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Characteristics of goal-setting tools in adult rehabilitation: A scoping review.

OBJECTIVES: This scoping review aims to map the literature on goal-setting tools in adult rehabilitation, exploring their characteristics, target users and supporting evidence to inform practice and future research in this area.

METHODS: We completed a comprehensive search of four databases to identify relevant articles on tools for goal setting in rehabilitation. We followed Arkey and O'Malley's scoping review process to guide article selection, data extraction and data analysis.

RESULTS: We identified a total of 165 studies that reported on 55 different goal-setting tools, including tools for goal selection and goal documentation ( n  = 31), goal setting and intervention planning ( n  = 15), and for measuring the quality of the goal-setting process ( n  = 9). Over half of the tools were primarily designed for use in rehabilitation of physical disabilities ( n  = 32). Some tools fell under multiple sub-categories based on their characteristics as follows: 22 framework tools, 12 interview tools, 9 outcome measurement tools for goal achievement, 6 outcome measurement tools for goal quality and 25 documentation tools. The majority of goal-setting instruments targeted goals at the level of activity and participation ( n  = 51) and aimed to facilitate a client-centred or shared decision-making approach to rehabilitation planning ( n  = 46).

CONCLUSIONS: This study provides a comprehensive overview of existing goal-setting tools, highlighting their characteristics, target users and identified needs. These findings can enhance practitioners' awareness of the range of goal-setting tools available and can enable more effective utilization of these tools in clinical practice. Further research should investigate how clinicians can combine multiple tools to deliver goal setting.

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