An Activity Analysis of #OTalk 27th October 2015

I recently attended a back to basic’s event within the trust I work for, which was led by Jennifer Creek.   As always Jennifer challenged us to reflect ‘are we really delivering occupational therapy?’,  reminding us that activity analysis is a core skill we should be using for everything we do with clients.  Taking this in mind I thought it might be fun to practice our activity analysis skills by doing an activity analysis of #OTalk.


What is activity Analysis?

Activity Analysis is the process of breaking down an activity into steps and detailed subparts and examining its components. With each activity being evaluated carefully to determine its therapeutic potential (Creek 2003 cited in Creek and Bullock 2008).

Any activity can be broken down into performance components to analyse the performance skills required as a means of understanding the client’s ability to complete the task or identify areas where the activity can be adapted (Mosey 1986 cited in Creek and Bullock 2008).

To understand activities and occupations to determine their demands, therapeutic potential, skills required to do them and their particular meaning. The thought process contributes to clinical reasoning during interventions and evaluation. With the therapist skill and expertise in analysing activities is critical in setting realistic treatment goals (Hagedorn 2001 cited in Creek and Bullock 2008).

There are many different forms/ format for activity analysis,  but I have chose to use the activity analysis, Jennifer used on the back to basics day.  During the twitter chat I will be asking you to fill in the below sections.

Name of activity – Engaging in OTalk

Timing/length of time/number of sessions:

Special features of the environment: (Space and Setting)

Appropriateness: (age, sex,culture etc)

Preparation: (tools, equipment, materials, environment, participants, therapist):


Performance requirements 

Physical demands (sensation,sensory, integration, perception, spatial awareness, co-ordination, balance, fine motor movement, mobility, speed, strength)

Cognitive demands (attention, concentration, temporal awareness, discrimination, language, abstract thinking, planning, knowledge, reading, numeracy, memory)

Intrapersonal demands (frustration tolerance, trust, creatively, risk taking, autonomy, sharing, responsibility, initiative, sublimation, coping with pressure, imagination)

Interpersonal demands (communication, co-operation, compromise, sharing, competition, negotiation, leadership, rule following, isolation, gender relation.)

Rachel @OT_rach

The Numbers –

743,099 Impressions
502 Tweets
58 Participants
402 Avg Tweets/Hour
9 Avg Tweets/Participant

Transcript from chat

I have used the Transcript for Tuesday Chat to write up the Activity Analysis,  please do add anything you think we have missed in the comments chapter,  and if you engaged in the chat, please do use as evidence in your CPD records 

Name of activity – Using social media format of twitter to engage in #OTalk, a weekly twitter chat about occupational therapy.

Timing/length of time/number of sessions: Every Tuesday evening 8pm for 1 hour. However individual can dip in and out during this hour session, others may spend more time doing prep.

Special features of the environment: (Space and Setting) Virtual environment of social media (twitter). Whist engaging the physical environment is best if participate are in comfortable, quiet, spaces he or she likes – dinning table, bed, sofa. However activity could be done anywhere with Wifi/internet access. Some participants multi task during it such as getting children to bed.

Appropriateness: (age, sex,culture etc)
Activity is appropriate for all, however there may be cultural barriers to engaging , lack of twitter experience/knowledge/ timing for those with children juggling bed/bath time with joining in chat. Chat is in english and on GMT limiting access to those not in UK and none english speaking.

Preparation: (tools, equipment, materials, environment, participants, therapist)
Essential equipment/ materials include – Internet access, a twitter account, an electronic device – smartphone/computer/tablet. optional include – pen/ paper to make notes.
The person hosting the chat will have created a blog post for potential participants to read in preparation. A host and more than one participant are required for chat.
Participants are likely to be OT staff/ OT students / service users however the chat is open to all as carried out in an open platform.

Participants in the chat need to be aware of and adhere to HCPC standards and COT Code of conduct. They also may want to think about what twitter account says about them as a professional i.e. appropriate twitter handle, photo, maintaining confidentiality.

Physical demands (sensation,sensory, integration, perception, spatial awareness, co-ordination, balance, fine motor movement, mobility, speed, strength)
Sensory skills to use device to engage in twitter chat, visual skill to follow fast pace of chat, moving between Virtual environments means those differ for different participants and can be optimised for each participant – some will be using assistive technology, fine motor skills to type , though some may choose to speak into Twitter using voice control software. Strength in hands is needed to hold device being used to tweet, unless using a desk top computer. Ability to use speed in typing.

Cognitive demands (attention, concentration, temporal awareness, discrimination, language, abstract thinking, planning, knowledge, reading, numeracy, memory)
Fast pace of chat requires, multitaskings, to follow the multiple treads and react with comments in a maximum of 140 characters. This requires good attention, literary and concentrate skills, Knowledge of the subject and how to use twitter effectively. Ability to remain focused during the hour.

Intrapersonal demands (frustration tolerance, trust, creatively, risk taking, autonomy, sharing, responsibility, initiative, sublimation, coping with pressure, imagination)
Managing frustration and coping with the pressure associated with only 140 characters and speed of chat. Taking responsibility for yourself and the way you portray yourself on Social Media, remembering code of ethics. Wiliness to listen to differences of option. Taking part requires autonomy, ability to share ideas, think creatively and be aware of risk that engaging in a social media as a professional or student might bring. Trust is required of the OTalk community, managing differing opinions, challenging own beliefs, asking ‘risky’ questions.

Interpersonal demands (communication, co-operation, compromise, sharing, competition, negotiation, leadership, rule following, isolation, gender relation.)

Remembering to follow the rules of the chat, and use the # in every tweet, this enable your tweet to been seen by all participants. Cooperation is required, ‘online’ considerations – privacy/awareness of public audience, Turn taking, etiquette and not monopolising the chat. being open to ideas & able to follow a theme or structure like this Q&A, appreciation of the value of discussion.


#OTalk 20th October 2015: Welcome to OT

This weeks #OTalk is a little bit different to our usual chats. This week we want to welcome the new batch of OT students to our profession. If you haven’t already done so please check out the video as some lovely OT students, new grads and a few of the #OTalk team have shared why they use #OTalk:

For regular #OTalkers: It would be brilliant to have you around to share your expertise with the new intake of students, you will remember the experience of studying and what it is like to go out on placement as well as all the emotions that go with the process.

If you are normally a ‘lurker’ during #OTalk, tonight would be a fab chance to contribute and share you experiences within the occupational therapy profession.

If you are a new student this weeks chat will give you an opportunity to ask OTs in practice, as well as other OT Students any questions that spring to mind about studying towards becoming an OT. Pierce (2014) sums up being a student nicely,

As I always tell entry-level students, you are like beautiful new sports cars. You are the newest, most up-to-date occupational therapists off the lot. But be humble: most therapist you meet were trained differently than you were, and they certainly have much to teach you.

The #OTalk community can be a great place to learn from each other as practitioners, so why not give it a go!

Normally we have questions to guide the chat but this week we are have a more general topic theme. If your question doesn’t fit into one of these do feel free to ask it at any point.

The themes for this weeks chat are:

  • Welcome

Why not say hi and meet some of the #OTalk community, students, clinicians and the #OTalk team.

  • #OTalk – what’s all the fuss about?

Why not share your tips on using #OTalk and twitter in general to help others make the most of the space. If you are new to twitter and have any questions feel free to ask away and we will try our best to help.

  • Occupational Therapy in the classroom

The first few weeks on a course can be exciting but also information overload, why not use this time to ask any questions you have about studying occupational therapy and the #OTalk community will try and help answer them.

  • Out on placement… what do I need to know

How are you feeling about going out on placement?  Why not chat about placement with the community – there will be a mix of students, new grads and educators so lots of knowledge to share!

  • What do I do when it gets stressful?

Everyone knows studying can be stressful, especially in the run up to assignment deadlines and exams. Why not share tips on how to keep the balance when you have so much to do.

  • What else is it worth checking out?

What other things is there to get involved in whilst you are a student OT.

Some Useful Tips:

What do I need to do to join in? – Remember the hashtag #OTalk

To join in the chat you will need access to Twitter. #OTalk takes place on a Tuesday evening between 8pm-9pm (UK Time), so it is helpful to be around then if you plan to join in. You can however catch up with the tweets if you can make it on the night by checking the post chat transcript )which is normally posted on the blog 48 hours after the chat.

It is worth checking out: Tweetchatting – Guide for Participants, this gives you some practical advice on joining in with the chat. It is also really important that you remaining professional whilst online and are aware of your code of ethics and professional standards when tweeting – Check out COT’s Social media briefing and their Introduction to Social Media document.

Why is it worth me joining in?

The #OTalk community are brilliant at supporting each other within their practice and love to have input from students within the weekly #OTalk chats.

It’s a great opportunity to expand your learning, and develop further what you have learnt in class and on placement. It can also give you a chance to develop professional networks with OTs in practice and learn from their practical experience of working within a range of settings. Another bonus is that it can count as an counting professional development activity, there is even a template to help you record your learning.

Here’s what Amy Spalding from COT has to say:

Still got questions about joining in?

Do you still have questions, you can ask via the @OTalk_ account or via members of the #OTalk team: @Helen_OTUK, @kirstyes, @GeekyOT @GillyGorry and @OTontheTracks


College of Occupational Therapists. (2015) Introduction to Social Media. London: COT.

College of Occupational Therapists. (2015) Social media: safe and appropriate use. London: COT.

Pierce, D (2014) Occupational Science: A powerful Disciplinary Knowledge Base for Occupational Therapy. In Pierce, D (2014) Occupational Science for Occupational Therapy, p. 1-10.

Welcome to Occupational Therapy #OTalk Post Chat Summary


So the numbers are in… and we had a whopping 1,121 tweets (approximately), by 136 participants, during (or just after) the Welcome to OT #OTalk hour on Tuesday!


It was a massively busy chat; which was brilliant to be able to facilitate. It was great to see students from at least 13 of the UK universities (only including students that shared their university during the chat, so could indeed be more) participating in #OTalk. A full list of the tweets shared during the chat can be found on healthcare hashtags and a selection of the chats tweets were included in the Storify of the chat.


So how easy is it to summarise 1,121 tweets; turns out not very easy…


But here goes:


If you watched the intro video for the chat, you will have seen a number of the team, a good few students and a couple of graduates share why they take part in #OTalk. So we though it only right to ask rest of the community to share why they choose to join in with #OTalk on a Tuesday night…


It seems there are a number of reasons the community of OT practitioners and students turn up between 8-9pm on a Tuesday; professional development appeared to be a key reason, along with networking and keeping up to date with current issues relevant to practice. For students it was highlighted the community helped them to link theory they learn in university to practice and also allowed them to learn from occupational therapists already working in practice.


Throughout the chat the #OTalk community shared advice and tips on studying at university and how to approach practice placements. Time management was highlighted by a number of individuals as the key to managing studies and maintaining occupational balance. People also shared the importance to engaging in activities that are meaningful to you and not to let these slip when university and placement gets busy, as this helps to keep the occupational balance and in turn our wellbeing. We all know this as we are learning to be (or are) Occupational Therapists; but aren’t we terrible at following our own advice?


There was lots of chat around placement and how to manage the challenges that come with learning about a new area of practice in a short space of time. The consensus is, to be as prepared as you can, Utilise your educators knowledge and YOUR supervision time; As well as embracing the placement you have been allocated, with more than one individual sharing that going on placement to a setting they hadn’t desired had actually turned out to be one of their favourites and even changed their path in ways they could never have imagined. It was also highlighted that when things don’t go well to speak to your educator and remember your university is also there to support you if need be (Letting things dwell can only make things worse). So use your challenges and learn from them. You are on placement to learn and grow as a practitioner after all.


On a similar topic we asked the community what to do when it all gets stressful? Similar to earlier conversations, the importance of engaging in meaningful occupations was highlighted as key to keeping the occupational balance; remembering to eat and if you are struggling speak to your personal tutor at university as they will be able to signpost you onto services to help. And most of all as @CeeCeeGeeOT shared: “Be positive! You got accepted on to the programme, you have what it takes to succeed.”


To finish the chat we asked for ideas on additional things to get involved in as a student; here are the suggestions that were shared during the chat (If you think of anymore, do let us know and we’ll add to the list):

  • Get involved in your university’s OT Society
  • Get involved with BAOT and become an active member
  • Utilise social media to develop your knowledge through tweetchats (#OTalk, #WeAHP etc), Facebook groups (4OT groups), and #OT24Vx15 (OT Virtual 24 Exchange Conference.
  • Join in with events OT Week events to help promote the Occupational Therapy profession.


As this summary comes to a close I really just want to thank all the brilliant people that helped us make this chat happen, from video contributions, retweets/FB shares and good old fashioned word of mouth, students, educators and occupational therapy practitioners, you all played a part in helping a bunch of students starting out in their occupational therapy career journey, have an opportunity to ask questions and get involved in #OTalk to see what we as a profession can do to support them, to help them to develop, and also what they can share with the rest of the profession as the newest and most up to date versions of occupational therapists they are in the process of becoming!

The Numbers
31Avg Tweets/Hour
8Avg Tweets/Participant

Healthcare Hashtags Transcript

PDF – Welcome to OT #OTalk


Tune in to next weeks chat: @OT_rach is leading us in an activity analysis of #OTalk; and as always everyone is welcome to join in with the chat.


#Otalk 13th Oct 2015 – What If…

One of the fun things about Twitter is ‘eavesdropping’ on other people’s conversations. Well – if they will just pop up in your timeline. On Saturday I was browsing my tweets and spotted this one by @hawki1989.

“What if OTs were no longer employed by the health service?” Julia Scott @BAOTCOT #derbyinnovate15 @DerbyOT

It turned out that Thomas Hawksworth was at the Derby University OT Student conference and he was kind enough to agree to host this week’s OTalk on this very topic. Here’s his introduction.

It’s a pleasure to be asked to host an OTalk session, particularly under the circumstances that it was.

On 10th October, as well as it being World Mental Health Day, the University of Derby in the United Kingdom hosted the first student-organised and student-led Occupational Therapy conference called InnOvaTe. The day consisted of sessions and workshops on the role of OT in various environments and with different client groups; all researched or experienced by Derby students. We were also excited to welcome Julia Scott, the Chief Executive of the College of Occupational Therapists, to our campus who gave the open plenary for the day.

In her speech, Julia Scott talked about the role of OT within the UK’s National Health Service but also paid lip-service to the role-emerging areas that OTs have yet to reach their potential. Through this frame, Julia encouraged students to be bold and entrepreneurial, or in her words, to be “wild, crazy and fantastic”– wild in your dreams, crazy about occupation and fantastic about your clients.

One of the questions posed by Julia was “what if OTs weren’t employed by the health service?”

What would this mean for clients who wouldn’t have as much access to therapists in hospitals, or for professionals who would need to market their abilities, seek out clients and be more flexible in their means of work? What about students who may have less access into the NHS-funded profession but may be able to embrace a different and more varied sense of OT away from the medical model?

Essentially, would the profession, professionals, students and clients benefit from OTs movement away from the medical model or medical environments?

Looking forward to this discussion – Tuesday at 8pm

Thomas Hawksworth @hawki1989

Dignity and Mental Health

It’s such a honour to be asked by the Otalk girls to join the team, and help out hosting some sessions this year.

World mental health day is Saturday 10th Ocober so this Tuesday 6th of October we are going to explore this years theme ‘Dignity’

The World Health organisation (WHO) says ‘Thousands of people with mental health conditions around the world are deprived of their human rights. They are not only discriminated against, stigmatised and marginalised but are also subject to emotional and physical abuse in both mental health facilities and the community. Poor quality care due to a lack of qualified health professionals and dilapidated facilities leads to further violations.’

The twitter chat will explore what is meant by dignity, and what part we as occupational therapists have to play in ensuring those with mental health issues dignity is upheld.

For more information about World mental health day please look at theses websites.

Looking forwards to hearing your thoughts on Tuesday 8pm

Rachel Booth @OT_rach

Post Chat update

Transcript 6th Oct 2015

1,378,955 Impressions

512 tweets
62 Participants
21 Avg Tweets/Hour
Avg Tweets/Participant