Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Dr. Stanley Paul

Second Advisor

Dr. Cindee Peterson

Third Advisor

Dr. Thomas Holmes

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Spirituality has become an increasingly important topic in healthcare and specifically in occupational therapy. Previous studies of spirituality in occupational therapy indicated that while therapists believed spirituality was important to health and rehabilitation potential, few therapists reported incorporating spirituality into treatment (Engquist, Short-DeGraff, Gliner, & Oltjenbruns, 1997; Howe, 1996; Rose, 1999). This study utilized a survey design to examine occupational therapists' current beliefs and practices regarding spirituality, as well as asking therapists to identify barriers to the use of spirituality in treatment.

The results of this study indicate that beliefs and practices regarding spirituality in occupational therapy may be changing. Therapists reported that they believed that spirituality is important to health and well-being. Therapists reported discussing spiritual issues with clients more frequently than in previous studies. Only one barrier, lack of education or experience in taking a spiritual history, was reported by a majority of respondents as impeding their ability to incorporate spirituality into their practice.