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Research Article  |   January 2000
Dynamic Performance Analysis: A Framework for Understanding Occupational Performance
Author Affiliations
  • Helene J. Polatajko, PhD, OT(C), is Professor and Director, School of Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Health Sciences, The University of Western Ontario, Elborn College, London, Ontario, N6G 1H1, Canada; hpolataj@julian.uwo.ca
  • Angela Mandich, MSc, OT(C), is PhD Candidate, School of Kinesiology, The University of Western Ontario; and Instructor, School of Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Health Sciences, The University of Western Ontario, Elborn College, London, Ontario, Canada
  • Rose Martini, MSc, OT(C), is PhD Candidate, Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada; and Lecturer, Occupational Therapy Program, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Article Information
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Research Article   |   January 2000
Dynamic Performance Analysis: A Framework for Understanding Occupational Performance
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, January/February 2000, Vol. 54, 65-72. doi:10.5014/ajot.54.1.65
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, January/February 2000, Vol. 54, 65-72. doi:10.5014/ajot.54.1.65
Abstract

Occupational therapy is now consistently described as a profession concerned with enabling occupation. A crucial step in enabling occupation is understanding the occupational performance of our clients. Dynamic Performance Analysis (DPA) is a new approach to occupational analysis that focuses on the client’s actual performance. DPA, acknowledging that optimal performance is the product of the interaction of person, environment, and occupation, and thus highly individualistic, places the client and his or her occupation, in interaction with the environment, at the center of the analysis process. Embedded in a top–down framework, DPA is a dynamic, iterative process, carried out as the client performs the occupation. The purpose of DPA is to identify where performance breaks down and test out solutions. In this article, the rationale, origins, and basic assumptions of DPA are discussed, and a detailed description of the DPA process together with two clinical examples is presented.