Immigration and its Impact on Daily Occupations: A Scoping Review


Kayla Marie Bennett, The University of Western Ontario, Occupational Therapy, Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada.



Immigrants often adopt new and unfamiliar occupations in an attempt to adapt to their new culture. Occupations provide a means for participation in the host country and play a significant role in formulating a person's identity. This scoping review sought to identify the current knowledge on immigration and its impact on occupations. A scoping review for peer-reviewed articles published between 2000 and 2010 in English or French was completed. Thirty-six articles met the inclusion criteria. Four themes were identified: 1) role change; 2) work; 3) identity; and 4) health and well-being. Limitations include the lack of a consistent definition of occupation, research primarily being conducted in the North American context and the limited number of occupational therapy based articles. Future research should focus on a systematic review of the lived experiences of immigrants and their occupational contexts, and how this can inform policy development. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.