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The University of Southampton

OCCT3036 Therapeutic Engagements/Partnerships in Occupational Therapy Practice 3

Module Overview

This practical module explores the theory and practice of commonly used components of therapeutic dialogue through the use of role play and video recordings. You will: - examine the verbal and non-verbal components of therapeutic dialogue which enhance the therapeutic value of dialogue interactions with service users and multi-disciplinary professionals - build the skills and confidence required to use talking as a therapeutic tool within occupational therapy at an advanced level and in preparation for practice - work collaboratively with your peers and module tutors to give and receive constructive feedback in relation to your role play and video recordings. The module builds on your previous work at levels 4 and 5 regarding understanding of both the therapeutic alliance ; and actions and skills needed to develop and maintain therapeutic relationships.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Critically review the effectiveness of your advanced therapeutic dialogue and engagement skills across a range of complex scenarios to facilitate individual or group participation.
  • Reflect, evaluate and modify your professional and personal effectiveness in response to constructive feedback from your peers and module tutors.
  • Adapt and justify therapeutic interactions to support a client-centred approach based on evidence and clinical reasoning.
  • Appraise the complexity of ’service users’ lived experiences and the contexts in which they live and work
  • Discriminate between a range of theoretical approaches of therapeutic dialogue, as a therapeutic intervention, to maximise occupational performance, insight and transformation.
  • Critically reflect on your therapeutic dialogue knowledge and skills, within the context of occupational therapy and assess the impact of this dialogue, for your self as a therapist, and your service users and multi-disciplinary professionals.


Topics covered are: - Examining the evidence base for talking as a therapeutic approach. - Developing and maintaining boundaries in therapeutic relationships - Therapeutic use of silence - Using metaphor in therapeutic conversations - Unexpected disclosure in therapeutic conversations - Transference and counter transference - Therapeutic dialogue components - such as reflection, summarising, challenging and empathy - Concepts of therapeutic use of self and therapeutic alliance within occupational therapy - Application of theory to occupational therapy practice, building on your practice placement experiences

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

There will be an emphasis on experiential learning. You will be supported in personal and critical reflection through the use of videotaped practical sessions, feedback and opportunities to practice and develop your skills in advanced therapeutic dialogue. Other methods include lectures, seminars, tutorials, group-work and collaborative peer learning tasks.

Wider reading or practice82.5
Follow-up work35
Preparation for scheduled sessions35
Practical classes and workshops20
Total study time187.5

Resources & Reading list

Nelson-Jones R (2013). Introduction to Counselling Skills – Text and Activities. 

Nelson-Jones R (2016). Basic Counselling Skills – A Helper’s Manual. 

Haene LD, Grietens H, Vershueren K (2010). ) Holding harm: narrative methods in mental health research on refugee trauma. Qualitative Health Research. .

Singer JA, Blagiv P, Berry m, Oost KM (2013). Self defining memories, scripts and the life story: narrative identity and psychotherapy. Journal of Personality. .

Murran C, Barber J (2010). The therapeutic alliance: an evidence-based guide to practice.. 

Mearns D, Thorne B and McLeod J (2013). Person-Centred Counselling in Action. 

Dryden W (2007). Dryden’s Handbook of Individual Therapy. 

Egan M (2007). Speaking of Suffering and Occupational Therapy. Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy. .

Legowski, Brownlee (2001). Working with metaphor in narrative therapy. Journal of Family Psychotherapy. .

McLeod J (2009). An Introduction to Counselling. 

Nelson-Jones R (2015). Theory and Practice of Counselling and Psychotherapy. 

Morrison T (2013). ) Individual and environmental implications of working alliances in occupational therapy. British Journal of Occupational Therapy. .

Tolan J (2012). Skills in Person-Centred Counselling and Psychotherapy. 

Katz N, Fleming J, Keren N, Lightbody S, Hartman-Maeir A (2002).  Unawareness and/or denial of disability: Implications for occupational therapy intervention. Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy. .

Hough M (2014). Counselling Skills and Theory. 



Class participation


MethodPercentage contribution
Critical Reflection 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Critical Reflection 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: External


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:


There are no additional costs associated with this module.

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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