Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Occupational Therapy
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College of Health Care Sciences - Physical Therapy Department
Publication Date / Copyright Date
Nova Southeastern University
Gina Ferra Kaplanis. 2019. Harnessing Nature for Occupational Therapy: Interventions and Health Promotion. Doctoral dissertation. Nova Southeastern University. Retrieved from NSUWorks, College of Health Care Sciences - Physical Therapy Department. (66)
Literature is beginning to emerge which states that participation in natural environments can be restorative, provide much needed physical activity and assist with health promotion and prevention of illness. Theories such as Attention Restoration Theory (Kaplan, 1995) and Biophilia Hypothesis (Wilson, 1993) support the benefits for participation in natural outdoor environments. Health benefits of participation in nature including accessing Vitamin D, improving balance, attention restoration, reduced myopia, stress reduction are widely present in literature. Despite the health benefits of participation in nature, occupational therapists rarely complete interventions in the natural environment. Principles of adult learning and occupational adaptation were used to create a 12-hour continuing education for occupational therapists to develop skills to use in natural outdoor practice. Data was collected from course previews, surveys about continuing education at sea and using principles of adult learning to create the course and utilize a new format ReLAP, in which continuing education focuses on reflection on current practice, learning new information relevant to intervention, applying and planning to use that information in practice.
Health and environmental sciences, Adult learning, Continuing education, Nature, Occupational therapy, Restoration