Channine Clarke

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Scholarly biography

Dr Channine Clarke is the Head of Practice Learning and Development for the School of Sport and Health Sciences. She is an occupational therapist by profession and teaches on both the BSc (Hons) and the MSc Occupational Therapy (pre-registration) courses and the post-graduate ‘Health Professional as an Educator’ module.  She has worked at the University since 2007.

Channine qualified as an Occupational Therapist in 1998, and has specialised in mental health, practicing within the Specialist and Secure Services for Sussex Partnership NHS Trust. She worked at The College of Occupational Therapists, developing their clinical audit and governance resources in 2001.

She gained her MSc in Occupational Therapy from Exeter University in 2002, exploring service users’ experiences of decision-making in forensic services and completed her PhD on professional identity and occupational therapy students’ experiences of role-emerging placements in 2012. She is an MSc and PhD supervisor with expertise in Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis as a qualitative research methodology.

Channine is a Senior Fellow of the HEA.

Research interests

My pedagogic PhD (2012) explored students’ experiences of role-emerging placements. Key findings were that REP’s can act as strong catalysts for students’ ontological development; they developed deeper insights into who they are becoming as professionals. This led to a professional identity that was of their own making which contrasted with traditional placements where they felt to adopt their educator’s identity. Students identified REP’s as one of their most significant learning experiences which helped prepare them more effectively for practice. These findings are being transferred to all types of placements, and to other disciplines, so that educators can become more proactive in helping students develop their understandings of practice and professional identity. This research underpinned a curriculum development whereby all occupational therapy students at the University of Brighton now do a mandatory placement in a diverse setting.                                                                     

My PhD research has led me to become known internationally as a key contributor within the field of practice learning, in particular the development of diverse placements. My publications are regularly cited and viewed on Research Gate. I have now developed a website for occupational therapists working in diverse settings and run an annual conference to promote this area of practice.

My research continues in the pedagogic domain, including the long term effects of PBL in the workplace, educators’ narratives and diverse placements and practice.

I have supervised many MSc and MRes student projects that have focused on occupational therapy, occupational science, education and practice based learning.

Approach to teaching

I believe passionately in Problem based learning (PBL) as the pedagogic approach for the Occupational Therapy programmes. Underpinned by constructivist, humanistic, socio-cultural learning theories, I actively promote its whole-system application to maximise learning. I am an experienced PBL tutor, facilitating very active small groups to enable students to develop their knowledge and understanding and to resolve real-life practical problems. I work to create an ambiance where I am approachable, student-centered and yet stretching/ supportive, to develop critical reasoning and reflective practice.

 I use a variety of blended learning approaches within PBL e.g. ‘You-Tube’ videos to facilitate discussion, sharing theoretical knowledge via ‘subject expert’ sessions and Camtasia presentations and guiding students’ reading by through digital reading lists. Through a Higher Education Academy Teaching Development Grant, awarded to the Occupational Therapy team, I have been able to develop authentic digital triggers. This E-learning facilitates self-direction, ready for lifelong learning in practice.

I underpin large-group sessions with experiential adult learning theories, balancing theory with activities that have practical application. This learning-by-doing reflects the occupational therapy philosophy and receives positive feedback from the students: “Thank you so much for today….It was perfectly balanced with practical group work. It was a very productive session that has really motivated me” (BSc student).

I have won two Excellence in facilitating Learning awards from the University of Brighton.

Supervisory Interests

Channine is an experienced research supervisor at both Masters and  Doctoral level. She has a particular interest in pedagogic research, including problem-based learning and practice education. She is known internationally for her research and publications on role-emerging placements and diverse practice and is interested in further research in these areas. 

As an occupational therapist, Channine is also interested in understanding the influence of occupations on health and well-being.

Channine is a qualitative researcher, with expertise in Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. 

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Occupational Therapy Students' Experiences of Role-Emerging Placements and their Influence on Professional Identity. , University of Brighton

Award Date: 31 May 2013


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