BSc Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapists work closely with people who have an illness, injury or disability to help them live their lives to their full potential. You could be helping a young person with anorexia, or an elderly person with mobility issues. The profession is extremely varied and requires a great deal of ‘out of the box’ thinking alongside clinical reasoning. Our course prepares you with the wide range of skills, knowledge and experience you need for an exciting and rewarding career.

We will support you to become the very best Occupational Therapist you can be. You will join a supportive community, working together to gain first-hand experience and deliver first-class care.

We are ranked 19th in the UK for Occupational Therapy (Complete University Guide, 2018). We also have a great reputation with our partner NHS Trusts, and are proud that our students graduate with excellent career prospects and good honours.

Overview

By studying our Occupational Therapy BSc programme, you are choosing an exciting and rewarding profession that focuses on developing extraordinary partnerships with people and helping to make lasting, positive changes in their lives.

Occupational therapists work with people who find it difficult to participate in life due to illness, injury or disability. We enable them to do the things they need or want to do. You will be taught to consider the physical, psychological, social, spiritual and environmental needs of your patient, helping them to develop the skills and confidence to carry out practical and purposeful activities. For more information on Occupational Therapy, you can visit the British Association of Occupational Therapists.

By studying our BSc Occupational Therapy programme you will receive the best possible academic grounding, which is highly regarded by our students. Our students enjoy a varied and interactive learning experience, with early patient contact and an innovative approach to education, based on current research.

You will be part of small teaching groups, becoming involved in a close-knit student body and enjoying a supportive learning culture. We also have superb, dedicated learning facilities including: anatomy room, assistive technology suite, and other well-equipped rooms – all designed to help you develop the skills and abilities you will need to pursue a career in this challenging profession. As part of our recruitment process, the values of the NHS Constitution will be explored at interview, with successful candidates demonstrating how these are reflected in their own beliefs. 

This Occupational Therapy Degree course is fully approved by and prepares you for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

Course Structure

The course builds up your Occupational Therapy knowledge and skills in a structured way through the three years of study, with a curriculum made up of carefully planned compulsory modules.

First Year

In the first year you will engage with core Occupational Therapy theory and practice. This will include exploring the values underpinning health and social care in order to develop academic study skills. A two week placement introduces you to the workplace, whilst a further four week placement will allow you to establish theory practice links.

Second Year

The second year of study addresses biological, psycho-social and spiritual perspectives of health. You will study specific health conditions in order to understand how Occupational Therapy relates across diverse areas of practice. You will also take part in 14 weeks of placement experience to continue to build your practice profile.

Final Year

During your final year you will continue to develop your knowledge and skills, as you explore Occupational Therapy theory and practice using creative media. You will also study a variety of contemporary health topics, as well as the legislation and policies that drive the health and social care agenda. You will complete 14 weeks of practice placement, which includes an eight week elective placement, with the opportunity to plan and undertake a placement of your choice.

Assessment

You will be assessed through a combination of course work and project work, designed to support your academic progression. Coursework assessment methods include essays, integrated assignments, poster and oral presentations. There is also a final year dissertation. Throughout the course you will have to pass all your placements.
Development of problem solving and analytical skills will be monitored throughout all of your modules. In addition, you will be expected to generate a professional portfolio, which will support your professional development.

More information

Course Modules 2017/8

Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits

HUMAN SCIENCES 1

Human Sciences (HS) is a year-long module that is taken by occupational therapy and physiotherapy students together. It aims to provide the fundamental theoretical background to the clinical sciences necessary for practice. It explores the bio-psychosocial processes underpinning human function. The focus is on the 'normal' structure and function of the body, to which pathology can be then be applied. The learning addressed in this module will inform the Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy Theory and Practice modules. The student needs to be able to integrate knowledge within the context of normal human function and begin to be able to translate this knowledge into the new context of dysfunction. The study of the living body will underpin learning in subsequent years and in other units. It will aim to facilitate future academic development and allow informed use of health and social care literature.

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MANDATORY TRAINING

This module is designed for occupational, physiotherapy and speech and language therapy students who are required to complete clinical practice hours as part of their degree. Mandatory training is a requirement of these programmes, stipulated by the commissioning body; Health Education East of England. It is important that students undertake a number of training sessions to ensure their own safety and that of service users, staff and anyone else they encounter. The learning objectives of this module are to: #Complete the necessary mandatory training to enable students to attend clinical placements in a variety of NHS and non-NHS settings; #Develop responsibility for own learning and documentation of mandatory training.

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OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY PRACTICE 1

This module focuses on the core theories and practice of occupational therapy. It aims to develop an understanding of the self and others as occupational beings within the context of physical, mental and social health and wellbeing during a lifespan. Using core materials from the Human Sciences and Professional Development modules the barriers to occupation are explored and skills of clinical reasoning and safe practice are introduced. This module helps students to develop an understanding of the philosophy and discrete body of knowledge which underpins occupational therapy. The purpose of the module is to enable the student to understand themselves and others as unique occupational beings by exploration of theoretical concepts and practical experiences. The introduction of clinical reasoning and problem solving skills prepare the student for placements 1 and 2.

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PLACEMENT EDUCATION 1

This module introduces the student to professional practice through Placement 1, a 2-week introductory experience which is undertaken in January, and Placement 2, a 4-week period of practice which occurs at the end of the second semester in June. The placement experience is undertaken in a variety of health and social settings, as appropriate, to develop the skills of working with patients under the supervision of an HCPC registered professional. Additionally, the school maintains contact with the student through faculty / virtual visits and support from their Personal Advisor. Both placements require an attendance of a minimum of 30 hours per week, 2 hours of which are designated for continuing professional development. Students are prepared for practice through a series of progressive sessions, including issues of professional conduct and professional development, which encourage integration of learning from other Year 1 modules. Placement 1 requires the student to self-assess their performance within criteria of safe practice, professionalism, clinical reasoning, interpersonal skills, client management, information management and personal and professional development. Placement 2 is assessed by the student's Placement Educator, using similar criteria. In addition, the module is assessed through selected evidence from the student's portfolio demonstrating their ability to use the tools of continuing professional development. #To prepare students to understand the elements of clinical governance which underpin safe practice. #To introduce the concepts of professional practice as outlined by the HCPC and by the RSC Professionalism Charter. #To lay the foundations of clinical reasoning using theoretical knowledge acquired to date. #To introduce basic generic and profession specific therapeutic skills within the practice placement environment. #To encourage effective communication skills within the workplace. #To introduce the policies and procedures within the practice placement environment, which underpin effective client care.

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PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Professional Development (PD) is a year-long module that is taken by speech and language therapy, occupational therapy and physiotherapy students together. It aims to provide opportunities for interprofessional understanding and communication to develop between students, and also to encouraging each individual to become aware of their professional identity. This module introduces students to generic academic and professional skills and concepts required as health and social care professionals. The module is organised into three key themes - transferrable professional skills (including preparing students for success on the course), professional development, and professional practice in context (including, wider frameworks of health and social care). Reflective practice, use of portfolios and, other tools for continuing professional development will be introduced.

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Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits

HUMAN SCIENCES 2

The Human Sciences module in year two follows on from Human Sciences in year one with an exploration of the biopsychosocial processes governing human function and dysfunction. In inter-professional groups, this unit develops the students' knowledge and understanding of a wide range of health conditions including rheumatology, orthopaedics, neurological, cardiovascular and respiratory, and mental health conditions. With the focus on dysfunction of the human body, related issues such as management of the condition, recovery processes and promotion of healthy lifestyles are explored. Subjects studied in year one including anatomy, physiology, psychology and sociology are further integrated and consolidated within this unit. The learning addressed in this module will inform the Occupational Therapy and Physiotherapy Theory and Practice modules. The knowledge base which students gain within this unit inform the practical skills acquired alongside the concurrent uni-professional occupational therapy and physiotherapy units in year two.

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MANDATORY TRAINING 2

This module is designed for occupational, physiotherapy and speech and language therapy students who are required to complete clinical practice hours as part of their degree. Mandatory training is a requirement of these programmes, stipulated by the commissioning body; Health Education East of England. It is important that students undertake a number of training sessions to ensure their own safety and that of service users, staff and anyone else they encounter. The learning objectives of this module are to: #Complete the necessary mandatory training to enable students to attend clinical placements in a variety of NHS and non-NHS settings; #Develop responsibility for own learning and documentation of mandatory training.

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OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY PRACTICE 2

This module develops understanding of occupational science, related to occupational therapy models of practice, frames of reference and their application to the practice of occupational therapy. Building on the focus of year one, the individual as an occupational being, the student will develop an understanding of barriers to occupational performance across the lifespan from changes to physical health, psychological and social well-being and the environment. Clinical reasoning skills are developed throughout the occupational therapy process. The module enables students to devise appropriate client-centred interventions that facilitate occupational goals. The module explores the diverse settings in which occupational therapy is delivered. The module enables students to begin to devise appropriate client centred interventions that facilitate occupational goals within a range of social and healthcare settings. This module develops the student's knowledge and skills based on their understanding of occupational science, related to philosophies of practice, occupational therapy models of practice, frames of reference and their application to the practice of occupational therapy. The students will develop their ability to clinically reason across the occupational therapy process.

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PLACEMENT EDUCATION - YEAR 2

This module progresses the student's placement experience through Placement 3, a 6-week period of practice which occurs in semester one of Year 2 and Placement 4, an 8-week period of practice which occurs in semester two. The areas of practice undertaken will further develop the student's individual profiles of experience by exposing them to a range of health and social care settings, including acute hospitals, community work, day centres and social services. Within both placement settings, the student is given the opportunity to progressively build upon the theory practice links in addition to the core skills of their chosen profession. Students are prepared for practice through a series of progressive sessions, which include the transition from level 1 to level 2 learning, early preparations for securing an elective [final] placement and integration of learning from other Year 2 modules. In addition, students have dedicated plenary sessions, which provide an opportunity for sharing reflections on the previous placement. The module is assessed through progressive learning outcomes on each placement, including formal assessment of criteria relating to safe practice, professionalism, clinical reasoning, interpersonal skills, client management, information management and personal and professional development. In addition, the module is assessed though a written formative reflective account based on portfolio evidence and written summative reflective account based on portfolio evidence. #To ensure students continue to progress with safe and professional practice in accordance with clinical governance protocols. #To enable student to demonstrate an increasing profile of professional attributes as articulated by the HSC Professionalism Charter. #To apply and articulate clinical reasoning skills, underpinned by appropriate theoretical knowledge acquired to date within the practice placement setting. #To foster increasing competence in relation to carrying out the holistic assessment of clients and planned interventions. #To guide the continuing development of effective and responsive communication skills with clients, families and professionals as appropriate within a service environment. #To ensure students understand how to adhere to local policies and procedures within the practice placement environment in relation to relevant aspects of information management.

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Research Study Skills

This module focuses on the value of research to the systematic evaluation of practice. The research component will introduce qualitative and quantitative methodologies, using experiential activities to develop primary research and critical appraisal skills. Students will also begin to develop an appreciation of the skills of clinical audit. Professional development is also enhanced through further use of the reflective skills learned in Professional Development 1. The learning objectives of this module are to: #Appreciate the value and role of Evidence Based Practice (EBP) in clinical work #Develop the academic skills for literature searching and critical appraisal as needed for EBP #Develop an understanding of the differences between primary and secondary research #Developing knowledge of the different research methodologies used in quantitative and qualitative research #Develop knowledge and skills to evaluate own clinical practice , service evaluation and audit

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Students must study the following modules for 120 credits:

Name Code Credits

CONTEXT OF PRACTICE

In this module students will be prepared for current service issues which will impact on their future working lives. It will build on their knowledge of health policy gained on practice placements and in other parts of the course and will provide the opportunity to analyse evolving government initiatives, policies, issues of patient and public involvement, clinical governance, service improvement, fitness for practice and quality service provision when working in the NHS or in Social Services. This module will also address the wider context of practice by looking at the contribution other professionals, patients and carers make to health and social care delivery. This module is designed to focus on current issues and practices in health and social care service provision. The module is delivered over whole days of teaching and learning experiences each of which focus on a theme and all have a clear relationship to quality service provision. All workshops within the themed days use the service improvement tasks Introduction to quality and service improvement, Quality and the therapist ,Developing business cases, Management of change, Quality in services, Measuring quality, Service user involvement and Issues in practice

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OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY PRACTICE 3

This module draws together the theory and practice from OTP1 and OTP2 modules preparing the student to become a confident and competent occupational therapist. Building on a broad understanding of the scope of occupational therapy practice, this module deepens the students' understanding of the complexities of occupational therapy interventions through the critical exploration of the profession's philosophies and practice in a range of diverse and developing contexts. Semester 2 facilitates inter-professional practice through shared learning with the physiotherapy students. The students analyse the unique and innovative contribution of their profession in a range of health and social care pathways. Building on a broad understanding of the scope of occupational therapy practice, this module deepens the students' understanding enabling them to critically analyse the complexities of occupational therapy interventions. Through the critical exploration of occupational science and the profession's philosophies and practice in a range of diverse and developing contexts the students will be able to synthesise theory and practice alongside increasingly sophisticated clinical reasoning skills. They will be able to evaluate problem solving, clinical reasoning and evidence-based decision-making in practice. Students will develop personal responsibility in their own life-long learning through the informed choice of options. They will develop skills in abstract writing and poster presentation to a level commensurate with post-registration professional practice.

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PLACEMENT EDUCATION - YEAR 3

This module facilitates the transition of the student towards a competent and autonomous practitioner. Placement 5 is of 6 weeks duration and occurs in semester one. Placement 6 (elective) is of 8 weeks duration, occurring in semester two and is chosen and organized by the student with opportunities to utilize their core skills and knowledge within a specialized area of practice in a national or international setting. The student continues to build upon their skills, knowledge and professional development with a focus on increasingly complex interventions. By the end of Placement 6, students will have accrued a broad profile of placement experience, working with a range of different client groups in different settings. Students are prepared for practice through a series of progressive sessions which include the transition from level 2 to level 3 learning with an emphasis on progression from student to newly qualified practitioner, ongoing preparations for the elective [final] placement and integration of learning from other year 3 modules. In addition, students have dedicated plenary sessions which provide an opportunity for sharing reflections on the previous placement. The module is assessed through increasingly progressive learning outcomes, including formal assessment within the criteria of safe practice, professionalism, clinical reasoning, interpersonal skills, client management, information management and personal and professional development. In addition, this module is assessed through a formative CPD Portfolio Profile Viva and a summative Professional Development viva voce presentation. #To enable students continue to develop as autonomous safe practitioners and learners within the practice placement setting. #To ensure that students are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes underpinning appropriate professional practice. #To continue to provide students with placement-based opportunities, to hone their clinical reasoning skills to a level suitable for entry into qualified practice #To optimise students' client management skills in keeping with the expectations of relevant professional standards of proficiency, clinical guidelines and legislation. #To foster continued development of students' interpersonal skills within the practice placement setting. #To ensure that students have become effective managers of service-related information in line with pertinent policies and procedures.

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PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT 3

This module completes the professional development theme which runs throughout the three years. It supports the student in completing their dissertation, started in Year 2, which assesses the skills of enquiry through a structured literature review. It also prepares students for practice through topics addressing the transition from student to practitioner. Students will be taught to identify and respond to changes in health and social care and be innovative and critical in using research evidence to support practice. They will also be prepared for change from student therapist to professional practitioners through lectures and individual and group reflections.

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Disclaimer

Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Further Reading

Entry Requirements

  • A Level BBB
  • International Baccalaureate 31 points including 6 5 5 at Higher Level
  • Scottish Advanced Highers CCC
  • Irish Leaving Certificate BBBBBB or 2 subjects at H2 and 4 subjects at H3
  • Access Course Pass with Merit in 45 credits at Level 3 in a Health, Care or Science subject
  • BTEC DDM in a Health, Care or Science subject
  • European Baccalaureate 70%

Entry Requirement

We look for applicants to have a clear understanding of the profession ideally with relevant voluntary or paid work in health care, an interest in people, a strong academic attainment and a broad academic base.

You are required to have 5 GCSEs at a minimum of grade 4 or grade C including English Language, Mathematics and a Science subject. (Please note that we are not able to accept Adult Numeracy or Literacy, Key Skills, City & Guilds, Functional Skills or Access to HE credits in lieu of GCSEs.)

General Studies, Critical Thinking, Public Services and AS-levels are not considered.

Applications are encouraged from those with non-traditional qualifications. Applicants with the following qualifications are required to demonstrate 5 GCSEs at grade 4 or grade C including English Language and Mathematics.

Access to Higher Education Diploma in a Health, Care or Science subject Pass with Merit in 45 credits at Level 3
Bachelor Degree (hons) 2.2
CACHE Level 3 Diploma in Child Care and Education (Early Years Educator) B
CACHE Level 3 Extended Diploma in Children's Care, Learning and Development, or Children and Young People's Workforce, or Health and Social Care (including Technical Level) B
Certificate of Higher Education 55%
City & Guilds Advanced Extended Diploma in Health and Care (Health or Care pathway) Distinction
Diploma of Higher Education 55%
Foundation Degree in a Health, Care or Science subject 60%
Foundation Year in a Health, Care or Science subject 70%
Open University (60 credits) in a Health, Care or Science subject 55%

 

We do not consider Apprenticeships, NVQs (any level) or Work-based Level 3 Diplomas (previously NVQs) as meeting the minimum academic entry requirements, although these can be used as evidence of recent study. We will also not consider an applicant who has an academic fail from a health based degree programme, including where an exit award has been achieved.

Due to competition for places on this course, meeting (or being predicted to meet) the minimum academic entry requirements is not a guarantee of selection for interview.

Graduates may wish to consider our accelerated Masters programmes.

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students from all academic backgrounds. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including speaking, listening, reading and writing) at the following level:

  • IELTS: 7.0 overall (minimum 7.0 in any component)

We may also accept a number of other English language qualifications. Review our English Language Equivalences here.

INTO University of East Anglia 

If you do not meet the academic and/or English language requirements for this course, our partner INTO UEA offers progression on to this undergraduate degree upon successful completion of a foundation programme and an interview:

INTO UEA also offer a variety of English language programmes which are designed to help you develop the English skills necessary for successful undergraduate study:

 

Interviews

Of the applicants who pass the initial screening stage, the strongest will be invited to interview.

Those invited to attend an interview morning or afternoon will be required to undertake a numeracy test and a short written literacy test. The results of these tests do not form part of the selection process but are a requirement of Health Education England and help the University to plan the level of numeracy support we provide to our cohorts. A sample test paper may be found here.

The interview lasts approximately 40 minutes and follows a multiple mini interview format across four stations. When applicants enter the interview room, they will find a series of four 'stations' to circulate through, spending approximately 7 minutes at each. Interviews explore a range of issues, including the applicant's suitability for the profession and whether the applicant holds the NHS values as reflected in the NHS constitution. Please note that we do not disclose interview questions.

Further information regarding the interview day can be found here.

Gap Year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year. We believe that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry and to contact admissions@uea.ac.uk directly to discuss this further.

Special Entry Requirements

We prefer applicants to demonstrate evidence of recent formal academic study within 5 years of the start of the course.  This is to ensure they are equipped to succeed on this academically rigorous course. 

If you have not studied for an academic qualification within the last 5 years, and particularly where your previous study does meet our entry requirements, do contact our Admissions office (admissions@uea.ac.uk). 

We want to hear from you to assess whether your work, life or previous educational studies are suitable evidence for demonstrating your motivation, potential, knowledge and ability to study the course.  We want you to succeed and an application and offer will only be considered where we believe that an applicant has the potential to complete the course with a good final degree classification. The Admissions Office can also give you advice on further study, if required, that can help you make a future application to the course.

All applicants should note that, due to competition for places on this course, exceeding, meeting (or being predicted to meet) the minimum academic entry requirements is not a guarantee of selection for interview.

Intakes

One intake in September each year.

 

Fees and Funding

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support

Tuition Fees

Information on tuition fees can be found here:

UK students

EU Students

Overseas Students

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

The University of East Anglia offers a range of Scholarships; please click the link for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The system allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it must be sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The UCAS code name and number for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

Further Information

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances with the Admissions Service prior to applying please do contact us:

Undergraduate Admissions Service
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515
Email: admissions@uea.ac.uk

Please click here to register your details via our Online Enquiry Form.

International candidates are also actively encouraged to access the University's International section of our website.

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries:
    admissions@uea.ac.uk or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515