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Research Article  |   June 1986
The Development of a Touch Scale for Measuring Tactile Defensiveness in Children
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Charlotte Brasic Royeen, PhD, OTR, is an Education Research Analyst with the Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education, Washington, DC 20202, and a faculty member of Sensory Integration International. At the time the study was conducted, she was an Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy at Howard University
  • This article was written by the author in her private capacity. No official support or endorsement by the Department of Education is intended or should be inferred.
    This article was written by the author in her private capacity. No official support or endorsement by the Department of Education is intended or should be inferred.×
Article Information
Complementary/Alternative Approaches / Children and Youth
Research Article   |   June 1986
The Development of a Touch Scale for Measuring Tactile Defensiveness in Children
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, June 1986, Vol. 40, 414-419. doi:10.5014/ajot.40.6.414
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, June 1986, Vol. 40, 414-419. doi:10.5014/ajot.40.6.414
Abstract

A three-phase study was conducted to develop an attitude scale measuring tactile defensiveness in children aged 6 to 10 years. It was assumed that the effects of tactile defensiveness on the perception and behavior of children produces stereotypical responses that can be measured by an attitude scale. A 49-item scale was developed and administered to 80 normal and 22 tactually defensive children within a large suburban school district. A subsequent item analysis reduced the scale to 26 items. This touch scale yielded an internal consistency reliability of .79432 and could distinguish between groups at a statistically significant level (.0073). The touch scale offers potential for diagnosing tactually defensive children. However, future research is required before it can be employed as a diagnostic tool. Such research could focus on the test-retest reliability of the scale and the refinement of the diagnostic validity of the test.