It is recommended that you formally meet with your student weekly for at least 1 hour. Using a consistent time will assist the student in creating a routine for their week.

Supervision sessions aim to:

  • Monitor student progress according to the student guidelines for the clinical area.
  • Discuss and review written work including progress notes, case conference notes, home visit reports and discharge summaries.
  • Discuss the student’s caseload including any diffi culties. It is useful for the student to talk about every client they are involved with.
  • Discuss treatment plans and assessment procedures.
  • Discuss problem areas (clinical or otherwise) and develop solutions (using previously defi ned placement objectives may assist in highlighting the areas of strength and weakness).
  • Ensure administrative requirements such as statistics are being consistently and correctly completed.
  • Review progress of case presentations / projects as required.
  • Enhance the student clinical reasoning process and enable reflective learning and practising. The use of an experiential learning diary or a self appraisal tool can be helpful for this. Refer to Part Four: The Feedback Process and Evaluation
  • Link the SPEF-R items to your student’s learning goals and to any learning opportunities your workplace can offer during student orientation.

(Queensland Occupational Therapy Collaborative [QOTFC], 2005; Clinical Placement Advisory Committee [CPAC], 1997)

Template 3.1: Self-directed learning and reflection sheet

Students should be expected to be proactive participants in the supervision process, coming to the meeting prepared with notes, any pre-set worksheets or exercises based on their clinical observations or experiences during placement and any questions.

Supervision sessions can be activity or topic focussed. For example, providing opportunity for familiarization and practice of formal assessments with you or another student prior to implementation with client.

Outside of the formal supervision process, it should be expected that students will ask questions and request feedback on a regular basis (QOTFC, 2005)

Another important method in facilitating student learning is the provision of regular constructive feedback and opportunity for self-evaluation.  The feedback process and reflection will be further discussed in Part Four: The Feedback Process and Evaluation.


Clinical educator supports and resources

Universities have clinical education or ‘fieldwork’ liaison staff who are available to provide a valuable and supportive resource for clinical educators.  Support offered includes:

  • On-site and remote support for clinical educators and students when concerns exist or issues arise.
  • Placement development
  • Training – individual/in-services/workshops e.g. you could request an in-service on supporting student learning at your placement.
  • Link to curriculum issues for students and Clinical Educators


My student has some personal issues that are affecting their work on placement. They have come to me for guidance, however I don’t feel that I am equipped or that it is appropriate for me to provide counselling at that level. What can I do?

It is not expected that you provide personal counselling for your students. You can talk to your fieldwork manager or to the clinical education liaison person at the university, who may be able to assist the student with strategies for managing workload and time-management. University Student Services offer professional counselling, free of charge to students. This can be arranged independently by the student or through clinical education staff, with student permission.