Abstract

We studied students’ perceptions regarding their professional and personal skills and compared the findings for those who completed community fieldwork (CF) with those completing traditional fieldwork (TF). We also compared the perceptions of CF students whose placement settings had an active occupational therapist present versus those whose settings did not. Results showed no significant differences in perceptions of professional and personal skills between the students involved in CF and those involved in TF. However, students who completed CF in a setting without an active occupational therapist present scored significantly higher in their perception of their personal responsibility, cultural competence, and overall personal skills than students whose fieldwork location had an active occupational therapist present. Our study indicates the value of using various supervisory strategies for occupational therapy students during fieldwork. Further studies are warranted.

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