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Research Article  |   May 1998
Occupation: The Keystone of a Curriculum for a Self-Defined Profession
Author Affiliations
  • Elizabeth J. Yerxa, EdD, LHD (Hon), ScD (Hon), OTR, FAOTA, is Distinguished Professor Emerita, Department of Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California. (Mailing address: Route 1, 196 Columbine, Bishop, California 93514)
Article Information
Education of OTs and OTAs / Special Issue on Occupation-Centered Practice and Education / Guest Editor Wendy Wood
Research Article   |   May 1998
Occupation: The Keystone of a Curriculum for a Self-Defined Profession
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 1998, Vol. 52, 365-372. doi:10.5014/ajot.52.5.365
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 1998, Vol. 52, 365-372. doi:10.5014/ajot.52.5.365
Abstract

The idea of occupation is proposed as the basis for constructing a curricular renaissance for occupational therapy in preparation for a new millennium. Implementing an occupation-centered curriculum could create a more integrated profession in which practice, ideas, scholarship, and education nurture and support one another, increasing the autonomy of both the occupational therapy profession and recipients of its services. A practice-oriented rationale for curricular design includes explication of the idea of occupation, a view of the person as an occupational being embedded in that concept, and the thought process of occupational therapy. Recommendations are provided to create an integrated curriculum that will contribute to future-oriented practice and a self-defined profession.