Responsibilities of Supervision

Supervising students for the purpose of clinical education involves providing opportunities for the next generation to develop the philosophies, specific knowledge, skills and attitudes of the occupational therapy profession (Best D & Rose M, 1996).

All occupational therapists need to recognise that the responsibility for student education lies both within the university sector and the occupational therapy profession as a whole. As we move further into the new millennium an ageing workforce in combination with an aging population means we need to train occupational therapists NOW! Each individual has a personal responsibility for fieldwork education. 

Reference: Best D & Rose M (1996) Quality Supervision. Theory and practice of clinical supervision. London: WB Saunders Company Ltd

What Do I Have To Offer?

I have only been out one or two years. What have I got to offer?

As a registered occupational therapist with one or two years' experience, you have lots to offer students. Here are just some things:

  • You will always know more than the students do!
  • You can let students know that you are a first time supervisor and negotiate to learn together!
  • You have lots of skills, knowledge and attributes that you already take for granted!
  • You know how to plan your daily and weekly schedule!
  • You know how to undertake an initial interview with a client!
  • You know how to assess and treat clients on your caseload. You may not be an expert yet, but you know where to start and can problem solve the next step!
  • You know how to do lots of indirect client care activities such as attend/run meetings, do your client contact statistics, attend case conferences, order supplies. Students need to learn all these sorts of things!
  • You know how the system in your centre works!
  • You know what other professionals in your team do and can assist students to spend time with them!
  • You know about the resources in your area and can assist/plan for students to visit other relevant centres!

Still not convinced? Have a look at our practice education videos for a wide variety of ideas and success stories to get you inspired.