Document Type (Journals)

Original Research


Non-traditional occupational therapy students experience stress and occupational imbalance during their educational experience due to academic and non-academic factors, which decreases their well-being. Throughout the occupational therapy literature, participation in a variety of occupations is known to positively impact well-being. However, there are limited interventions available to foster occupational therapy students’ overall well-being through occupational engagement. Furthermore, there is a scarcity of interventions specifically designed to meet the unique needs of non-traditional occupational therapy students. Action planning is a structured goal setting format by which a person develops specific strategies to achieve desirable outcomes. This qualitative descriptive study described the benefits of participating in a group action planning intervention on the health, wellness, and well-being of non-traditional occupational therapy master’s hybrid students. Data were collected through written reflections and coded line-by-line, resulting in open and focused codes. From the data, four themes emerged: developing the new skill of action planning, recognizing the importance of well-being, understanding health and wellness must be prioritized, and achieving a sense of balance. While follow-up studies are recommended, results from this study suggest that the group action planning intervention was beneficial and may help promote health, wellness, and well-being in non-traditional occupational therapy hybrid students.


Dr. Elena Wong Espiritu, OTD, OTR/L, BCPR is an Associate Professor in the School of Occupational Therapy at Belmont University, where she teaches in both the entry-level doctoral program and the master's program for therapy assistants transitioning into OTRs. Prior to academia, she worked 10 years in the adult physical disabilities setting providing acute care, inpatient acute rehabilitation, and outpatient services as a clinician and team coordinator.

Declaration of Interest

The author reports no declarations of interest.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.