Document Type (Journals)
The recent growth of entry-level occupational therapy doctoral (EL-OTD) programs has been met with mixed opinions from both occupational therapy educators and practitioners. These opinions occasionally have been accompanied by uncertainty about the specific curricular components that differentiate the EL-OTD from the entry-level master’s degree. In an effort to address this uncertainty, the purpose of this article is to present one example of an EL-OTD curricular model and describe its distinct educational components. This curricular model integrates recommendations for doctoral education originally proposed by Case-Smith et al. (2014) and is characterized by the following three components: 1) Advanced Coursework; 2) the Doctoral Capstone Project; and 3) the Doctoral Capstone Experience. We share the lessons learned after matriculating three cohorts of EL-OTD students and describe influences from the field of implementation science that have informed the development of our curriculum.
Erika Kemp, OTD, MS, OTR/L, BCP is the Director of Clinical Education and Capstone Coordinator for The Ohio State University. She has served as the Academic Fieldwork Coordinator at Ohio State as well as at an OTA program for a total of 9 years in clinical education, with prior clinical experience in schools, pediatric outpatient and acute care. Her research examines the benefits of the capstone experience.
Lisa A. Juckett, PhD, OTR/L, CHT is an Instructor in the Occupational Therapy Division at The Ohio State University. She has provided instruction to occupational therapy students in the clinic, community, and classroom settings. Her research examines the specific strategies that optimize the implementation of evidence into occupational therapy practice.
Amy Darragh, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, Director of the Occupational Therapy Division, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at The Ohio State University, has expertise in holistic review in admissions and occupational therapy doctoral education. Her research emphasizes pediatric neurorehabilitation, technology innovations for training and rehabilitation, and family/caregiver health.
Lindy Weaver, PhD, OTR/L is Assistant Professor, Clinical, and Curriculum Director in the the Division of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at The Ohio State University and has expertise in pediatric and adolescent mental health. Her research is in use of yoga to reduce stress and anxiety in youth.
Monica L. Robinson, OTD, MS, OT/L, FAOTA, Clinical Associate Professor, applies innovative educational practices in her teaching including using metacognitive strategies in an active learning environment, providing inter-professional educational opportunities, and the use of simulation in education to bridge the gap between the classroom and the clinic.
Carmen P. DiGiovine, PhD, ATP/SMS, RET is a Rehabilitation Engineer and Professor - Clinical in the Occupational Therapy Division at The Ohio State University. Dr. DiGiovine is the Director of the Rehabilitation Science and Technology (RST) Lab and the Assistive and Rehabilitative Technology (ART) Certificate Program.
Lori DeMott, OTD, OTR/L, CHT is Lecturer in the Division of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at The Ohio State University. She has extensive clinical experience in hand therapy and is interested in educational innovations to teach clinical skills to entry level students.
Declaration of Interest
The authors report no declarations of interest
Kemp, E. L., Juckett, L. A., Darragh, A. R., Weaver, L. L., Robinson, M. L., DiGiovine, C. P., & DeMott, L. (2021). Advancing the Entry-Level Practitioner: A Curricular Model of the Professional Occupational Therapy Doctoral Degree. Journal of Occupational Therapy Education, 5 (3). Retrieved from https://encompass.eku.edu/jote/vol5/iss3/17
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