Exploring and Promoting Meaningful Engagement Across the Lifespan: An Interdisciplinary Approach

David S. Sherman, Western Michigan University

Capstone Experience & Project Presentation Video


Highlights and results from a research and education focused doctoral capstone experience will be presented. The DCE comprised of two independently conducted research projects. The first study will describe and highlight the importance of meaningful participation for US older adults using a secondary data from the University of Michigan’s Health and Retirement Study (HRS; HRS, 2022). The second study conducted during the DCE reported preliminary results of an exploratory study investigating the relationship between engagement in meaningful activity and the achieving resilient outcomes during stressful life events in a general sample of adults. In addition to findings from the research projects, personal reflections from teaching, instruction, and the development of introductory level occupational science content will be discussed. Findings from the study and experience highlight the importance of meaningful activity and provides evidence base supporting the underlying claims of the field of occupational therapy.