Assignment: Therapy Educators

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Assignment: Therapy Educators

Assignment: Therapy Educators

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A PROFESSIONAL LEGACY

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• Research is defined as a systematic intensive study directed toward fuller knowledge of the subject studied. • Basic research is directed toward the increase of knowledge. It is research where the primary aim of the investi- gation is a fuller understanding of the subject under study rather than the practical application thereof.

• Applied research creates directly applicable knowledge. The researcher looks for results which promise to be of ultimate use in practice.

• Development is the systematic use of scientific knowledge directed toward the production of useful materials, sys- tems methods or process (13, pp. 146–147). Within the profession two of these three types of research can and are being accomplished—applied research

and development. Our greatest lack is in basic research. To do basic research requires a scientist with not only the scientific approach, but also the scientific background. I do not know of a profession that performs basic research entirely for themselves—certainly medicine does not—and I do not know why we should continue to struggle with the idea of performing our own basic research to the detriment of our educational process. I propose that educators and clinicians formulate collaborative relationships with social scientists to address the

social, cognitive, and psychological aspects of function and with biological scientists to address the motor and sen- sory integrative aspects of function. A research team should inspire a collaborative relationship between the occupational therapy educator, the basic

scientist, and the clinician or clinicians. The occupational therapy educators must assume the role of coordinator and facilitator of research projects. The clinician should function as a clinical scientist who logs observation and inferences, and communicates with the educator who can organize teams to design and implement research to answer pertinent questions. One reason these research teams have not yet developed is that educators and practitioners have not been

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