Credentials Display

Wendy B. Stav, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA

Alison R. Herman, D.H.Sc., M.P.H., OTR/L


Background: Researchers sought to discover the experiences of occupational therapists transitioning from existing clinical practice to exclusively occupation-based approaches.

Method: This phenomenological study captured the experiences of clinicians as exercise-based equipment was temporarily removed from the rehabilitation gym and replaced with occupation-based kits. The therapists used the new occupation-based materials with all clients for 4 months and participated in interviews and a focus group.

Results: The study yielded a greater understanding therapists’ process and experiences through the themes: (a) challenges to occupation-based practice and (b) occupation-based metamorphosis.

Conclusions: The personal and contextual obstacles associated with implementing occupation-based practice hinder occupational therapists’ abilities to practice aligned with the profession’s philosophical beliefs. However, when sufficient supports are in place, therapists traverse the “change curve” and ultimately experience a professional evolution into an occupation-centered paradigm.


This work was supported by the funding from the Nova Southeastern University Dr. Pallavi Patel College of Health Care Sciences Faculty Research & Development Grant. NSU IRB Protocol Number 2018-159

No authors or contributors to this study have financial and non-financial relationships or activities, or conflicts of interest based on the study design, materials used, or outcome of the research.