What Is the Proper Don 1 ain of Occupational Therapy Research ?


T his excerpt from the 1917 Constitution of the National Society for the Promotion of Occupational Therapy identifies key elements of the proper domain of occupational therapy research: the study of therapeutic applications of occupation via occupational therapy and the study of the influence of occupation on the person. I would add "the study of the occupational nature of the human being" as a key element. This element, too, has historical antecedents. Consider these excerpts from a "Credo" written by William Rush Dumon (1919): "That occupation is as necessary to life as food and drink. ...That sick minds, sick bodies, sick souls may be healed through occupation" (p. 17). A multitude of questions could be illuminated through scholarly inquiry. For example: Given the ubiquitous presence of occupations in the day-to-day Jives of persons, how are these occupations structured and experienced' What are the critical ingredients of occupation that are health producing' Might some aspects of occupation be detrimental to health in some situations' If so, what are these? What is the process by which occupation influences health' How might the daily round of occupations, like the daily intake of food and drink, be tailored to meet the health needs of a person? What methods might be used [Q help a person with a disability shape daily occupations into a healthful con-

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@inproceedings{Parham2008WhatIT, title={What Is the Proper Don 1 ain of Occupational Therapy Research ?}, author={Diane Parham}, year={2008} }