OT 6400: Theory in Occupational Therapy

Course description

This course will explore core concepts, models, and paradigms of the past, present, and future and their influence on education, research, administration, and the practice of occupational therapy. Components of theory, formulation of theory, and the effect of theory development on occupational therapy will also be explored.

Relationship to curriculum design

The main competency that is addressed in this class is theory. The lectures, in class discussions and assignments all focus on this area. New information about theory is discovered through exploration of new information including terms, contents and the use of theory. The information is integrated with information the students have learned in the past including theories, frames of reference and clinical experiences. The students are then expected to apply these newly learned concepts through critiques of theories, frames of reference and opinions in the profession. At the end of the class the students use reflection to write a journal about the contents of the course. Students will be evaluated in the following competencies: self-awareness, healthy behaviors and personal growth (the competent occupational therapy graduate approaches the practice of occupational therapy with an awareness of his/her limits, strengths, weaknesses and personal vulnerabilities). The graduate assesses personal values and priorities in order to balance personal and professional commitments. The graduate seeks help and advice when needed for his/her own difficulties and develops personally appropriate coping strategies. The graduate accurately hears and appropriately responds to constructive criticism) and OT theory, models and frames of reference (6a. The competent occupational therapy graduate will demonstrate the skills necessary to critically analyze theories, models and frames of reference used in occupational therapy and be able to use theories for the development of frames of reference. The graduate will demonstrate knowledge of the history, development and use of theories, models and frames of reference in occupational therapy. 6b. The graduate will embrace a scholarly attitude toward the analysis of and future contributions to the occupational therapy body of knowledge.)

Assignment policy

All in class assignments must be done in class. If you miss an in class assignment, you will receive a zero for that assignment. For assignments with a due date, the assignment must be turned in at the beginning of class time on that date. For each day the assignment is late, 10 points will be deducted from your grade for that assignment.  

Learning outcomes

At an introductory level, student will be able to demonstrate the following: 

  1. Students will be able to articulate an understanding of the importance of the history and philosophical base of the profession of occupational therapy. (B.2.1)
  2. Students will be able to analyze and discuss how history, theory, and the sociopolitical climate influence practice.  (B.3.4)
  3. Students will be able to identify the purpose of scientific knowledge. (B.8.1)
  4. Students will be able to contrast ways that theories are developed. (B.3.6)
  5. Students will be able to evaluate occupational therapy and related theories according to scientific criteria. (B.1.1)
  6. Students will be able to discuss how theories, models of practice and frames of reference/guidelines for practice are used in practice. (B. 3.1; B.3.3)    
  7. Students will assimilate classroom learning to establish a sense of professional identity based on the unique perspectives, beliefs and values of OT.
  8. Students will be competent in written and verbal communication. (B.1.1)