I recently completed a Masters by Research (MRes) through the University of Salford.
I undertook the MSc part time while working full time over 200 miles from the university and only attended the university in person once in the four years it took me to complete my research. Skype became my best friend!
Juggling work, study and a young family at home was tough, but one worry I didn’t have was financing my studies as the OETT kindly provided 67% of the funding for my MSc and my employer Blatchford paid the remaining 33%. This help was invaluable, and we as a profession are so incredibly privileged to have access to such financial support to help us further our knowledge clinically, which in the end serves to benefit our patients – the reason why we entered the profession in the first place.
During my MSc I learned research skills, academic writing skills, the use of gait analysis and the interpretation of data, as well as furthering my knowledge of the orthotic treatment of foot and ankle trauma. These skills are important in ensuring I am well versed in providing evidence-based practice for the patients that I treat now and in the many years to come.
I would encourage all Prosthetists/Orthotists to consider an MRes as an alternative to the more conventionally taught MSc courses. It enables you to gain research skills and explore an area of orthotics in great detail in a flexible way that allows remote working very easily. It takes a lot of discipline but it was definitely worth it.
So thank you once again to the OETT. Your support of our profession is invaluable and the process to apply for assistance is simple, seamless and very swiftly managed.