Psychology in Occupational Therapy

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Course Outline

Welcome to Psychology in Occupational Therapy.

This is a largely online course. The main subject content of the course is outlined in the Wiki you are now reading and the topic headings roughly approximate the weeks of the course.

The course is self paced so you can proceed at the speed that best suites your style though you should note that there are some Assessment milestones that must be met at certain weeks of the course and you cannot proceed further with the course unless you pass these (see below for assessment and assessment criteria)

For those of you who prefer a more directive approach the course is also offered in BlackBoard format and can be accessed at Blackboard link - use log on as

It is expected that the course Wiki will be constructed on a weekly basis by course participants and you have already been allocated to a group that corresponds with your expected contribution to the Wiki. Thus Group one will be expected to have made some progress on the first topic Introduction to Psychology in Occupational Therapy by the end of Week Two. Group two will be expected to work on Experimental by end of week three. Your initial assessment will be based on your Wiki contribution. The aim is that by the end of the course the group Wiki will be a detailed summary of Blackboard content.

There will be student polls of course satisfaction at regular intervals currently timetabled at Weeks 3, 6, and 9. They will be of the form 1. What to Stop 2. What to Start 3. What to continue

An overall assessment of the course and the facilitator will take place at the completion of the semester.

Please take advantage of these assessments as they will shape how the course proceeds.

Course requirements

Computer equipment

In order for you to access the course we suggest that you have a computer running Windows 2000 or its equivalent. We suggest that you have a broadband connection and that you have a microphone and speakers or headphones.

We suggest that you have Powerpoint, Elluminate, Word 2000 or better, Adobe Acrobat.

We suggest that you have set up an email system, an RSS feed, a Blog, and that you understand how to edit a Wiki.

It is also a good idea to brush up on your keyboarding skills - nothing more frustrating than being a one-fingered typist.--bron 23:38, 28 October 2007 (CET)

I use the laptop by christinaT [1]

Computer Skills

You should be familiar with the above software and how to read and write with it. You should be able to set up and monitor a Blog You should be able to edit a Wiki. You should be able to work Elluminate. You should be familiar with Blackboard

Resources for all of these are found under Working online or Resources


Assessments for this course will be in three parts.

At Week four you will 10% At Week eight you will 10% At week twelve you will 70% Wiki contribution 10% - Note that this 10% will be a group consensus mark of your fellow group members

Course communication

The prime source of communication for this course will be through Blackboard. Course content for each week will be posted on the Blackboard site and extra resource will be posted as required. You are expected to carry out the online exercise and if feedback is required use the Digital Drop Box facility in Blackboard to post your response. The tutor will return any assessments within two working weeks.

If you wish to proceed at your own pace you will find identical resource on the course Wiki.

The primary source of communication about personal issues is with the course facilitator

He will monitor email daily and you can expect a reply in 24hrs. Discussion work will be posted through the Discussion board on Blackboard.

We suggest you also setup and use a Blog on a regular basis where you can discuss the course and issues surrounding it. Although there is no assessment attached to your Blog I would expect that you make an entry at least weekly and no less than fortnightly.

Working Online

Wikipedia has some excellent resources for Working online and how to use the various tools that appear on this site.

Computer Literacy Resources

Study skills

Resources for e-Learning


Warm ups

Go to Week One on Blackboard and work your way through the exercises posted there. Put your answers etc in the Digital DropBox,

Course structure

The course is self pace. The primary placement of the course is on BlackBoard under Psychology in Occupational Therapy. You will be assigned to a Group before Week One and you will be responsible for making a group entry of the course Wiki for the topic that is assigned to your Group. You will have your Group Topic by Week one with emails for all group members.


Primary contact is through the course facilitator email You can also make comments through your Blog and the Digital Dropbox in Blackboard. I will respond to all contacts within 24 hrs.


Email Digital Drop Box Personal Blogs [2]

Other computer resources [3]

Course assessment

Assessments for this course will be in three parts.

At Week four you will 10% At Week eight you will 10% At week twelve you will 70% Wiki contribution 10% - Note that this 10% will be a group consensus mark of your fellow group members

Introduction to Psychology in Occupational Therapy

Course Outcomes

At the successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

1. Identify and discuss key theoretical concepts, perspectives and explanations regarding the nature and processes of psychosocial functioning in the context of activity.

2. Identify major themes/issues in psychological development across different stages of the lifespan and recognise the various factors that influence and contribute to psychological functioning.

3. Critically evaluate, reflect, and integrate knowledge with appropriate referencing.


· Introduction to learning theories and understanding how we get to know the world in which we live. · Exploration of key areas/themes and issues of human development and psychological functioning including: nature, structure and dimensions of personality; social, emotional and moral development; cognition and decision making; sex-roles and gender development; identity, self-concept, self esteem and self-efficacy; motivation; transitions, change, resilience and loss. · The exploration of the relationship between occupation and psychosocial development including the impact of occupational deprivation on psychosocial development. Learning/Teaching Methods Using blended delivery the following methods will be applied: Group Learning/Tutorials: This will take the format of case based learning scenarios encouraging application of principles relating to Psychology. Students will develop problem-solving skills and obtain feedback about their progress of learning.

A Definition of Psychology: Psychology is the scientific study of behaviour and mind processes in contexts

Psychology borders on various other fields including physiology, neuroscience, artificial intelligence, sociology, and anthropology.

There are many branches to the discipline of psychology.

Those relevant to the study of Psychology and Occupational Therapy are -


Cognitive & NeuroPsychology



Occupation or Industrial




Psychology is an important discipline in almost all health related fields and specialist such as Behavioural Scientists, Health Psychologists Clinical Psychologists and Psychologists are found in most training institutions charged with educating these professions.

History of Psychology & Occupational Therapy

# REDIRECT [[Levine RE.  (1983) J Allied Health. 1983 Aug;12(3):183-91.

A historical perspective on professional values.]]

The history of occupational therapy began in 1917 when the discipline was formally established, when services were needed to help returning soldiers regain function after World War I (1914 - 1918).

Occupational therapy is nowdays intertwined with other health disciplines and has branched out from disability and rehabilitation.

Rehabilitation also involves the emotional concerns that might be associated with a disability and occupational therapy training now has a component of psychological and social training. Psychotherapy and vocational counseling can do much to help a person cope with the changes that have occurred as a result of the disability and restoration of partial function. The history of occupational therapy shows how this aspect of treatment has become increasingly important.

Application of Psychology to Occupational Therapy

Philosophies of Psychology

Social Psychology



Perceptual Illusions Illusions

Human Development

Attention & Cognition





Collaboration & Consultation

Collaboration and consultation can be viewed as advanced communication skills with a focus on working with either an interdiscipliniary or multi-discipliniary team, families and carers, and community groups. It strives to develop and foster an equal partnership with the occupational therapist and these groups as an aid to therapy.








Group Leadership


Health Beliefs

Facilitating Change

Collaborative Environments





There are a variety of research methodologies that are employed in research . They can be broadly

Quantitative Research In Occupational Therapy link [5]

broken down into -


Quantitative research usually employs strictly controlled methodologies with designs that are robust and repeatable. Usually they are analyzed with parametric or non-parametric statistics.

Parametric statistics use ratio and interval data.

Non-parametric statistics use nominal and ordinal data


Some basic tools that you may find useful. (needs some structure here)

The Cochrane Collection Cochrane Video

The Cochrane collection is an evidence based collection of studies which is used extensively in health (mostly medicine) and provides the best source of what works and what doesn't viz a vi interventions, treatments, and therapies.

Online Statistics Tools

Sample Size calculator

Interactive Statistical Calculator [6]

Comprehensive Statistical Information (complex) [7]