Occupational Therapy BSc(Hons) 2017-18

This course also available for 2018-19 entry

Want to join us in September? You can now apply via Clearing

About the course

This course currently offers:

  • Many excellent inter-professional learning opportunities with colleagues from a range of healthcare professions.

  • Teaching within our purpose built Occupational Therapy skills laboratory designed to replicate specific rooms in patients' homes.

  • Learning which is supported by both off and on-site computing and library facilities that are consistently praised by the College of Occupational Therapists.

You may be aware of the value of meaningful and purposeful occupation in your own life, and know it is important to be active and fulfilled. This course enables you to take this understanding and put it to work for the benefit of others. You'll have the opportunity to learn how to help people, in order to improve or maintain their health and wellbeing through participation in meaningful occupation. Occupational therapists work with people of all ages in a wide variety of circumstances. This may include working with people who have illnesses, disabilities, long-term conditions or developmental delays, as well as those who have experienced trauma or are homeless, asylum seekers and refugees. As an occupational therapist you could work with anyone who needs help to manage their day to day lives and how they use their time.

Throughout the course you'll study the underlying theories and principles of occupational therapy and apply this to different areas of practice. You'll also have the opportunity to learn how to integrate knowledge from the biological, behavioural and social sciences. You'll explore ways to identify areas in people's lives which are causing difficulties, and how to enable them to fulfil their potential and enjoy maximum independence and quality of life. You'll have the opportunity to learn how occupational therapy engages with people of all ages in a variety of environments including homes, community, hospitals, schools, charities and prisons.

Due to the inter professional nature of occupational therapy, you'll also study with students from other health and social care professions, for example physiotherapists, social workers, nurses and podiatrists. You'll have the opportunity to develop both teamwork and autonomous practice skills required to work in a rapidly changing health and social care context.

Upon successful graduation you could work with the NHS, social services, charities, education services, social enterprises, community interest groups, medico-legal firms or alternatively you could work in independent practice. There may also be opportunities to work in education, research or oversees as occupational therapists are needed throughout the world.

Knowing that you've made an impact on the quality of life of others can give you great job satisfaction. The skills of problem solving, enabling participation and getting people home from hospital quicker, all contribute to knowing that you've made a positive difference in people's lives leading to a rewarding and varied career.

UCAS code:

Start date:
18 / 09 / 2017


3 years full-time

Course type:

Full Time

Course content

Year 1: core modules

Foundations and Context of Occupation and Practice

This module examines the key concepts and philosophy of occupational therapy and explores different contexts in which occupational therapy is practised. Working in a group, you will be required to deliver a presentation discussing the wider socio-political issues affecting the occupation of communities and populations, supported by written coursework reflecting on your experiences of working as part of a group. You will also produce written coursework applying an occupational therapy model to an assigned case study.

Health; Occupational Performance and Occupational Disruption

This module explores health from an occupational perspective, including the relationship between health and occupation. You will be introduced to the structure and function of the human body, along with the underlying physiological and psychological processes supporting healthy human behaviour. Building on these concepts, you will explore physiological and psychosocial factors which can affect occupational performance. You will be introduced to a range of occupational therapy assessment methods. You will be assessed through coursework, including a workbook (which must be passed to successfully complete this module) and a written analysis of a familiar occupation and a practical assessment.

Practice Based Experience 1

You will be introduced to a variety of occupational therapy practice settings through completing a series of placements, where you will have the chance to develop and apply your practical skills, as well as gain an understanding of appropriate professional behaviour and standards, which you will demonstrate during the practice experience. You will also examine the nature and development of communication strategies in relation to therapeutic relationships and working with other health and social care professionals. Alongside a practice based educator, you will be required to develop a learning contract to identify learning outcomes for your placement, which you will be assessed on.

Professional Development and Research 1

In this module you’ll have the opportunity to be actively engaged in developing your understanding of professional culture, standards, mandatory health and safety training and the importance of research to underpin your evidence based practice. You’ll work with other colleagues to develop these values, skills and competencies including the professions of Nursing, Midwifery, Occupational Therapy, Operating Department Practice, Physiotherapy and Podiatry. You’ll also be encouraged to evaluate and reflect upon your strengths and limitations to identify areas for your further development towards becoming a registered practitioner. Assessment will involve one piece of coursework and one online short answer examination.

Year 2: core modules

Enhancing Occupational Performance for Individuals and Groups

You will explore issues of assessing and enhancing the occupational performance of individuals and groups. As well as developing planning, intervention and evaluation skills you will have the opportunity to review the ethical, legal and policy framework effecting service delivery through producing a piece of coursework based on a case study. You will also have opportunity to lead practical therapeutic groups where you will able to develop your confidence and creative abilities through further coursework.

Interprofessional Working in Context

You will be introduced to the theory and concepts of interprofessional working (IPW). You will explore what helps and hinders IPW in practice, drawing on experience from your first year practice learning experience. This will include attending two conferences, one where you will listen to keynote lectures and one where you will present your work in a group and observe other group presentations. You will be assessed through coursework, where you will participate in the group conference presentation (pass/refer/fail) and produce a written review based on an example of interprofessional working (worth 100% of module marks).

Practice Based Experience 2A

You will have the opportunity to complete a six week placement in a practice environment. You will focus on client-based assessment and use a range of occupational therapy skills and interventions to support clients in the achievement of their personal goals. You will also begin to work with other members of the wider health and social care team. Alongside a practice based educator, you will be required to develop a learning contract to identify learning outcomes for your placement, which you will be assessed on.

Practice Based Experience 2B

You will have the opportunity to complete a six week placement during which you will apply your occupational therapy skills in a wider variety of contexts. This will involve taking a greater degree of responsibility for overall client care and learning to select and justify appropriate assessments and interventions for individuals, groups and communities. You will also engage with health and social care professionals from a range of disciplines. Alongside a practice based educator, you will be required to develop a learning contract to identify learning outcomes for your placement, which you will be assessed on.

Research 2

This module provides the opportunity for you to build on your knowledge of research that you studied in Year 1 and prepare you to undertake an area of research in Year 3. You will learn about and be assessed on data collection and analysis in relation to methods which are currently used in research and evaluation of practice, through coursework involving a work book. This includes quantitative and qualitative research, systematic reviews and audits. In addition you will work in multi professional groups to produce coursework involving a research proposal, which you will carry out in Year 3. This will be assessed on a pass/fail basis (which must be passed to successfully complete this module).

Year 3: core modules

Consolidating Occupational Therapy Practice

You will have the opportunity to further develop your understanding of the theories, principles and concepts, which influence current practice within Occupational Therapy. Using case studies, you will required to adopt an enquiry based, critical evaluation of the theoretical and practical approaches to working with individuals, groups, communities and populations. You will demonstrate your ability to apply occupational therapy intervention to a selected case study through your coursework involving a presentation.

Practice Based Experience 3

You will have the opportunity to work with increasing independence by learning how to manage your time and prioritise your work load during an eight week placement within the NHS, social care or non-traditional settings. You will encounter clients with complex and challenging needs and contribute to the management of  the service, working effectively as part of a team. Alongside a practice based educator, you will be required to develop a learning contract to identify learning outcomes for your placement, during which you will be assessed on your performance.

Research 3

This is a multi-disciplinary module which follows on from Research 2. You will undertake a small scale research project in a multi-professional group, which could consist of a combination of nursing, midwifery, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, operating department practice, or podiatry students. Based on this research project you will produce two pieces of coursework, a report written in a style suitable for publication and a group presentation at the Interdisciplinary Student Research Conference.

Widening Occupational Therapy Practice

This module involves focusing in-depth on an area of occupational therapy in a variety of contexts such as health, social care and third sector. Through lectures and workshops you will have the chance to gain the skills required to evaluate an area of occupational therapy and develop a proposal for enhancing the service. You will use and evaluate these skills whilst undertaking an assessed practice placement experience in a service area, which must be passed to successfully complete the module. You will also be assessed through coursework involving a report and service development proposal based on your practical experience and a reflective commentary on the development of your skills through your experiences of the project undertaken.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.

We review all optional modules each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let students know in good time the options available for them to choose for the following year.

We will only change core modules for a course if it is necessary for us to do so, for example to maintain course accreditation. We will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before you begin the relevant academic year.

Sometimes we have to make changes to other aspects of a course or how it is delivered. We only make these changes if they are for reasons outside of our control, or where they are for our students’ benefit. Again, we will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before the relevant academic year. Our regulations set out our procedure which we will follow when we need to make any such changes.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England is the principal regulator for the University.


Practice education is an important and compulsory part of the course, so placements will be undertaken throughout the three years. You're required to undertake 1000 hours of professional practice throughout the course in a range of health, social and third sector care settings within the West Yorkshire region. This will be equivalent to placements of seven weeks in Year 1, 12 weeks in Year 2 and 10 weeks in Year 3.

Please note that you may be required to travel for/during your placements.

Career opportunities

95% of graduates from courses in this subject area go on to work and/or further study within six months of graduating. Our graduates have gone on to work as Occupational Therapists in NHS, private and voluntary healthcare services including Locala Community Partnerships and the South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. Graduates have also diversified into work as a Mental Capacity Act/Mental Health Act Manager, Assistive Technology Lead Officer or lecturer in local authorities, community services and universities.*

*Source: DHLE survey and LinkedIn

Professional links and accreditations

This course is currently accredited by the College of Occupational Therapists. Courses accredited by the College of Occupational Therapists also receive accreditation from the World Federation of Occupational Therapy. The course is also currently regulated by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

Whilst studying this course you're currently not required to register as a member with the Health and Care Professions Council, however you must follow their standards of conduct, performance and ethics.

You'll be encouraged to join the British Association of Occupational Therapists and College of Occupational Therapists for which you'll be required to pay a fee. Although membership is not essential it may benefit you whilst studying the course.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching takes place in lectures, seminars, tutorials and group work, practical experience, lectures, presentations and simulation.

Assessment is a combination of coursework, practice/competency based learning, examinations and essays. This also includes a variety of innovative methods such as reflective logs, group presentations, case studies, portfolios of learning, poster presentations and practice based reports.

14.3% of the study time on this course is spent in lectures, seminars, tutorials etc.

Your module specification/course handbook will provide full details of the assessment criteria applying to your course.

Feedback (usually written) is normally provided on all coursework submissions within three term time weeks – unless the submission was made towards the end of the session in which case feedback would be available on request after the formal publication of results. Feedback on exam performance/final coursework is available on request after the publication of results.

Huddersfield is the only University where 100% of the teaching staff are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy.*

*permanent staff, after probation: some recently appointed colleagues will only obtain recognition in the months after their arrival in Huddersfield, once they have started teaching.

How much will it cost me?

The full-time undergraduate tuition fee for 17/18 entry is £9250.

Tuition fees will cover the cost of your study at the University as well as charges for registration, tuition, supervision and examinations. For more information about funding, fees and finance for UK/EU students, including what your tuition fee covers, please see Fees and Finance. Please note that tuition fees for subsequent years of study may rise in line with inflation (RPI-X).

If you are an international student coming to study at the University of Huddersfield, please visit the International Fees and Finance pages for full details of tuition fees and support available.

Please email the Student Finance or call 01484 472210 for more information about fees and finance.

Further study

Progression to a postgraduate course is dependent on successful completion of your undergraduate studies. There may also be minimum qualification requirements such as a first class or higher second (2.1) degree. Please check the course details to confirm this.

How to apply

We hope you're interested in what you've seen and want to apply to join us. Please take a look at the information on what to do next.

Once you've sent your form in to UCAS you may need to come to an interview. We've put together some information for you about what to expect at an interview - but don't worry, when you're invited you'll be given full details of what will happen.

Research community

Research plays an important role in informing all our teaching and learning activities. Through research our staff remain up-to-date with the latest developments in their field, which means you develop knowledge and skills that are current and highly relevant. For more information see the Research section of our website.

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This course is currently accredited by the College of Occupational Therapy. Courses accredited by the College of Occupational Therapy also receive accreditation from the World Federation of Occupational Therapy.The course is also currently approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

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