One of the aims within occupational therapy program is to strengthen our students international identity by exploiting already established international networks of cooperation. Since all students cannot go for an exchange abroad it is important to create possibilities for international contacts at home, so called Internationalization at home, IaH.
This year the topic for international week was evidence based occupational therapy and occupational balance. The working process consists of lectures, workshops and group work. Students from the first year are mixed in groups with students from the third year and they all are working together with the themes for the week.
During the week we had lecturers from universities which we have cooperation with. We had two lecturers from Katholieke Hogelschool VIVES in Belgium. Lieve Debackere lectured about rheumatoid arthritis and occupational therapy and Nele Castelén gave an insight into the area of supported employment for persons with mental problems. Additionally Miguel Brea from Universidad Juan Ray Carlos in Madrid, Spain, had lectures about the importance of home visits in occupational therapy. Jeanette Lindgren from VIA Unviersity in Århus Denmark lectured about occupational balance and how it should be considered when working with different clients groups.
The week ended up with a seminar where the students in different creative ways presented the results of their group work regarding the different themes.
The feedback from the students participating was overall positive. The best parts was the possibility to work together in mixed groups and the possibility to have freedom to plan the seminar presentation in a creative way. Also the topics for the week was interesting. However, the week was demanding and intensive so students also gave good feedback about how the week could be developed to be even better. Some of the ideas was to have more practical workshops parts in the week as a way to grasp the themes a little bit more concrete.
We will absolutely take this valuable feedback with us when we plan the week for next year!
The responsible teachers for the week: Annikki, Heidi and Tove