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dignity respect and privacy

Student responsibilities

When on practice placement students are legally required to act in accordance with the Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct for Occupational Therapists [COT 2015].

During practice placements students must abide by the principles/policies of, and the procedures adopted by our Trust and comply with arrangements specified and/or negotiated with their Practice Placement Educators (PPE) and relevant personnel.  This includes matters like accommodation, keys, library books/fines etc

Students should conduct themselves and undertake agreed work in a manner commensurate with their student status, respecting the rights of clients and their carers.  Students are also expected to co-operate with their PPE, OT staff and members of the multi-disciplinary team

All students should have a copy of their University Student Handbook, Manual which should be used in collaboration with these guidelines.


  • The student must inform the PPE and/or the member of a staff in charge of their clinical area of work immediately in the event of any critical/unusual incident occurring during a client treatment session either to the client or to them.
  • The student will comply with the Trust IM and T security policy
  • Students must ensure that a qualified health practitioner countersigns all the entries that they make in clients case notes. When writing in client's notes students may only use the following abbreviations
  • The Trust will not tolerate verbal, racist or sexual abuse or violence towards its service users or staff, contractors or visitors and therefore requires students to report any such incidents to their PPE.
  • You have a legal duty to maintain confidentiality at all times.

Learning contracts

  • An Individual Learning Contract and weekly objectives are negotiated between the student and the PPE based on the overall expectations of the placement, taking into account the level of the student's education in relation to the aims and objectives, learning outcomes and assessment of the particular practice education module.
  • The student should not accept responsibility for tasks that are above and beyond his/her capabilities or alternatively avoid taking responsibility commensurate with his/her level of training.
  • It is evident from a learning agreement and placement programme that the student in collaboration with the PPE has identified, developed and used learning opportunities to support the achievement of placement outcomes.

Supervision and support

  • The student must actively participate in supervision with the named PPE, with a minimum of one hour of formal supervision per week [Hocking and Ness 2002]
  • The student should be willing to discuss both their strengths and weaknesses so that there is a planned approach to learning and supervision, allowing progression from observing practice to independent practice.
  • Students are aware of the academic and pastoral support available whilst on placement.

Learning opportunities

  • Students are expected to work the same hours as a full time qualified OT
  • Students are expected to engage in any multi-disciplinary training opportunities offered.
  • Students should negotiate a suitable time each week for independent study with their PPE.
  • Students will be responsible for the completion and submission of all written components whilst on placement.

Assessment and evaluation

  • Students will carry out self-appraisal and critical reflection on a regular basis in preparation for both formal assessment and supervision sessions.
  • The student is requested to complete the Trust evaluation form and return to the Placement Coordinator at the end of the placement.

Health and safety

Students unable to attend due to sickness must adher to their university proceedures and make sure that:
  • The practice area is contacted by telephone at the earliest opportunity, and NO LATER THAN the normal start time on the first day of sickness.
  • A telephone message must be left if there is no reply. Texting or emailing is not acceptable
  • The student is responsible for alerting their PPE to any health issue, which may impinge on client care.
  • You have a responsibility to read and adhere to the Trust's Health and Safety Policies Students should make themselves aware of and follow the control measures of any risk assessment prepared.
  • The Trust operates a Smoke Free policy, which it expects students to adhere to.
  • The Trust does not wear uniform but all students are expected to maintain a professional appearance at all times and to ensure that that they comply with the Dress Code


  • Students are responsible for booking their own accommodation see student accommodation. Placement coordinators will advise on the best option depending on location of the clinical area and other students on placement within the Trust
  • Students using Trust accommodation during practice placements are required to sign a tenancy agreement and abide by the conditions detailed within it. Failure to do so may result in the retention of your deposit.

Disclosed disbilities

By law, students are not obliged to disclose a disability. If they chose this option then they will be assessed without the benefit of additional support, but this is a choice that can be made.
  • Students are encouraged to initially disclose their disability to their University in order to receive any pre-placement support. Students are can however disclose a disability whilst on placement.
  • If a student discloses a disability they do not need to give medical details or history. A student who discloses a disability is only required to provide information about how their disability affects them on a daily basis.
  • The student is encouraged to identify what 'reasonable adjustments' are required to make the placement accessible. By reasonable adjustments this may mean extra reading time, working a shorter week, permission to use a laptop computer or being provided with a quiet area to write up notes. See Useful tips for a student with a disability asking for reasonable adjustments.
  • Students are encouraged to visit the placement before starting to openly discuss their needs and what adjustments they would find helpful.


  • Never accept a gift, favour or hospitality from a service user, carer or relative currently receiving care, unless it is a small gift of gratitude, e.g. a box of chocolates or with hospitality e.g. a cup of tea.
  • Always inform your supervisor and if you are at all unsure about accepting a gift, favour or hospitality always seek advice or consult the Hospitality, Gifts and External Sponsorship policy
  • Mobile phones will be turned off during work hours except in exceptional circumstances e.g. as a safety measure

If you are ever in doubt about any aspect of your role, always seek clarification from your professional supervisor or senior member of staff.

Read the  document Dress Code (83 KB)

document (83 KB)

College of Occupational Therapists [2015] The Code of ethics and professional Conduct for Occupational Therapists. London: COT

College of Occupational Therapists [2014] Standards for Education: Pre Registration Education Standards.  London: COT

Hocking C, Ness NE (2002) Revised minimum standards for the education of occupational therapists. Perth: WFOT.