Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Helping Students Reflect

By now students are nearing or at the halfway point in OCCTH 526.  This practical experience is allowing them to apply Year 1 and Year 2 (Fall Term) academic course work and is promoting their clinical reasoning, analytical and evaluative skills.  According to the educator Professor David Boud, effective learning will not occur unless you reflect (McClure, n.d.).

One definition of reflection is that it is "a process of reviewing an experience of practice in order to describe, analyse, evaluate and so inform learning about practice" (McClure, n.d., p. 3).

There is so much that we could cover on this topic but perhaps, for this week's blog, we can offer a few resources and tips that may assist you in enhancing your students' abilities to reflect.

Consider Schon's (1983) Reflective Practice Cycle:

Consider Three Aspects of Reflection: Stages, Components, Time Dimensions (Plack et al, 2005):

1) Stages of Reflection include:
  • Returning to experience - describing an event or incident that stands out, including who, what when, where, why, and how.
  • Attending to feelings - both your own and perhaps others.
  • Re-evaluation - reappraise the current situation vis-a-vis past experiences.  Possibly link new concepts to pre-existing knowledge, begin to integrate new information, validate insights, thoughts, perception, and work this new meaning into your own way of being.
2) Components of Reflection may be:
  • Content based - exploring the problem/experience to better understand it and consider different perspectives
  • Process based - begin to explore other strategies available for use
  • Premise based - recognize and explore or critique own assumptions, values, beliefs, and biases.
3) There are 3 possible Time Dimensions:
  • Reflection on action (R-O-A) - after the action has been completed
  • Reflection in action (R-I-A) - occurs while in the midst of an activity and a result of conscious decisions made on the spot
  • Reflection for action (R-F-A) - anticipate situations and/or plans for future to improve the outcome

Journalling is suggested as a mechanism to facilitate reflection.  We encourage students to journal and it is a requirement in their mental health placements.  In a future blog we hope to focus on journalling as a reflective strategy.  Stay tuned!

McClure, P.  (n.d.). Reflection on Practice.  University of Ulster:
Plack, MM., Driscoll, M., Bliessett, S., McKenna, R., Plack, TP. (2005). A Method for Asssessing Reflective Journal Writing. Journal of Allied Health, 34:199-208.
Schon, D. (1983). The Reflective Practitioner: How Professionals Think in Action. Basic Books: USA.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Call for Offers and Placement Requests for Spring & Summer 2016

THANK YOU to those of you who are currently involved in the education 
and support of our UofA MScOT students! 

We greatly appreciated the generous number of offers that we received for OCCTH 526!

We have just begun recruiting for the upcoming Spring and/or Summer sessions:

·        OCCTH 525: Year 1/Level 1:  May 16 - June 30, 2016 (7 weeks)

·        OCCTH 527, Year 2/Level 3A:   July 4 - August 19, 2016 (7 weeks) 
This placement could start one week earlier or up to two weeks later depending on preceptor preference.

Please consider making a placement offer in one of the following ways:
  •  1.  If you are an HSPnet user, please accept your Placement Request(s) in HSPnet.
  •  2.  If you work for AHS, but are not an HSPnet user, you must notify Tracy Wulff via email with your offer and she will enter it into HSPnet on your behalf: 
  •  3.  If you work for Covenant Health, you must notify Stacey Roussel and she will accept or enter your offer in HSPnet:

The  placement requests and 'call for offers' for OCCTH 528/Level 3B in September-October will be sent out on May 15, 2016.  These dates and future placement dates can be found on the 'Clinician' page of our OT Department website:

Thank you for your consideration!

Monday, January 11, 2016

OCCTH 526 begins ...

Happy New Year!

As of today, all of our Year 2 students have started their OCCTH 526 fieldwork placements. We have students being supervised and mentored by OTs in a broad array of practice settings across the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan and even a few students completing placements in British Columbia.

A huge thank you to our OT communities and partners for supporting our students!

At any point during a student placement when support or consultation is needed, students and clinical educators are encouraged to reach out to our fieldwork team. We are here to assist you in navigating the process of supervision and evaluation. Here is the link to our fieldwork webpage & our individual contact information:

While OCCTH 526 is in session, we'll be creating a weekly blog post ... so stay tuned and subscribe below to get weekly updates and access to information, resources and fieldwork tips!