How should occupational therapy respond to widening participation strategy?

Collins, B 2015, How should occupational therapy respond to widening participation strategy? , in: College of Occupational Therapists 39th Annual Conference & Exhibition and Specialist Section – Work Annual Conference, 30th June-2nd July 2015, Brighton, United Kingdom.

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Abstract

In August 2014, Health Education England (HEE) (who commission occupational therapy education in England) presented “Widening Participation: It Matters” for consultation. The strategy document sets out targets to attract and retain students from a wider diversity of backgrounds into health professions, including occupational therapy (HEE 2014). Widening participation (WP) aims to create a workforce that better reflects the diversity of the client population (HEE 2014) and also to support individuals from underrepresented groups to access education and achieve the social mobility possible from education and graduate employment (HEE 2014; HEFCE 2014). What contribution does occupational therapy have to play in this aim to widen participation? Occupational therapy has long asserted the importance of culture (e.g. Kielhofner 2009), social justice (e.g. Townsend 1993) and inclusion in daily occupations. Yet, how inclusive and diverse is our own profession? How well do occupational therapy programmes promote both a wider range of applicants and also support WP student success with their ambition to be occupational therapists? Draft recommendations from Health Education England include the aim to increase the number of students who are mature, from Black, Asian and ethnic minority groups and with disabilities. They also aim to evaluate what works to promote WP student success. What works in university-based and practice placement occupational therapy education? How will our profession respond to widening participation targets? What are the benefits and risks to occupational therapy of targets and goals set by external bodies, frequently these are the funders/ commissioners such as HEFCE/OFFA and HEE? This seminar will enable the exchange of ideas and current practice about how educators and the profession as a whole can respond to and engage with the widening participation debate from the context of our own profession.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Journal or Publication Title: College of Occupational Therapists 39th Annual Conference & Exhibition and Specialist Section – Work Annual Conference Book of Abstracts
Publisher: College of Occupational Therapists
Depositing User: USIR Admin
Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2020 13:39
Last Modified: 13 Jul 2020 13:39
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/57612

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