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Behdin Nowrouzi-Kia, OT Reg. (Ont.), PhD; Donna Barker, MSc, BSc(OT), OT Reg.(Ont.); Jill Stier M.A., OT Reg. (Ont.); Joyce Lo


The purpose of this study was to group and analyze the Practicum Demands Measure© (PDM) data collected over 2 academic years and create a general profile of demands across practicum settings. The data will be used to guide faculty in the most suitable placement of students requiring accommodations for a disability. The study used a secondary analysis design to analyze the 538 participant PDM data collected over the 2017/2018 and 2018/2019 academic years. Most of the sampled students were in fieldwork Level I and worked in mental health settings. The students reported physical demands, such as lifting more than 5kg (65.7%), intermittent sitting (97.6%), and keyboarding (94.6%). They also reported physical environment characteristics, such as exposure to infectious disease (44.6%) and congested working areas (27.5%). Cognitive demands included instant recall (90%) and analytical and clinical reasoning (99.8%). Practicum demands in occupational therapy were similar across other health care profession student placements, such as nursing and physical therapy. Practicum demands need to be studied more extensively to optimize students’ opportunities for success for students requiring accommodations in varied clinical settings.


The authors declare that they have no competing financial, professional, or personal interest that might have influenced the performance or presentation of the work described in this manuscript.