Occupational Therapy Doctorate Program

Research and Capstone

Research is one of the four major goals of the curriculum. Therefore, research is a component of all courses in the curriculum, and each student independently conducts a research-based scholarly project.

The scholarly project is an individualized learning experience that is truly graduate in character. Faculty engage in a collaborative mentoring relationship with the student. The student assumes responsibility for learning in a self-directed manner without the structure provided by the typical classroom course. There are many options to choose from, both in terms of research topic and in terms of research methodology. The major requirements are that the topic must be relevant to the profession of occupational therapy, that the methodology must be recognized in the literature, and that the faculty mentor can provide guidance in the topic.

Conducting original, meaningful, valid research is a significant challenge for all students. With guidance from a faculty mentor, the student must identify and master the relevant literature in a line of inquiry, and the student must conceptualize a research question or hypothesis that is a logical next step in that line of inquiry. The student must apply principles of research design as documented in reputable sources to the problem or hypothesis under study. Another challenge is that methodological problem-solving often involves apparatus or instruments with which the student has had little prior experience. Next, the student must draw on considerable personal and interpersonal abilities in order to collect the data according to the approved plan. Then the student must use complex tools in the analysis of data. Finally, the student must describe and present the entire project in a professionally appropriate, journal article format. Throughout the process, the student must provide ethical protection for the rights of human subjects, and must be able to participate in a mentoring relationship with the primary advisor. Given the many challenges inherent in the scholarly project, successful completion is a major achievement of which every graduate should be proud.

Published Research

Students names are in italics
Anderson, K. M., Nelson, D. L. (2011). Wanted: Entrepreneurs in Occupational Therapy.American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 65 (2), 221-228.

Applegate, S. L., Rice, M.S., Stein, F., Kinsuk, K.K. (2008). Knowledge of results and learning to tell the time in an adult male with an intellectual disablity:  a single-subject research design. Occupational Therapy International, 15(1), 32-44.

Bartnik, L. M., & Rice, M. S. (2013). Comparison of Caregiver Forces Required for Sliding a Patient Up in Bed Using an Array of Slide Sheets. Workplace health & safety, 393-400. Doi: 10.3928/21650799-20130816-52.

Beauregard, R ., Thomas, J.J., & Nelson, D.L. (1998). Quality of reach during a game and during a rote movement in children with cerebral palsy. Physical and Occupational Therapy in Pediatrics, 18 (3/4), 67-84. 

Benoit, W ., & Reeves, G.D. (2001). Effect of jaw and cheek support on nutritional intake.Physical and Occupational Therapy in Pediatrics, 21 (2/4), 49-58. 

Bulthaup , S ., Cipriani , D.J., & Thomas, J.J. (1999). An electromyography study of wrist extension orthoses and upper extremity function. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 53, 434-440 . 

Butts, D.S. & Nelson, D.L. (2007). Agreement between Occupational Therapy Practice Framework classifications and occupational therapists' classifications. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 61, 512-518.

Cipriani, D. J., Hensen, F. E., McPeck, D. L., Kubec, G. L., & Thomas, J. J. (2012). Rating scale analysis and psychometric properties of the Caregiver Self-Efficacy Scale for Transfers. Occupational and Physical Therapy in Pediatrics, 32(4), 404-415.

Collier, S., & Thomas, J.J. (2002). Range of motion at the wrist: A comparison study of four wrist extension orthoses and the free hand. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 56, 180-184 . 

Darnell, J.L ., & Heater, S.L. (1994). Occupational therapist or activity therapist-Which do you choose to be? American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 48, 467-468 .

Davies, D.M., Rice, M.S., & Maitra, K. (2009). Immediate versus prolonged visual exposure and object relevancy in a reaching and placing task. Al Ameen Journal of Medical Sciences, 2(1), 22-35.

Dermody , J.L ., Volkens , P.P., & Heater, S.L. (1996). Occupational therapy students' perspectives on occupation as an agent that promotes healthful lifestyles?Including Commentary by Bloomer J. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 50, 835-843. 

Eastridge , K.M., & Rice, M.S. (2004). The effect of task goal on cross transfer in a supination and pronation task. Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy, 11, 128-135.

Ferguson , M.C ., & Rice, M.S. (2001). The effect of contextual relevance on learning and transfer of a motor skill. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 55, 558-565.

Fertig, P.A., Rice, M.S., Maitra, K.K., & Kopp Miller, B. (2008). Reduced feedback: Motor learning strategy in persons with Alzheimer’s disease. Physical and Occupational Therapy in Geriatrics, 27(1), 122-138.

Gasser- Wieland , T. L., & Rice, M. S. (2002). Contextual relevance of the occupational form during a reaching and placing task with cerebral vascular accident survivors. OTJR: Occupation, Participation, and Health, 22, 153-160. 

Glass, L.M ., & Nelson, D.L. (1999). Occupational therapists' involvement with the minimum data set in skilled and intermediate care facilities. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 53, 348-352.

Grossi, J., Maitra, K., Rice, M. (2007). Semantic priming of motor task performance in young adults:  Implications for occupational therapy. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 61 311-320.

Guest, K.L., & Kopp Miller, B. (1997). The development of SASAD: The survey of attitudes toward the sexuality of adults with disabilities. Topics in Geriatric Rehabilitation, 12(4), 61-81. 

Hall, B.A ., & Nelson, D. L. (1998). The effect of materials on performance: a kinematic analysis of eating. Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy, 5 , 69-81. 

Hartman, B.A ., Kopp Miller, B., & Nelson, D.L. (2000). The effects of hands-on occupation versus demonstration on children's recall memory. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 54, 477-483.

Hearns, M.K., Kopp Miller, B. & Nelson, D. (2010). Hands-on versus learning by demonstration at three recall points in university students. OTJR: Occupation, Participation and Health, 30(4), 169-171.

Holubar, M.N., & Rice, M.S. (2006). The effects of contextual relevance and ownershipon a reaching and placing task. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, 53, 35-42.

Hoppe, K. A., Kopp Miller, B., & Rice, M. S. (2008). Occupationally Embedded Exercise Versus Rote Exercise and Psychosocial Response in College-Aged Females. Occupational Therapy in Mental Health, 24, 176-191.

Isenburg, B.D ., & Heater, S.L. (1994). Professionalization of the field: How can educational programs identify the best applicants? American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 48, 758-759.

Johnson, C.J., & Nelson, D.L. (In Press) Convergent validity of three occupational self-assessments. Physical and Occupational Therapy in Geriatrics.

Juratovic, M ., & Rice, M.S. (1999). Cross transfer in a fine motor task. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology 2000 NASPSPA Abstracts, 21 (suppl. S62).

Kilduski , N.C., & Rice, M.S. (2003). Encouragement and knowledge of results: Effects on motor learning. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 57, 329-336.

King, S., Thomas, J.J., & Rice, M.S. (2003). The immediate and short-term effects of a wrist extension orthosis on upper extremity kinematics and range of shoulder motion.American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 57, 517-524. 

Kneisley, B.A ., & Heater, S.L. (1998). Factors which motivate the certified occupational therapy assistant to become a registered occupational therapist. Occupational Therapy in Healthcare: A Journal of Contemporary Issues, 11(3), 39-51. 

Korp, K., Taylor, J. & Nelson, D. (2012). Bathing area safety and lower extremity function in community-dwelling older adults. Occupational Therapy Journal of Research, 32 (2), 22-29.

Lorenzo, R.F. & Metz, A.E. (2013). Occupational therapists’ knowledge and perceptions of childhood chronic respiratory diseases. Occupational Therapy in Health Care.27(3), 256-270.

Lough, C.L., Rice, M.S., & Lough, L.G. (2013). Choice as a Strategy to Enhance Engagement in a Coloring Task in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Occupational Therapy International, 19, 204-211. doi: 10.1002/oti.1337

Luce, S., & Rice, M.S. (2004). Contextual interference and performance in persons with traumatic brain injury. Israel Journal of Occupational Therapy, 13, E3-E28 . 

Luce, S., & Rice, M.S. (2001) Contextual interference in persons with traumatic brain injury . Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology 2001 NASPSPA Abstracts, 23 ( Suppl . S94).

Miller, K.R.S. & Metz, A.E. (2012). Pretending enhances management in messy play for children with sensory sensitivity. Journal of Occupational Therapy, Schools, & Early Intervention, 5, 259-274.

Metz, A., Thomas, J.,WelcomeK. (2011). Meaningful and purposeful experiences: Occupational therapy and a perspective on hearing impairment. eHearsay, 1(1), 97-100.

Metz, A.E., & Robnett, R. (2011). Engaging in mentally challenging occupations promotes cognitive health throughout life. Gerontology Special Interest Section Quarterly, 34(2), 1-4

Melville, L.L., Baltic, T.A., Bettcher , T., & Nelson, D.L. (2002). Patients' perspectives on the self-identified goals assessment. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 56, 650-659.

Meyer, J.L., Rice, M.S., & Metz, A.E. (2011). Knowledge of Results and Learning to Tell Time with Typically Developing 7 and 8-Year-Old Children: A Single Subject Research Design. Journal of Occupational Therapy, Schools, & Early Intervention, 4, 141-153. doi: 10.1080/19411243.2011.59530

Moberg-Mogren , E., Nelson, D.L. (2006). Evaluating the quality of reporting occupational therapy randomized controlled trials by expanding the CONSORT criteria. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 60, 226-235.

Moyer, J.A., & Nelson D.L. (1998). Replication and resynthesis of an occupationally embedded exercise with adult rehabilitation patients. Israel Journal of Occupational Therapy, 7, E 57-75. 

Nagel, M.J., & Rice, M.S. (2001). Cross transfer effects in the upper extremity during an occupationally embedded exercise. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 55 , 317-323. 

Nelson, D.L., Melville, L.L., Wilkerson, J.D., Fogle, R.A., Grech, J.L., & Rosenberg, J.A.(2002). Interrater reliability, concurrent validity, responsiveness and predictive validity of the Melville-Nelson Self-Care Assessment. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 56, 51-59.

Norton-Mabus, J.C., & Nelson, D.L. (2008). Reporting of randomized controlled trials in occupational therapy and speech therapy: Evaluation using an expansion of the CONSORT Statement. Occupational Therapy Journal of Research, 28, 64-71.

Oxer, S., & Kopp Miller, B. (2001) Effects of choice in an art occupation with adolescents living in residential treatment facilities. Occupational Therapy in Mental Health, 17(1), 39-49.

Pataki, K.W., Metz, A.E., & Pakulski, L. (2013). The effect of thematically related play on engagement in storybook reading in children with hearing impairment. Journal of Early Childhood Literacy.Advanced online publication. 10.1177/1468798413480516

Philips (Ault), K.E., Maitra, K.K., & Rice, M.S. (2010). Grasping naturally vs. grasping with a reacher in persons without disability: motor control and muscle activation differences.American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 64 (1), 95-104.

Rahman, N., Thomas, J.J., & Rice, M.S. (2003). The relationship between hand strength and the forces used to access containers by well-elderly individuals. In M.A. Corcoran (Ed.), Geriatric Issues in Occupational Therapy: A Compedium of Leading Research (pp. 66-75). Bethesda , MD: AOTA Press.

Rice, M.S., Dusseau, J.M., & Kopp Miller, B. (2011). A Survey of Musculoskeletal Injuries Associated with Manual Patient Lifting in Occupational Therapy Practitioners in the State of Ohio. Occupational Therapy in Health Care25(2-3), 95-107. doi:10.3109/07380577.2011.566308

Rice, M.S., & Hernandez, H. (2004). Frequency of knowledge of results and motor learning in persons with mental retardation. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology 2004 NASPSPA Abstracts, 26 ( Suppl . S153-S154).

Rice, M.S., & Hernandez, H. (2006). Frequency of knowledge of results and motor learning in persons with developmental delay. Occupational Therapy International, 13(1), 35-48.

Rice, M.S., & Trentman, A.L. (2006). Personal prefrence and quality of reach in healthy adult women. American Journal of Ocucpational Therapy, 60, 577-586. 

Rice, M.S., Fertig, P.A., Maitra, K.K., & Kopp Miller, B. (In Press). Reduced Feedback: Motor Learning Strategy in Persons with Alzheimer’s Disease. Physical and Occupational Therapy in Geriatrics.

Ross, L.M ., Hall, B.A., & Heater, S.L. (1998). The Issue Is: Why are occupational therapists not doing more replication research? American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 52 , 234-235. 

Ross, L., & Nelson, D.L. (2000). Comparing materials-based occupation, imagery-based occupation, and rote movement through kinematic analysis of reach. Occupational Therapy Journal of Research, 20, 45-60. 

Sakemiller, L.M ., & Nelson, D.L. (1998). Eliciting functional extension in prone through the use of a game. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 52, 150-157. 

Sass, P.L ., & Nelson, D.L. (1998). Pilot study of the inpatient rehabilitation-scales of therapeutic occupation. Occupational Therapy International, 5, 66-81. 

Schmidt, C.L ., & Nelson, D.L. (1996). A comparison of three occupational forms in rehabilitation inpatients receiving upper extremity strengthening. Occupational Therapy Journal of Research, 16, 200-215. 

Sevey , K.L., & Rice, M.S. (2002). Long handled sponges: To bend or not to bend.Assistive Technology, 14.2 , 91-97. Note:  this issue was published in 2003. 

Slusser, L.R., Rice, M.S., & Kopp Miller, B. (2012). Safe Patient Handling Curriculum in Occupational Therapy and Occupational Therapy Assistant Programs: A Descriptive Study of School Curriculum within the United States of America. WORK: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment, & Rehabilitation, 42(3), 385-392. .doi: 10.3233/WOR-2012-140

Thomas, J.J., Shuford, D., Duke, J., Cipriani, D. (2007). Development and psychometric properties of the self-efficacy scale for transfers for caregivers of children requiring transfer assistance. Archives Physical Medicine Rehabilitation, 88, 481-488.

Timmerman, L., Schmidt, C., & Heater, S.L. (1994). Increasing occupational therapy research: Is it time to try something new? American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 48, 647-648. 

Tebben , A.B., & Thomas, J.J. (2004). Trowels labeled ergonomic vs. standard design: Preferences and effects on wrist range of motion during a gardening occupation.American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 58, 317-323

Wehrkamp, R.A., & Rice, M.S. (2010). Long-handled shoehorn length, body mass index, and hip range of motion in healthy female adults. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 64 (6), 915-922.

Zimmerer-Branum , S ., & Nelson, D.L. (1995). Occupationally embedded exercise versus rote exercise: A choice between forms by elderly nursing home residents. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 49, 397-402. 

Research Presentations and Posters (External):

 UT OT students have presented over 500 research papers or posters at state, regional, and national professional conferences. 

Capstone Experience

The Capstone Experience culminates in the Capstone Semester, after successful completion of the Level II fieldwork placements and a competency examination. The goal of the Capstone Experience is to develop specialized skills in an area of individual interest that meets the student's professional goals. The Capstone Experience can occur in various areas of professional life:  a) clinical practice such as hand therapy, school/pediatric settings, community settings, etc., b) advocacy such as AOTA national office, c) education such as teaching in an OTA Program or online education, d)program development such as designing new services for a particular group in need of occupational therapy, and e) research through completion of a project designed in collaboration with a faculty mentor. The Capstone Experience allow students to develop contemporary practice skills beyond those expected for entry-level practice.

All past disseminations can be found online here: http://utdr.utoledo.edu/graduate-projects/

Last Updated: 9/28/20