Date of Award


Degree Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Dawn Robarge

Second Advisor

Holly Grieves


Dementia, a neurodegenerative disorder affecting multiple brain regions, significantly disrupts daily life (Feurich, 2023). Occupational therapists, guided by the Occupational Therapy and Performance Framework (OTPF-4), address cognitive and functional challenges in individuals with dementia (American Occupational Therapy Association, 2020). Therapists employ compensatory strategies to enhance quality of life of people with dementia, as well as their family caregivers. Adult day centers serve as valuable resources for family caregivers, offering respite care during working hours. Despite regulations in most states, Michigan lacks specific dementia training laws in some healthcare settings (Burke & Orlowski, 2015). As a result, many facilities that serve individuals with dementia lack comprehensive training protocols to enhance dementia care skills. This doctoral capstone experience (DCE) aimed to enhance staff's management of Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia (BPSD) at and adult day center through a strength-based training curriculum and environmental modifications. Results demonstrated the value of a strength-based approach in dementia care, as evidenced by staffs’ improved understanding of dementia and BPSD management strategies, and the effectiveness of layout modifications to decrease BPSD occurrence. Providers working in dementia care, including occupational therapists, should employ a strength-based when evaluating and treating people with dementia (PWD)