College of Health

Occupational and Recreational Therapies

Therapeutic Activities

Purpose

This area was created to offer clinicians intervention tools that address cognition. These tasks allow clients to participate in simulated novel tasks related to real-life demands. Information gathered during these tasks can be utilized by therapists to better assist their client in actual day to day activities that require the same skills. These tasks are unique in that they utilize web-based technology, a feature that is currently limited in most occupational therapy assessments and intervention tools. This tool can also be used for the purpose of educating clients who have not yet developed the skills related to online activities.

Background

These activities were developed following the format utilized by the Performance Assessment of Self Care Skills (PASS), an occupation-based performance measure (Rogers, JC & Holm, MB © 1989, 1994). Additional information on this assessment can be acquired by contacting the PASS authors or through Occupational Therapy literature (Holm & Rogers, 1999).

The developers of the simulated online activities followed the protocol offered by the authors of the PASS for developing a new item. We are currently conducting research to evaluate the inter-rater reliability and content validity of these items. Among the documents needed for the activities you will find the instructions and a score sheet. Both of these follow the PASS documentation format. The score sheet is meant to offer you a general idea of the process and how the activity can be observed. At this time the activities are only appropriate for intervention use, not for assessment.

Who Can Benefit

The activities can serve as an intervention tool for a wide variety of individuals.

  • Cognitive deficits: insight and awareness, attention to detail, divided attention, memory, problem solving, inhibition, executive functions
  • Transitioning to independent living: young adults, individuals with mental illness
  • Limited knowledge of computers: refugees, older adults, job seekers who need computer skills
  • Perceptual limitations: Left neglect, low vision

Functional Simulated Technology Tasks

Our goal is to develop several different technology based activities that simulate real world demands and are readily available for occupational therapists to use as part of an occupation- based practice. At this time there are two activities, with plans to add at least two additional.

On-line Bill Pay

Client must find and navigate the website, manipulate print-outs of actual bills and credit cards, understand directions from the website, refer to the bills for information (account number, amounts due, etc.), enter information into the computer, and solve problems based on feedback from the website.

First Time User

The simulated online bill pay site can only be utilized with the bills and credit cards provided on this site. Your client will access the site by going to http://www.otiadl.net/BillPay/. This site is in its preliminary stages and occasionally under development.

Print the following documents needed to utilize the simulated online bill pay activity:

  1. Instructions (pdf download): this sheet lists the physical set up of the task, materials needed, and the verbal directions.
  2. Bills: there are four bills needed for the task. The two gas bills (February (pdf download), March (pdf download)) look similar but they are two different months with different amounts due. The bills look nice when printed in color but are just as useful when printed in black and white.
  3. Credit cards: these should be printed in color for the best results. Once they are printed, cut out the card and paste/tape the two sides together. Printing the credit cards on card stock and/or laminating them will allow you to use the same cards long term.
  4. If you plan on using this assessment with multiple clients on one computer, you may consider turning off auto complete or auto fill options on your internet browser. This will prevent past assessment entries from automatically popping up. This is done differently with every browser.

Online Shopping

Clients must manipulate and make decisions pertaining to shopping for a specific type of clothing. This requires finding and navigating the website, searching for the correct products, selecting items (based on sizing, pricing, color, and type of clothing), and correctly entering all information into the computer in order to complete the purchase.

First Time User

The simulated shopping site is more flexible than the online bill pay site. There is a case written to use with the site but at this time this case can be graded to meet your client’s needs. The documents required to complete the shopping task can be accessed on this site. This task requires the use of the same American Express card used with the bill pay task and can be accessed on this site. Your client will access the shopping site by going to www.health.utah.edu/ot/onlineshopping. Keep in mind, this site is in its preliminary stages and occasionally under development. Any new information or relevant changes will be posted on the University of Utah, Division of Occupational Therapy site.

Print the following documents needed to utilize the simulated online shopping activity:

  1. Instructions (pdf download): this sheet lists the physical set up of the task, materials needed, and the verbal directions.
  2. Dress Code (pdf download): the original case used for the shopping task requires the client to refer to the school dress code before purchasing uniforms. Be sure you are familiar with the restrictions of the dress code so you can properly cue the client and clothes are chosen.
  3. Credit card (pdf download): this should be printed in color for the best results. Once it is printed, cut out the card and paste/tape the two sides together. Printing the credit card on card stock and/or laminating it will allow you to use the same card long term. If you also use the online bill pay, this credit card is the same American Express used during that task.
  4. If you plan on using this activity with multiple clients on one computer there are two things to consider. Once you have finished using the site with a client be sure to empty the shopping cart prior to using it again. Also you may consider turning off auto complete or auto fill options on your internet browser. This will prevent past assessment entries from automatically popping up. This is done differently with every browser.
  5. Other Online Shopping Resources:

For Internet Explorer: Select Tools, navigate to Internet Options in the drop down menu, go to Content, go to Auto-Complete, and unclick all items. For Firefox: At the top of the Firefox window, click on the Firefox button (Tools menu in Windows XP) and then click Options, select the Privacy panel, Set Firefox will: to Use custom settings for history, Remove the check mark from the box that says Remember search and form history, Click OK.

Holm, M.B., & Rogers, J.C. (1999). Performance assessment of self-care skills. In B.J. Hemphill-Pearson (Ed.), Assessments in Occupational Therapy Mental Health: An integrative approach (pp. 117-124). Thorofare, NJ: SLACK Incorporated.