Michael Iwama, PhD, MSc, BScOT, BScHP

Michael Iwama
Dean and Professor
School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
Occupational Therapy
(617) 726-3170
Office Location: 
Shouse - 261

Michael Iwama, PhD, MSc, BScOT, is Dean of the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, and Professor in the Department of Occupational Therapy.

Dean Iwama previously was professor and chair of the Department of Occupational Therapy at  Augusta University (formerly the Medical College of Georgia).

Dean Iwama is widely recognized for having developed the “Kawa Model” (‘Kawa’ is Japanese for ‘River’), the first substantial model of practice in the rehabilitation sciences developed outside the English-speaking world. The Kawa Model is now taught in over 600 health professions education programs internationally and used in practice across six continents. He has emerged as a very important and progressive thinker in the fields of occupational therapy and rehabilitation sciences worldwide.
Dean Iwama draws on his rich experience of acculturating into Eastern and Western social spheres of experience to drive his profound and critical perspectives on culture and its intersections with theory and practice in the rehabilitation sciences. 

A passionate and captivating communicator, Dean Iwama regularly is invited to lecture to both U.S. and international audiences. Since his book, The Kawa Model: Culturally Relevant Occupational Therapy, was published in 2006, he has given over 350 invited national and international lectures and over 50 keynote and plenary addresses at scientific and professional conferences. He has more than 25 publications in both English and Japanese professional journals. 

Dean Iwama is also an adjunct professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto and holds similar adjunct professorial appointments at six universities in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Asia. 

He completed advanced studies in Medical Anthropology from University of Leiden, Netherlands, a PhD in Sociology from Kibi International University in Japan, a MSc in Rehabilitation Sciences from University of British Columbia, a BSc in Occupational Therapy from University of British Columbia, and a BSc in Human Performance from the University of Victoria.


BSc, Human Performance, University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
BSc, Occupational Therapy, University of British Columbia, Canada
MSc, Rehabilitation Sciences, University of British Columbia, Canada
PhD, Sociology, Kibi International University, Takahashi, Okayama, Japan
PhD (ABD), Medical Anthropology, University of Leiden, the Netherlands