Occupational therapy is the application of treatment techniques in order to recover, maintain, or develop working skills and daily living of patients with developmental, metal or physical conditions. This paper seeks to compare and contrast two theories of occupational therapy. This is in order to enhance the understanding of the underlying similarities and differences within these two theories. Occupational therapy treatment techniques aim at teaching the skill, adapting the environment, educating the patient, or teaching the skill so as to boost the level of involvement in performance of daily actions.
The theory of Person Environment Occupational Model was developed in the year 1996 by a scholar known as Law. The theory is based on occupational therapy, and it seeks to explain the relationship between three different perspectives, which include, a person, occupation and environment. This model serves as a guideline for clinical reasoning thus it facilitates the understanding and analysis of the interdependent interaction between person, environment, and occupation (Dunbar, 2007). As a result, it provides a foundation for the purpose of applying the concepts of this theory in the field of occupational therapy. The person environment occupation model of occupational performance takes on a transactional approach instead of an interactive approach as it seeks to explain the relationship between a person and his or her environment. Due to this, this model is mainly based on the relationship exhibited between a person and his or her environment.
The Model of Human Occupation focuses on analysing the factors that motivate an individual to pursue a certain occupation. It seeks to establish the key factors that influence people to choose certain careers, as opposed to others. The model also seeks to establish whether there are patterns of occupational behaviour that are displayed by people that work in certain professions. The Model of Human Occupation also seeks to establish the impact of the environment on the occupational performance of an individual (Ikiuga, 2007). This model appreciates the complexity of human occupation, and it acknowledges that a person is composed of various components. The model also accounts for the impact of the environment on individual performance, and also seeks to explain the concept of occupational performance.
The Person Environment Occupation Model of Occupational Performance acknowledges that each and every person is unique and different in his or her own way. An individual is able to perform a wide variety of tasks and responsibilities. This is due to the fact that people normally have different talents, capabilities, weaknesses, levels of knowledge, attributes, experience, and skills among others. These factors significantly contribute in the formation and development of individual personality. These factors influence the nature of things that a person perceives to be essential and beneficial to them. However it is imperative to take note of the fact that despite these aspects being natural, there are some, which are acquired (Ikiuga, 2007). The ones which are acquired are mainly acquired from the environment inhabited by an individual, such as the place they live, work, and interact with people. All these factors serve to influence the behaviour of a person.
For instance, the level of motivation exhibited by people is a function of their personality, as well as the environment they inhabit. There are situations, in which certain individuals thrive in with ease whereas others strive very hard to achieve their objectives. For instance, there are people that find subjects that are based on mathematics to be relatively easier compared to all the other subjects. As a result, such individuals do not require allocating a lot of time for the purpose of studying such a subject. They will spend less time studying this subject, and it is most likely that they will perform well in the examinations. In contrast, there are people who find subjects, which based on mathematics relatively hard, as compared to all the other subjects. As a result, in order for such an individual to excel in that subject, they have to put in a lot of time for studying those subjects.
The level of independence, that an individual has affect his or her performance. This is because; there are people who work well under minimal supervision whereas others need consistent level of supervision in order to accomplish their tasks (Kielhofner, 2009). This implies that in the event that an individual who works under minimal supervision is placed in an environment with a lot of supervision; their level of performance is likely to deteriorate. This model also assumes that, with time, an individual continues to grow and develop. It is as a result that the tastes and preferences of an individual are more likely to change. When tastes and preferences of individuals change, things that motivate such individuals also change, with respect to the change of taste and preference.
The Model of Human Occupation appreciates that the study of human occupation is a complex subject. This is mainly attributable to the fact that human being as complex in nature. As a result, it makes the work of establishing what motivates them to become relatively complex. Human beings are motivated by a variety of things, and their level of motivation is likely to change upon the realisation of certain goals (Kuhaneck, Spitzer, & Miller, 2010). This model notes that the occupations that people chose are mainly as a result of their own personal satisfaction and survival. The model appreciates that it is possible to influence the level of occupational performance displayed by an individual through occupational therapy.
The Model of Human Occupation states that an individual is made up of different components namely: habituation, volition, and performance capacity. The volition component of a human being is composed of emotive and cognitive systems of dispositions for specific occupations (Dunbar, 2007). It is through this component that one is able to understand the values, personal causations, and beliefs. An individual is able to understand how different factors influence their occupational performance through personal causation. Personal causation takes into account both external and internal factors prevalent and likely to affect the occupational performance of an individual.
The theory of Person Environment Occupational Model appreciates that the environment of a person is likely to influence the occupational performance of an individual. This model classifies the environment into five main classes namely; socioeconomic, physical, cultural, social, and institutional. It is within these five classes of the environment that the level of motivation that an individual has is likely to be affected. It is imperative to take note of the fact that all of these categories have equal importance with regard to the occupational performance of an individual (Kuhaneck, Spitzer, & Miller, 2010). In the development of this model, the scholar takes account of different perspectives of environment such as household, community, person, and neighbourhood. This is because all these aspects have a significant impact on the occupational performance of a person and they aid in establishing why an individual displays a certain level of performance.
According to the Model of Human Occupation, habitation is the manner in which a personal turns a certain act of occupational performance into a daily routine and eventually into a habit. This model seeks to establish ways in which various factors are likely to affect the habits of a person. This is done through subjecting a person into different situations and environment, in order to study the manner in which they react to changing conditions. This serves to facilitate the studying of occupational performance given the habits of a person (McColl, 2003). The performance capacity of an individual is mainly influenced by the level of knowledge, skills, and experiences that individual possesses. A person that has high levels of experience, skills, and knowledge is more likely to display higher levels of occupational performance. This model introduces the concept of occupational identity. Occupational identity is the ability of an individual to determine for him or herself the nature of occupation that they would like to engage. Occupational competence is expressed as the ability of an individual to maintain the desired level of occupational performance.
The third variable in the Person Environment Occupation Model of Occupational Performance is the occupation. In this model, occupation is considered to be various tasks that an individual seeks to accomplish, and they add value to their lives. In most cases, occupations are considered to be a life time venture, thus they are carried out throughout the better part of the life of a person (McColl, 2003). The model states that, an occupation is a venture that enables an individual to achieve his or her intrinsic desires such as expression, life satisfaction, and self maintenance. This model also highlights the need to consider the short term features that cover the occupational life of a person. This is because the level of occupational performance that is displayed by a person is usually influenced by the experience they have as professionals.
Dunbar, S. (2007). Occupational Therapy Models for Intervention With Children And Families. New York: Slackbooks.
Ikiuga, M. N. (2007). Psychosocial Conceptual Practice Models in Occupational Therapy: Building Adaptive Capability. New York: MOSBY Elsevier.
Kielhofner, G. (2009). Conceptual foundations of occupational therapy practice. New York: F A Davis Company.
Kuhaneck, H., Spitzer, S., & Miller, E. (2010). Activity Analysis, Creativity and Playfulness in Pediatric Occupational Therapy. New York: Barlett Publishers.
McColl, M. A. (2003). The Theoretical Basis of Occupational Therapy. New York: Slack Inc.