Professional Reward in the Academic Fieldwork Coordinator Role

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Abstract

The purpose of this national survey was to explore perceptions of professional reward among occupational therapist (OT) and occupational therapy assistant (OTA) academic fieldwork coordinators (AFWCs). Agreement was found in ranking the value of six role factors: (1) fieldwork data management, (2) fieldwork site management, (3) fieldwork teaching and consultation, (4) departmental and institutional compliance, (5) scholarship and accreditation, and (6) laying groundwork for students in fieldwork. Both levels of AFWC indicated teaching and consultation had the highest value and data management the least. OT AFWCs placed significantly higher value on publishing articles and lower value on educating fieldwork educators about role delineation than OTA AFWCs. Five themes emerged regarding professional reward: (1) intrinsic reward, (2) collaboration, (3) development of the profession, (4) feeling appreciated, and (5) student success. AFWCs value activities involving personal interaction, promoting professional development, and facilitating student success. Results have implications for AFWC collaboration, workload distribution, and scholarship.

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