Research Article
Issue Date: September/October 1999
Published Online: September 01, 1999
Updated: April 30, 2020
Reliability and Validity of the Self-Assessment of Occupational Functioning
Author Affiliations
  • Alexis D. Henry, ScD, OTR/L, FAOTA, is Research Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Center for Mental Health Services Research, University of Massachusetts Medical School, 55 Lake Avenue North, Worcester, Massachusetts 01655
  • Kathi Brenneman Baron, MS, OTR/L, is Manager, WorkSite Program, University of Illinois at Chicago Medical Center, Chicago, Illinois
  • Laurie Mouradian, ScD, OTR/L, is Associate Professor, Department of Occupational Therapy, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Clare Curtin, PhD, OTR/L, is School-Based Occupational Therapist, Jefferson County Public Schools, Golden, Colorado
Article Information
Mental Health / Rehabilitation, Participation, and Disability / Assessment
Research Article   |   September 01, 1999
Reliability and Validity of the Self-Assessment of Occupational Functioning
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, September/October 1999, Vol. 53, 482-488.
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, September/October 1999, Vol. 53, 482-488.
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Objective. Two studies examined the reliability and validity of the Self-Assessment of Occupational Functioning (SAOF), a 23-item self-assessment of perceptions of strengths and weaknesses relative to occupational functioning, grounded in the Model of Human Occupation.

Method. The first study examined the test–retest reliability of the SAOF, and involved 37 college students without disabilities who completed the SAOF twice. The second study, which involved 39 young persons hospitalized with psychiatric disorders, examined internal consistency reliability of the SAOF, and examined correlations between SAOF scores and composite scores on the Self-Perception Profile, a widely used measure of perceived competence. In addition, data from both studies were combined to examine the ability of the SAOF to discriminate between the college students without disabilities and the young persons with psychiatric disorders.

Results. Kappa and intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) were used to examine test–retest reliability and Cronbach’s alpha was used to examine internal consistency. Acceptable levels of test–retest (ICCs) and internal consistency (Cronbach’s alpha) reliability were found for the subscale and total scores of the SAOF. However, test–retest reliability (kappa) was lower than desirable for many of the individual SAOF items. The young persons with psychiatric disorders had lower item, subscale, and total scores on the SAOF than did the college students without disabilities. In addition, a discriminant analysis predicting group membership (college students without disability vs. young persons with psychiatric disorder) correctly classified 76.6% of the participants based on the four subscale scores of the SAOF.

Conclusion. The SAOF has the potential to be a reliable and valid clinical assessment; however, additional research is needed.