Hazel L. Breland, Charles Ellis, Jr.; Is Reporting Race and Ethnicity Essential to Occupational Therapy Evidence?. Am J Occup Ther 2012;66(1):115-119. doi: 10.5014/ajot.2012.002246.
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© 2017 American Occupational Therapy Association
Detail the sample’s major demographic characteristics, such as age; sex; ethnic and/or racial group; level of education; socioeconomic, generational, or immigrant status; disability status; sexual orientation; gender identity; and language preference as well as important topic-specific characteristics (e.g., achievement level in studies of educational interventions). . . . Even when a characteristic is not used in analysis of the data, reporting it may give the readers a more complete understanding of the sample and the generalizability of results and may prove useful in meta-analytic studies that incorporate the article’s results. (pp. 29–30)
To be consistent with APA (2010) guidelines for the reporting of race and ethnicity of the participants of all research studies.
To fulfill the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education’s (ACOTE’s; 2007) Standard B.8 related to research.
To facilitate cross-validation of both research tools and research findings across racial and ethnic groups. According to ACOTE Standard B.4.0, the processes for screening, evaluation, and referral as related to occupational performance and participation must be culturally relevant and based on theoretical perspectives, models of practice, frames of reference, and available evidence (ACOTE, 2007). This standard suggests that models of practice, frames of reference, and available evidence that determine approaches for screening, evaluation, and referral are incomplete in the absence of consistent consideration of race and ethnicity in research findings.
To reduce the gap between science and clinical practice based on race and ethnicity. Consistent reporting of race and ethnicity will result in improved quality of care and services delivered to people from all backgrounds and will provide clear evidence of whether the results of studies apply to people from all racial and ethnic backgrounds (Rodakowski, Kelly, & Gould, 2010; Smyth, 2011).
Review and consider the composition of the standardization sample of an assessment and its appropriateness for the population being treated (Hernandez, Horin, Donoso, & Saul, 2010).
Understand that considerable heterogeneity exists among members of each racial and ethnic group and that clinical practice should be influenced by such diversity. ACOTE (2007) Standard B.1.7 requires students to demonstrate knowledge and appreciation of the role of sociocultural, socioeconomic, and diversity factors and lifestyle choices in contemporary society (e.g., principles of psychology, sociology, and abnormal psychology); they can do this only if the supporting evidence is found in the occupational therapy literature.
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