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Service-Learning in Occupational Therapy Education
Philosophy & Practice

Author(s): Kathleen Flecky, OTD, OTR/L, Assistant Professor Department of Occupational Therapy School of Pharmacy and Health Professions, Creighton University , Omaha, Nebraska
Lynn Gitlow, PhD, OTR/L, ATP, Director of Occupational Therapy, Husson University, Bangor, Maine
  • ISBN-13: 9780763759582
  • Paperback    310 pages      © 2011
Price: $124.95 US List
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Service-Learning in Occupational Therapy Education: Philosophy and Practice explores the use of service-learning as a pedagogical tool for educators to enhance occupational therapy students’ knowledge and skills in the areas of critical thinking and problem solving, diversity, health promotion, community issues, social justice and citizenship. These areas are representative of core competencies needed by occupational therapy professionals for occupation-based practice in the 21st century. This text describes philosophical and theoretical principles of service-learning in relationship to occupational therapy philosophical and pedagogical traditions. Effective service-learning educational strategies and experiential applications of occupational therapy in the community are highlighted through the presentation of case studies of service- learning initiatives in occupational therapy programs across the United States. Examples of how to design, implement and assess service-learning projects and partnerships are provided along with insights and lessons learned from faculty engaging in service-learning.

Features & Benefits

  • Description of the relevance and congruence of philosophical and theoretical traditions of service learning and occupational therapy.

  • Links service learning specifically to occupational therapy education: faculty and student friendly exercises and reflective activities on practice.

  • Samples of how to initiate partnerships, develop course objectives and syllabi aligned with Accreditation Council of Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) guidelines, readings, websites and course support materials as well as project and student  assessment tools. 

  • Description of “lessons learned” from faculty, including the strengths and challenges of service-learning based on qualitative and quantitative assessment results and community based research.

Applicable Courses

Primary Courses:

Community Service in Occupational Therapy

Service-Learning in Occupational Therapy


Additional courses could include:

Occupational Therapy in the Community

Community-based Occupational Therapy Practice

Emerging Areas of Practice in Occupational Therapy

Experiential Community Practice in Health Professions


Chapter  1  Foundations of Service-Learning
Chapter  2  Occupational Therapy Education: Preparing Students for Future Practice
Chapter  3  Who Sits at the Head of the Table? A Reflection on Community, Student, Faculty Partnerships
Chapter  4  Cross-Cultural Service Learning: An Introduction and Best Practices
Chapter  5  Providing Voice to Vulnerable Populations Through Service Learning Infused in an Occupational Therapy Program
Chapter  6  Service –Learning, Health Promotion and Occupational Therapy: A Good Fit
Chapter  7  Occupation of Learning through Service Engagement: An Occupational Therapy Assistant Program Perspective
Chapter  8  Translating Service-Learning Theory into Practice in Occupational Therapy Education
Chapter  9  Occupational Therapy Service Learning & Early Childhood Education
Chapter  10  Community Engagement: A Process for Curriculum Integration
Chapter  11  Involve Me and I Understand: Is It Service Learning or Fieldwork Education
Chapter  12  Conclusions and Reflections

Kathleen Flecky, OTD, OTR/L-Assistant Professor Department of Occupational Therapy School of Pharmacy and Health Professions, Creighton University , Omaha, Nebraska

Lynn Gitlow, PhD, OTR/L, ATP-Director of Occupational Therapy, Husson University, Bangor, Maine

The following instructor resources are available to qualified instructors for download

ISBN-13: 9780763759582

Slides in PowerPoint Format

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