Baltic-Nordic collaboration regarding the alignment of standard knowledge within the field of sensory integration at the bachelor and postgraduate level

    Project: Development project/ Innovation

    Project Details

    Description

    The development of a Baltic-Nordic curriculum for the promotion of knowledge and
    professional skills within the field of sensory integration in order to strengthen the ability of
    occupational therapy practitioners to conduct a systematic assessment of SI and provide individually
    tailored SI intervention within their own countries. To validate an evaluation tool EASI to be the first
    reliable assessment instrument in Baltic-Nordic countries in the field of sensory integration.

    Layman's description

    The main goal of this project is Baltic-Nordic collaboration regarding the alignment of standard knowledge within the field of sensory integration at the bachelor and postgraduate level. A. J. Ayres developed sensory Integration (SI) theory in the 1960’s and 1970’s, during which she studied the connection between sensory processing in the brain and the behavior of children with learning disabilities and behaviour disorders. The theory evolved from Ayres’ observation that children with learning disabilities had difficulty interpreting sensory information from their bodies and surroundings.
    Ayres noticed that difficulties with sensory processing and integration often coincided with learning disabilities and delayed motor skill development. Sensory integration is thus a process that occurs in the brain, when different types of sensory input need to be interpreted and integrated to a meaningful
    entirety, so that we can respond appropriately in interaction with our environment. In other words, SI is a prerequisite for play and activities through which a child learns intellectual, motor and behavioural competencies and develops self-awareness. To understand sensory integration as it is
    related to successful participation in play, self-care, and schoolwork activities, Ayres designed and adapted standardized tests that evaluated the constructs of SI. These constructs included sensory perception, praxis, bilateral integration, and balance, as well as non-standardized observational measures of functions such as sensory reactivity and postural mechanisms (e.g., the ability to assume and maintain a prone extension or supine flexion posture). Ayres developed individual tests and then published the Southern California Sensory Integration Tests (SIPT; Ayres, 1989). The SIPT is the only published set of tests that collectively addresses most of the core SI functions identified by
    Ayres. The SIPT has limitations. The normative data for the SIPT were collected in 1984-1985.
    Accessibility and use of the SIPT are limited because of the cost of SIPT kits (including shipping), translated materials and validated use of the SIPT outside the United States. The lack of availability of normative data for populations outside the United States is an increasing concern as growing numbers of occupational therapy practitioners across the globe become educated in sensory
    integration so that they can provide high-quality assessment in SI for children so that precise and focused therapy can be provided. In order to insure that, there is a need for proper evaluation tool in the Nordic- Baltic countries. To meet the need for a set of tests that evaluate the constructs of SI with psychometrically strong, internationally appropriate, and easily accessible measurement tools, the
    development of the Evaluation in Ayres Sensory Integration (EASI) was initiated. The EASI are that the tests will be aligns with major constructs in SI theory. EASI aims to offer a means for therapists around the world to provide comprehensive evaluation of sensory integration functions in an accessible and feasible way.

    The development of a Baltic-Nordic curriculum for the promotion of knowledge and professional skills within the field of sensory integration in order to strengthen the ability of occupational therapy practitioners to conduct a systematic assessment of SI and provide individually tailored SI
    intervention within their own countries. To validate an evaluation tool EASI (Evaluation in Ayres Sensory Integration) to be first reliable assessment instrument in Baltic-Nordic countries in the field of
    sensory integration. To create a foundation to future Baltic-Nordic cooperation in the field of sensory integration through project activities such as training modules for practitioners and students and first Baltic-Nordic Sensory Integration Congress.
    Short titleBanister
    AcronymBANISTER - BAltic NordIc Sensory InTEgRation
    StatusFinished
    Effective start/end date01/04/1901/12/22

    Collaborative partners

    • Institute of Educational Sciences, Talinn University (Joint applicant) (lead)