Participatory action research and young adults with psychiatric disabilities

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry

Publication Date


Document Type



Adaptation, Psychological; Age Factors; *Community-Based Participatory Research; Cooperative Behavior; Disability Evaluation; *Health Services Research; Humans; Mentally Disabled Persons; *Research Personnel; Research Support as Topic; Social Facilitation; Vocational Guidance; Young Adult


Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatry and Psychology


TOPIC: Participatory Action Research (PAR) methods are increasingly being used to include people with psychiatric disabilities in the research production process. PAR places a strong emphasis on collaboration between academic researchers and the disadvantaged community, along with strategies for overcoming barriers to collaboration.

PURPOSE: The author describes key principles for engaging young adults with psychiatric disabilities as research associates in a participatory action research (PAR) project.

SOURCES USED: Over the past decade, the author developed substantial knowledge by leading or co-leading five (5) funded PAR projects with young adults with psychiatric disabilities and has integrated this experience with an analysis of relevant publications.

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: The key components for achieving successful PAR with young adult researchers align well with the literature on PAR with adults with psychiatric disabilities. Specific adaptations for transition age youth researchers include mentorship from more experienced researchers and the availability of specialized vocational supports.

DOI of Published Version



Psychiatr Rehabil J. 2012 Winter;35(3):231-4. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Psychiatric rehabilitation journal

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed