Natalie Bennett Brown, Winnie Dunn; Relationship Between Context and Sensory Processing in Children With Autism. Am J Occup Ther 2010;64(3):474–483. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2010.09077
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OBJECTIVE. The purpose of the study was to determine the relationship between sensory processing and context for children with autism. We examined home and school contexts using the Sensory Profile (Dunn, 1999) and the Sensory Profile School Companion (Dunn, 2006a) questionnaires.
METHOD. Teachers of 49 students with autism completed the Sensory Profile School Companion, and parents completed the Sensory Profile. We conducted correlational analyses using the avoiding and seeking quadrant scores from the School Companion and corresponding avoiding and seeking quadrant scores from the Sensory Profile.
RESULTS. The avoiding quadrant score coefficient (.59) and the seeking quadrant score coefficient (.45) were statistically significant (p = .01) with good and fair correlations, respectively, suggesting that sensory processing patterns have both universal qualities and context-specific qualities in children with autism.
CONCLUSION. Findings from this study provide initial evidence that sensory processing and context for children with autism are related.
Registration is described as the degree to which a child misses sensory input (high neurological threshold and passive response).
Seeking is the degree to which a child obtains sensory input. Children in the seeking quadrant also have a high neurological threshold but respond actively. Children with low neurological thresholds fall into the sensitivity or avoiding quadrants.
Sensitivity is the degree to which a child notices sensory input (passive response).
Avoiding is the degree to which a child is bothered by sensory input (active response).
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