Date of Award

2014

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (Occupational Therapy) Honours

School

School Of Medical Sciences

Faculty

Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science

First Advisor

Dr Janet Richmond

Abstract

AIM: The construct validity of the 6th edition of the Developmental Test of Visual-Motor Integration (Beery VMI-6), is yet to be tested for a Western Australian population. This study aimed to use a combination of factor analysis and correlational tests to provide preliminary evidence for the construct validity of the Beery VMI-6 when administered to a Western Australian population of 6-10 year old children.

METHOD: This pilot study utilised a quantitative non-experimental exploratory design. Convenience sampling was used to recruit 91 children (aged 6-10 years old) from two schools in the northern suburbs of Perth. Administration of the Beery VMI-6 adhered to the assessment manual guidelines. In addition, informal observations were made, and a Parent Questionnaire and Teacher Checklist were instrumented. Data was stored and analysed using SPSS 22. As the data was normally distributed, parametric analysis was used, with a paired t-test for the factor analysis and Pearson’s for the correlational tests. Principal Components Analysis and orthogonal Varimax rotation were used for the factor analysis.

RESULTS: The factor analysis extracted two factors with eigenvalues exceeding 1.5, accounting for 33.106% of the total variance. Nine items loaded significantly on factor 1 and eight loaded significantly on factor 2. Correlational tests exposed that three out of five construct validity hypotheses from the Beery VMI-6 manual were justified for this population, however all significant correlations were of weak to low strength.

CONCLUSION: For this population, the Beery VMI-6 is bidimensional with factor complexity. It therefore does not measure the single homogenous construct of visual-motor integration as the manual suggests, but instead measures two discrete constructs. Considering the results of the factor analysis and the mixed results of the correlational tests, the construct validity of the Beery VMI-6 does not meet the demands expected of a standardised assessment for the Western Australian population. It is therefore recommended that Occupational Therapists are cautious when using the Beery VMI-6 within this population, and that they add to the assessment by using clinical reasoning and observation.

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