Guiding Principles

For the Canadian Occupational Therapy Fieldwork Experience

These guidelines are intended to ensure that each Canadian occupational therapy fieldwork experience provides excellent learning opportunities and resources and an optimum environment for learning. Students acquire abilities and professional behaviors as well as new knowledge while engaged in fieldwork education. Students, preceptors, onsite fieldwork coordinators, university professors and university fieldwork coordinators are expected to collaborate in linking fieldwork experiences to what students have learned in class. Therefore, it is important to share a common vision for fieldwork education.

The fieldwork experience should:

  • Be a collaborative learning experience among students, clients, fieldwork educators, onsite fieldwork coordinators and university programs;
  • Be mutually beneficial to students and fieldwork educators;
  • Be accepted as an essential part of professional growth for both students and fieldwork educators and fieldwork site;
  • Occur in a positive learning environment;
  • Consider the teaching methods and learning styles of both students and fieldwork educators;
  • Consider students’ learning objectives in relation to their professional development within the context of the fieldwork environment;
  • Support students to account for their learning;
  • Enable students to link theory with practice;
  • Enable students to take an active role within the site;
  • Promote satisfaction for both students and fieldwork educators regarding the fieldwork experience;
  • Occur anywhere the roles and functions of an occupational therapist can be developed and integrated.