Date of Award

Summer 8-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Susan MacDermott

Second Advisor

Erin Schwier

Medical Subject Headings

Addiction, Substance-related Disorders, Residential Treatment, Occupational Therapy


The main purpose of this capstone project was to identify a potential occupational therapy role for the substance abuse and addiction population in residential treatment settings and advocate that role to various residential recovery programs.

A qualitative methods approach was used for this project that included direct observation and participant interviews. An observation chart tool was used to collect data and was later analyzed via thematic coding.

Occupational areas of leisure exploration and participation and social participation were found to be the two most common themes after data analysis. Other areas of occupation that were less prominent however still important to several participants were work exploration and education.

Occupational therapists' unique skill in address these particular ares of occupation will help to enhance recovery programs by assisting in meeting needs of participants. Further ares of research and project development will include a qualitative review of a larger population of individuals in addition to a case study following participants after completion of a residential recovery program.


Capstone Project submitted to the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Occupational Therapy.