Poster Session
Issue Date: July 2015
Published Online: July 01, 2015
Updated: April 30, 2020
Concurrent Validity of the Adult/Adolescent Sensory History (ASH)
Author Affiliations
  • SPIRAL Foundation, Newton, Massachusetts
Article Information
Sensory Integration and Processing / Assessment/Measurement
Poster Session   |   July 01, 2015
Concurrent Validity of the Adult/Adolescent Sensory History (ASH)
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911500193.
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July 2015, Vol. 69, 6911500193.

Date Presented 4/18/2015

Adults aged 18 to 95 yr completed the Adult/Adolescent Sensory History (ASH) and the Adult/Adolescent Sensory Profile (AASP). Results show strong correlations between the two measures, providing support for construct validity of the ASH as a measure of sensory processing.

SIGNIFICANCE: The Adult/Adolescent Sensory Profile (AASP) is the only published measure of sensory processing in adults; however, it lacks adequate representation of sensory discrimination and praxis skills. The Adult/Adolescent Sensory History (ASH) addresses this gap and presents results in a manner that facilitates individualized treatment planning.
INNOVATION: The ASH’s unique design of having diagnostic criteria for areas of praxis, posture, and sensory discrimination informs clinicians with a more holistic diagnosis and treatment plan for their patients with sensory processing disorder (SPD). This tool is unique in the information provided, which supports clinical reasoning to support treatment planning. It also addresses areas of praxis, posture, and discrimination of sensory inputs not addressed by current measures.
Total scores and similar section scores on the ASH and AASP are strongly correlated, suggesting that both instruments measure similar underlying constructs and components of sensory processing. Extensive research exists on how children process sensory information, but there is far less research on how sensory processing affects adults. In this study, we examined concurrent validity of the ASH in relation to the AASP—the current gold standard for measuring adult sensory processing—through comparison of total and appropriate section scores of the measures.
METHOD: We used a cross-sectional, correlational study design and a convenience sample. Participants included adults aged 18 to 95 yr who had no neurological motor coordination problem, who had no mental health diagnosis or low-functioning autism, and who were able to independently complete study measures.
The ASH is a 188-question, self-report sensory questionnaire for adults examining sensory processing in 7 sensory systems and 13 areas of modulation, discrimination, postural control, praxis, and social–emotional function. Total score, sensory section, and subsection scores are obtained. The AASP is a self-report questionnaire for adults examining sensory processing in adults. Results are reported in sensory-processing styles of low registration, sensory sensitivity, sensory seeking, and sensory avoiding. Using one-tailed Pearson correlations, we compared total scores on the ASH to total scores on the AASP as well as corresponding subsections of the measures.
RESULTS: Results show strong correlations between total scores (r = .78) of the measures. Most subscales (Visual/Spatial, Auditory, Movement, Activity/Social Emotional, and Touch) had moderate to strong significant positive correlations (rs = .54 to .69) except Taste and Smell (r = .31). ASH subscales of Modulation, Discrimination, Praxis, Postural Control, and Proprioceptive Processing were strongly and significantly (p < .01) correlated with subsections of all AASP quadrants except sensory seeking. Discrimination subscore on the ASH correlated strongly with low registration on the AASP (r = .80). The sensory-seeking quadrant on the AASP did not correlate significantly with any ASH scale except for negatively with Praxis.
CONCLUSION: The results of this study show that the ASH and AASP both measure the underlying construct of sensory processing, providing evidence of the construct validity of the ASH. The limitation of this study is the oversampling of the typical population, which could have affected the range of scores of the study. In additional studies, researchers should investigate the relationship between typical and atypical populations using ASH and AASP as measures of SPD.