A scoping review of the Photovoice method: implications for occupational therapy research

Can J Occup Ther. 2012 Jun;79(3):181-90. doi: 10.2182/cjot.2012.79.3.8.


Background: Photovoice is a participatory action research method combining photography and group work to give people an opportunity to record and reflect on their daily lives.

Purpose: To review the use of Photovoice in health research and consider the implications for occupational therapy research.

Methods: Literature review, guided by a scoping framework, reveals the purposes, rationales and populations with whom Photovoice has been used.

Findings: From 351 documents retrieved, 191 original studies were surveyed; 68% were peer-reviewed. The majority of studies (76%) occurred within the public health domain and a smaller percentage (24%) with individuals experiencing a specific illness and/or disability, with very few (2%) documented in the occupational therapy literature.

Implications: Photovoice provides a useful framework to apply a participant-centred research approach on occupational participation. It is important to consider and further examine ethical and methodological issues related to stigma, physical and cognitive capacities, mobility and technical accessibility related to using this method.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Group Processes*
  • Humans
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Photography*
  • Research Design*