Background and aim: A qualitative research strategy was used to explore the professional development transitions of 24 allied health graduates in their first year of employment.Methods: Twelve occupational therapists, six physiotherapists and six speech pathologists participated in semi-structured interviews with the first author. Interviews were audiotaped, transcribed and analysed. Measures to promote credibility and trustworthiness of the data were implemented.Results: Graduates experienced three professional development transitions in their first year of work: adjustment to the workplace and work role, assimilation into the workplace and workforce, and future workforce plans. These transitions were broadly chronological (with some overlaps): the first occurred in the initial 6 months of employment, the second in the following 6 months, and the third close to the end of the first year. Key indicators of graduates' successful adjustment to the workplace and work role transition were the completion of core client and non-client duties with confidence and competence and reduced levels of stress and fatigue. The key indicator of successful assimilation into the workplace and workforce was graduates' perceptions of themselves as integral team members who were respected by their colleagues. The key indicator of graduates' successful future workforce plans transition was their identification of plans to continue working in their chosen profession.Conclusion: Occupational therapists, physiotherapists and speech pathologists experienced three professional development transitions in their first year of employment. The success of each transition was dependent on a positive experience of employment. Effective workplace support and supervision were important contributors to these positive experiences.
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||Focus on Health Professional Education: A multi-disciplinary journal|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|