A model of professional thinking: integrating reflective practice and evidence based practice

Katrina Bannigan, Alis Moores

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Internationally, occupational therapists operate in increasing complex health and social care settings. To function in this environment, high-level thinking skills are required. Reflective practice and evidence-based practice are two key skills that shape the way occupational therapists think.

To integrate reflective practice and evidence-based practice so that their complementary qualities form part of a model of professional thinking.

Key issues
Reflective practice and evidence-based practice skills both contribute to clinical reasoning. The “model of professional thinking” can enable occupational therapists to integrate these two skills into their professional thinking.

Rather than teaching reflective practice and evidence-based practice as discrete subjects, “professional thinking” should be taught as an overarching topic within curricula. This may mean changes to the organisation and delivery of curricula, including practice placements. This model of professional thinking will need to be evaluated.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)342-350
Number of pages9
JournalCanadian Journal of Occupational Therapy
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2009



  • clinical decision making
  • evidence based practice
  • occupational therapy
  • reflection
  • curriculum development
  • thinking

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