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Research Article  |   February 1995
Fieldwork in Schools: A Model for Alternative Settings
Author Affiliations
  • Lou Ann Sooy Griswold, MS, OTR, is Assistant Professor in the Occupational Therapy Department, University of New Hampshire, Durham, New Hampshire 03824. At the time of this study, she was Project Director
  • Beth Seybold Strassler, MBS, OTR, is an independent occupational therapy practitioner. At the time of this study she was Project Coordinator, Occupational Therapy Department, University of New Hampshire, Durham, New Hampshire
Article Information
Education of OTs and OTAs / Special Issue on Fieldwork
Research Article   |   February 1995
Fieldwork in Schools: A Model for Alternative Settings
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, February 1995, Vol. 49, 127-132. doi:10.5014/ajot.49.2.127
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, February 1995, Vol. 49, 127-132. doi:10.5014/ajot.49.2.127
Abstract

Objective. An exploratory study was conducted at the University of New Hampshire to increase the number of school-based fieldwork opportunities for occupational therapy students and to guide the development of a model for first-time fieldwork supervisors in schools.

Method. Responses to a questionnaire completed by 119 occupational therapists working in schools in northern New England provided a description of both school-based occupational therapy practice and of their needs as supervisors. Interviews with 12 occupational therapists who had supervised fieldwork students in schools provided qualitative information.

Results. Findings suggested that school-based practice issues such as working part time, traveling between schools, and using variety of service delivery models created particular challenges for fieldwork supervisors in schools. A process of addressing fieldwork supervisors’ concerns during recruitment and in a fieldwork supervisor seminar and providing on going support resulted in successful fieldwork experiences for occupational therapy students.

Discussion. This process of studying a practice setting in order to develop a model for fieldwork that addresses the uniqueness of the setting may be used to develop fieldwork opportunities in other practice settings as well.