The Research Behind the CO-OP Approach

Earn 1 hour of continuing education by joining the OT Potential Club after listening to this OT Potential Podcast course on the CO-OP Approach.
Research Behind the CO-OP Approach™ with Tee Stock

If you haven’t been following the exciting research behind the CO-OP Approach, this episode is for you. 

CO-OP stands for Cognitive Orientation to (Daily) Occupational Performance. This is a trademarked approach with a formal certification program, so we won’t be teaching the actual method. However, we’ll be discussing the research behind the CO-OP Approach, as well as some ways it can impact your practice. 

We’ll explore the primary research article, where the CO-OP Approach is performed by OTs in a group setting. You’ll see its impact on “body function, activity, AND participation,” and you’ll be pleased to learn that the researchers determined the approach works 🙂

After spending time in the article, we will be joined by Tee Stock, OTR/L, OTD, MS, MBA. Tee owns her own practice providing pediatric therapy in the home, and she is also certified in the CO-OP Approach. She and I will discuss the research and practical implications for OTs, so you can gain useful takeaways for your own practice.

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Earn continuing education by taking this Research Behind the CO-OP Approach™ course.
Earn 1 hour of continuing education

1. Listen to the podcast for free.

2. Sign up for the OT Potential Club.

3. Pass the quiz and download your certificate!

Primary Research Explored

When you log in, be sure to check out the OT Potential Club’s written breakdown of the following research article. Then, share your questions and thoughts with fellow practitioners.

Thornton, A., Licari, M., Reid, S., Armstrong, J., Fallows, R., &; Elliott, C. (2016). Cognitive orientation to (daily) occupational performance intervention leads to improvements in impairments, activity and participation in children with developmental coordination disorder. Disability and Rehabilitation, 38(10), 979–986. 

Supplementary materials

Here are the supplementary materials we mentioned in the episode


  • Child Occupational Self Assessment (COSA)
  • Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM)
  • Goal Attainment Scaling (GAS)
  • Movement Assessment Battery for Children – Second Edition (MABC-2)
  • Pediatric Activity Card Sort (PACS)
  • Perceived Efficacy and Goal Setting System (PEGS)
  • Performance Quality Rating Scale (PQRS)

Secondary Research 

Araujo, C. R., Cardoso, A. A., Polatajko, H. J., &; de Castro Magalhães, L. (2021). Efficacy of the cognitive orientation to Daily Occupational Performance (co-op) approach with and without parental coaching on activity and participation for children with developmental coordination disorder: A randomized clinical trial. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 110, 103862.  

Novak, I., &; Honan, I. (2019). Effectiveness of paediatric occupational therapy for children with disabilities: A systematic review. Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, 66(3), 258–273. 

Learning Objectives

  • You will be able to identify outcomes measures utilized to determine the effectiveness of the CO-OP Approach™. 
  • You will be able to recognize the limitations of the research behind the CO-OP Approach™. 


Intro (5 minutes)

Breakdown and analysis of journal article (10 minutes)

  • What is the CO-OP Approach™?
  • Why did the authors choose to focus on “body function, activity, and participation?”
  • What was the goal of this paper?
  • What were the authors’ methods?
  • What outcome measures were used?
  • What were the results?
  • Discussion and conclusion
  • Takeaways for OT practitioners

Discussion on practical implications for OTs (with guest Tee Stock) (45 minutes)

  • Tell us the story of how you found OT- and then how you found the CO-OP Approach™.
  • What was your initial impression of the article? 
  • Can you tell us about your experience getting certified in the CO-OP Approach™?
  • What do you look for in a client to consider using the CO-OP Approach™ with them?
  • If you decide to use the CO-OP Approach™ as an intervention, can you tell us what an evaluation might look like?
  • Then, what might the intervention look like?
  • In your experience, how have kids and their families reacted to the CO-OP method?
  • In your opinion, which therapists are a good fit for further training in CO-OP?
  • Did reading this article make you think differently about how you might approach CO-OP sessions in the future? 
  • How has being trained in the CO-OP method made you think differently about your overall OT care?
  • If we have extra time: What research questions would you like to see answered about the CO-OP method in the future?

Contact Hours

1 hour (0.1 AOTA CEUs). Released online from Aurora, NE.

This course on the research behind the CO-OP Approach™ is AOTA approved!

Target Audience/Educational Level

Our target audience is occupational therapy practitioners who are looking to learn about the CO-OP Approach™. The educational level is introductory.

Instructional Methods/Registration/Special Needs Requests/Cancellation Policy

This course is an independent/self-study course delivered via podcast on iTunes, Spotify and Google Play. Explore your listening options on the OT Potential Podcast page.

If you need accommodations to take this course, please contact us and we will address your needs on an individual basis.

If this course were to be cancelled, please see our cancellation policy on our terms page.

Course Completion Requirements

In order to receive a certificate for this course, you must first listen to the podcast in its entirety. Then, you will need to take the test (found at the top of this page) and earn 75% or higher. If you pass, a certificate will be automatically generated and sent to your email.

Financial and Non-financial Disclosures

It is the policy of OT Potential to disclose any financial and non-financial interest the provider or instructor may have in a product or service mentioned during an activity. This is to ensure that the audience is made aware of any bias of the speaker.

We here at OT Potential have no financial stake in this topic. Our guest, Tee Stock, has no financial interest in this topic to disclose.


Tee Stock, OTR/L, OTD, MS, MBA:

Tee Stock, OTR/L, OTD, MS, MBA

Tee Stock has been an occupational therapist since 1998, specializing in school and home-based practice. She became a faculty member at MGHIHP in 2019 and teaches in their OT program. She has experience working with schools, families, and other service providers.

Dr. Stock completed her Master of Occupational Therapy at Tufts University in 1998 and her Doctorate in Occupational Therapy at Quinnipiac University in 2017. Dr. Stock conducted her doctoral research study on postsecondary transition planning and the roles that OTPs have in the process. She also has a Master in Business Administration from Bentley University and recently presented a webinar on OT and entrepreneurship for AOTA.

Dr. Stock has presented on the Cognitive Orientation to Occupational Performance (CO-OP) Approach, handwriting, sensory integration, occupational therapy, school-based OT practice, transition planning, and using the occupational profile to improve evaluations. She is a co-author of an AOTA PowerPoint on the role of OTPs in Transition Planning. Dr. Stock has worked on client-centered occupational therapy and transition planning in public schools, a private special education school, for a local collaborative, and in her local community.

She is certified in Astronaut Training, Therapeutic Listening, the CO-OP method, and Handwriting Without Tears and has extensive continuing education in the areas of autism, sensory processing, handwriting, social skills, transition planning, and other topics. Dr. Stock is the co-author of an upcoming book chapter on school-based occupational therapy.

Sarah Lyon, OTR/L:

Sarah Lyon, OTR/L

Sarah’s passion is helping fellow OT practitioners translate evidence into daily practice. Sarah earned her BA in religion from St. Olaf College, then earned her master’s degree in occupational therapy from New York University in 2011. Since then, she’s worked in numerous facilities, including a critical access hospital, an acute trauma hospital, and a state inpatient psychiatric hospital.

Sarah is the founder/owner of OT Potential. Read more about OT Potential here.

This course was designed to meet your continuing education requirements

We designed the courses in the Club to meet the requirements for “online” and “independent/self-study” courses. For more details read our blog post: Can I earn OT CEUS from a podcast? To verify the requirements from your specific state (within the US), check out our post, OT Continuing Education Explained. If you are outside of the United States and have questions, please contact us.

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