Measurement in Developmental Therapy: Past, Present, and Future
This chapter describes the history of standardized testing, the problem of lack of testing instruments, and the rationale for increased use of standardized tests in developmental therapy settings. Critical to the future development of occupational and physical therapy as scientific and clinical disciplines is the generation of measurement tools specific to client needs. The advent of new tests and the power they convey are also having an important impact on pediatric occupational and physical therapy and will generate the desire for more such tools. External pressures for accountability, cost control, and cost/benefit analyses, and pressures from physicians and others to document efficacy are forcing change on these professions that can only lead to increased efforts to measure sensorimotor performance in scientifically defensible ways. Educators are needed to teach measurement principles and critical analysis of the clinical literature at every level of the educational ladder.