Document Type (Journals)
The development of professional characteristics is crucial to becoming a well-rounded, competent occupational therapist. An exploratory sequential mixed method design was used to determine if there was a difference in the growth of professional characteristics of students in a three-year entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD) program who attended a traditional on-campus program compared to a hybrid program. Ten second and third-year occupational therapy students from the traditional and hybrid pathways participated in a focus group related to cultivating professional characteristics. The themes that evolved from the focus group included: teamwork/team player, time management, communication, self-awareness, critical thinking, and leadership. The themes were then used to create survey questions related to the development of professional characteristics. Twenty first-year, 23 second-year, and 25 third-year students completed the survey. Twenty-seven of the 68 survey participants attended the program in the traditional pathway, and 41 of the 68 survey participants attended the hybrid pathway. Outcomes from the survey data suggest that there are significant differences in professional characteristics between traditional and hybrid students in the areas of listening (p-value = 0.024) and assertive communication (p-value = 0.003), in which traditional students rated their agreement of the development of these characteristics higher than the hybrid students. The results of this study emphasize the importance of professional occupational therapy education regardless of the delivery model (hybrid or traditional) to help mature professional characteristics in students and prepare them for clinical practice.
Kyrra Miller, OTS is an occupational therapy student in Creighton University’s entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy program.
Adeline Maher, OTS is an occupational therapy student in Creighton University’s entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy program.
Alison Puckett, OTS is an occupational therapy student in Creighton University’s entry-level Doctor of Occupational Therapy program.
Angela Lampe, OTD, OTR/L is an assistant professor at Creighton University in the Department of Occupational Therapy.
Helene Lohman, OTD, OTR/L, FAOTA is a professor at Creighton University in the Department of Occupational Therapy.
Declaration of Interest
The authors report no declaration of interest.
Miller, K., Maher, A., Puckett, A., Lampe, A. M., & Lohman, H. L. (2021). Professional Characteristic Development of Occupational Therapy Students in Traditional vs. Hybrid Pathways. Journal of Occupational Therapy Education, 5 (2). https://doi.org/10.26681/jote.2021.050204
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