The purpose of this study was to compare the use of crafts in psychiatric occupational therapy practice with the actual craft-related training received by occupational therapy students. Two questionnaires were developed, one related to the crafts used in clinical practice, the other related to the amount and type of craft training received in educational programs. One thousand occupational therapists who work in psychiatry and 139 accredited and developing educational programs were asked to complete the questionnaire appropriate to their setting. The final analysis involved 121 educational programs (87% response rate) and 384 clinical programs (38% response rate). The results suggest that there may be substantial differences between craft related training and actual clinical use of crafts.
The findings imply that educational programs must reevaluate the types of crafts taught and the method by which they are integrated into the total curriculum. Implications for the profession include the need to clarify the role of crafts as a therapeutic modality and to reflect on the future direction of the profession.