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Research Article  |   July 2003
Practitioners’ Reading Patterns, Attitudes, and Use of Research Reported in Occupational Therapy Journals
Author Affiliations
  • Darbi Breath Philibert, MHS, LOTR, is Assistant Professor, Department of Interdisciplinary Human Studies, Early Intervention Institute, Human Development Center, 1100 Florida Avenue, Building 124, New Orleans, Louisiana 70119; dphilib@lsuhsc.edu
  • Patricia Snyder, PhD, is Professor and Associate Dean, School of Allied Health Professions, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Debra Judd, PhD, LOTR, is Assistant Dean for Clinical Affairs, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, Louisiana
  • Mary-Margaret Windsor, ScD, OTR/L, is Associate Professor, Towson University, Towson, Maryland
Article Information
Practitioner’s Reading Patterns
Research Article   |   July 2003
Practitioners’ Reading Patterns, Attitudes, and Use of Research Reported in Occupational Therapy Journals
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July/August 2003, Vol. 57, 450-458. doi:10.5014/ajot.57.4.450
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July/August 2003, Vol. 57, 450-458. doi:10.5014/ajot.57.4.450
Abstract

Occupational therapists are encouraged to use research-based evidence to guide practice. In this study, we investigated whether members of the American Occupational Therapy Association read their flagship journal, the American Journal of Occupational Therapy (AJOT), or other scholarly journals. Therapists’ attitudes about research, their reading patterns, and their use of research in clinical practice were also explored. A proportional, random sample of 626 therapists from five states was mailed a questionnaire; 52% were returned. Of the 328 respondents, 85% reported reading AJOT. For those who did not read AJOT, barriers cited included time constraints, difficulty interpreting results, lack of clinical information, and too much scientific information. Attitudes about research generally were positive, although ratings regarding the usefulness of research to inform clinical practices were less favorable. Attitudes about and use of research ratings were not strongly related to practice settings, educational degree level, years of experience, or state of residence. Results suggest education and clinical practice changes may be necessary to support therapists’ use of empirical evidence in practice contexts.