OBJECTIVE: This article presents and evaluates the results of an educational initiative at the occupational therapy programme at University College Lillebaelt in Denmark. The objectives of the initiative were (A) to establish institutional partnerships between the educational institution and various practice fields and (B) to develop students' competences in practice research and collaboration, thus building up a framework in which research-based change in occupational therapy practice can be pursued through students' practice research. The practice research undertaken in the students' bachelor's projects had a theoretical and methodological foundation in critical psychology. METHODS: Four bachelor's cohorts with a total of 29 students participated in the educational initiatives from 2008 to 2011. Nine groups conducted practice research projects, wherein they collaborated both with occupational therapists in the practice field and with citizens, and later drafted written reports and communicated their results Concurrent with this, they received special education and counselling from teaching staff. RESULTS: The initiative was evaluated by analysing focus group interviews, questionnaires and the students' bachelor's theses. Results of the evaluations showed that (A) the developed institutional partnerships promoted the goals of the initiative, including research-based proposals for change in the practice field and that (B) the students acquired competences in practice research and collaboration. CONCLUSIONS: On top of what students learned through the initiative, all of this was to the benefit of the university college, the occupational therapy program, and the practice fields and citizens. The results point toward a continuation of the educational initiative.
Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy, 2013, Vol 20, Issue 4, p. 242-52
Adult; Clinical Competence; Cohort Studies; Curriculum; Denmark; Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate; Female; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Humans; Male; Nursing Education Research; Occupational Therapy; Partnership Practice; Pilot Projects; Program Evaluation; Public-Private Sector Partnerships; Students, Health Occupations