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Evaluation in Ayres Sensory Integration® (EASI) Tactile Perception Tests: Construct Validity and Internal Reliability.

IMPORTANCE: Assessment of tactile perception is foundational for addressing aspects of occupational performance.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the construct validity and internal reliability of four new tactile perception tests.

DESIGN: Causal comparative groups design.

SETTINGS: Homes, schools, and therapy practices across the United States.

PARTICIPANTS: Children ages 3 to 12 yr: typically developing (n = 174) and those with sensory integration concerns (n = 153).

OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Rasch analyses to evaluate construct validity; analysis of covariance to evaluate group differences.

RESULTS: The Rasch model confirmed evidence of construct validity for each of the four tests. The typically developing group scored significantly higher than the clinical group on all tests (η2p = .040-.105, p < .001). Person reliability indices and strata indicated moderate to strong internal reliability (Rasch person reliability indices = .69-.87; strata = 2.33-3.82).

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: The Evaluation in Ayres Sensory Integration® (EASI) Tactile Perception Tests are reliable and valid measures for assessing tactile perception in children ages 3 to 12 yr. Findings suggest that these tests are likely to be clinically useful and appropriate for children in this age range and may provide critical information regarding underlying sensory functions necessary for optimal occupational performance. What This Article Adds: This article provides data supporting the reliability and validity of the EASI Tactile Perception Tests in a U.S.

SAMPLE: These assessments can be used by therapists trained in their administration to assess tactile functions that may affect participation in activities, tasks, and occupations.

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