Course Overview

“Graduated Return to Work” is an online learning unit developed in 2013 as a collaborative project designed through a University of Washington – University of Otago partnership.
View the Course Flyer here.

How to Register

Create an account on our Continuing Education website or login to your existing CE account and select the green registration button at the top to register.


This course is free.

Intended Audience

Healthcare providers including physicians, nurse practitioners, occupational health nurses, and physician assistants who see workers with occupational injuries and illnesses.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the physical, mental, vocational and social consequences of being out of work
  • Explain why return to work is essential
  • Develop a framework for planning graduated return to work
  • Coordinate with stakeholders when developing realistic goals and timeframes for milestones
  • Use tools for graduated return to work in clinical practice
  • Apply a graduated return to work approach to injury treatment as part of an overall package of injury treatment

Course Structure

The course is broken up into several modules:

  1. Case Study: Back injury
  2. The Adverse Effects of Unnecessary Work Absence
  3. What Is Graduated Return to Work?
  4. Foundation for GRTW
  5. Ingredients for Success
  6. Barriers to GRTW
  7. Planning GRTW
  8. Implementing a GRTW Plan

Questions throughout the modules help reinforce what you have just learned. Your grade on these "knowledge check" questions do not count toward your final grade. At the end of each module is a short quiz. You must receive a cumulative score of at least 80% from all graded quizzes to receive the certificate of completion for this course. If you do not pass the course, you may retake the quizzes up to three times.

Course Duration

You have up to 3 months to complete the course. You do not need to complete the course in one sitting. Feel free to break it up into several sessions. We estimate that the course will take about three hours to complete.

Certificate of Completion

When you have completed and successfully passed the course, a PDF certificate will be emailed to you, which you can print out.


United States