#COT2017 Clicking your way through continuing professional development? Poster 26

My final offering from the #COT2017 Poster Zone…

Poster 26: Clicking your way through continuing professional development? Attitudes to social media use as a platform for continuing professional development (CPD) within occupational therapy.

Murray K: NHS Lothian, Ward K: University of Cumbria

This post and poster has a special place in my heart.  Not least because if focuses on a topic which I am passionate about, but was written and produced by #OTalk’s very first OTalk Student Digital Leader, Kelly Murray AKA @OTontheTracks. So very well done Kelly, I am proud and honoured to work alongside you as a super #OTalk Team member and to be able to call you a friend and all round superstar!

KellyTo download your own copy of this poster visit Kelly’s Blog here.

From the authors:

Introduction: This poster presents a study which explored the use of social media within the continuing professional development of occupational therapy students and practitioners. Perceived barriers and the influence of generation theory on the use of social media were also considered. Increasingly, social media platforms are being embraced by healthcare professionals within financially challenging climates and occupational therapists working within non-traditional settings as a cost effective mode of networking and supporting their CPD (Lawson and Cowling, 2014).

Previous literature is limited and focuses on small-scale qualitative data (Bodell and Hook, 2014) and personal experience of using specific social media platforms (Bodell
et al., 2009; Ezzamel, 2013; BJOT and #OTalk, 2016). More research with a larger sample group was therefore considered appropriate.

Method: A mixed method survey design gathered qualitative and quantitative data through an online questionnaire. Content analysis was used to code and identify themes. Descriptive statistics were used to quantify the findings and consider variations across generations.

Findings: Results highlighted a predominantly positive attitude to social media use within CPD. Accessibility, networking, learning and development were highlighted as advantages to its use. Time and individuals’ skills and knowledge were highlighted as barriers to utilising the platforms. The results suggest that age does not impact on willingness to use social media within CPD but does impact on perceived knowledge and skills to utilise the platforms confidently.

Conclusion: The study highlighted a need for more structured training on professional social media use at both pre and post registration levels.

BJOT. #OTalk. (2016). Social media: Creating communities of research and practice. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 79(4), 195–196. Sage Publishing. doi:10.1177/0308022616631551 (accessed 02 January 2017).

Bodell. S. Hook A, Penman M, Wade W. (2009). Creating a learning community in today: how blogging can facilitate continuing professional development and international learning.British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 72(6), 279–281. Sage Publishing. doi: 10.1177/030802260907200611 (accessed 02 January 2017).

Bodell. S. Hook A. (2014). Developing online professional networks for undergraduate occupational therapy students: an evaluation of an extracurricular facilitated blended learning package. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 77(6), 320–323. Sage Publishing. Doi: 10.4276/030802214X14018723 138156 (accessed 02 January 2017).

Ezzamel. S. (2013). Blogging in occupational therapy: knowledge sharing, professional development, and ethical dilemmas. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 76(11), 515–517. Sage Publishing. doi: 10.4276/030802213X13833255804711 (accessed 02 January 2017).

Lawson. C. Cowling C. (2014). Social media: The next frontier for professional development in radiography. Radiography, 21(2), 74–80. Elsevier. Doi http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.radi.2014.11.006 (accessed 02 January 2017).

Post by @Helen_OTUK


#OTalk 27th September 2016 – Welcome to OT: The Student Journey!

This week’s #OTalk is being hosted by Kirstie (@KLO2_Kay), who is the current #OTalk student digital leader intern.


Topic: Welcome to OT: The student journey!


This month, countless universities across the country welcome another batch of enthusiastic and passionate Occupational Therapy students.  These batches come in all shapes and sizes and are filled with students from a variety of backgrounds and with a variety of experiences, but what do they all have in common and will always have in common? People and occupation!

Every OT out there has been through what these students are about to embark on in one form or another, so what better way to welcome the new intake than with a reflective #OTalk! This is a great opportunity for the OT community to pass on their wisdom and offer up the chance for any students to ask questions about the journey they are about to take.

For any new students out there feel free to jump in ask any questions as the hour goes on, be sure to let everyone know who you are and where you’re studying.


Some questions to consider:


1: Why did you choose OT?

2: What are you most looking forward to about your OT training/What did you most look forward to?

3: Quick fire round! If you could ask another OT anything what would it be?

4: What was your greatest moment/experience during training, were there any light bulb moments?

5: If you could pass on one bit of wisdom to the next generation what would it be.


Last September the lovely Kelly (@otonthetracks) made the video “Welcome to OT’ where OTs and OT students shared some experiences of using Twitter and participating in #OTalk so if you’re a new student be sure to check it out!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptFThxT1p4Q

If you are new to Tweetchats and #OTalk, our handy guide of hints and tips to get you started is another useful read. https://otalk.co.uk/resources-coming-soon/tweetchatting-guide-for-participants.

There will also be some of the #OTalk team around to support you, so if this is your first #OTalk or you have any questions or queries about joining in just shout and we will help if we can.


Hope to tweet with you all soon!



Post Chat Updates:

Online transcript

The Numbers

32Avg Tweets/Hour
9Avg Tweets/Participant



To join in the chat on Tuesday between 8pm-9pm (UK time), use the twitter hashtag #OTalk in your tweets.

Announcement: Student Digital Leader Intern Position Filled!

The #OTalk team are thrilled to announce that after a brilliant application, Kirstie (@KLO2_KAY) is going to be joining the team as the new #OTalk Student Digital Leader Intern.


We asked Kirstie to introduce herself to the community… Here’s what she said:



Hi there! My name is Kirstie; I’m a 2nd year Occupational Therapy student and an Occupational Therapy practitioner currently working in Dementia. My areas of interest include the therapeutic use of Lego, Animals as therapy and of course the use of social media for role promotion and shared learning experiences. When it comes to the professional use of Twitter I strongly believe in its versatility and accessibility and when used correctly and well, it is an untapped source of knowledge and opportunity.


Even when using social media for professional purposes I still feel there should be an element of ourselves shared as that is part of what makes us the type of professionals we are. If you have ever stopped by my Twitter profile (@KLO2_KAY) you will have seen frequent Occupational Therapy and healthcare related posts interwoven with those about cats, food and the traditional student moans and groans, as that is pretty much what sums me up as a person! Part professional and part normal human being (Most of the time!).


If you are at #COT2016 you can meet her in person at the Social Media Networking Meeting: #OTalkonTour. But in the meantime please show Kirstie some OT Love on twitter and welcome her to the crew.


Position Open – #OTalk Student Digital Leader Intern

#OTalk Student Digital Leader Intern (17/18) Position Open


#OTalk is a community that welcomes students alongside practitioners and academics, recognising the vital role students can play in bringing fresh knowledge, innovation and enthusiasm to the community.  

To foster this collaboration, in 2015 #OTalk introduced the position of Student Digital Leader.  This Intern role offers a student the opportunity to become involved in the running of #OTalk for 6-12 months whilst receiving mentoring in digital leadership from the team.

Being part of the #OTalk team allows you to be creative, innovate and work as part of team. As a Student Digital Leader Intern these are some of the activities you could be involved in and be responsible for during your internship:

OTalk Project.

As part of your internship we hope you would be able to contribute in an innovative way to the #OTalk community by undertaking some form of project. This will be agreed between yourself and the rest of the OTalk team after you join the team.

OTalk Blog – Transcript posting.

To support the team in posting blog transcripts on the blog posts within 48 hours of a chat and sharing this with the #OTalk community on the social media platforms.

OTalk Facebook.

To monitor the facebook page, replying to comments and ensuring blogs have been shared within other relevant pages and groups (e.g. 4OT groups and Student Occupational Therapy groups/pages)

OTalk Twitter – Promoting.

To regularly tweet from OTalk and personal accounts to promote the chats and other related activities.

OTalk Twitter – Follows.

To review follows on the OTalk Twitter account, block spam accounts and to follow back/create lists for the OTalk account.

OTalk Twitter – Hosting.

To host a minimum of one chat during the internship and to support an additional two chats with guest hosts (Training will be provided – more can be hosted as desired).

Promoting OTalk.

To take and create opportunities to promote #OTalk and the benefits of professional social media use within university populations and regional/geographical networks.

OTalk Experience Summary.

Along with the OTalk crew,  write up an account of the experience of interning for publication.  This can be done in a range of ways and we are open to finding new and creative ways to share this experience Our first intern Kelly did this by displaying a poster at #COT2016 and our second Kirstie wrote a piece with Kelly for OTNews.

OTalk Development.

Engagement in online team meetings to review chat effectiveness, suggest future development and feedback on the relevance of OTalk for students.

Interns ideally need to be:

  • Excellent communicators
  • Familiar with the use of twitter
  • Familiar with the use of gmail, google calendars and google drive
  • Familiar with the use of skype
  • Familiar with wordpress blog editing dashboard
  • Able to create PDFs of transcripts and certificates
  • Available on Tuesday nights between 8pm – 9pm at least once a month
  • Available for 30 minutes on Thursday or Fridays to post chat transcript
  • Able to access the Internet and have a laptop/smartphone that will enable blog editing and twitter/Facebook access.
  • Passionate about the occupational therapy profession
  • Promoters of the positive application of social networking for professional development
  • Responsible and professional in their use of social media (social media accounts of applicants will be reviewed as part of the application process)
  • Engaging with CPD on a regular basis

Training to use the relevant software will be provided so please still apply if you meet most of the outline above.

If you are interested in this position please send the following information to otalk.occhat@gmail.com:

  • A personal statement of no more than 500 words demonstrating your suitability for the internship.
  • A Biography of between 100-200 words (that includes your name and university, and a link to your LinkedIn profile) [Write this as if you are introducing yourself to the OTalk Community on the blog].
  • Your skype username.
  • The name and e-mail of a referee who can be contacted if you are invited to interview.

Please direct any queries to the our email or DM us on Twitter at @OTalk_

The closing date for applications is Tuesday 28th November at 23:59.

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to a skype interview in December and will be in post by January 2018.