Occupational Science & Occupational Therapy - Journal articles

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    Examining motivation of first-year undergraduate anatomy students through the lens of Universal Design for Learning (UDL): A single institution study
    (Springer, 2023-07-05) Dempsey, Audrey M. K.; Nolan, Yvonne M.; Lone, Mutahira; Hunt, Eithne; Irish Research eLibrary
    Motivation is critical for meaningful learning among healthcare students studying anatomy. Learners are highly variable, and it is important to ensure learners are equally supported in the diverse aspects of an anatomy curriculum. The implementation of the educational framework, Universal Design for Learning (UDL), in anatomy curricula could potentially enhance student motivation. The multiple means of engagement principle of UDL refers to the enhancement of motivation among students. This study aimed to identify healthcare students’ motivation levels at the start and end of their anatomy module and whether there was any change in motivation. The Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ) was distributed to gather the self-reported motivation levels of first-year undergraduate medical, dental and occupational therapy (OT) and speech and language therapy (SLT) students studying anatomy at the start of their respective anatomy modules and again at the end of the module. The overall response rate was 74% and 69%, at the start and end of the study, respectively. Responses were analysed by the respective programme of study. Motivation to study anatomy among medical, dental, OT and SLT students ranged from medium to high on the MSLQ at the start of their respective anatomy modules. By the end of the anatomy modules, dental students reported high levels of motivation to study anatomy, whereas motivation among medical, OT and SLT students ranged from medium to high. A change in students’ self-reported motivation levels while studying anatomy was identified. The study emphasises the benefits of UDL and its flexible nature to enhance motivation.
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    Awareness of Universal Design for Learning among anatomy educators in higher level institutions in the Republic of Ireland and United Kingdom
    (Wiley, 2022-09-07) Dempsey, Audrey M. K.; Hunt, Eithne; Lone, Mutahira; Nolan, Yvonne M.; Irish Research eLibrary
    There is an increasing need to facilitate enhanced student engagement in anatomy education. Higher education students differ in academic preferences and abilities and so, not all teaching strategies suit all students. Therefore, it is suggested that curricula design and delivery adapt to sustain learner engagement. Enhanced learner engagement is a fundamental feature of Universal Design for Learning (UDL). The aim of this study is to determine if anatomy educators in the Republic of Ireland (ROI) and United Kingdom (UK) are aware of UDL and to assess if, and to what extent, it has been implemented in the design and delivery of anatomy curricula for healthcare students. An anonymous online questionnaire was administered to anatomy educators in higher level institutions in the ROI and UK. Inductive content analysis was used to identify the impact of UDL on student learning, engagement, and motivation, as perceived by the participants. The response rate was 23% (n = 61). Nineteen participants stated they knew of UDL. Of these, 15 had utilized UDL in their teaching of anatomy. Analysis indicated that the perception of UDL was mixed. However, the majority of responses relating to UDL were positive. The majority of the respondents were unaware of UDL but identified the frameworks' checkpoints within their curriculum, suggesting they have unknowingly incorporated elements of UDL in their curriculum design and delivery. There is a lack of information on the benefits of explicit utilization of UDL for engagement and motivation to learn anatomy in healthcare programs in the ROI and UK.
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    Evidence for implementing tiered approaches in elementary schools in school-based occupational therapy: a scoping review
    (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2023) Lynch, Helen; Moore, Alice; O'Connor, Deirdre; Boyle, Bryan
    Importance: Internationally, it is suggested that school-based occupational therapy (SBOT) has an important role in supporting inclusion in educational settings. In SBOT, multitiered service delivery models are identified as a way forward to maximize school inclusion. Therefore, identifying evidence for the implementation of tiered interventions in SBOT is vital. Objective: To identify and map evidence in the occupational therapy literature relating to SBOT interventions delivered in elementary schools for all children, for those at risk, and for those with identified diagnoses. Data Sources: Peer-reviewed literature published in 14 occupational therapy journals between 1990 and 2020, indexed in the EBSCOhost database. Study Selection and Data Collection: Included studies were those within the scope of SBOT that reported on school occupations and focused on elementary school–age children (excluding kindergarteners or preschoolers). Findings: Forty studies met the criteria. Individual-tier intervention studies (n = 22) primarily reported direct interventions with children at risk or with identified diagnoses (Tier 2 or Tier 3), focusing mostly on remedial approaches. None adopted a whole-school approach. Despite handwriting and self-regulation being dominant areas of concern, these studies were not explicitly related to inclusion outcomes. Evidence for implementing multitiered models primarily used indirect, collaborative consultation, embedded in the school context (n = 18). These studies identified positive school staff and child outcomes when collaboration was timely, consistent, and authentic. Conclusions and Relevance: More rigorous individual-tier intervention studies are required to inform the design and implementation of multitiered interventions in SBOT and to support participation and inclusion in schools. What This Article Adds: This scoping review provides evidence to support occupational therapists’ professional reasoning in developing evidence-based, contextual, educationally relevant multitiered models of intervention in SBOT.
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    Creating a community of praxis: integrating global citizenship and development education across campus at University College Cork
    (UCL Press, 2022-12-13) Cotter, Gertrude; Bonenfant, Yvon; Butler, Jenny; Caulfield, Marian; Doyle Prestwich, Barbara; Griffin, Rosarii; Khabbar, Sanaa; Mishra, Nita; Hally, Ruth; Murphy, Margaret; Murphy, Orla; O'Sullivan, Maeve; Phelan, Martha; Reidy, Darren; Schneider, Julia C.; Isaloo, Amin Sharifi; Turner, Brian; Usher, Ruth; Williamson Sinalo, Caroline; Irish Aid
    The Praxis Project, established at University College Cork (UCC), Ireland, in 2018, seeks to assess possible models of best practice with regard to the integration of global citizenship and development education (GCDE) into a cross-disciplinary, cross-campus, interwoven set of subject area pedagogies, policies and practices. This study – the first part of an eventual three-part framework – asserts that the themes, theories, values, skills, approaches and methodologies relevant to transformative pedagogical work are best underpinned by ongoing staff dialogue in order to build communities of support around such systemic pedagogical change. This article is based on a collaborative study with the first cohort of UCC staff (2020–1), which demonstrates many ways in which staff and students realised that smaller actions and carefully directed attention to specific issues opened doors to transformative thinking and action in surprising ways. From this viewpoint, the striking need emerged for taking a strategic approach to how GCDE is, and should be, integrated into learning across subject areas.
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    Environmental qualities that enhance outdoor play in community playgrounds from the perspective of children with and without disabilities: A scoping review
    (MDPI, 2023-01-18) Morgenthaler, Thomas; Schulze, Christina; Pentland, Duncan; Lynch, Helen; Horizon 2020
    For children, playgrounds are important environments. However, children’s perspectives are often not acknowledged in playground provision, design, and evaluation. This scoping review aimed to summarize the users’ (children with and without disabilities) perspectives on environmental qualities that enhance their play experiences in community playgrounds. Published peer-reviewed studies were systematically searched in seven databases from disciplines of architecture, education, health, and social sciences; 2905 studies were screened, and the last search was performed in January 2023. Included studies (N = 51) were charted, and a qualitative content analysis was conducted. Five themes were formed which provided insights into how both physical and social environmental qualities combined provide for maximum play value in outdoor play experiences. These multifaceted play experiences included the desire for fun, challenge, and intense play, the wish to self-direct play, and the value of playing alone as well as with known people and animals. Fundamentally, children wished for playgrounds to be children’s places that were welcoming, safe, and aesthetically pleasing. The results are discussed in respect to social, physical, and atmospheric environmental affordances and the adult’s role in playground provision. This scoping review represents the valuable insights of children regardless of abilities and informs about how to maximise outdoor play experiences for all children.