Research Areas research areas


  • Ariel Schwartz is committed to advancing knowledge about the use of inclusive/participatory research approaches with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Throughout all of her research, she partners with individuals with intellectual/developmental disabilities.

    Her research is focused on participation and wellness for transition-age youth with intellectual/developmental disabilities. Recent research has addressed employment for transition-age youth with co-occurring mental health conditions, the development and testing of a peer mentoring intervention to address mental health self-management for transition-age youth, and the development of accessible research ethics training that will support individuals with disabilities to take on a range of research roles. Dr. Schwartz has also contributed to the development of an accessible patient-reported outcome measure (the PEDI-PRO) for young adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities and co-developed a framework of cognitive accessibility for patient-reported outcome measures.

    Dr. Schwartz’s research has been funded by NIDILRR and PCORI, in addition to a range of local and national foundations. She has also served as a Consultant, Engagement Coordinator, and Project Manager for multiple PCORI and NIH-funded studies.
    In addition, Dr. Schwartz has clinical experience as an occupational therapist in inpatient mental health and community-based settings.
  • Selected Publications

    Academic Article

    Year Title
    2024 Exploring the impact of mental health symptoms in the workplace and supportive accommodations for young adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities and co-occurring mental health conditionsJournal of Mental Health Research in Intellectual Disabilities.  17:83-105. 2024
    2024 Experiences from the implementation of physical therapy via telehealth for individuals with Parkinson disease during the COVID-19 pandemic.Disability and Rehabilitation.  46:1593-1601. 2024
    2023 'Being a part of something': Experiences and perceived benefits of young adult peer mentors with intellectual/developmental disabilities and co-occurring mental health conditions.Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities.  36:1067-1075. 2023
    2023 Psychometric testing of the Icelandic Occupational Self-Assessment (OSA-IS).Scandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy.  30:771-781. 2023
    2023 Who is Delivering Sexual Health Education Content to Young Adults with Intellectual or Developmental Disability?: A Survey of US-Based School-Based Professionals and ParentsSexuality and Disability: a journal devoted to the psychological and medical aspects of sexuality in rehabilitation and community settings.  41:189-200. 2023
    2023 Anticipating the outcomes: how young adults with developmental disabilities and co-occurring mental health conditions make decisions about disclosure of their mental health conditions at workDisability and Rehabilitation.  45:602-612. 2023
    2022 Supporting young adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities to deliver a peer mentoring intervention: Evaluating fidelity and resources required.Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities.  35:1336-1347. 2022
    2022 Eligibility criteria in NIH-funded clinical trials: Can adults with intellectual disability get in?Disability and Health Journal.  15:101368-101368. 2022
    2022 Feasibility of a peer mentoring programme for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and co‐occurring mental health conditionsBritish Journal of Learning Disabilities.  50:433-445. 2022
    2022 Predictors of community-based employment for young adults with intellectual disability and co-occurring mental health conditions.Disability and Rehabilitation.  44:1609-1618. 2022
    2022 Clinical applications of the VIA Inventory of Strengths with Individuals with Intellectual/Developmental DisabilitiesThe Journal of Positive Psychology: dedicated to furthering research and promoting good practice.  18:439-448. 2022
    2022 How people with intellectual and developmental disabilities on collaborative research teams use technology: A rapid scoping review.Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities.  35:88-111. 2022
    2021 Adoption of Patient-Reported Outcome Measures With Youth With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: Contextual Influences and Practice PatternsAmerican Journal of Occupational Therapy.  75:7512500058p1-7512500058p1. 2021
    2021 Feasibility of a Peer-Mentoring Intervention for Young Adults With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Co-Occurring Mental Health ConditionsAmerican Journal of Occupational Therapy.  75:7512515356p1-7512515356p1. 2021
    2021 Usability and Reliability of the Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory-Patient Reported Outcome (PEDI-PRO) Software Interface for Youth With DDAmerican Journal of Occupational Therapy.  75:7512500004p1-7512500004p1. 2021
    2021 Adoption of patient-reported outcome measures with youth with intellectual/developmental disabilities: Contextual influences and practice patterns.Child: Care, Health and Development.  47:501-508. 2021
    2021 Impact of COVID-19 on services for people with disabilities and chronic health conditions.Disability and Health Journal.  14:101090. 2021
    2021 Inclusive approaches to developing content valid patient-reported outcome measure response scales for youth with intellectual/developmental disabilities.British Journal of Learning Disabilities.  49:100-110. 2021
    2021 Usability and Reliability of an Accessible Patient-Reported Outcome Measure (PROM) Software: The Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory–Patient-Reported Outcome (PEDI–PRO)American Journal of Occupational Therapy.  75:7501205010p1-7501205010p10. 2021
    2020 Occupational Therapy Practitioners’ Knowledge, Comfort, and Competence Regarding Youth SuicideOccupation Participation and Health.  40:270-276. 2020
    2020 Stakeholder-driven approach to developing a peer-mentoring intervention for young adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities and co-occurring mental health conditions.Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities.  33:992-1004. 2020
    2020 “Team is everything”: Reflections on trust, logistics and methodological choices in collaborative interviewingBritish Journal of Learning Disabilities.  48:115-123. 2020
    2020 Photovoice with Individuals with Intellectual and/or Developmental Disabilities: Lessons Learned from Inclusive Research EffortsCollaborations: A Journal of Community-Based Research and Practice.  3. 2020
    2020 "That Felt Like Real Engagement": Fostering and Maintaining Inclusive Research Collaborations With Individuals With Intellectual Disability.Qualitative Health Research.  30:236-249. 2020
    2019 Improving Research and Practice: Priorities for Young Adults with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities and Mental Health NeedsJournal of Mental Health Research in Intellectual Disabilities.  12:97-125. 2019
    2019 Youth’s Perspective of Responsibility: Exploration of a Construct for Measurement with Youth with Developmental DisabilitiesPhysical and Occupational Therapy in Pediatrics.  39:204-216. 2019
    2019 Understanding self-determination as a crucial component in promoting the distinct value of occupational therapy in post-secondary transition planningJournal of Occupational Therapy, Schools and Early Intervention: innovations in practice, theory, and research.  12:129-143. 2019
    2018 “I just had to be flexible and show good patience”: management of interactional approaches to enact mentoring roles by peer mentors with developmental disabilitiesDisability and Rehabilitation.  40:2364-2371. 2018
    2018 Development of the Pediatric Disability Inventory-Patient Reported Outcome (PEDI-PRO) measurement conceptual framework and item candidatesScandinavian Journal of Occupational Therapy.  25:335-346. 2018
    2018 Initial evaluation of the effects of an environmental-focused problem-solving intervention for transition-age young people with developmental disabilities: Project TEAM.Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology.  60:801-809. 2018
    2018 Patient-reported outcome measures for young people with developmental disabilities: incorporation of design features to reduce cognitive demands.Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology.  60:173-184. 2018
    2017 Refining the Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory-Patient-Reported Outcome (PEDI-PRO) item candidates: interpretation of a self-reported outcome measure of functional performance by young people with neurodevelopmental disabilities.Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology.  59:1083-1088. 2017
    2017 Reducing Barriers to Patient-Reported Outcome Measures for People With Cognitive ImpairmentsArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.  98:1705-1715. 2017
    2016 A Participatory Approach to Developing the new Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory Patient-Reported OutcomeAmerican Journal of Occupational Therapy.  70:7011500002p1-7011500002p1. 2016
    Youth Experiences of the IDEA-Mandated Transition Planning Process: a Metasynthesis of Youth VoicesReview Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
    “It’ll Grow Organically and Naturally": The Reciprocal Relationship between Student Groups and Disability Studies on College CampusesDisability Studies Quarterly.  34.

    Teaching Activities

  • Independent Study Taught course
  • Education And Training

  • Ph.D. Rehabilitation Science, Boston University
  • Full Name

  • Ariel Schwartz