Association of Canadian Occupational Therapy University Programs

Committee on University Fieldwork Education (CUFE)

Committee Name or Name: 

CUFE (Committee of University Fieldwork Education) is an ACOTUP committee of managers and coordinators of fieldwork placements for the 14 occupational therapy programs in Canada.  One to three members represent each program based on the composition of the respective fieldwork teams.  Two members act as co-presidents and communicate with the ACOTUP Executive Committee.  The CUFE meets at least twice per year, once during the annual conference, and once by teleconference.

In accordance with its primary mission to promote clinical training within the profession and research, the CUFE's actions are guided by the following themes:

1. Ongoing information-sharing, collaboration and innovation amongst key stakeholders regarding the implementation of quality fieldwork experiences.

2. Facilitate an in-depth review of national fieldwork.

3. Facilitate, coordinate, and implement an ongoing national marketing plan to increase the profile of occupational therapy fieldwork education.

4. Facilitate participation in research related to topics on fieldwork.

On an ongoing basis, members discuss the best strategies to  find fieldwork placement opportunities, help students in their learning, and preceptors/supervisors in their support role, in order to ensure quality clinical training for all future occupational therapists. After one year in use, a survey taken by the majority of programs allows us to conclude that the CFPSS is already a success.

In the last two years, the CUFE has engaged itself in the development and implementation of the Canadian Fieldwork Placement Sharing System (SCPS/CFPSS).  In 2016, the 14 programs created a process  and developed tools  to coordinate inter-university fieldwork requests between programs.  In order to do so, the CUFE wrote a reference document containing the specifics of each program, created a single application form, and sent an information message to partner clinics affected by this change. 

CUFE is also active in research on clinical fieldwork.  Many collective member initiatives have led to a literature and data review regarding clinical fieldwork, the production of papers as well as presentations during the CAOT conference.   This year, during its annual meeting, the CUFE will host for its members a workshop on accommodations for students during their fieldwork.

The  International Fieldwork group is a sub-committee of CUFE  which aims to develop and bring together various projects regarding international fieldwork.

In summary, the CUFE is a dynamic committee composed of engaged and passionate persons, who, by uniting their forces for the service of clinical training, give value to the richness and continued improvement of the fieldwork experience, as much for the students as for those who support them.