Free
Poster Session
Issue Date: August 2016
Published Online: August 01, 2016
Updated: January 01, 2021
Test–Retest of the Purdue Pegboard in Adults With Intellectual Disabilities
Author Affiliations
  • Washington University in St. Louis
  • Belmont University
  • Texas Christian University
Article Information
Intellectual Disabilities / Assessment/Measurement
Poster Session   |   August 01, 2016
Test–Retest of the Purdue Pegboard in Adults With Intellectual Disabilities
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2016, Vol. 70, 7011500058. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2016.70S1-PO5105
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, August 2016, Vol. 70, 7011500058. https://doi.org/10.5014/ajot.2016.70S1-PO5105
Abstract

Date Presented 4/8/2016

The test–retest reliability of the Purdue Pegboard in adults with intellectual disabilities is largely unknown, limiting the interpretability of this measure in this population. This study shows that the Purdue Pegboard is a reliable measure of manual dexterity in adults with intellectual disabilities.

Primary Author and Speaker: Kara Schule

Additional Authors and Speakers: Mary Beth Tumminello, Phil Esposito

PURPOSE: The Purdue Pegboard is a common test used in occupational therapy settings to measure fine motor dexterity. The purpose of this study was to examine the test–retest reliability of the Purdue Pegboard in adults with intellectual disabilities (including Down syndrome).
RATIONALE: Previous research has shown that persons with intellectual disabilities have decreased fine motor coordination. As a result of this lack of fine motor coordination, self-care tasks, such as using a toothbrush or knife and dressing, may be difficult for this population. The Purdue Pegboard is a test of manual dexterity and bimanual coordination that is often used in an occupational therapy setting. Although the Purdue Pegboard does not directly measure functional ability, it measures fine motor dexterity, which is necessary to perform functional tasks. The test–retest reliability of this test remain largely unknown in this group, limiting the interpretability of this measure in this population.
DESIGN: Descriptive, pre–post design
PARTICIPANTS: Twenty-eight individuals with intellectual disabilities (ages 18–50 yr) were recruited during a statewide Special Olympics event.
METHOD: Following a familiarization process, a total of two trials were administered to each participant for three subtests. Subtests included right hand, left hand, and both hands. The assembly task was omitted. Following a 30- to 45-min break, participants again completed two trials for each of the three subtests.
ANALYSIS: The participants’ one-trial and sum-of-three-trials scores for each of the three Purdue Pegboard subtests were analyzed using Pearson product–moment correlations, Intraclass correlations, and both independent and dependent samples t tests.
RESULTS: Test–retest reliability coefficients ranged from .86 to .94 for one-trial administration and the sum of the three trials. Independent t-test results showed a significant difference between scores of individuals with Down syndrome and scores of individuals with intellectual disabilities (p < .05). There was no significant difference between scores from the first trial and scores from the second trial (p > .05). Results suggest the Purdue Pegboard test is a reliable assessment to use in individuals with intellectual disabilities. No practice effect was demonstrated in this study.
DISCUSSION: The test–retest reliability of the Purdue Pegboard using a single-trial administration has ranged from .37 to .92 in typical and atypical populations. Results of this study suggest the Purdue Pegboard is a reliable measure in adults with intellectual disabilities. In most clinical settings in which time is limited, the test–retest reliability of a single-trial administration appears to be adequate. Future research should increase the time between trials.
IMPACT STATEMENT: Results support the use of the Purdue Pegboard as a reliable measure of manual dexterity, and a one-trial administration of the Purdue Pegboard is a sufficiently reliable assessment in adults with intellectual disabilities. These findings should enable clinicians and researchers to monitor and interpret the changes in the hand dexterity of adults with intellectual disabilities more accurately and confidently. In addition, changes in scoring may reflect true changes in a person’s manual dexterity.