Date of Award

January 2012

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Peggy P. Wittman

Department Affiliation

Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy


This paper is a qualitative research study which seeks to explore the experiences of an occupational therapist in delivering occupation-based practice at a skilled nursing facility in Kentucky. Over a three month period, the subject participated in one email and two face-to-face semi-structured interviews. During these interviews, the researcher and therapist discussed topics such as the therapist's thoughts on reimbursement and documentation and her strategies for intervention planning and implementation.

During data analysis of interview transcriptions, three themes emerged and were titled with direct quotes from the participant: "The long-term goal is to increase my patient's level of functional ADL performance," "I'm constantly watching my little stopwatch," and "I like the bio-mechanical aspect of OT as well as the occupational aspect."

Results were congruent with previous conclusions drawn by scholars in the field regarding occupation-based practice. The results support the argument for further research of therapists' experiences in delivering occupation-based practice in real-world contexts. The findings of this research study are beneficial to the field of occupational therapy because they assist in profession's understanding of why a gap exists between theory and practice of occupational therapy.