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OCAT: Occupational Therapy Assisting: Terminology

Find It in the Library

Find additional terms in this Dictionary.  Two copies are available, one in Reference and one in the circulating collection.  Call number is: RM735 .J345 2009 




Evidence-based Practice (EBP)

Evidence-based practice refers to the use of research and scientific studies as a base for determining the best practices in a field.  The movement began in the 1990s with a focus on the medical profession.  The basic premise of the movement is to provide transparency and to assure the public that techniques and procedures will provide the best possible interventions or treatments.

Mental Disorder

A disorder characterized by psychological symptoms, abnormal behaviors, impaired functioning, or any combination of these. Such disorders may cause clinically significant distress and impairment in a variety of domains of functioning and may be due to organic, social, genetic, chemical, or psychological factors. Similiar terms include mental illness, psychiatric disorder, or psychiatric illness.

Mental Health

A state of mind characterized by emotional well-being, good behavioral adjustment, relative freedom from anxiety and disabling symptoms, and a capacity to establish constructive relationships and cope with the ordinary demands and stresses of life.

Occupational Therapy (OT)

A therapeutic, rehabilitative process that uses purposeful tasks and activities to improve health; prevent injury or disability; enhance quality of life; and develop, sustain, or restore the highest possible level of independence of individuals who have been injured or who have an illness, impairment, or other mental or physical disability or disorder. It typically includes assessment of an individual's functional status, the development and implementation of a customized treatment program, and recommendations for adaptive modification in home and work environments as well as training in the use of appropriate assistive technology devices.

The term occupation is used by practitioners of the therapy to denote three broad categories of human activity: (a) activities of daily living, (b) work and productive activities, and (c) play or leisure activities.

Terms for Article Types

  • Case study:  A summary that describes a single person, group, situation, or event.
  • Review article: Article or publication which provides an overview or summary of a specific topic by examining published literature.
  • Critically appraised topic: A short summary of a specific topic from the literature, created to answer a specific clinical question.
  • Cohort study Study: in which a defined population is followed over a long period of time to compare one or more variables' correlation to the outcome of interest. An example would be to look at first level nursing students at Kent East Liverpool and follow them over time looking at specific variables or interventions and their resulting effect.
  • Case-control study: Study which compares a group of research subjects with the outcome of interest to an appropriate control group without the outcome of interest. The proportion of each group having a history of one or more particular attributes or variables of interest is then compared. A case-control study looks at a population now and then examines its history to look at the presence (or not) of variables of interest by comparing to the control group.
  • Randomized controlled clinical trial (RCT): Study in which the research subjects are randomly divided into an experimental and a control group. The experimental group is exposed to the variable of interest and the control group is not. The results are compared.
  • Systematic Review: A study which uses rigorous, standardized methods for selecting and assessing all relevant research studies on a specific topic. A systematic review does not include a quantitat:ive summary of the results.
  • Meta-analysis: A systematic study which uses rigorous, standardized methods to identify and evaluate all relevant prior studies on a specified topic according to a predetermined and explicit method. A statistical aggregation and analysis is then performed to combine the results of these studies to determine whether significant trends can be found. A meta-anlysis includes a quantitative summary of the results.
  • Guideline Practice: guidelines are statements or other indications of policy or procedure for standards of care or practice based upon the best available level of evidence. Health fields often refer to "clinical practice guidelines. " Guidelines are often created by an expert consensus group based on rigorous analysis of existing evidence