Mary J. Bridle First Research Award

rev. 2/17

The purpose of the award is to foster scholarship and first research efforts within the occupational therapy community of students, young practitioners, and early researchers. It supports Pi Theta Epsilon’s mission of promoting research and scholarly activities within the field of occupational therapy. The Mary J. Bridle Award provides an opportunity for Pi Theta Epsilon members to have a research manuscript reviewed by experts in the field and considered for publication in OTJR: Occupation, Participation and Health. Additionally, a cash award of $750 is given. The Mary J. Bridle Award will be available annually but will be awarded only when manuscripts of sufficient caliber are submitted. 


Click here for a list of all PTE Mary J. Bridle First Research Award Recipients.


The PTE Executive Committee and National Coordinator will organize review of all submitted research manuscripts. The review will be conducted by three anonymous reviewers offering expertise in the area of the manuscript subject. Publication is conditional on and will proceed in accordance with the policies of OTJR with final approval of its editor-in-chief.


Application Instructions

Submissions must be emailed to by October 1 of each year. Curriculum vitae (CV) for each author must be included. For blinded review, the manuscript must not identify either the student or educational program with which s/he is associated. It is the applicant’s responsibility to see that all identifying materials have been removed; failure to do so will disqualify the manuscript. The applicant’s contact information should be provided in a cover letter which should also include definitive statements regarding each of the following:

  1. When the study was initiated, and how it was related to the author’s educational program at the time (e.g. “the manuscript was a required clinical research project during fieldwork,” “the manuscript was a term paper required for a course in research,” etc). 
  2. Identify any faculty members in your program who have assisted you in any way with the study for the purpose of ensuring no conflict of interest in the review process. 
  3. Verify (as appropriate) approval granted by an Institutional Review Board (IRB) if relevant to the study. Please note that some studies, such as retrospective studies or systematic reviews, may be acceptable for submission but do not generally require IRB approval. See OTJR’s website for current submission guidelines.
  4. Indicate whether or not the manuscript has been accepted for publication elsewhere. [Note: manuscripts previously published or in the process of publication are NOT eligible for this award].
  5. A short paragraph of no more than 100 words to appear in professional publications citing the applicant's contributions and a brief overview of the subject.

Submission Checklist:

 Item  Deadline
 Letter of Intent:  A brief outline of your project (1-2 sentences) which details the OT topic. 
 (The title of your manuscript is acceptable. 
 September 15
 Cover letter  October 1
 De-identified manuscript  October 1
 Curriculum vitae for each author  October 1
 Recent photograph of applicants suitable for reproduction
 (hi resolution 300 dpi or greater, .jpg preferred)
 October 1


Any occupational therapy student, practitioner, or researcher who is a member in good standing of Pi Theta Epsilon may submit a manuscript provided the following criteria are met:

  1. The applicant is one of the following:
    a)   currently enrolled as a student in an entry-level or post-professional clinical OT program. 
    b)   currently enrolled as a PhD, ScD, EdD, or post-doctoral student in a rehabilitation-related program. 
    c)   within three years post-graduation from one of the academic programs listed above.
  2. The applicant is an author on the study; and 
  3. The manuscript has not been previously published.

Applicants may submit as a team if multiple Pi Theta Epsilon members are co-authors on a manuscript. The monetary award would be provided to the chapter to be distributed at the chapter advisor’s discretion.

Criteria for the Research Manuscript 

Research MUST: 


  1. Not have been published before nor in the process of publication elsewhere at the time of submission for the Mary J. Bridle Award. 
  2. Add to the body of knowledge of occupational therapy. 
  3. Clearly demonstrate significance to the field of occupational therapy. 
  4. Present logical development of rationale for the study and for the specific research question. 
  5. Demonstrate methodologically correct form for the research question(s) asked by the study (not applicable to scholarly studies). 
  6. Follow submission guidelines for feature articles in OTJR: Occupation, Participation and Health. See the OTJR website for current information for authors.


The award will be announced at the next National Student Conclave and the recipients recognized at the awards ceremony at the next AOTA Annual Conference.



Contact Michele Fernandez, PTE National Coordinator.


PTE Mary J. Bridle First Research Award Recipients

2017    Sara S. Ulfers
Occupational therapists' Perceived Knowledge Needs on Cancer-Related Cognitive Impairments
1999    Beth Hall, MOT, OTR/L
            Lisa Ross, MOT, OTR/L 
An Examination of the Effect of Materials on Occupational Performance Through Kinematics Analysis of Eating
2014    Beta Delta Chapter at Nova Southeastern University
Health Care Profession Students' Knowledge about Occupational Therapy
1998    Kyle Russell
Use of Occupational Therapy Aides in Occupational Therapy Practice
2007    Laureen R. Franklin, MS, OTR/L
Behavior Problems and Sensory Processing in Children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum
1997    Mary Ponte-Allan, MOT
Goal Setting and Functional Outcomes in Rehabilitation
2005    Kimberly A. Van Den Wymelenberg, MS, OTR/L
Early Intervention Service Eligibility: Implications of Using Different Editions of the Peabody Developmental Motor Scales and Different Types Scores
1996    Claire Yanoshak, MS, OTR/L
Impact of Spinal Cord Injury on the Life Roles of Women
2002    Dorothy "Dottie" Handley-More
Facilitating Written Work Using Word Processing and Word Prediction
1995    Sheri Zimmerer-Branum
Occupationally Embedded Exercise
2001    Renee Watling, MS, OTR/L 
Current Practice of Occupational Therapy for Children with Autism

1994    Steven Park, MS, OTR/L
Using the Assessment of Motor and Process Skills to Compare Occupational Performance Between Clinic and Home Settings

2000    Roxann Beauregard, MOT, OTR/L, MS, CCC-SLP
Quality of Reach During a Game and During a Rote Movement in Children with Cerebral Palsy