Graduation Year


Document Type


Degree Type

Open Access Capstone

Degree Name

Doctor of Occupational Therapy (OTD)


Occupational Therapy


Communication is an essential part of who we are, as we participate in our occupational roles, even for those who utilize augmentative and alternative communication. The purpose of this project was to evaluate the impact of a parental training program, as parents utilized a communication device, in order to increase the number of opportunities for their child to engage with and participate with at home and in the community. This project utilized the Human Activity Assistive Technology and the Person, Environment, Occupation, and Performance model. A descriptive mixed methods case study with a sequential exploratory design was used in this project. The qualitative aspect utilized a semi-structured interview with the participant. The quantitative aspect utilized a pretest and posttest with the Family Impact of Assistive Technology Scale- Augmentative and Alternative Communication. Participant was a single parent of an 8 year-old female who has been diagnosed with Autism and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Qualitative results indicated parent’s initial reluctance, her discovery, and enthusiastic response when she implemented strategies that increased communicative opportunities while engaged in meaningful family activities. Quantitative results indicate that the parent overcame several barriers as she implemented the communication device, and the child factors of communicating face-to-face and social engagement were increased. The use of a family-centered parental training created several positive outcomes such as increased family connectedness, enhanced occupational performance and a sense of belonging within the family.

Faculty Mentor

Camille Skubik-Peplaski, PhD OTR/L FAOTA

Department Affiliation

Occupational Therapy

Committee Member

Allen Keener, OTD, MS, OTR/L, ATP

Department Affiliation

Occupational Therapy

Department Affiliation

Occupational Therapy

IRB Approval Number (if applicable)