The discipline of occupational science has called for an increase in research focusing on the study of occupations. Gray (1997) stated that occupational therapy could benefit from “a more profound understanding of the essence of occupation” (p. 15). Dickie (2003) argues that “one way to achieve this understanding is to examine occupations directly” (p. 120).
Dating is an occupation that has not been examined directly and has recently undergone rapid changes in its practice. Although occupational science research has been done on mate selection (Krishnagiri, 1996), there is a dearth of literature exploring the actual activities surrounding mate selection, how one actually participates actively in this selection which the researcher will refer to as dating. This study will address the gap in the literature by exploring the occupation of dating and the experience of young women participating in dating occupations in Ireland.
A qualitative approach will be used to explore the occupation of dating. Data collection will include the use of semi-structured interviews, direct observation, and cultural material. Interviews will be audiotaped, transcribed. Field notes taken during observation and interviews will be coded using thematic analysis to generate common themes across cases (Braun & Clarke, 2006).
Findings will be reported using themes generated from thematic analysis.
To be determined. Research to be completed by Spring 2016.
Application to Practice:
Implications for understanding the occupation of dating will be discussed with relevance to occupational therapy practice.
McCarthy, Karen and Jackson, Jeanne, "Exploring the Occupation of Dating For Young Women Living in Ireland" (2016). Collected Faculty and Staff Scholarship. 243.