Assessments of sensory processing in infants: a systematic review
Article first published online: 15 NOV 2012
© The Authors. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology © 2012 Mac Keith Press
Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology
Volume 55, Issue 4, pages 314–326, April 2013
How to Cite
EELES, A. L., SPITTLE, A. J., ANDERSON, P. J., BROWN, N., LEE, K. J., BOYD, R. N. and DOYLE, L. W. (2013), Assessments of sensory processing in infants: a systematic review. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology, 55: 314–326. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8749.2012.04434.x
- Issue published online: 12 MAR 2013
- Article first published online: 15 NOV 2012
- PUBLICATION DATA Accepted for publication 18th July 2012. Published online
Aim The aim of the study was to evaluate the psychometric properties and clinical use of assessments of sensory processing function, within the first 2 years of life, and to identify which assessment is the most appropriate and precise in measuring the construct of sensory processing.
Method The literature was comprehensively searched, and assessments used to measure sensory processing in infancy were systematically selected and reviewed for clinical use, reliability, validity, and responsiveness.
Results Thirty-four assessments were identified; three met the predefined inclusion criteria. All discriminative assessments, the Sensory Rating Scale, and Infant/Toddler Sensory Profile are parent-reported questionnaires and can be administered from birth up to 3 years of age. The Test of Sensory Function in Infants is a performance-based assessment and is suitable for infants aged 4 to 18 months. Studies evaluating the psychometric properties of these three assessments differed in the properties addressed and reported poor to adequate reliability.
Interpretation Selecting the most appropriate and precise assessment to measure sensory processing function in infancy will depend on the specific components of sensory processing that need to be evaluated, infant age, and what other sources of information are available about the infant’s development.