Building an executive functioning toolbox: an interactive online course for school-based occupational therapy practitioners
Laygo, Allison Ashley
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School-based occupational therapy practitioners actively support students’ functional participation in school-related activities. Underlying these daily school activities are executive functioning skills. Although addressing executive functioning (EF) skills is within occupational therapy’s scope of practice, school-based practitioners typically do not support the development of these skills in students. Identified factors that contribute to this gap in practice are limited (1) EF knowledge, (2) availability and access to EF resources, and (3) time to complete job demands. To address this clinical gap, an interactive online course for school-based occupational therapy practitioners was developed which presents current EF research, knowledge, and resources. The course utilizes interactive features to support practitioners in applying course information in the school setting. This includes practicing EF assessments, designing EF interventions, and preparing advocacy resources and dissemination tools to share with school administrators and school staff about the importance of addressing executive functioning skills in school-age students. The objective of the online course is to develop a community of occupational therapy practitioners committed to improving EF skills in students through contributions in research, assessment, interventions, and school collaborations.