Subtle Realism and Occupational Therapy: an Alternative Approach to Knowledge Generation and Evaluation

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Occupational therapists are increasingly engaging in research. As this occurs, important and challenging questions are being asked about the most appropriate research approaches to use. Strongly held perspectives of what best constitutes evidence often conflict with influential hierarchies of research. The British Journal of Occupational Therapy has, in recent years, published a variety of papers and letters that have presented and defended effectively the differing perspectives of research approaches. Each of these has presented challenges to occupational therapy research. This opinion piece supports a combinist approach to research. It presents and defends such an approach from a subtle realist perspective.

Document Type: Short Communication

Publication date: October 1, 2004

More about this publication?
  • The British Journal of Occupational Therapy (BJOT) is the official journal of the College of Occupational Therapists. Its purpose is to publish articles relevant to theory, practice, research, education and management in occupational therapy internationally.

    BJOT publishes research articles, critical reviews, practice analyses, opinion pieces, editorials, letters to the editor, book reviews and an annual index. Please refer to the author's guide at

    Submissions can be made at

    The 2013 Impact Factor for The British Journal of Occupational Therapy is 0.897.

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