Occupational Therapy

We've put together some information and resources to help you support, supervise and assess MSc Occupational Therapy (Pre-Reg) students within the practice setting.

These additional resources will help you to shape a fulfilling experience as a Practice Educator and enhance the student's experience with you.

About the programme

The programme is a two-year full time MSc (pre-registration) course to enable registration with the HCPC to practice as an occupational therapist. Watch our video about the content of the course and how it is structured.

Placement information

The course includes a number of placement blocks (rotations) that take place in different specialities. View the block plan for the course (Excel spreadsheet).

The students will have a practice assessment document (PAD) (PDF) that has been developed with guidance from the Royal College of Occupational Therapy.

The Royal College of Occupational Therapy also has some excellent resources:

Online Practice Educator preparation

In collaboration with our placement provider partners, we have developed an online workshop to prepare you to become a Practice Educator for an ARU student. A Practice Educator is a registered healthcare professional who is responsible for student supervision and assessment.

Access the course and find out more about the latest Practice Educator updates.

Raising concerns about a learner struggling on placement

If a learner has been assessed and identified as struggling and there is a possibility they may not pass the placement, then it is important to identify their learning needs and develop an action plan for working in your area of practice.

An action plan is a tool that can be utilised to set goals for behaviours and performance whilst creating discussion and a clear focus between the University, the educator and the learner.

An action plan should ideally identify learning outcomes that have not been met thus far; learning activities required to meet targets; identifying support needed; agreed timescales and evidence needed to prove development (Walsh, 2014).

The visiting tutor should be contacted first and the action plan (below) completed collaboratively with the learner, educator and the visiting tutor.

Occupational Therapy action plan (Word doc)

Review of action plan

An action plan should be regularly reviewed at agreed points to ensure the learner is making progress. Utilising an action plan can support the learner to achieve their goals, or provide evidence as to why a learner has failed to achieve their set learning outcomes or developed sufficiently despite support.

A review date should be set in the initial meeting and agreed by the practice educator, visiting tutor and the learner. These reviews should take place weekly until the student is performing at the required level or has failed the placement.

Occupational Therapy review of action plan (Word doc)

Reporting sickness and absence

It is your responsibility as a registered professional to inform Anglia Ruskin University of a student's sickness or absence and to ensure this is recorded and signed on the student's timesheet.

The University has a duty to inform the professional body of the exact hours a student has experienced in the clinical area and it is therefore important that accurate records are kept.

Please inform the University of a student's absence by emailing alliedhealthpracticeteam@aru.ac.uk or calling 01245 684816, stating: student name, student ID number, clinical site, reason for absence.

Lapses in professionalism (LiP)

Clinical practice is a fundamental aspect of the development of professionalism, with clinical assessors responsible for the assessment of competence which establishes a student's fitness for practice. This is mirrored within the academic environment with Personal Tutors playing a key role in the development of educational proficiency and professional behaviour within the university setting.

Therefore, to ensure a holistic approach to the assessment and management of student professionalism between the practice learning setting and academic institution, our intention is to include a transparent monitoring and recording system that supports the identification of low and higher-level concerns.

The LiP process is a mechanism to report and action any unprofessional behaviour during the student’s period of registration. When a lapse is reported, this will trigger actions between key stakeholders to award tariff points to develop a facilitative action plan together with the student before they lead to more significant fitness to practice issues.

Find out more and report a lapse in professionalism




If there is any information that you think would be useful to add to this page, please contact rosaline.van-de-weyer@aru.ac.uk