Date of Award


Document Type



Edith Cowan University

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (Occupational Therapy) Honours


School of Exercise and Health Science


Faculty of Computing, Health and Science

First Supervisor

Dr Sonya Girdler

Second Supervisor

Ms Katherin Bathgate

Third Supervisor

Dr Jenny Downs


Community participation group interventions for children and adolescents with neurodevelopment disabilities : A systematic review

Objective: To describe the effectiveness of community integration interventions on community participation, self-esteem and quality of life for children and adolescents with a neurodevelopment intellectual disability.

Method: Electronic searches of five databases and manual searches of reference lists were conducted. Community integration interventions which targeted friendship development, recreation participation, quality of life and self-esteem were included.

Results: Thirteen studies were included in this review. A variety of study designs and interventions were used. Following interventions, all but one study reported significantly increased friendships, five reported increased recreation participation and one reported increased quality of life and self-esteem. Methodological quality of the studies ranged from adequate to strong.

Conclusions: Community integration interventions appear to be effective in supporting the successful inclusion of children and adolescents with neurodevelopment intellectual disabilities. Future interventions should consider the impact of several factors, such as impairment, personal and environmental factors, in facilitating community participation.

Community participation for girls and women living with Rett syndrome

Purpose: To describe the relationship between impairment, personal and environmental factors, and community participation for Australian girls and women with Rett syndrome

Methods: Data was collected from the 2009 follow-up questionnaire completed by families participating in the Australian Rett Syndrome Database (n = 214). Univariate and multivariate logistic regression were used to analyse relationships between impairment, personal and environmental factors and participation.

Results: In.2009, the mean age was 17.6 years (SD = 7.95, range three to 34 years) with 114 (53.3%) girls still at school and 100 (46.7%) women post school. Frequency of activities was influenced by levels of walking, community support and maternal education. For girls living at home, participation in activities was associated with greater functional independence, higher levels of maternal education and better family income. Participation in recreational (90.1 %), physical/skill-based (67.6%) and/or social (70.3%) activities were commonly reported by families, whilst self-improvement (17.6%) activities were less reported. Younger girls participated in activities mainly with family members and older girls more frequently participated with carers.

Conclusion: Participation for girls and women with Rett syndrome could be enhanced by stronger community support. Future studies should use both qualitative and quantitative methodologies to determine the level of satisfaction and enjoyment experienced by girls and women in community activities.