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EVALUATION OF MEASURES OF

SENSORY PROCESSING AND

INATTENTION IN A SAMPLE OF SOUTH

AFRICAN PRESCHOOL LEARNERS





Yael Chemel



A dissertation submitted to the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the

Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree

of Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

Johannesburg, 2015

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Declaration









I Yael Chemel declare that this dissertation is my own work. It is being submitted for the

degree of Master of Science in Occupational Therapy at the University of the

Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. It has not been submitted before for any degree or

examination at this or any other University.

Yael Chemel

25 February 2015

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Table 4.9 Distribution of section scores for the Sensory Profile compared to a normal
distribution (n=100)



Typical
Performance

%

Probable
Difference more

or less than
others %

Definite
Difference

more or less
than others %

p-value

0 -1 SD and 1SD -2 SD and 2SD


Normal Distribution 68.2% 27.2% 4.2%
Sensory processing

Auditory processing 70 18 12 0.009*

Visual processing 90 9 1 0.012*

Tactile processing 73 18 9 0.035*

Vestibular processing 58 28 14 0.000**

Multisensory processing 75 16 9 0.043*

Oral Sensory processing 75 10 15 0.001*

Mean percentage 73.5% 16.5% 10%

Sensory Modulation

Sensory processing related to
endurance

63 14 23 0.000**

Modulation body position 74 15 11 0.020*

Affecting activity level 70 27 3 0.030*

Affecting emotional responses 73 14 13 0.008*

Visual affecting emotional and
activity level

86 13 1 0.085

Mean percentage 73.2% 16.6% 10.2%

Behaviour and emotional responses

Emotional/social responses 65 21 14 0.001*

Behavioural outcomes 72 14 14 0.005*

Threshold for response 83 11 6 0.553

Mean percentage 73.3% 15.3% 11.3%






4.4 Convergent validity of the results from the Sensory Profile and
the School Companion

Some items on the sensory profiles, the Sensory Profile and the School Companion, were

similar and these were correlated to establish how the assessments of the sensory

processing of the participants was similar amongst the teachers and the parents.

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4.4.1 Quadrant summary

For the quadrant summary the Sensory Profile and School Companion sections sensory

seeking and seeking, low registration and registration, sensory sensitive and sensitivity, and

sensory avoidant and avoiding were compared.

The parents indicated a high percentage of participants ‘at risk’ in the ±1 probable

difference category for sensory sensitivity and a high percentage of participants with a

definite difference for low registration (Figure 4.8).





Figure 4.8: Comparison of quadrant scores on the Sensory Profile Parent Questionnaire
(SP) and the Sensory Profile School Companion (SC) (n=100)


The teachers also indicated a high percentage for definite difference low registration but

this was less than the parents’ scores on the Sensory Profile. The percentage of definite

difference scores for sensory avoiding was higher on the School Companion.

There was only a statistically weak significant association between the teachers for low

registration scored by the parents and registration scored by the teachers with the

teachers scoring this aspect higher indicating more difficulties in this section (Table 4.10).

0

10

20

30

40

50

60

70

80

0 ±1 ±2

P
e

rc
e

n
ta

g
e



SP:Sensoty seeking SC:Seeking SP:Low registration SC:Registration

SP:Sensory Sensitive SC:Sensitivity SP:Sensory Avoiding SC:Avoiding

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These forms are similar to the form that you have filled out and therefore is based on

observations only. Your child will not be expected to deviate from their classroom tasks in

any way. The assessment form I am asking you to fill in will take approximately 10 minutes

each to complete. No further treatment or procedures will be done on the participants. These

scores will then be compiled and analysed using various statistical methods.

If the scores found place your child at risk for a sensory modulation or attention problem I

will inform you so that you can follow up with further occupational therapy assessment if

you wish. I will provide the names of occupational therapy services if requested. In addition,

at the end of the study I will present the findings of the study to you, on request.

You may withdraw your child from this research at any time without having to give a

reason. Remember that this study is completely voluntary and not taking part in it or

withdrawing from it, carries no repercussions of any sort.

Confidentiality will be maintained by the use of a code instead of names on all results. Only

the researcher will have a list of names and codes to enable the codes to be linked to a

particular child.

hesitate to contact me on 072 633 1976

If you are happy to allow your child to take part in the study, please read and sign the

attached consent form.

Thank you

Yael Chemel

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INFORMED CONSENT FORMS

I agree to allow my child to participate in the study outlined in the information sheet:

Parent/caregiver: __________________________

Name of participant: ______________________________

Signature: __________________________________

Date: _________________________

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