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South African Journal of Occupational Therapy

On-line version ISSN 2310-3833
Print version ISSN 0038-2337


WALLACE, Kerry; FRANZSEN, Denise  and  POTTERTON, Joanne. Development of an Occupational Performance Questionnaire for preschool children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder. S. Afr. j. occup. ther. [online]. 2016, vol.46, n.2, pp.23-30. ISSN 2310-3833.

BACKGROUND AND AIM: Outcome measures in occupational therapy (OT) are needed to provide evidence of the effectiveness of OT intervention. The aim of this study was to develop an occupational performance assessment specific to preschool children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD). METHODOLOGY: An instrument development design was used to describe the steps in the development of the Occupational Performance Questionnaire (OPQ) which consisted of two parts:- Part 1 General Information, Part 2, OPQ: Occupational Performance Areas (OPQ:OPA) and OPQ: Family Impact (OPQ: FI). Content, construct and convergent validity, test-retest reliability and internal consistency for the OPQ was established. The OPQ was field tested with parents of 19 pre-schoolers with ASD receiving weekly OT intervention, who completed the OPQ three times over a one year period. RESULTS: Content analysis confirmed the appropriateness of the items and the OPQ was responsive to change over time for the OPQ:OPA and OPQ:FI. Convergence of the OPQ:OPA with the Short Sensory Profile (SSP) and the OPQ:FI with the Parent Stress Index (PSI-SF) was moderate to weak. The items on the OPQ had test-retest reliability and internal consistency at acceptable levels. CONCLUSIONS: The OPQ is an inexpensive, parent report outcome measure appropriate for use with South African pre-school children with ASD designed to evaluate change in their OPAs over time. Further research in psychometric analysis and standardisation of the OPQ is recommended.

Keywords : Autism Spectrum Disorder; Psychometric evaluation; Occupational Performance; Preschool children; Parent report outcome measure.

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