This weeks chat is on the topic of practice education models and will be hosted by Mary Mulry (@MulryMary). Mary is a lecturer and practice education coordinator in Occupational Therapy at Glasgow Caledonian University. Here is what Mary had to say…
Practice education is an area of growing interest for me since assuming the role of Practice Education Coordinator last year. The role has opened my eyes to the challenges facing both educational institutions and practice educators in sourcing and providing adequate placements for occupational therapy students. Practice education is the backbone of our education as occupational therapists, yet despite its importance, there is an acknowledged shortage of placements.
With growing numbers of students needing placements, increasing resource shortages and lower staffing ratios, there is a growing expectation on occupational therapists to take more students every year. It is documented that a one to one model of practice education has its benefits however given the growing pressures on services and occupational therapists there is a greater need for practice educators and educational institutions to consider other models of practice education.
The move towards other models of practice education needs careful consideration. It needs to be evidence based and ensure that the quality of the placement is maintained. Peer learning has been documented as being beneficial when considering models of practice education, this facilitation of peer learning needs significant consideration when coordinating placements (Martin et al, 2004; Price et al, 2016).
The following are some questions to be considered:
- What is your experience and/opinion of practice education models (practice educators and students)?
- What supports do you feel need to be put in place for practice educators implementing the 3:1 or 2:1 model?
- What are the benefits and/or challenges in implementing these models of practice education (3:1 and 2:1)?
- Would you consider supporting students of various levels or of the same level as part of implementing 3:1 or 2:1 models of practice education?
- Do you think some settings are more suited to implementing these models of practice education than others?
Martin, M. Morris, J. Moore, A. Sadio, G. and Crouch, V. (2004) Evaluating practice education models in occupational therapy: comparing 1:1, 2:1 and 3:1 placements. British Journal of Occupational Therapy. 67(5) pp. 192-200.
Price, D. and Whiteside, M. (2016) Implementing the 2:1 student placement model in occupational therapy: Strategies for practice. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal. 63(2) pp. 88-95.