Sharon A. Gutman; State of the Journal, 2010. Am J Occup Ther 2010;64(6):832-840. doi: 10.5014/ajot.2010.064601.
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Foremost, we must continue pressing for the generation of intervention effectiveness studies that demonstrate support for occupational therapy services in our major practice areas (e.g., rehabilitation and pediatrics), newly emerging and nontraditional practice areas (e.g., driving reevaluation and rehabilitation), and practice areas in which we have lost our past value (e.g., mental health). In addition to the promotion of intervention studies, AJOT will seek to present a balanced representation of research priorities (i.e., effectiveness studies, instrument development and testing, intervention efficiency and patient satisfaction, basic research) in each issue.
We must also strive to produce studies at higher levels of evidence and rigor. As the profession advances developmentally, the journal will decrease the amount of Level IV and Level V research and prioritize studies using control, randomization, standardized assessments, and larger sample sizes.
Increased research must be generated in the practice areas of mental health, productive aging, work and industry, and health and wellness—areas receiving little research attention in the past 5–10 yr (Gutman, 2009). To promote this needed research, the journal will publish three special issues in the next 2 yr addressing the effectiveness of occupational therapy services for clients with work-related injuries, patients with Alzheimer’s disease, and clients with psychiatric disabilities.
Finally, the Editorial Board will continue to monitor the journal’s 2- and 5-yr IF scores. The move to online publication and the greater accessibility that it will afford will positively influence the IF. So, too, will prioritizing the publication of meta-analyses, systematic reviews, and randomized controlled trials that allow practitioners to form a consensus about best practice.
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