Technology for Occupation and Participation Network


Technology, whether rehabilitative, adaptive, occupation-related, or as a means to assess or deliver therapy, is a constant in occupational therapy practice. Applications of technology are advancing quickly in all areas of practice. Technology can include products, services, and environments and there is a progressive blurring of these divisions as electronic aids to daily living, ubiquitous technologies, and environmental control are becoming more commonplace. Technology can support individuals of all ages, abilities, and settings to engage in meaningful occupations, and are therefore important to the health and well-being of Canadians. Understanding the use, benefits, limitations, research and practice evidence, provision and policy context with respect to technology is critical to occupational therapy practice now and in the future. Enhancing competency and capacity in practice with advancing technology is a necessity for specialists, and considering the pervasiveness of technology will be a necessity for all occupational therapists.


The CAOT Practice Network, Technology for Occupation and Participation , has several proposed overarching objectives which include the following:

  1. To build a community of engaged occupational therapists with diverse knowledge and skills with respect to technology who support each other in learning and advancing practice;
  2. To facilitate awareness about and interest in the latest research in technology that can support occupational performance and participation;
  3. To build capacity in critically examining provision practices in technology, evaluating and advocating for new technologies that can benefit clients, caregivers, clinicians and the health care system;
  4. To build capacity and take action in developing and implementing policies and practices involving technology that can support occupational justice;
  5. To support interdisciplinary collaboration and practices through outreach and engagement with other professions working in the technology field;
  6. To respond to occupational therapists’ and the public’s needs regarding knowledge, research evidence, and best practices with respect to technology’s role in enabling occupation and participation
  7. To foster awareness, build capacity, and support research related to evaluating OT and participation outcomes with technology oriented interventions.
  8. To build a community of occupational therapists who may be interested in advancing OT practice in new and emerging directions, creating new roles for occupational therapists in product and environmental design that will be useful to clients, caregivers, other occupational therapists, and the general public.


The activities of the network will depend on its specific membership needs.

Some example activities may include:

  1. Leading the development of the CAOT Role Paper for OTs in Technology
  2. Share information and create accessible resources regarding funding for technology in Canada.
  3. Building capacity through training on how to carry out rapid reviews or developing practice guidelines, with the membership to create at least 1 product per year.
  4. Creating a repository of outcome measures that can be used with technology interventions in OT research and practice that supports creation of real-world evidence.
  5. Creating a mentorship network that can operate through video calls.
  6. Setting up bimonthly video calls for members to share local projects, resources, research or practice evidence or discuss events that they have attended that may be of interest to the network.
  7. Through social media and the CAOT Practice Network website, highlight practice and research contributions of CAOT members working in the field of technology to support public awareness of OT.

Contact  if you are interested in participating in the CAOT Practice Network: Technology for Occupation and Participation.

Network Co-chairs:  Emma Smith, PhD, OT, ATP/SM, Rosalie Wang, PhD, OT Reg. (Ont.)

Communications and events lead: Anna Braunizer, MSc.OT, Reg. OT (BC)  
Research evidence advancement lead: Megan McPherson, PhD (c), MSc.OT, Reg. OT (BC)
Professional practice/continuing education lead: Cara Sadiq, PhD (c), MSc.OT, OT Reg. (Ont)


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