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Occupational Therapy Fieldwork Education

Welcome to Misericordia University’s Occupational Therapy Fieldwork Education Department! The fieldwork portion of our curriculum signifies a new beginning for our students in the life long learning continuum.

Fieldwork education is designed to provide occupational therapy students with opportunities to integrate academically acquired education with practice. It is during the students’ experiences in fieldwork that they can learn, practice and refine skills of observation, evaluation, treatment planning and implementation, documentation and communication. In the fieldwork setting, the students begin to define their future role as practicing occupational therapists and can develop the necessary personal and professional skills essential in meeting the demands of this challenging profession.

Level I and Level II Fieldwork is an essential part of an occupational therapy program’s curriculum as established by the American Occupational Therapy Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education. At Misericordia University, fieldwork education begins in the junior year for a weekday student and ends in the fall semester of their graduate year. For weekend college students, fieldwork education begins in the second year of the program and ends in the spring semester of their graduate year.

Level I Fieldwork is integral to the academic courses offered in the occupational therapy curriculum. There is a Level I Fieldwork experience for each intervention course offered. Experiences in Level I Fieldwork include; observation, interaction with consumers and other professionals, opportunities to experience the intervention process under direct supervision, and evaluation of the student’s performance in these areas. The experiential nature of the learning is a hallmark of Level I Fieldwork and carries the expectation of engagement with people in occupation across the life span continuum in a variety of settings. Students are primarily supervised by certified and licensed occupational therapists with at least one year experience. Students may also have the opportunity to be supervised by certified and licensed occupational therapy assistants and a variety of other health care professionals.

Level II Fieldwork begins after successful completion of all required coursework. It is the cumulative educational experience in which students have the opportunity to apply academically acquired knowledge in assessing, planning and implementing occupational therapy intervention programs for consumers in a wide variety of traditional and non-traditional service settings. Students must complete six months of Level II Fieldwork experience and be supervised by a licensed and certified occupational therapist with at least one year of practice experience. Upon successful completion of all coursework, Level I and Level II Fieldwork, the student will qualify to take the NBCOT (National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy) examination.

Fieldwork Education at Misericordia University is managed by the Academic Coordinator of Fieldwork Education. For more information related to Fieldwork Education, please feel free to contact Suzanne Lennon, MS, OTR/L, Academic Coordinator of Fieldwork Education at 570-674-8180 or e-mail at slennon@misericordia.edu.