New Occupation Definition in OTPF-4 (Occupational Therapy Practice Framework)

Occupation Definition OTPF-4

Occupation Definition Update

See our blog post on other changes and updates in the OTPF-4.

OTPF-3

Occupation – Daily life activities in which people engage.

Occupations occur in context and are influenced by the interplay among client factors, performance skills, and performance patterns. Occupations occur over time; have purpose, meaning, and perceived utility to the client; and can be observed by others (e.g., preparing a meal) or be known only to the person involved (e.g., learning through reading a textbook). Occupations can involve the execution of multiple activities for completion and can result in various outcomes. The Framework identifies a broad range of occupations categorized as activities of daily living, instrumental activities of daily living, rest and sleep, education, work, play, leisure, and social participation.

OTPF-4

Occupation – Everyday personalized activities that people do as individuals, in families, and with communities to occupy time and bring meaning and purpose to life.

Occupations can involve the execution of multiple activities for completion and can result in various outcomes. The broad range of occupations is categorized as activities of daily living, instrumental activities of daily living, health management, rest and sleep, education, work, play, leisure, and social participation.

*Health management has been moved to become it’s own new occupation.

Occupation is the everyday personalized activities that people do as individuals, in families, and with communities to occupy time and bring meaning and purpose to life.

Discussion

The new definition of occupation is exciting for me because people who are unfamiliar with occupational therapy often mistake the term occupation related to finding work or holding a job. Before the OTPF-4 – Anecdotally, I have been defining occupation as how people occupy their time to my clients and this seems to resonate with them more.

I think this new definition of occupation will really help to advocate for the profession and increase awareness of what occupational therapists do!

OTPF-4 Changes and What’s New

Check out our blog post on the new OTPF-4.

Jeff is a licensed occupational therapist and lead content creator for OT Dude. He covers all things occupational therapy as well as other topics including healthcare, wellness, mental health, technology, science, culture, sociology, philosophy, and more.