular evaluation template to case studies to improve confidence in utilization and clinical practice.

6. Apply vestibular rehab techniques to patients with central and cervicogenic dizziness.

7. Recognize that there are other causes of dizziness and list indications for referral to a clinician with further training in this area.


Approved by the Wisconsin APTA for .22 CEU's. Focus on Function Physical Therapy, PC is an AOTA Approved Provider of professional development. Course approval ID#0000006328. This course is offered at .22 CEU's, intermediate educational level, foundational knowledge. The assignment of AOTA CEUs does not imply endorsement of specific course content, products, or clinical procedures by AOTA.


Colleen Sleik PT, DPT, NCS

Physical Therapist

Colleen Sleik, PT, DPT, NCS, is a Doctor of Physical Therapy, specializing in the treatment of patients with vestibular disorders. Dr. Sleik graduated from The College of St. Catherine with a Master of Physical Therapy. She earned a transitional Doctor of Physical Therapy degree through The University of St. Augustine, Florida, and completed the Competency-Based Vestibular Rehabilitation course through Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Dr. Sleik is a board-certification Neurologic Clinical Specialist. She is a member of the Vestibular Disorders Association (VEDA) and the American Physical Therapy Association, including the Academy of Neurologic Physical Therapists and the Vestibular Special Interest Group. Dr. Sleik is a full-time clinician at Bellin Health in Iron Mountain, MI where 75-90% of her caseload consists of patients with vertigo, dizziness, or balance problems. Dr. Sleik's journey into the specialized care of vestibular patients began after evaluating a patient that she was unable to help. She needed to know more. She attended courses in vestibular rehab, accessed research to guide her treatment, and developed her skills in treating dizzy patients through years of practice. As a clinician, Dr. Sleik utilizes evidence-based treatment strategies to provide her patients with the best care available, while also providing them with strategies for long-term management of their condition. Dr. Sleik lives and works in a small, rural community in Michigan where it is not uncommon for patients to drive several hours to access her specialty vestibular rehabilitation services. This need inspired her to begin teaching vestibular rehabilitation continuing education courses, and she has been teaching national-level seminars in vestibular rehabilitation since 2015. Her goal is to increase clinicians’ knowledge and understanding of vestibular rehabilitation, ultimately improving access to knowledgeable clinicians providing quality care for patients with dizziness. Dr. Sleik is pleased to have this opportunity to share her passion for treating this special population and guiding your journey in providing specialty care in vestibular rehabilitation.

Jack Cervantes PT, DPT

Physical Therapist

Jack Cervantes, PT, DPT, is a Doctor of Physical Therapy, currently working at UW Hospital & Clinics and UnityPoint Health - Meriter while completing the Orthopaedic Physical Therapy Clinical Residency Program. Dr. Cervantes is a recent graduate of the Carroll University Doctor of Physical Therapy Program in 2022. Throughout his clinical experiences he completed rotations in the Outpatient Orthopedic, Inpatient General, Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Emergency Department (ED), and Outpatient Vestibular Setting. Dr. Cervantes has also completed a variety of continuing education courses including M1 Graston Certification, Running Rehabilitation, Cervical Manipulation Safety, and American Sign Language (ASL) for the Physical Therapist. He is also a member of the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), including APTA Wisconsin and the Orthopaedic Special Interest Group. Dr. Cervantes’ interest in vestibular rehabilitation began following an intensive 8-week rotation treating patients with diagnoses varying from benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) and vestibular hypofunction to post-concussion syndrome and Meniere's disease. He has attended and assisted in the presentation of the continuing education course “Differential Diagnosis in Vestibular Rehabilitation” with Dr. Colleen Sleik PT, DPT, NCS at the 2022 Spring Conference held by APTA Wisconsin. This experience and continuing education opportunity opened the door to a whole new side of physical therapy. As a clinician, Dr. Cervantes utilizes evidence-based treatment approaches to provide his patients with the best care available, while also providing them with strategies for long-term management of their condition.

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