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The University of Southampton

OCCT1035 Practice Placement 1 OT

Module Overview

This module provides an opportunity to experience current practice in a variety of locations across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Principle providers of placements will be in health or social care settings. You will work alongside an experienced therapist who will act as placement educator for the entire period of study. You and the placement educator will be allocated a Locality Contact (a member of the academic staff in the School's OT team) who will provide a link to the academic programme and will visit you at least once during the placement. You are supernumerary to the staff on the unit in which you are placed. This particular placement has a focus on you observing and beginning to engage with service users, using your own existing skills and those developed within the academic programme, prior to placement. During the placement you will be closely supervised by your practice educator and will be encouraged to take increasing responsibility, according to yours and your practice educator's assessment of your confidence and developing abilities. Integration of Service Users (SU) The experience of working closely with service users of all ages, cultural backgrounds and across clinical specialities is an essential ingredient to the learning and assessment of competency in Health Care programmes. This placement links to work carried out in other level 4 modules, allowing you to apply your foundation knowledge and skills to understand the impact of pathologies on the occupational engagement of service users. You will also explore the role of occupational therapists in facilitating/enabling service users to manage their conditions/situations, (re)engage with important occupations and where appropriate to engage with the rehabilitation process. Multi-Professional Learning The partnership between the academic and practice arena is an essential ingredient in the development, delivery and evaluation of health care programmes. During other level 4 modules you will have opportunities to work alongside and learn together in mixed groups of health care students and this will be replicated in practice placement experiences where different professions frequently work together within practice teams. It is envisaged that these experiences will have an impact on how and what you explore and in particular may be a feature of aspects of your personal and professional development activities (see learning outcomes).

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

To provide an introduction to current professional practice in occupational therapy. It seeks to expose you to the profession's culture, vision, ethos and approaches.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Recognise and adhere to the principles of safe occupational therapy interventions and practice utilising appropriate risk assessment procedures where necessary
  • Reflect on how a practical skill has been developed in practice.
  • Apply appropriate communication styles when working as a therapist, an educator and a professional
  • Assist with assessing service users and discussing interventions with regard to individual service user need
  • Choose and apply appropriate interventions with consideration for individual service user needs, privacy and confidentiality
  • Identify the effects of interventions and discuss possible modifications to treatment/management
  • Maintain accurate records appropriate to the needs of service users and the team
  • Demonstrate organisational skills with regard to personal workload and service user interventions
  • Produce a case study/project from practice that uses theoretical and practical skills learnt throughout the academic year
  • Develop personal learning objectives appropriate for practice placement and future theoretical study


Practice placements in health and/or social settings include the study of: - People and their narratives/experiences - Occupations and activities important in maintaining health and well-being - Informing sciences that impact on service user’s lives including bio-psycho-social and patho-physiological sciences Integration of knowledge, skills and attitudes specific to the specialty area of the placement, reflecting the five sections of practice: safe conduct, professionalism, interpersonal skills, therapeutic skills and management skills as defined in the programme practice placement assessment criteria. The Continuous Professional Development process: including developing learning outcomes/objectives, reflecting on a learning experience and producing a practice case study/project.

Special Features

Service users have had a 'patient/client voice' in developing the learning outcomes for this module. You will receive guided work based practice from a placement educator and take an active role in, and where appropriate, responsibility for a caseload under their supervision. The opportunity to work with other health professional learners on a specific project: learning about their disciplines and communicating with them while developing own professional identity. You will have the opportunity to work with and learn from other health professionals and appropriate staff within the placement setting as well as the named placement educator to facilitate understanding of the multidisciplinary nature of health and social care provision. Some practice placements are located in buildings which may be inaccessible to students with restricted mobility, for example, in old hospital buildings. Additionally some practice placements may require students to visit people in their domestic settings with a variety of accessibility issues. If there is an issue with accessibility, reasonable adjustments will be made where possible to ensure you have an equivalent experience and can meet the required learning outcomes. Grading of Placements The assessment of occupational therapy practice placements is completed on an assessment form which will be emailed to your practice educator and which you will be able to download from your Practice Placement 1 Blackboard site. Once completed in collaboration with you at the final assessment stage, it will be returned by email to the placement assessments team at the University and you should keep a copy for your own records. Your academic tutor has access to the document to support your ongoing learning and progression. The Assessment of Practice addresses the following areas: There are 5 specific domains of assessment each with their own subsection criteria: Section 1 - Safety Section 2 - Professionalism Section 3 - Interpersonal Skills/Communication Section 4 - Therapeutic/Clinical Skills Section 5 - Management/leadership Skills Sections 1 & 2 have 3 response items namely unsatisfactory, needs improvement or satisfactory. Sections 3 - 5 have 5 response items graded A - E, where E is a fail. The importance of safety and professionalism is emphasised by sections 1 & 2 being assessed in the same manner on each placement. To represent the students' increasing proficiency and level of achievement the criteria for sections 3 – 5 differ and are further developed for each level as they progress from Placement 1 - Placement 4.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Your learning will be facilitated by the University prior to your placement through a preparation session and a visit to your practice area. The placement educator(s) will use a variety of learning and facilitation methods, including: - demonstration by a recognised placement educator in the placement facility - supervised service user contact using mentorship - staff and learner led presentations - case study/presentations - ward rounds/case conferences/community visits - attendance at clinics and opportunities to observe specialist treatments such as surgical interventions - departmental in-service programmes - peer support in the university and practice-based setting - support from placement educators and visiting academics (locality contacts) - eLearning resources: blackboard site - learning resources in practice area - practice placement handbook

Total study time240

Resources & Reading list

Higgs J & Jones M (2008). Clinical Reasoning in the Health professions. 

Guidance on Conduct and Ethics for students.

Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics.

Royal College of Occupational Therapists. Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct for Occupational Therapists. 

Standards of Proficiency.

McLeod J (2013). Introduction to Counselling. 

Curtin M, Egan M and Adams J (2017). Occupational Therapy for People Experiencing Illness, Injury or Impairment: Promoting occupation and participation. 





MethodPercentage contribution
Evaluation 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Evaluation 100%


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Accommodation and Travel

You may need to pay for accommodation depending upon where you are based for your placement. You may also incur travel costs related to travel to and from the placement base, plus travel while on placement to visit practice based units, other hospitals, client homes etc

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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