Fieldwork education, which combines work-based learning and assessment, has a pivotal place in professional education. It provides a precious opportunity to inte- grate the art, science and ethical practice of Occupational Therapy. The therapeutic milieu is also the most appropriate but difficult setting in which to judge 'compe- tence to practise'. Yet fieldwork education has not received the attention, resources, research and status it deserves. This is why this book is so important. The focus upon the students' experience reflects the central tenet of the book: the responsibility, challenge and pleasure of life-long learning. The book covers the whole spectrum of fieldwork in a way which will be of interest to academic and fieldwork educators too. This is achieved through a striking balance between reas- suring, practical advice and scholarliness. The reader is encouraged to enter into current debates, engage in inter-disciplinary and international comparisons and appreciate the tensions between professional issues and organizational contexts. The insights into the logistical, political and educational factors which contribute to the theory-practice gap are noteworthy. In my view, the authors have produced an excellent introduction to fieldwork education, and especially to the complexities of clinical reasoning which is a vital component of initial and continuing competence for many professions. I hope the book will enhance the effectiveness of fieldwork education and thus the quality of health and social care.
Making the Most of Fieldwork Education
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