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Occupational Therapist Assistant & Physiotherapist Assistant

2019/20 | Conestoga College

Program Code: 1111
School of Health & Life Sciences

Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning

This is a companion document to the current Conestoga College Student Guide

Program Handbook Guidelines

The purpose of this handbook is to provide students with program-specific details and other important information. The material in this handbook is accurate at the date of posting, and is applicable for the current academic year. Students will be informed of handbook changes that occur, if any, through college email. Program handbooks are updated yearly and students must check their program handbook for the current edition.

Welcome

To the School of Health & Life Sciences

Your Bridge to Practice

bridge logo 

What does this mean for you?

  • The opportunity to become the professional you aspire to be.
  • The opportunity to learn in specialized settings with real-life scenarios,.
  • The opportunity to acquire skills and knowledge in a unique inter-professional environment.
  • The opportunity to take advantage of state-of-the-art facilities, social and study spaces in our Cowan Health Sciences Centre, as well as other unique learning resources such as the Motz Emergency Service Bays in the Regional of Waterloo Paramedic Services Station, the WeConnect Agora, and the Simulation Centres in the Living Classrooms.
  • The opportunity to become a "preferred graduate", selected by your future employers. 

Top 5 Expectations of You

1. Use MyConestoga to connect to:

  • Your Conestoga Email: (e.g. John Smith, Student Number 1234567, jsmith4567@conestogac.on.ca): This is the official communication channel for everything related to your academic requirements. Communication with faculty and staff should only happen through your Conestoga email account. Communication via other accounts may not be responded to. Check MyConestoga regularly and respond as requested.
  • eConestoga: This is your resource for all course-based program activity and information, as well as course-based communication with the faculty.
  • Student Portal: You will find your final grade information, college tuition invoices, class schedules and absence reporting on this portal.
  • Placement Health Requirements: This service provides you with the requirements to enter into practice settings.

2. Know and plan around your academic schedule

  • Course Schedule: This is a timetable of all your classes for each semester.
  • The Academic Year Critical Dates: Program start and end dates, holidays and deadlines for course add/drop and withdrawal, are located on the college website. Programs with exams outside this time will be notified by the academic area.

3. Be the professional you wish to become:

  • Act respectfully and professionally, as these behaviours are the key to your learning experiences.
  • Present in professional dress and conduct: See Professional Conduct section for professionalism expectations for your program. The college's Student Guide provides you with the Student Rights and Responsibilites at Conestoga.
  • Pre-WIL Health Requirements: Pay attention to the deadlines listed on your documents. Complete the tasks as required; as without these, you will not be able to progress to your work-integrated learning (WIL) and program completion will be in jeopardy. 
  • Social Media: Use responsibly and respectfully. See Standards of Conduct section of the Handbook.

4. Attend classes and labs to enhance your success:

  • Attendance Expectations: Attendance for class, labs and placement/WIL are in place to support your learning and experiences as a future professional. See Attendance and Student Success Strategies section in the Handbook.
  • Absence from Evaluations: Must be reported in the Student Portal before your scheduled evaluation time. See Attendance for Evaluation section in the Handbook.
  • Request for Accommodation for Religious Holidays: Request must be submitted to your Program Coordinator as per course schedule. See Religious Holidays sections in the Handbook.

5. Take responsibility for your academic status:

  • Student Records: For any questions concerning your student record, academic status and/or program withdrawals, please contact your Program Coordinator.
  • Fee Payments: Payment is required to attend classes. Check your Student Portal for invoices.
  • Credit Transfer/Exemptions: Conestoga supports the transferability of academic credits between programs and educational institutions through recognized transfer pathways, articulation agreements and course-to-course equivalences. Please refer to the Student Guide for more information.
  • Student Forms: To access forms, please go to the Student Forms page.
  • Academic Policies and Procedures: Are found under Policies and Procedures. Please review the Rights and Responsibilities website. 
  • Student Affairs Policies and Procedures: Are found on the Student Affairs page.

Top 5 Resources for You

1. Your teaching team 

  • Contact Information: Is posted on eConestoga and in your Handbook (Relationships section).
  • Appointments: Book appointments (in person, by phone, email) to ensure resources are available.
  • Email Inquiries: will be answered within two business days.
  • Urgent help: Program Assistants are available to help you reach a member of the teaching team (contact information in Relationships section of the Handbook).

2. Counselling and services

  • College Counselling: Professional counsellors can help you achieve your educational goals, and provide support related to stress management, anxiety, depression, transition issues, family issues, and other concerns. Counselling is free, voluntary and confidential.  To make an appointment, please refer to the Counselling services website.
  • Good2Talk: Confidential 24-hour phone line for stresses, big and small (1-866-925-5454).
  • Conestoga Security: Provides safety and security services. Refer to the Student Guide for Conestoga's Safety and Security Services and procedures.
  • Student Financial Services: Student Financial Services  provides you with options to finance your post-secondary education. Students in need of emergency financial assistance, please follow this link for more information. 
  • CSI Food Bank: The CSI Food Bank is an emergency food relief program for Conestoga students. Please follow this link.
  • Health Services: These services include a family doctor and a nurse. Please follow this link.
  • Facility Information: Refer to the Student Guide for information on after-hours parking, classroom and computer labs.

3. Accessibility services

  • Students with Documented Disabilities are encouraged to book an appointment with Accessibility Services to access accommodations. Disability-related documentation will be required to book an appointment. Please refer to the Accessibility Services webpage for more information.
  • Adaptive Technology Aids and Special Facilities: Adaptive Aids are arranged through Accessibility Services. Accessible washrooms are located throughout the campus. Contact the Adaptive Technology Lab for more information on adaptive technology aids. 

4. Student study spaces and general supports

Cowan Health Sciences Centre (F-wing)

  • Student Lounge Space on each floor. Outlets and charging stations are located throughout these areas.
  • Student Meeting Room Space:  For more information on availability, please connect with the Interprofessional Resources Office (2F16).
  • Access to computers, photocopier and printers: on the 1st Floor—in the student lounge area , or on the 2nd Floor—at the Customer Service Desk and kiosk area.
  • Open Access Lab, 2nd Floor, 2F18: available on a come and go basis for students in health and pre-health programs. Book with an Open Access Staff. 
  • Tech Bar: Drop by the Tech Bar for one-on-one assistance. Information can be found on the Library Services website.  

5. Services for students

  • ONE Card: This is your official identification card designed to access all on-campus services. Visit the eligibility on this website
  • Library Resource Centre: Located on 2nd Floor B Wing. Visit the Library Resource Centre page for more information.
  • International Education Office: Visit the International Education Office for services available to you.
  • Learning Commons: Academic services and resources, including resources for math, writing, peer tutors and resources for APA. Visit the website or access through MyConestoga.
  • Student Engagement: Get involved and visit the Student Engagement page or connect to MyConestoga for your Co-Curricular Record.
  • Student Financial Services: Your resource to apply for student awards, bursaries, and scholarships. If you are in a financial crisis, please see the Emergency Assistance website for more information. 
  • Bookstore: Your location to buy books, clothing and general supplies (A-wing) .
  • Co-op and Career Advising: Your resource for Co-op placements , summer jobs or future careers. Visit the Co-op and Career Services site for more information.
  • Lockers are available with your tuition. Visit this link to find more information.
  • Information Technology: provides supports and general assistance with college-related needs such as Email, Network accounts, connectivity and wireless printing. Visit the Web IT Service Desk for more information.

Letter to Students

Dear Student,

Congratulations on being accepted into the Occupational Therapist Assistant & Physiotherapist Assistant (OTA & PTA) Program.

This handbook has been prepared to provide information about academic standards, guidelines and processes specific to the OTA & PTA Program. Reading, understanding and following the information in this handbook is an important first step in your success in this program and your chosen profession. The handbook has been compiled with careful consideration for your personal and professional growth during your two years at the College. If you do not understand any of the information in this handbook, please ask the Program Coordinator for an explanation.

Use the table of contents in this handbook as your guide and reference as you proceed through the program. The OTA & PTA Faculty will refer to the handbook often, but the responsibility for knowing the program standards is ultimately yours.

In addition to the OTA & PTA Standards and Procedures Handbook, the Conestoga College Student Guide outlines important policies and procedures for you to follow. The OTA & PTA Standards and Procedures Handbook is a supplement to, but not a replacement for, the Conestoga College Student Guide.

We are here to help you have a successful two years. Should you experience difficulty or need assistance in any area of your studies, please talk to your Program Coordinator, or come to my office to seek direction to support your success in the program.

All the very best to you in your studies.

 

Sincerely,


Paul Finch, Chair, Health Sciences

Dianna Fong-Lee, OTA & PTA Program Coordinator

Program Overview

Program Description

This program is designed to prepare students with the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to perform their role as occupational therapist assistants and physiotherapist assistants (OTAs & PTAs). OTAs & PTAs may perform functions common to both occupational therapy and physiotherapy practice settings and are primarily responsible for implementation of treatment plans to promote physical functioning or to enhance participation in activities of daily living for individuals with a wide range of health conditions. 

The program integrates classroom theory with hands-on practical skills and enhances critical thinking, decision making and leadership skills, through the use of diverse learning activities such as small group case-based learning, simulation, applied learning projects and e-learning. Exposure to clinical experiences across a variety of clinical settings is integrated into the curriculum to ensure students have an opportunity to apply skills in a supervised setting Program Philosophy.

The fundamental responsibility of a student in health sciences is to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to be a competent caregiver upon graduation. As a student is preparing to become a health care professional, it is imperative that your behaviours and attitudes reflect the professional and ethical standards that are embraced by your chosen profession. We believe that a value system incorporating high moral and ethical integrity is of vital importance, and regard the absence of such values as critical and dangerous to practice. We believe integrity to be a quality that includes sound moral principles, sincerity, honesty and self-respect.

It is expected that all OTA & PTA students, Faculty, and administration will function within the Standards of Conduct and Professional Practice for the OTA & PTA Program at Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning.

Program Outcomes

Successful completion of the program will enable the graduate to:

  1. Communicate appropriately and effectively, through verbal, nonverbal, written and electronic means, with clients, their families, and significant others, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, other health care providers, and others within the role of the therapist assistant.
  2. Participate in the effective functioning of interprofessional health care teams within the role of the therapist assistant.
  3. Establish, develop, maintain, and bring closure to client-centred, therapeutic relationships within the role of the therapist assistant.
  4. Ensure personal safety and contribute to the safety of others within the role of the therapist assistant.
  5. Practice competently in a legal, ethical, and professional manner within the role of the therapist assistant.
  6. Document and complete client records in a thorough, objective, accurate, and nonjudgmental manner within the role of the therapist assistant.
  7. Develop and implement strategies to maintain, improve, and promote professional competence within the role of the therapist assistant.
  8. Perform effectively within the roles and responsibilities of the therapist assistant through the application of relevant knowledge of health sciences, psychosociological sciences, and health conditions.
  9. Perform functions common to both physiotherapy and occupational therapy practices that contribute to the development, implementation and modification of intervention/treatment plans, under the supervision of and in collaboration with the occupational therapist and/or physiotherapist.
  10. Enable the client's occupational performance by contributing to the development, implementation, and modification of intervention/treatment plans, under the supervision of and in collaboration with the occupational therapist.
  11. Enable the client's optimal physical function by contributing to the development, implementation, and modification of intervention/treatment plans, under the supervision of and in collaboration with the physiotherapist.

Program Summary Design - 2019 / 2020

Level Course Code Course Name Hours
1 COMM1085 College Reading & Writing Skills 42
1 OHS1320 Safety in the Workplace 14
1 OPA1000 Anatomy of Movement 42
1 OPA1010 Orientation to Rehabilitation 56
1 OPA1020 Fundamentals of Patient Care 42
1 ANAT1070 Essentials of Anatomy And Physiology 42
1 OTAE1007 Elective: General Education (Minimum of 42 hours) 42
1       Any course in the subject of General Education Eligibility (2015 onward)  
    Total Credit Hours for this level: 280
2 OPA1200 Interpersonal Skills and Therapeutic Relationships 42
2 FPLT1320 Field Placement I 75
2 OPA1225 Practice Skills - Foundations of Occupational Therapy 56
2 OPA1235 Practice Skills - Modalities 56
2 OPA1245 Practice Skills - Exercise 56
2 OPA1255 Health Conditions I 42
2 OTAE1006 Elective: General Education (Minimum of 42 hours) 42
2       Any course in the subject of General Education Eligibility (2015 onward)  
    Total Credit Hours for this level: 369
3 FPLT2230 Field Placement II  75
3 OPA2115 Advanced Practice Skills for OTA 56
3 OPA2125 Advanced Practice Skills for PTA 56
3 OPA2130 Communication Disorders 28
3 OPA2140 Practice Skills - Mental Health Concepts 42
3 OPA2155 Health Conditions II 42
3 OTAE1005 Elective: General Education (Minimum of 42 hours) 42
3       Any course in the subject of General Education Eligibility (2015 onward)  
    Total Credit Hours for this level: 341
4 FPLT2240 Field Placement III 450
4 OPA2210 Professional and Interprofessional Issues 42
    Total Credit Hours for this level: 492
    Total Credit Hours for Program: 1482

The program adheres to the program standards set by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) to ensure that graduates will be provided with the entry-level skills they need to become successfully employed. Electronic versions of these published standards can be found on Occupational Therapist Assistant and Physiotherapist Assistant Program Standard .

Program Design for your Cohort

Students can find their program design on the student Portal by following the steps below:

  1. Log in to Student Portal
  2. Click on 'My Courses' tab
  3. Select 'View Progress Report' button

Courses are listed by level/semester. Students can also view courses for the most current program design for this academic year on the Conestoga College website. To find these courses, students need to scroll down the page to the 'Program Courses'.

Pathways and Further Post-secondary Education Opportunities

Conestoga pathways enable students to build on their academic achievements in order to earn a degree or additional credential. Pathways are formed through agreements between Conestoga programs or partner institutions. View the transfer agreement opportunities for this program.

There are a number of different opportunities available to students who want to continue studying at Conestoga. Whether you wish to transfer to another program or apply to a new program after graduation, Conestoga has established pathways to help you meet your goals. Conestoga Pathways information is available on Conestoga's website.

Employment Opportunities

Upon successful completion of the program, graduates are prepared to work in a variety of settings such as hospitals, retirement homes or long-term care facilities, private rehabilitation clinics and other health-related community agencies. Graduates will perform specific tasks related to individuals or group treatment programs as part of the interprofessional team focused on the rehabilitation needs of the patient / client.

For more details on related occupations, job market information and career opportunities; see the Government of Canada website.

Relationships

Communication and Contact Information

Faculty Commitment to Success

To ensure your success in the program, it is important you become familiar with those who are here to support and help you along your way. If you have any day-to-day questions about your program, courses or school work in general do not hesitate to contact your Program Coordinator, Faculty or Chair.

Faculty Availability

Faculty offices are located in the main building (4B area) and students are welcome to see individual Faculty to discuss course work, assignments, or any other issues. During the first several days during the start of the semester Faculty will explain how you can contact them outside of class time. Individual Faculty timetables may be posted. As Faculty have diverse teaching schedules, it is best to make an appointment to ensure that they are available. Faculty members will endeavour to reply to email messages within 48 business hours.

Telephones for internal use are located outside the entry to Faculty workspaces. Beside this phone will be a Faculty directory with extension numbers only. If you have an appointment with a Faculty member, please call to confirm that you have arrived. Please do not enter until you have confirmation that the Faculty member is available to meet with you. If you do not have an appointment, please call the person you wish to meet with to confirm that they are present and can see you. If you do not reach them, please leave a message. In an interest of respecting the work environment for everyone in this area, please do not wander into Faculty workspaces looking for them.

Contact Information and Availability

Dianna Fong-Lee
OTA & PTA Program Coordinator
Dfong-lee@conestogac.on.ca
519-748-5220 Ext. 3934

Paul Finch
Chair, Health Sciences
pfinch@conestogac.on.ca
519-748-5220 Ext. 2395

Wendy Dunbar
Program Assistant
wdunbar@conestogac.on.ca
519-748-5220 Ext. 2454

Contacting Program Staff

When contacting program staff outside of class time it is advisable to use email or telephone. Your message should include the following information:

  • first and last name
  • course and level
  • brief description of reason for contact
  • telephone number where you can be reached

Student Email

All students are supplied with a College email address. Only Use the College email address when communicating with Faculty. Non-College email addresses (e.g. Gmail or Hotmail) are problematic. Students are expected to check their College email regularly as most official communication will be via this method.

Student Engagement

Student Concerns/Issues

If concerns or issues arise during your learning experience, or main goal is to collaborate with students, faculty and staff to resolve situations of concerns quickly and to learn and improve situations.

To achieve this goal, we work with an effective problem-solving strategy:

1. When a situation of concern arises, inform those involved in timely manner.

2. Please see the Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy in the Student Guide for further details on informal and formal procedures for the resolution of concerns and issues.

3. Issues and concerns related to a placement site, or its employees should first be brought to the attention of the Conestoga Field Placement Supervisor or Program Coordinator, subject to the additional procedures outlined in the sections on "Professionalism" and "Concerns Regarding Safety or Care/Service for Clients during a Field Placement" of your handbook. 

Student Representation

Conestoga Students Inc. (CSI) and Conestoga College agree that a student has the right to invite a member of CSI to a student/faculty meeting, provided that 24 hours advance notice is given to faculty. This advance notice will ensure that all parties will have an opportunity to adequately prepare for the meeting.

PAC (Program Advisory Committee)

Each program at Conestoga has a Program Advisory Committee (PAC), which consists of industry and academic representatives, as well as current students. The PAC meets several times a year to discuss the future priorities of  that industry and any adjustments that can be made to keep the college program.

At the beginning of each academic year, the Program Coordinator will invite students to volunteer on the PAC. Student attendees are important members of the PAC and are expected to be present at the meetings, and prepare and submit a report based on guidelines provided by the Program Coordinator.

WIHSC (Waterloo Interprofessional Health & Community Student Collaborative)

Conestoga College offers many unique and exciting opportunities for personal and professional growth. Conestoga hosts exciting extra-curricular opportunities that add to the culture of the college. WIHSC (Waterloo Interprofessional Health & Community Student Collaborative) is one such group whose members strive to 'learn with, from, and about' each other.

Membership is comprised of students enrolled in health, community, and social sciences programs. Some of the most popular initiatives that this group regularly engages in are interactive simulation exercises, peer-mentoring, guest speakers, paper case studies and monthly meetings. To find out more about this opportunity, please visit the WIHSC website. 

Student Feedback

Student feedback is an essential component of our continuous improvement process. Our opportunities for student feedback include:

Key Performance Indicators

All college programs in the province are evaluated using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) through the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU). This survey is conducted each academic year in select classes. Strategic goals to improve the programs are developed from these results. This data and other data specific to the campus and the program/school are collected so that Conestoga College can continually improve quality.

Student Appraisal of Teaching

The Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT) allows direct feedback from students on teaching for a particular course. Completion of the SAT forms give teachers and academic managers valuable information to use for the improvement of teaching at Conestoga.

The SAT process has two components: Quick-SAT and Full-SAT. The Quick-SAT is 5 questions, occurs during week 5 of classes and provides early feedback to faculty about the student experience within their classroom. The Full-SAT is 44 questions and occurs late in the semester; a summary of the results goes to the academic manager to be shared with the faculty member. Typically about one-quarter of the faculty is appraised per term. All full-time faculty have a SAT review at least once every two years. Part-time faculty may be reviewed more frequently. Continuing Education students may have an opportunity to complete a SAT form during their Continuing Education course.


Class Cancellations

Class cancellations due to faculty absence

Class cancellations due to faculty absences will be posted on the Student Portal.

Faculty may also elect to post any absences on eConestoga. 

Class cancellations due to inclement weather

College closure due to inclement weather will be announced on local radio stations and posted on the College's website. A message will be recorded on the campus switchboard after office hours.

Personal notifications of class cancellations

Students have the option of receiving special emails or SMS text messages notifying them of class cancellations due to faculty absences. To receive these notifications, students must subscribe to this service. Please visit the Student Portal, and select notifications. 

Standards of Conduct and Professional Practice

Program Standards for Professional Practice

Conestoga College School of Health & Life Sciences has been given the mandate to prepare OTA & PTAs. The Province of Ontario expects the college to graduate OTA & PTAs who meet the standards that have been established for the profession. Conestoga College Student Guide, Standards of Conduct stipulates college expectations that are to be applied to all programs.

OTA & PTAs function in an independent and inter-dependent environment. The majority of the time, the practitioner's involvement at the care recipient's side is of an independent nature, when direct supervision of an action is not possible. There is an implicit trust by the client that the OTA & PTA is an ethical, moral and competent person.

As a student of Conestoga College you are a member of the College community and as such you have received a Conestoga Student Guide that includes Student Rights and Student Responsibilities. It is essential that you review this section and familiarize yourself with these responsibilities. It is expected that your conduct as a student will be reflective of the responsibilities listed. If you have any questions regarding any of them, please contact your Program Coordinator.

It is the expectation of all students, Faculty, and administration of Conestoga College that we, as health care practitioners, will incorporate and function within the guidelines of these professional standards of ethical practice.

In addition to all Student Responsibilities found in the Conestoga Student Guide, OTA & PTA students have the following obligations:

  • complete the learning objectives, tests, assignments and all other forms of student work, with honesty and professional integrity;
  • attend class and field placement as scheduled;
  • actively engage in classroom learning processes;
  • demonstrate ethical and professional behaviour while attending class, and field placement;
  • protect the integrity of the program and the college;
  • maintain the confidentiality of all classroom and field placement experiences, including use of any form of social media, and seek clarification from faculty/administration when unsure of any of these standards.

As an OTA & PTA student, please note that all expectations referred to above and found in the Conestoga Student Guide apply equally to clinical placement experiences and to all work/activities related to clinical placement experiences as they relate to patients, families, and staff, their person and/or property. 

Academic Offences and Plagiarism

Academic honesty is expected and required of all Conestoga students. It is critical that you familiarize yourself with the Academic Offences Policy found in the Conestoga Student Guide. The Academic Offences Policy provides a detailed description of the following:

  • Scope of academic integrity,
  • What academic integrity means,
  • What types of behaviours constitute a breach of academic integrity, and
  • The penalties associated with breaching academic integrity.

Please speak with a faculty member or your Program Coordinator if you have any further questions after reviewing the policy. Please note that maintaining academic integrity is very important, and that it is your responsibility to know the Academic Offences Policy .

Below are a few examples to help you avoid breaching academic integrity.

  • Make sure that you recognize information that requires referencing.
  • Whenever you refer to material from another source, whether book, journal article, video, newspaper, or electronic publications, you must acknowledge your source using proper citations and references. Please visit the Conestoga Learning Commons for assistance with the formatting and referencing.
  • If you work collaboratively with others on an assignment, make sure that you do not copy words or ideas from others intentionally or by accident.
  • Make sure that you read the Academic Offences Policy located in the Conestoga Student Guide, and that you fully understand it. The policy describes additional behaviours that represent a breach of academic integrity.
  • Information can be found on the Academic Integrity website

Copyright – What you need to know

Photocopying and scanning at Conestoga College are governed by the Copyright Act, an agreement with Access Copyright, and the Association of Canadian Community Colleges' Fair Dealing Policy.

Under the terms of Conestoga's Access Copyright, you can photocopy or scan the following:

  • Up to 10% of most published works.
  • One chapter that is greater than 10%, but no more than 20% of the book.
  • One article, short story, play, poem or essay from a book, magazine or journal issue containing other works.
  • One newspaper article or page.
  • One entry from an encyclopedia, dictionary, annotated bibliography or similar reference work.
  • One drawing, sculpture, painting, print, architectural work of art or work of artistic craftsmanship from a larger volume containing other works.

Cumulative Copying

Cumulative copying consists of copy more than 10% over time. This is not allowed. The copy limits apply to an entire academic year, so once you reach the limit for an item, you can not copy from this source anymore until the next academic year.

You cannot copy or scan the following:

  • Workbooks or study guides that are intended for one-time use.
  • Instruction manuals.
  • Sheet music and original artistic works including photographs or prints.
  • Advertisements.
  • Business cases.
  • Full textbooks.
  • Any of the items on the Access Copyright Exclusions list.

You can find this information and more on the Copyright for Students web page.

Safe Practice

Safe practice is a hallmark of professional practice. It is an expectation of everyone who aims to become a professional.

There are a number of policies and procedures associated with practical training in your program that have been developed to ensure your safety and the safety (physical and emotional) of those around you. These policies will be reviewed during your program.

The following basic procedures are outlined for your attention:

  1. Your personal safety begins with the use of professional attire and foot wear, and with your attention to the health and safety expectations that may be identified throughout the college. 
  2. Help us create a safe and pleasant environment by wiping up spills, ensuring lap top cords do not snake across walking areas, and by reporting equipment or facility problems when you notice these.
  3. Specific dress codes, personal protective equipment and specific codes of behavioral conduct may apply to certain programs; Failure to follow these may result in your inability to participate in a lab, class or experiential learning activity.  
  4. Safe work practices are to be followed during all training. Follow the direction of your instructors. If you have a placement, your instructor will ensure that you are aware of safe practices and safety precautions and procedures. This includes problem-solving by the instructor and Program Coordinator with the college's Occupational Health & Safety Department as required.
  5. All safety-related accidents, incidents, and near misses must be reported to the Instructor-in-Charge immediately.

Student Protection Acknowledgement

A Student Protection Acknowledgement confirmation pop-up will appear when a student logs into the Student Portal on a yearly basis. This will direct students to policies and procedures relevant to their academic responsibilities. All Conestoga College wide academic policies and procedures are listed on the college website under "About Conestoga", "Policies and Procedures". 

Students are advised to review and comply with all policies and procedures, including the following:         

  • Academic Credential Procedure 
  • Academic Dispute and Resolution Policy & Procedure
  • Academic Offences Policy & Procedure 
  • Academic Recognition Policy
  • Clearance of Academic Deficiency Policy & Procedure
  • Co-operative Education Policy
  • Discontinuance Policy & Procedure
  • Evaluation of Student Learning Policy & Procedure
  • Grading Procedure
  • Graduation Requirements and Convocation Procedure
  • Program Withdrawal and Refund Procedure
  • Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy & Procedure
  • Student Feedback Policy
  • Student Fees Policy & Student Fee Invoicing and Payment Procedure

Students must follow all of the policies and procedures for Conestoga College and it is expected that faculty will accept, fulfil and enforce these standards.

 

Conestoga 101

The Student Engagement Department is here to help you transition to the Conestoga College experience, connect with your community, and build your skills.
Start your college experience by completing Conestoga 101 (CON0101) on eConestoga, a mandatory course for all new full-time students that will take you approximately one hour to complete. CON0101 provides an overview of the supports, services, and opportunities available to you throughout your time at Conestoga. Make sure you complete it early on in the term, as it contains valuable information that will help you transition to Conestoga.

Professional Conduct - Use of social media and cell phones

To support a respectful learning environment both in the classroom and in field placements, the use of cell phones and laptops for social networking should only occur during break times, before and after class, and during formal break time in field placement.

Laptops and other forms of technology may be used in the classroom when the use pertains to the content and processes of learning facilitated by the faculty or instructor. If your technology use is disruptive to the class, we may ask you to leave the class until such time that you are able to re-engage in the learning process. 

Social Media Policy

  • As a student and future professional, it is essential to maintain your professional boundaries in all communication, including social media.

Important for you to know is that:

According to the Ontario College of Teachers (2011), "Electronic messages are not anonymous. They can be tracked, misdirected, manipulated and live forever on the internet." The same organization also indicates "Online identities and actions are visible to the public and can result in serious repercussions or embarrassment."Many types of social media encourage instantaneous, casual dialogue. It is important to remember that even an innocent comments may be easily misunderstood.

  • Assume that information you post or send can be accessed or altered by anyone.
  • Consider whether any posting may reflect poorly on you, your school, or your profession.
  • Avoid online criticism of other students, colleagues, faculty or field placements.
  • Avoid impulsive, inappropriate or heated comments.
  • Pictures should not be taken, posted to social media sites or shared without the expressed permission of all individuals involved.
  • Make sure your on-line name and email reflect professionalism.
Maintain privacy of all care and service activities when in practical work experiences:
  • Do not take or post any pictures while on placement or involved in lab activities.
  • Maintain client-provider relationships and boundaries. The addition of a client to a 'friendship" status online is unacceptable.

Ontario College of Teachers. (2011). Professional Advisory-Use of Electronic Communication and Social Media. Retrieved May 12, 2015, from https://www.oct.ca/resources/advisories/use-of-electronic-communication-and-social-media

Cell Phone Policy

Students should respect their instructors, faculty and staff by not using their cell phones for personal use during class time.

Students can not bring their cell phone or technology device(s) into a test or examination, unless required for the examination and approved by the faculty. 

In the event of an urgent need to keep your cell phone with you during a test, please speak to your faculty as soon as you enter the examination room. 

Cowan Health Sciences Centre

Clinical Lab Dress Code

The Clinical Lab areas of the Cowan Health Sciences Centre (CHSC) are comprised of clinical bed labs, the Cross Centre for Simulation Learning and the Open Access Lab. In order to maintain these as safe professional spaces, appropriate dress must be worn. The purpose of this dress code is to insure the safety of the student, Faculty and staff and also to prepare them for the clinical environment. The dress code is designed to comply with infection control procedures, workplace health and safety considerations and professional safety.

All lab areas are covered by this policy for all programs in the School of Health & Life Sciences. Non-compliance with this dress code will result in the person being asked to leave the lab area. (If during scheduled lab time, this may result in a missed lab).

Dress Requirements:

  • Clinical dress as set forth by the program (should be neat and clean). For courses with a lab component, students must wear Program-approved clothing (OTA & PTA golf shirt and approved shorts or pants) for lab safety and accessibility and these may be purchased from the Conestoga College Bookstore. For practical lab exams, clothing is as expected in clinical placement. Students are required to wear the OTA & PTA golf shirt and nametag, and 'casual dress' pants.

Note: Dress requirements apply not only to lab or examination areas but also while working in the Centre for Simulation Learning. Students should be aware of the additional policies: 

  • Closed toe, closed heel shoes.
  • Hair tied back, if hair is long, then it must be up.
  • No rings, necklaces or dangling earrings.
    • A pair of studs may be worn; one in each ear
    • A plain wedding band may be worn
  • Nails should be kept neat and short; artificial nails and nail polish are not allowed.
  • No hats to be worn (exceptions related to the Human Rights Code).
  • No denim or sweat pants.
  • Nametags must be worn.
  • Scented products (perfume, scented aftershave, hair products) must not be worn.
  • Personal hygiene products such as deodorant should be used but unscented.
  • No gum chewing is permitted in clinical, lab or community settings.

Requests for accommodations of this policy (e.g. for religious or disability reasons) will be considered within the framework of the Conestoga College Policy or Human Rights.

Faculty and/or Clinical Preceptors reserve the right to ask students who do not conform to the uniform policy to leave the clinical, community or lab setting. Time missed must then be made up by the student. Please be reminded that the labs are a clinical setting and, as such, the requirement for proper hand washing/hygiene is in effect.

Clinical Lab Areas: 1F26, 2F06, 2F10, 3F35, 3F36, 3F38, 3F40, 3F45, 3F46

Open Access Lab: 2F18

Cross Centre for Simulation Learning: 2F30, 2F50, 2F34, 2F46

Guidelines for Student Use of Classrooms and Labs

  1. No food is allowed in classrooms or labs.
  2. Only drinks with spill-proof lids are allowed in classrooms (i.e. not paper coffee cups).
  3. No drinks are allowed in the lab areas of combined classroom/labs.
  4. The materials from the lab must remain in the room.
  5. Students are expected to show respect for the environment and equipment.
  6. The labs are intended for educational, not recreational use.
  7. The rooms are to be left clean after each class (i.e. equipment put away, chairs, tables and plinths returned to their proper positions, the sink and tables must be cleaned if needed, etc.).
  8. Permission must be given by Faculty to utilize any of the materials or equipment. Students may book access to lab areas for practice when the room is not in use.
  9. Lab areas are shared spaces for several programs. Be respectful of other users.

Procedure for Booking Open Access Space during Regular Hours, After-Hours and over the Weekend

Please refer to the booking procedure posted in the School Shell

Lack of Compliance to Health and Safety Regulations

Any person who fails to comply with Health and Safety regulations or handles equipment in an unsafe or abusive manner will be asked to leave the Fitness and Rehabilitation Lab. Faculty have the authority to ask any person who fails to comply with Health and Safety regulations or handles equipment in an unsafe or abusive manner to leave the Fitness and Rehabilitation Lab. You will be asked to sign a form to indicate your commitment to abide by the expectations outlined herein.

Occupational Health & Safety Office General Information

This department is available to students, staff and Faculty.

The objectives of this department are to:

  • Monitor the health status of personnel and maintain health records.
  • Provide health teaching and health counselling.
  • Promote a healthy and safe work and study environment, thus reducing absenteeism.
Each student must have Health Insurance coverage and/or an Ontario Health Card.

Attendance and Student Success Strategies

In view of the learning complexities of the OTA&PTA Program, it is imperative that students attend all classes and clinical placement as scheduled. Students who are absent from class or field placement place themselves in academic jeopardy in meeting the learning objectives as stipulated by the program.

If extenuating circumstances require students to miss a class, please note that it is the student's responsibility to share this information with faculty and to acquire any missed information.

In order to be respectful to both fellow students and to faculty, students are expected to arrive on time for class and field placement.

Test Procedures

Once a test begins, students may not leave the test room for 30 minutes. If they finish a test before that time, they may review their answers but are expected to sit QUIETLY and not disturb others. Once students leave the room they may only re-enter when invited back by Faculty.

Any student found cheating during the course of an examination/test will be addressed according to procedures found in Conestoga Student Guide.

Faculty is responsible to advise as to the material permitted in the testing room. Personal items and learning materials will be left in an area identified by the faculty.

Faculty will advise as to the seating arrangements of students.

During open book tests, students must bring their own course materials (books, notes, Learning Packages etc.) for individual use only. Students may not share any of these materials. Electronic devices, such as, iPod, text messaging, cell phones, translators, will not be permitted.

Importance of Test and Presentation Dates

Test and assignment dates are scheduled at the beginning of each semester. Unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the College, the Program, or the Faculty may require changes to the course schedule. If this occurs, students will be notified.

Students are required to write all tests during the scheduled in-class test times. Students who make personal commitments that conflict with meeting test and assignment deadlines do so at their own risk. There will be no special arrangements made for students with personal conflicts (e.g. work, family commitments or vacation plans). Students who wish to reschedule a test or presentation because of a religious holiday are required to discuss the situation with faculty at the beginning of the semester.

Academic accommodations are provided to students with documented disabilities through the Accessibility Services Office.

Assignment Policies

The expectation of health Professionals is that they complete assigned work competently and in the allocated time, or if they anticipate difficulty in meeting deadlines they take responsibility for notifying the appropriate person(s).

The following regulations regarding assignments reflect this belief and are designed to ensure that graduates of the programs meet these expectations.

  • Students are required to submit all written assignments on or before the date and time specified.
  • Students should anticipate problems that will necessitate an extension of time.
  • If an extension of time is required, students may make this request ahead of the assignment due date to the appropriate course instructor. NOTE: An extension of time may be given at the discretion of faculty. An extension will not be given if the request is made on the day the assignment is due.
  • Late assignments will be accepted but there will be a 10% penalty for each day late the assignment is late, up to three days. Assignments that are more than three days late will receive a grade of zero.
  • All assignments must be completed. A student will not receive a passing final grade until all assignments have been submitted even if the late penalty reduces the points possible to zero. All late submissions must be turned in by noon on Friday before the week of final exams.
  • Assignments are to be submitted according to the submission guidelines as outlined by the professor. Assignments may be submitted through eConestoga or as a hard copy, and must be submitted in the formats requested by the professor.

Submitting Assignments Outside of Class Time

While assignments should be submitted in class or via eConestoga on the day they are due, if circumstances require that they be submitted outside a scheduled class, the following procedure should be followed:

  1. Provide an electronic copy of your assignment to the faculty as per faculty instructions. 
  2. Contact Faculty by email to alert them that you have submitted your assignment. 
  3. Bring the hard copy of the assignment with an attached copy of the email you sent to the faculty member to the 4B reception area and submit into the Assignment Drop Box by the Receptionist desk.

Working Together on Group Assignments

Students will often work with their fellow peers on various group assignments/projects throughout the program. Each group member is responsible for ensuring that they have an equal role in the group. All students in the group should review the completed work before it is submitted/presented. When issues/concerns arise during the group process, it is the responsibility of group members to contact the faculty member for assistance prior to due date. 

Religious Holidays

Students are permitted by Conestoga policy to be absent from class to observe a recognized religious holiday. Any student who is unable to attend classes or participate in an examination, study, or work requirement on some particular day(s) because of religious beliefs will be given the opportunity to make up the work that was missed or complete alternate work/examinations subject to timely notification.

Conestoga recognizes all religious holidays as defined by the College Employer Council.

It is your responsibility to:

  • Plan ahead and be aware of the dates of all examinations and other course obligations;
  • Advise the faculty member that you will be seeking accommodation to observe a recognized religious holiday. You will also make a request in writing to your Program Coordinator within the first three weeks of the semester and prior to the date of assessment that falls on the religious holiday. Exceptions based on extenuating circumstances must be approved by the Program Chair.

 

Use of Time between Classes

Students are encouraged to use breaks between classes for personal needs (food, washroom, phone calls, emails etc.) but also for group work, studying, connecting with Faculty, field placement supervisors, etc.

Faculty Returning Tests & Assignments

In order to support student success, students will be given continual feedback on their progress throughout the semester. Individual Faculty will inform students in class how/when tests and assignments and/or marks on them will be returned. Please note that some tests will be returned to students and some may be retained by Faculty. Under no circumstances are students to enter the offices of Faculty or look through papers on a desk without a Faculty present. Students who have questions about tests/assignments/grades should follow the process outlined below:

  • At least 24 hours after receiving the mark and within 7 days, write a note to the Faculty, indicating the area(s) of clarification required
  • Initiate a meeting with the Faculty to discuss the matter
  • Bring pertinent information (assignment, mark sheet, etc.) to the appointment

General Guidelines for Quality of Written Work

In the OTA & PTA program, both in courses and clinical placement, there are continuous requirements for written work in a variety of formats (papers, assignments, forms and plans, handouts, etc.). It is expected that all students will meet the standard of English required within the profession. Faculty, clinical placement supervisors and cooperating instructors will identify students who are having difficulty in this area and will approach them to discuss the need for improvement. Students may be referred to the Learning Commons to help them improve the quality of their written work.

General Guidelines for Submitting Written Work

For specific course requirements, refer to the Course Schedule and Evaluation Methods information provided in course outlines. If you are not clear about course requirements, discuss this individual Faculty. Students are required to use spell-check and grammar-check to assist with the editing of written work. The Learning Centre will be an invaluable resource to students who require assistance in organizing and writing an assignment with correct spelling and grammar.

Unless otherwise indicated by instructors, generally, assignments should be:

  • Typewritten
  • Double spaced and one sided
  • Submitted using font size of 12 CPI and standard 1" margins
  • Written in a grammatically correct manner (use spell and grammar check)
  • Handed in securely fastened with a cover page indicating the course name, Faculty's name, student's name, section and date submitted
  • Handed in at the beginning of class on the designated due date in class, unless otherwise indicated by instructor
  • Formatted using APA@Conestoga
NOTE : Faculty does not assume responsibility for assignments not given directly to them in hard copy at the beginning of the relevant class course. Students should avoid handing in assignments outside the regularly scheduled class time and should make every effort to hand assignments in to the instructor in person.

Academic Progress Through the Program

Academic Standing and Promotion

The Conestoga Student Guide is your first source for information concerning academic regulations, policies and procedures. The Conestoga Student Guide is available on the college website and by visiting the "Student Guide" tab in your Student Portal.

In addition to the Academic Regulations found in the Conestoga Student Guide, the following apply to the OTA & PTA Program:

Promotion Standards

Promotion is the advancement from one portion of the program to another after a process of evaluation, which ensures that specific program objectives have been met. Promotion is based on academic achievement, satisfactory clinical performance, professionalism and health status. Promotion review occurs at regular intervals based on curriculum design. Requirements of each must be met prior to graduation.

Promotion standards are minimally accepted performance expectations that must be met as the student progresses through the program.

These standards set the basis for the evaluation of student performance and provide the program with an on-going decision-making process for assessing whether the student has met the expected academic performance, and is permitted to advance to the next academic level of the program.

In this competency-based curriculum model, the student must:

  1. Demonstrate a theoretical base for practice, and the ability to transfer and apply theory to practice in a variety of situations.
  2. Master the required skills to care for the client.

Promotion Standards have been developed in both theory and practice that evaluate the competency of the learner.

Theoretical Standards
Standard Rationale

STANDARD 1

The student is expected to complete all course requirements.

The Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities (MTCU) set provincial educational standards that must be met by the OTA & PTA Program. Course requirements are completed in accordance with these provincial standards.

STANDARD 2

The student must demonstrate a minimum level of theoretical competency in meeting course and program requirements by achieving a minimum of 65% on all final course grades for vocational courses

Graduates must have a sound theoretical knowledge base to practice in the discipline. Therefore, students must achieve a 65% and above for all vocational courses to pass a course.

STANDARD 3

The student must have completed all courses (including liberal studies courses) of all previous semesters in order to be promoted into Clinical Placement III (semester iv)

Clinical Placement III provides students with the opportunity to integrate and consolidate all learning from previous semesters/courses in meeting the standards of practice.
Practice Standards
Standard Rationale

STANDARD 4

The student is expected to apply theory and skills to practice in a safe competent manner in accordance with the level identified in the learning outcomes.

The OTA & PTA Program is based on a competency-based model where minimum theoretical knowledge and practice skills must be demonstrated. The program curriculum is designed with learning outcomes that are levelled in performance expectations as students advance through the program.

STANDARD 5

The student's progress in practice will be documented in formative and summative evaluation.

Student achievement records are maintained as the student progresses through the program. The formative evaluations will provide the student with performance assessments of strengths and weaknesses. The Summative Record at the end of the course provides the student with an overview of performance strengths and weaknesses and goals set directing future expectations.

STANDARD 6

The grade for practice experiences is "pass" or "fail".

An assessment of pass indicates that the student has met the learning outcomes.

STANDARD 7

Regular attendance is mandatory to achieve a "pass" in practice experiences.

Absenteeism places the student in academic jeopardy because teachers/clinical preceptors are unable to assess and evaluate performance when students are not in attendance for practice experiences.

STANDARD 8

The student is expected to maintain mental and physical health throughout the program, consistent with OTA & PTA practice requirements.

The Care Provider must be in good mental and physical health in order to care for others. Poor mental and physical health leads to absenteeism and results in disruption to the learning process.

Achievement

Students must attain a minimum 65% passing grade in all OTA & PTA courses, and achieve a Pass, when the course is graded as Pass / Fail.

Reason for Student Progress Being Reviewed by Promotion Committee

Students who fail to meet program standards will be reviewed by the Promotion Committee.

Reasons for presentation at Promotion Committee Meetings include:

  • Failure of a theory course and/or practice course.
  • Patterns of absence from class or practice, which may affect achieving program standards.
  • Excessive accumulated absences from class, lab or practice.
  • Failure to follow through on previous Promotion Committee recommendations.

A student who has not met the standards will not be promoted to the next level of the program. The Promotions Committee may decide such a student should be discontinued or may require the student to complete one or more of the following, or an alternative as deemed appropriate:

  • Complete supplemental requirements for course failures (see criteria for writing of supplemental examinations). Following successful completion of supplemental work, the highest course grade that can be achieved is 65%.
  • Follow through with counselling (academic and/or personal).
  • Follow through with health measures as recommended.
  • Complete makeup work for missed learning experiences.  Total time lost will be assessed on an individual basis. Additional time may be required to complete program objectives.
  • Complete the requirements of Probationary Status.
  • Complete compulsory practice remedial assignments.
Promotion and Supplemental Procedure
PERSON ACTION
Promotion Committee Grants or denies permission for supplemental work.
Program Coordinator/Faculty

Meets with the student.

Completes the supplemental form with criteria.

Reviews the recommendation of the Promotion Committee.

Student

Takes completed Supplemental Form and payment to Registrar's Office.

Brings pink copy of Supplemental Form for admission to supplemental as well as photo ID.

Program Chair/Program Coordinator/Instructor

Sets date for supplemental examination.

Notifies student and Registrar's Office of result of supplemental work.

FAILURE TO SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETE REQUIREMENTS OF THE PROMOTION COMMITTEE WILL RESULT IN DISCONTINUANCE FROM THE PROGRAM.

Supplemental Work

A student that is unsuccessful in a course may be granted the opportunity to complete supplemental requirements.

Criteria for Eligibility to Write Supplemental Examinations

  1. No more than two supplementals throughout the program and no more than one supplemental per course will be offered.
  2. For the purposes of determining supplemental eligibility repeating a failed course counts as a supplemental in that course.
  3. The student must have passed at least one test/exam in the course.
  4. The student must have achieved a final course grade of 50% or within 10% of the required pass mark, whichever is the higher standard. Therefore, for courses with 65% pass, the student must have achieved 55%.
  5. A supplemental evaluation will not be granted for a course in which a student has received an academic offence.

In addition, the following will also be considered by the committee:

  • Previous academic history,
  • Current clinical practice performance,
  • Demonstration of professional behaviour,
  • Attendance in class, lab, and practice experiences.

NOTE:

  • A fee is to be paid to the Registrar's Office for supplemental work.
  • If the student is successful in completing the supplemental work for the course, the failing course grade will be upgraded to the minimal passing grade of 65% for the program. 

Academic Probation

Students who have been unsuccessful in their field experience, have failed two or more academic courses, and/or have required considerable testing/assignment variances may be recommended for Academic Probation. Academic probation allows students to be promoted to the next level with a special timetable or with academic conditions. Special timetables and academic conditions are designed as part of written learning contract that the student and Program Coordinator create together. The goal of these measures is to allow students to continue in the program accompanied by a supportive plan for success.

Discontinuance

Students who have failed to meet all program standards or who have failed to meet the standards set out in the Conestoga Student Guide and/or the OTA & PTA Program Handbook involving academic dishonesty, student responsibilities, or unacceptable behaviour, attitude or conduct may be discontinued from the OTA & PTA Program.

Students can be discontinued according to the following reasons:

  • For failure to meet academic program standards by failing two or more courses in the same term,
  • For violating documented ethical standards of practice,
  • For inappropriate behaviour that jeopardizes the study of other students,
  • For not adhering to the professional standards of health and ability required for this kind of work.

Withdrawal

Students not planning to return to the OTA & PTA Program the following semester are expected to complete a Withdrawal Form available from the program coordinators, the Registrar's Office, or on the college website.

Program Transfer

Prior to transferring to another program, it is recommended that the student meet with the program coordinator or academic advisor. Students who decide to change programs may do so by completing and submitting a program application form to the Registrar's Office. If considering transferring to a program outside the school in which they are currently enrolled in, students may want to discuss options with a career advisor. When a student moves from one Conestoga program to another and where courses numbers/codes are identical or equivalent, automatic credit is given if passing grades are met.

Appeal

Students have the right to appeal any academic decisions as set out in the Conestoga Student Guide. It is recommended that students begin this appeal process by first meeting with the faculty and/or program coordinator and/or program chair.

Clearance of Academic Deficiency

Please refer to the College Policies, Procedures, Practices and Guidelines webpage then click on the Academic Administration side tab and search for the document entitled Clearance of Academic Deficiency. Please note that following the end of semester, contact with any student eligible to write a supplemental will be made either by phone or email. A specific date, time and room number will be given to each student. If a student does not respond to this contact, the student forfeits the opportunity to write a supplemental test. 

Readmission to the Program

Since the OTA & PTA Program is a highly integrated and oversubscribed program, a student who has withdrawn or been discontinued from the program must apply to be readmitted. Readmission to the program is not guaranteed. Students who have been discontinued from semester one must reapply through Ontario Colleges for readmission to semester one. Admission / readmission to all other semesters are based on seat availability and academic status. If space in the program exists, students will be readmitted to the current program design, to which current program standards and procedures will apply. Students will be ranked ordered for readmission using the following criteria:

  1. Students in good academic standing who have withdrawn from the program due to illness or personal circumstances with prior approval from the Program Coordinator and/or Chair.
  2. Students who have one discontinuance as a result of course failure(s) and whose academic status / performance and extra-curricular preparation suggests that they will be successful in the program if readmitted.
  3. Transfer students from other institutions whose OTA & PTA Programs are deemed to be substantially equivalent in curriculum structure and who are in good academic standing.
If there are more students within any category than space in the program can accommodate, the following academic factors will also be considered when categorizing students for readmission:
  • Overall grade point average (GPA) for students in good academic standing.
  • Number of courses failed and grade point average if student presents with one discontinuance.

Students who do not meet the above criteria will not be readmitted to the program.

For additional information, refer to the Academic Administration page for more information on the readmission procedure.

Only one opportunity to re-apply or repeat a failed course is permitted.

Graduation

Students are expected to respond to their invitation through their  Student Portal. Convocation ceremonies are held in the spring and fall of each academic year. Students, who take longer than the advertised program length, are responsible for completing any new or additional courses due to a program design change. Students who complete their program after the scheduled completion date are required to fill out an  Application to Graduate form and submit it with payment to the registrar's office. Students who are discontinued or have withdrawn and then return to the college will be placed in the current program design and must meet all requirements to graduate.

Course Add/Drop

You can add, change and drop courses from your portal depending on the dates and which program you are in:
1. Log in to the Student Portal,
2. Click on the "My Courses" tab,
3. Scroll over the icons to the right of individual course listings. It is strongly recommended that students consult their Program Coordinator/academic advisor prior to dropping a course.

Special Timetables/Adding Dropped or Failed Courses

Please note that when students are not taking the program in the prescribed sequence, they will be on "special timetables". Prior to the beginning of the semester, students should attempt to add missed courses from a previous semester by logging in to the Student Portal and following the instructions to register for courses. If students are not able to add courses on their own (because of a timetable conflict or full course section) they must seek assistance from their Program Coordinator during the "Special Timetable Registration" initiated by the College. Dates, times and locations of Special Timetable Registration periods are posted in the student portal in advance of the beginning of each semester. Students must attend this meeting where they will receive further guidance regarding this academic status from their Program Coordinator.
Students who take longer than the designed program length of time to complete their studies are accountable for completing any new or additional courses that may result due to changes in the program of study. Unless otherwise stated, students registered in non-cohort delivered programs must complete the program of study within seven years of being admitted to the program.

General Education / Breadth Electives

School of Liberal Studies

The purpose of diploma General Education electives and Degree Breadth electives is to provide graduates with the skills and knowledge to succeed not just in their chosen career fields, but in all life paths. Working collaboratively with your program,  diploma General Education and degree Breadth elective courses cultivate critical and creative thinking skills, civic engagement and knowledge of the broader world of arts, culture and science that helps make you more reflective, creative, and effective in your own life.

All Ontario College Diploma, Ontario College Advanced Diploma, and Degree programs at Conestoga require students to complete general education electives / interdisciplinary breadth.

More information on these courses can be found at www.conestogac.on.ca/electives.

 

Process for resolution of student concerns

In order to resolve any concerns which may arise during a course, field placement or relating to the overall program, students are encouraged to resolve issues or concerns informally at the program level prior to proceeding to a formal appeal.

If attempts have been made for a resolution, yet no satisfactory outcome was reached, students are encouraged to refer to the Student Guide, and to follow the procedures outlined under the "Academic Dispute Resolution and Appeal Procedure" section.

Maintaining Student Files

  1. Official records of each student's education are maintained electronically by the Registrar.
  2. Administrative records related to your experience in the Program are maintained to demonstrate compliance with external and college requirements. This information is as follows:
Administrative Records
Student Information (if applicable) File Location and Student Access Retention

Pre Placement Health Requirements

  • Copies of information received from student.

In H.S Trax, by individual student access, accessed through My Conestoga

  • Each student has their own information on the Passport for provision to placement agencies.
  • For the duration of a student's stay in the Program.

Acknowledgement of WSIB understanding.

  • Signed electronically by student prior to the first field placements.
  • By Program, online.
  • For the duration of a student's stay in the Program.

Student Consents signed on admission electronically.

  • Student Consent for Release of Information.
  • Student Understanding of Professional Standards.
  • Student Understanding of Safety Requirements.
  • Filed electronically.
  • For the duration of a student's stay in the Program.
  1. Academic Files are set up as required for a student to document important matters relevant to a student's progress or to document and monitor resolution of concerns.
Academic Records
Student Information File Location and Student Access Retention

Documents related to academic progress

  • Correspondence regarding course equivalencies.
  • Correspondence regarding supplementary examinations.
  • Learning Contracts.
  • Disabilities Information and plans.
  • In Student File, maintained by the Program Coordinator, initially, and then filed during the student's stay in the Program – maintained by Program Assistant.
For 1 year following graduation or as required by accrediting body.
Records of Competency Attainment As above. As above.

Documents related to areas of concern

  • Interview records, supporting email documentation.
  • Student Rights and Responsibilities.
  • Incident reports.
  • Letters/emails of significant concern and replies.
  • Appeals .
As above. As above.
  1. Students may review the contents of their academic file by:
    • Requesting this in writing to the Program Coordinator.
    • Reviewing the file in the presence of the Program Coordinator.

Additional Information for Students

Below is information to supplement the information found in the Conestoga Student Guide.

  • Your Conestoga Student Guide provides detailed information about dropping courses. If you are planning to drop a course, you must do so within the time period. If you have missed that time period, please see the Program Coordinator and she will advise you as to your options. Not attending does not constitute an official dropping of a course and will result in a grade of "F".
  • If you have completed courses from a college or university that you think may be very similar in content to courses in the OTA & PTA program you may be eligible for a course exemption. (Please note that to receive an exemption, courses must have been completed within the past seven years and with a passing grade of 65%). If you would like to proceed with a request for exemptions, please contact your Program Coordinator for guidance. Please note that exemptions will not be processed until a student is registered in the program. The exemption process will take some time (two-three weeks), and students should attend all scheduled courses until they receive the exemption as they will be responsible for all material covered in class should the exemption be denied.
  • If you feel you have acquired the knowledge and skill presented in a specific course (including field placement) without taking that course in an academic institution, you may wish to investigate Prior Learning Assessment (PLAR). Please consult a Continuing Education Calendar, available on the Conestoga website, for details. 

Work-Integrated Learning Experiences

Student Consent Forms

Students are required to complete program specific consent forms. To access the forms, students need to visit the WIL Document Services Community in myConestoga and click on the WIL Document Forms tab. 

Pre-WIL Health Requirements

Mandatory work-integrated learning (WIL) health and safety requirements must be completed by students prior to student WIL experiences. Successful WIL completion is required for students to progress to program completion.  To qualify for WIL experiences, students must present the following at the start of the program in accordance with pre-admission information provided by the College:                 

  • A complete immunization record including MMR, Tdap, Varicella, Polio, and Hepatitis B.  Seasonal flu vaccination is required during flu season (October – March)
  • TB Testing: Evidence of current 2-step or previous 2-step + current 1-step if more than one year has passed since 2-step testing
  • Standard First Aid and CPR – HCP level
  • N95 Respirator Fit Testing
  • An annual Police Check for Vulnerable Sector Screening (VSS).  Police Checks must be clear of any unpardoned criminal offences. An unclear criminal record may result in the inability to participate in WIL experiences which will jeopardize progress in the program. Acceptance for WIL is at the discretion of the agency; some agencies may request students to provide a VSS completed within six months of WIL start date. Students with criminal records are advised to meet with the program chair for academic counselling to determine program suitability.

Safety in the Workplace Course (OHS1320)

All students who participate in unpaid work-integrated learning (WIL) experiences during the course of their program will be required to successfully complete the mandatory Safety in the Workplace course prior to going out on WIL.  The course will provide students with an introduction to workplace hazards and general safety awareness. Students will receive a Record of Completion to provide evidence of this training to WIL experience sites and will consent to their workplace insurance coverage.

WSIB

Prior to your first WIL experience, you must electronically sign a Declaration of Understanding of WSIB Coverage related to Unpaid Clinical placements indicating you understand that WSIB coverage will be provided through the Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities (MTCU) while you are on training WIL experiences. This Declaration will be placed in your student file. It is your responsibility to ensure that the Declaration of Understanding for WSIB Coverage has been electronically signed, in the Safety in the Workplace Course - OHS1320, and visible on your H.S. Trax home page to be eligible to attend your WIL experience.

Guidelines for WIL Placement

Students are responsible for completing all of the required hours of WIL placement to successfully complete this program. All financial costs related to WIL placement are the responsibility of the student.

Guiding Principles and Policies

1. Lottery System
In order to fairly distribute WIL placement sites among the students, a lottery system where student's names are drawn at random will be used to determine WIL placements. Finances and transportation issues are not taken into account in the assignment of placements. Students are responsible for independently arranging and financing any housing and transportation costs for placements.

The majority of WIL placement locations are within the Regional Municipality of Waterloo, however, some placements are further away. There are no guarantees that all locations will be accessible by public transportation. All efforts are made to assist students by placing them in locations that will not put undue stress on them. However, all students should realize that they are responsible for arranging their own transportation to the facility in order to fulfill the requirements of the WIL placement.

Factors that may influence assignment of placements:

  • Balance of PT, OT or combined OT & PT hours: Specific placements may not be possible as there is a need to balance hours with an OT or PT specific WIL placement.
  • Variety of Learning Experiences: Ideally students should be exposed to a wide variety of learning experiences across the lifespan or practice specialties. However, students should be aware that this is not always possible.
  • Students on probation status: Some students may be having academic or clinical difficulties which warrant having them placed in specific facilities where the supervising therapist is associated with the program. This ensures that the student and facility have close communication to monitor progress.

2. Requesting Specific Placements
There is no process in place for requesting specific placements with respect to location or type of facility.

3. Independently Arranging Placements
Students are not allowed to arrange their own placements. However, if there is a facility that you know is interested in having students, the program coordinators should be consulted and proper procedures will be undertaken to enable this to happen if it is appropriate. If that location is confirmed as a student placement, student assignment will still be based on the above criteria.

4. Confirmation of Placement Times, Dates and Location
Every effort will be made to confirm placement location as well as times as early as possible. Given the limited number of placements, students must be prepared for changes even up to a few days before the placement starts.

5. Student Responsibilities
Prior to departing to WIL placement sites, it is necessary that each student shall have:

  • satisfactorily completed all required courses in each semester of the OTA & PTA curriculum
  • shown proof of up to date CPR and First Aid and Criminal Reference Check
  • met all college requirements for immunization and health screening
  • completed all required WSIB insurance forms
  • obtained appropriate clinical clothing. Dress code for clinical placement is OTA & PTA Program golf shirt, name tag, 'dress casual' pants and low-heeled closed heel-and-toe shoes
  • reviewed the dress requirements for lab (Standards of Conduct and Professional Practice); all the requirements for lab also apply to the clinical setting.

Students may be expected to comply with other requirements that may be asked in certain settings, such as more frequent criminal reference checks.

6. WIL Placement Preparation Sessions
These in-class sessions will be scheduled throughout the term and prior to the start of the first WIL placement. These sessions will address the following:

  • Telephone etiquette for initial contact with the facility
  • Student obligations with respect to attendance, professional behaviour, dress code and confidentiality
  • Performance goals and learning objectives
  • Method of evaluating student performance
  • Facility Evaluation
  • Tips on communicating with on-site or off-site supervising therapists
  • Other

7. Withdrawals/Inclement Weather

Leaving or failure to show up at the WIL placement site without communicating with the WIL placement supervisor or program coordinator is a serious infraction of professional ethics and is considered abandonment of one's professional responsibilities to the patients and facility. The student will receive a failing grade in the WIL placement and will not have the option to re-enter the program.

Cancellation of Clinical Due to Inclement Weather

  • Students, in consultation with the Clinical Educator and/or Program Coordinator, will make the judgement as to whether the shift should be discontinued. The Program Coordinator will notify the Chair (the next day) that such a decision was made for the safety of the student. Note that even if Conestoga College is closed, clinical sites may remain open. In this case, students are expected to attend if they can travel safely. 

8. WIL Placement Evaluations
An evaluation of progress mid-way should be conducted by the preceptor in writing and verbally. Strengths and weakness are identified and suggestions are made to help students achieve their goals. The student and/or the preceptor will report unsatisfactory student performance immediately to the program coordinator. Problem areas will be identified, suggestions for improved performance will be outlined, and alternative solutions will be explored towards the goal of improved performance during the remaining half of the placement.

9. WIL Placement Grades
The final WIL placement grade is pass/fail.

10. Transportation
It is the responsibility of the student to arrange for transportation to scheduled WIL placement locations. ALL students will be placed in a variety of agencies to provide various experiences.

11. Parking fees
Students are responsible for making their own arrangements for parking at the College or clinical agencies and for paying for parking fees. 

Concerns Regarding Student Safety or the Safety and Care/Service for Clients

Work-integrated Learning (WIL) experiences provide the opportunity to demonstrate and enhance your learning in the practice environment. These WIL experiences have been organized by your Program in partnership with the organization where you have been placed.

The following procedures have been developed to make it easier to identify and address any concerns or issues regarding your safety or the safety and care of clients that may come up during the WIL placement in a way that supports both a solid learning experience and a constructive partnership with the WIL placement site.

A. Communication of General Concerns
Regarding Your Safety or the Safety and Care/Service for Clients

  1. Students will be provided with an Orientation to their WIL site on the first day of their WIL placement. The Orientation may include details of the WIL site's policies and procedures related to communication about the safety of the work environment and/or the safety and care of patients/residents/clients.
  2. If a student has any concerns about the safety of the work environment and/or the safe/appropriate care/service for clients:
  • The student must immediately report these concerns to the College individual associated with the WIL placement (Clinical Instructor, Faculty responsible for your WIL placement, WIL placement Supervisor).
  • The Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Supervisor will discuss this concern with Site Management.
  • For concerns of a serious nature (e.g. concerns impacting a total student group; a serious care/service situation), the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Supervisor will discuss the situation with the Program Coordinator and, potentially, the Chair. The Coordinator or Chair will immediately contact WIL site management to determine next steps.

Should facility policies require that WIL students report safety or care/service concerns immediately to WIL site management, the student should report to the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Officer immediately afterward.

B. Reporting of Incidents of Student Injury during a WIL Experience

  1. Should students experience personal injury of any kind, this must be reported immediately to the WIL Placement Employer and Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Supervisor. The WIL Placement Employer will provide first-aid that may be necessary, including arranging for transportation to emergency medical services if required. The Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Supervisor will notify the Program Coordinator and Chair and complete an Unpaid Work/Education Placement-Accident Report (UWEP-04) and will send this to the College's Occupational Health & Safety Office. Where necessary, the Occupational Health & Safety Office will complete a WSIB 7 form, a Letter of Authorization to Represent Placement Employer and a Work/Education Placement Agreement Form.
C. Reporting of Student Involvement

In Situations of Possible Injury to Clients during a WIL Experience or Student Damage to Facility Property

  1. Should students be involved in care/service situations where there the care/service results in a potential concern/injury to patients/residents/clients of the WIL placement site, this concern must be immediately reported to the WIL Site in order that care can be given. This situation must also be reported immediately to the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Supervisor. The faculty member will discuss this immediately with the WIL placement site and ensure that an incident report is completed. The faculty member must also inform the Program Coordinator and the Department Chair for a discussion of program expectations and implications. It is the responsibility of the Chair to ensure that all documentation is obtained regarding the incident and to inform College officials accordingly.
  2. Should students be involved in situations where there is alleged damage to resources/physical property at the WIL site, this concern must be reported immediately to the WIL Site and to the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Officer. The faculty member will inform the Program Coordinator and Department Chair for a discussion of program expectations and implications. It is the responsibility of the Clinical Instructor/Responsible Faculty/WIL Placement Officer to complete an incident report with the Chair accountable to ensure all documentation is obtained and to inform College officials accordingly.

Student Awards

Conestoga has more than 400 awards, bursaries, scholarships and academic grants available to Conestoga students. These funds are made available to our students through the partnerships we have established with local business and industry leaders. To be considered for an award, complete the General Application available through your Student Portal. Notifications and instructions to complete the application are sent to all full-time students' email accounts in the fall semester (Deadline: First Friday in October) and winter semester (Deadline: First Friday in February). Visit the Student Financial Services on Conestoga's website.

Awards Available for OTA/PTA - 2019 / 2020

The following awards* are available to the students of OTA & PTA program. Students who have questions about any of these awards should speak with their Program Coordinator. Please watch your College email for information from the Financial Aid office concerning application deadlines, processes and eligibility. You may obtain information about other school wide awards and scholarships from Financial Aid. You can find the General Awards Application by clicking on Student Financial Services.

* Note: All awards correct at time of print, but are subject to change.

Award Description Criteria

Academic Excellence Award for Outstanding Academic Achievement

 

Financial Aid Awarded to the student who has demonstrated highest overall average in all required course work in Year one and two of the program.

Clinical Excellence Award for Outstanding Clinical Performance

 

Nominated Awarded to the student who has demonstrated excellence in performing clinical practice objectives in full-time placements.

Student Excellence in Inter-professional Practice & Team Work

 

Nominated Graduate student with an inquisitive nature, engages other disciplines in care, accountable for actions and communicates information while demonstrating professionalism, safe patient practice, leadership and engagement.

College Hours

Full-time courses at Conestoga are typically delivered during the following hours:

  • Monday to Thursday, 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
  • Friday,  8:00 AM to 6:00 PM

In some instances, classes will be scheduled outside of this time frame to accommodate course, program, and college requirements.

Web-based Tools

Program courses may use web-based services with data centres outside of Canada. Students may be expected to complete assessments where information is transmitted outside of Canada. Students who do not wish to submit their information to other countries have the right to opt-out. It is the responsibility of the student to notify the instructor if they, in the first week of term or at the time assignment details are provided, wish to submit an alternate assignment.

Course examinations may be administered through a remote proctoring service to assure academic integrity. Ensure that you meet the system requirements that will allow the recording of your computer screen, webcam, and microphone.

Attendance at Evaluations

Working Together to Plan Your Success

Your success matters! As an emerging professional, it is important that you demonstrate the same professional attitude to your program that you will be required to demonstrate to your future workplace. Regular, punctual attendance, and active participation in scheduled classes, field and clinical placements, labs and any on-campus and off-campus activities scheduled by your program will help you to understand and master the learning complexities of your program.
If extenuating, unplanned circumstances require you to miss a class, please note that it is your responsibility to follow up with individual faculty members and to acquire any missed information.

Attendance for Evaluations

Evaluations are critical components of each course and your overall success in your program. An evaluation is defined as a test, exam, presentation or any other formal assessment that contributes to your course mark that requires your presence, in class or on-line. Please note that in many programs across the College, every field placement, clinical day, and lab/shop day is considered crucial to your overall learning and success and the expectation is that you attend.  If you are in a program that includes field or clinical placements, labs/shops, or any other on or off campus activities, it is essential that you discuss attendance requirements with your program faculty in order to understand expectations and consequences.  
Your attendance for all evaluations is a requirement. If there is a concerning pattern of absence from evaluations across your program, you may be asked to meet with the Program Coordinator and/or Student Advisor to discuss strategies for success.
While circumstances such as religious holidays and academic accommodations may necessitate rescheduling of evaluations and will be accommodated, please note that there will be no special arrangements made for rescheduling evaluations due to personal conflicts such as work or vacation plans.  

In order to facilitate a smooth implementation for all scheduled evaluations, both you and your program faculty have responsibilities which are listed below:

Faculty Responsibilities

  • To communicate all course obligations to you at the beginning of each semester through the Instructional Plan, including evaluation and presentation dates.
  • To communicate, in writing, any unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the college, the program or the faculty members that may require changes to the course schedule.
  • To provide alternative evaluation arrangements for missed evaluations/work due to recognized religious holidays as defined by the College Employer Council and documented accommodations through the Accessibility Office.
  • To accept alternative evaluation requests in good faith and examine based on the unique circumstances and students' individual needs.
  • To facilitate alternative evaluation arrangements as described below.

Student Responsibilities

  • To be informed about all course obligations and due dates.
  • To inform your faculty member in writing of the need to reschedule evaluations due to a religious holiday as defined by the College Employer Council.
  • If you have to be absent from any scheduled evaluation, report your absence on the Student Portal using the procedure below. You must do this prior to the start of the evaluation or risk receiving a mark of zero.

How to Report Absences on the Student Portal

  1. Log into the Student Portal and click on the 'Absence tab'.
  2. Indicate whether or not there is an assessment scheduled on that day by clicking 'Yes or No', as well as the reason for the absence (illness or other).
  3. Click 'Continue' to report the absence.
  4. Click 'I agree' to confirm the absence.
  5. You will receive a confirmation email that your absence has been recorded.

Important! Please note the following:

  • The earliest you can record an absence for a particular day, is after 8:00 p.m. the day before. You must report each day you are absent.
  • The Absence Recording System will show you as being absent for the day, starting from the time that you recorded the absence. For example, if you record your absence on a specific day at 11:00 a.m., the system will show you as being absent for all classes starting after 11:00 a.m. that day.
  • If you are going to be present for any other classes on the day for which you recorded an absence, please let the faculty member know by attending or following up by eConestoga or college email.
  • When you return to campus, make eConestoga or email contact immediately with the faculty member associated with the evaluation you missed in order to arrange appropriate follow up.

Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations Less than 20%

Conestoga recognizes that unexpected circumstances such as brief illness do arise during the semester and that a visit to a health practitioner may not be necessary. A valid absence from a scheduled evaluation worth less than 20% of the final grade which is not documented through the Accessibility Office or previously arranged due to religious holidays, will be accommodated once per course during the semester, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above. If the evaluation cannot be rescheduled, (for example an experiential activity, lab or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks to another evaluation item will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via email to their eConestoga or college email address, or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.

Absence from additional scheduled evaluations worth less than 20% in the same course may require documentation for verification.

Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations 20% or More

Absence from scheduled evaluations worth 20% or more of the final grade that are not documented through the Accessibility Office or arranged due to religious holidays, will require appropriate documentation for verification, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above.

Alternative Evaluation Arrangements

  • Faculty members will determine alternative evaluation arrangements as appropriate.
  • Students will complete any necessary forms. 
  • Students are required to complete the alternative evaluation as scheduled. If an evaluation cannot be rescheduled (for example an experiential activity or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via eConestoga or college email, or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.
  • Tests will be made up in the Conestoga Test Centre in the following week, or by individual arrangements with course faculty member.
  • If the evaluation is to be conducted in the Conestoga Test Centre, students will be asked to show their ONECard* before permitted to write the test.

* Students taking part-time courses or in programs where a OneCard is not provided may be asked to show alternate ID.

Program Handbook Revision Log

Last Revised By Whom
June 18, 2015 Paul Finch
June 26, 2015 Jillian Grant
May 20, 2016 Paul Finch
May 31, 2016 Nicole Dorscht
June 19, 2017 Jillian Grant
June 5, 2018 Wendy Dunbar
July 8, 2019
Julia Rodricks

Accommodation Disclaimer

Conestoga College provides an equitable environment where all students have the opportunity to participate in College life. In accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and the Ontario Human Rights Code, Conestoga recognizes its responsibility and legal obligation to provide education, information and services in an accessible manner.

Conestoga's  Accessible Learning services provide support for students with permanent and temporary disabilities who feel they are encountering barriers to learning. They work with students to understand the impact of a disability in the college environment and will help develop a success plan that considers student goals and required academic accommodations. Accessible Learning will also communicate necessary accomodations to professors on behalf of the student. 

To consult with an Accessibility Advisor about accommodations please make an appointment by emailing  accessibility@conestogac.on.ca or calling 519-748-5220 ext. 3232.

Exceptions for non-accessiblity focused issues need to be consulted on with your professor. Final approval for exceptions unrelated to academic accomodations rests with the program chair.