Research Article
Issue Date: May 1998
Published Online: May 01, 1998
Updated: April 30, 2020
Occupation-Centered Assessment of Children
Author Affiliations
  • Wendy Coster, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, is Chair, Department of Occupational Therapy, Boston University, Sargent College of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, 635 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts 02215
Article Information
Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention / School-Based Practice / Special Issue on Occupation-Centered Practice and Education / Guest Editor Wendy Wood
Research Article   |   May 01, 1998
Occupation-Centered Assessment of Children
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 1998, Vol. 52, 337-344.
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, May 1998, Vol. 52, 337-344.
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The past 5 years have seen increasing calls to reexamine our assessment and intervention practices to ensure that they reflect the profession’s basic focus on occupation. Although a number of noteworthy efforts in this direction have been presented for adult practice areas, implementation of occupation-centered assessment in pediatrics has been hampered by the Lack of a consistent frame work to guide this process.

This article will present an adaptation of the functional assessment model proposed by Trombly (1993) designed to better reflect the unique needs and situations of children. It is a multilevel model that examines the pattern of a chiLd’s occupations in a particular environment as well as the performance of important tasks and activities that are part of these occupations. It is proposed that this model can serve as an organizing framework for an occupation-centered assessment process by helping to identify the critical questions that need to be addressed at each level of analysis and the kinds of members that might be used to obtain relevant information. The newly completed School Function Assessment will be used to illustrate application of the framework to examine occupational performance of children in elementary school.