Professional Reasoning

The details
Health and Social Care (School of)
Colchester Campus
Spring & Summer
Undergraduate: Level 5
Monday 13 January 2020
Friday 26 June 2020
11 March 2020


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BSC B939 Occupational Therapy

Module description

All health professionals are required to demonstrate sound decision making skills in the process of developing appropriate outcomes. This module is designed to introduce and further develop your understanding of the concepts of reasoning, problem-solving and decision making, in preparation for the second practice placement. You will develop your ability to articulate your professional reasoning within this module and further into the placement.

Module aims

This module introduces you to the theory and practice of professional reasoning

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, you will be able to:

1. Deconstruct the strands of reasoning and discuss how they inter-relate to inform your professional decision making
2. Demonstrate an understanding of the influence your personal beliefs can have upon your professional reasoning
3. Justify the process of your reasoning in order to reach an appropriate outcome

Module information

This module runs 2 days per week in the spring term directly before 'Practice placement HS275 – 'lead'. The module content is delivered through interactive seminars and student-led small group work, in order to provide opportunities where you can further develop confidence articulating your professional reasoning.

Learning and teaching methods

Overview: Small group work, tutorials and seminars will form the basis of the learning methods within this module. The emphasis will be to further develop your professional reasoning skills, which inform your occupational therapy practice. Lectures: Due to interactive nature of this module, keynote lectures will not be utilised. Independent: Drawing on previous experiences of EBL, you will explore content supported by small group and individual study. Placement: You will draw on your placement experiences to inform and develop your professional reasoning skills. Online: Using a blended learning approach you will be expected to engage and contribute to online group activities and use of online library facilities. A module Moodle page will support your learning on this module. Tutorials: Due to structure of this module, there will not be opportunity for formative tutorials, however you will have the opportunity to receive written formative feedback. Skills: Throughout this module, you will draw on and extend your current knowledge and transferrable skills, in order to progress your occupational therapy identity and skills. The module is designed to provide you with opportunities to develop your skills in articulating your professional reasoning.


  • Jones, Alun. (1997) 'Death, poetry, psychotherapy and clinical supervision (the contribution of psychodynamic psychotherapy to palliative care nursing)', in Journal of Advanced Nursing. vol. 25 (2) , pp.238-244
  • (2018) Clinical and professional reasoning in occupational therapy, Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer.
  • Mattingly, C. (1991-11-01) 'What is Clinical Reasoning?', in American Journal of Occupational Therapy. vol. 45 (11) , pp.979-986
  • Fleming, M. H. (1991-11-01) 'Clinical Reasoning in Medicine Compared With Clinical Reasoning in Occupational Therapy', in American Journal of Occupational Therapy. vol. 45 (11) , pp.988-996
  • Wilding, Clare; Whiteford, Gail. (2007-09-27) 'Language, identity and representation: Occupation and occupational therapy in acute settings', in Australian Occupational Therapy Journal. vol. 55 (3) , pp.180-187

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Practical   HS272 Verbal Presentation    100% 

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Lindsey Nicholls, email: lindsey.nicholls@essex.ac.uk.
HSC OT Staff
Hannah Duncan/Jack Hickson E: ipladmin@essex.ac.uk



External examiner

Ms Jeannette Carol Head
Canterbury Christ Church University
Lecturer/Senior Lecturer MSc Health and Wellbeing Programme Director
Available via Moodle
Of 186 hours, 24 (12.9%) hours available to students:
162 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

Disclaimer: The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its Module Directory is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to programmes, modules, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to modules may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery or assessment of modules and other services, to discontinue modules and other services and to merge or combine modules. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications and module directory.

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