Welcome

We welcome you as a clinical fieldwork coordinator and/or fieldwork educator for students of D’Youville College Occupational Therapy Department. We appreciate the time and expertise you bring to the fieldwork experience and hope that the materials contained in this website will be useful to you.

Please take the time to become familiar with this information. We welcome any feedback you may have and encourage you to contact us if you have any questions. We look forward to a successful and ongoing educational alliance with you and your facility.

Fieldwork Roles & Policies

Review each section below for the roles, responsibilities and qualifications of fieldwork educators, coordinators and students.

Educator

To be eligible to serve as a primary fieldwork educator (supervisor), an individual must:

  • Be a credentialed OT practitioner licensed or exempted to practice in New York State Authorized by New York state to practice as an OT or OTA
  • Have over 1 year full-time equivalent OT practice
  • Maintain current certification/registration as a COTA or OTR with the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT)
  • Understand and agree to abide by the DYC Fieldwork mission, values, policies, procedures, and forms
  • Demonstrate role competencies as described in the AOTA document Role Competencies for a Fieldwork Educator.

Coordinator

Fieldwork coordinators should meet the conditions described in the AOTA document Role Competencies for an Academic Fieldwork Coordinator.

Student

Prior to starting Level II fieldwork student must meet the following prerequisites:

  • Successfully complete and pass all of the required academic courses.
  • Attend all scheduled Fieldwork Seminars and meetings.
  • Complete all paperwork requirements, and comply with any additional tests or requirements of individual fieldwork sites by the due date(s). These include all health testing, immunizations, CPR, etc. Refer to the individual fieldwork file folders for details.
  • Attend mandatory OSHA & HIPAA inservices/requirements scheduled by AFWC.
  • Retrieve nametag following the requirements of the individual fieldwork site. Additional nametag may be required if fieldwork centers have different requirements.
  • Register properly in the appropriate semester, using correct credit hours for OT 640 (4) and OT 641 (4).
  • Write to fieldwork educator at least one to two months prior to arrival, confirming the fieldwork experience and dates. The student should also request additional information regarding arrival time, location, arrangements for meals/room (of provided), directions to the center, and other requirements (CPR, Child Abuse Clearance, Criminal Record Check, additional health tests, additional health/malpractice insurance, etc.) the student must complete prior to start date.
  • Purchase uniform if required by the center. Attach DYC/OT insignia on the uniform; to be placed on the left sleeve at shoulder level.
  • Communicate updated information regarding health insurance and health status to the AFWC and DYC OT secretary.

Additionally, students must meet dress and appearance requirements in order to participate in fieldwork.

Site-Specific Learning Objectives

According to the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE), each fieldwork site must develop Level II OT learning objectives that reflect the unique setting, consumer populations, treatment approaches, philosophy, and expected competencies of entry-level OTAs at that site. Objectives should be written as behavioral and measurable statements of what a student is expected to do, know, or otherwise demonstrate by the end of the fieldwork rotation. The following resource may be useful in developing site-specific fieldwork objectives:

The Role of Fieldwork Educator and Supervision

Supervision can be described as a mutual undertaking between supervisor and supervisee. It is an evolving process, intended to promote growth and development while evaluating performance and maintaining standards of the profession. AOTA uses the term “Fieldwork Educator” to help to clarify the roles and responsibilities of those therapists who are committed to “training up” the next generation of OT practitioners.

Supervision of student interns is a dynamic process of managing learning experiences in relation to the fieldwork objectives and expectations outlined in the Field Work Performance Evaluation (FWPE). The fieldwork experience should be structured to maintain quality care for clients (always a priority), while simultaneously facilitating learning for the OT intern. Working toward mastery of entry-level skills required for competence is a collaborative process between the fieldwork educator and the intern.

Fieldwork educators’ roles, responsibilities, and styles vary. However, responsibilities consistent to all supervisors include:

  • Orienting the student to the place, people, routines/schedules, policies, and protocols.
  • Establishing expectations, perhaps in conjunction with the intern.
  • Providing learning opportunities tailored to the needs of the intern.
  • Providing ongoing feedback, monitoring, and evaluation of performance.

In engaging in the supervisory process, both the fieldwork educator and intern are responsible for seeking a balance in this relationship. Throughout this relationship the fieldwork educator’s roles may include:

  • Resource person
  • Role model
  • Adviser
  • Coach
  • Mentor
  • Teacher
  • Facilitator
  • Sounding board

Although fieldwork educators can serve as a major source of support for while learning, it is unrealistic for interns to expect them to tell the answers or to direct all of their activities. In addition, it is important to acknowledge that the most valued characteristics in a supervisor are different than those of a friend. If there is confusion regarding these roles on either the part of the intern or the fieldwork educator, it can disrupt the balance in the relationship. A more social relationship, although easing the stress of a new situation, may lead to dependency versus autonomy issues. This will most likely interfere with the giving and receiving of feedback when the fieldwork educator assumes his or her role as evaluator of the intern’s performance.

Supervision Documents

Guidelines for Supervision, Roles, and Responsibilities During the Delivery of OT Services
Occupational Therapy Assistant Supervision Requirements (by state)
NYS Office of Professions Regulations on Supervision

Occupational Therapy Programs

D’Youville College offers a five-year occupational therapy program leading to a combined bachelor’s and master’s degree. With approximately 110 students, the program features strong professional involvement and an ongoing curriculum review. The master of science degree in occupational therapy is an entry-level degree created for students with a BA or BS in another area of study. The three-year degree program includes courses in occupational therapy theory and practice, six months of supervised fieldwork, and research.

Program Options

BS Human Occupation / MS Occupational Therapy (five-year combined degree)
MS in Occupational Therapy

Fieldwork

The Department of Occupational Therapy has clinical agreements with over 300 hospitals, school systems, rehabilitation centers, mental health sites, and community based facilities across the United States and Canada. International fieldwork options can be pursued. Local sites are available for many fieldwork experiences.

Three levels of fieldwork education are integrated into the occupational therapy curriculum. The first level is comprised of site visits and Level I. Level II fieldwork comprises the second level and Community Practice comprises the third level of clinical fieldwork.

Site Visits

Visits to health care agencies are part of certain entry-level courses. These visits orient the student to a variety of services provided in the local area, focusing on the context in which occupational therapy services are delivered or could be provided.

Level I Fieldwork

Experiences during the academic phase of the program enable students to apply classroom learning in the clinical setting. These experiences are associated with specific intervention courses and place students in various health care arenas with a variety of consumers/patients.

Level II Fieldwork

Level II fieldwork consists of two full-time 12 to 13 week clinical training experiences, (Part-time options are available). Each student treats a wide range of disabilities and age groups. Emphasis is on applying knowledge through in-depth activities, tasks, and the responsibility for delivering health care to patients. Clinical experiences may include acute hospital settings, inpatient psychiatric settings, rehabilitation centers, day treatment centers, nursing homes, school systems, developmental centers, and community health initiatives.

Community Practice

An advanced placement in a community setting or educational environment allows you to explore non-traditional or specialty applications of occupational therapy. Community Practice occurs in the graduate year following fieldwork.