Purpose: Individuals with acquired brain injury (ABI) often struggle due to inadequate planning and execution skills for completing nonroutine tasks. This study’s purpose was to pilot ecologically valid procedures to assess planning for and execution of prospective daily activities. Method: Participants included 9 adults with histories of severe ABI and 9 controls. Data collection included both prospective task planning and execution. First, participants created a plan for later execution of daily tasks in accordance with preestablished rules. Over the subsequent 10 days, participants independently attempted task completion. Differences within and between participant groups regarding planning and task performance were evaluated statistically and through examiner observation. Results: Participants with ABI implemented minimal planning strategies. They demonstrated highly variable performance and displayed substantially greater difficulty initiating and successfully executing tasks in adherence to rules than participants without ABI. Conclusions: Evaluating planning strategies and execution of novel prospective tasks is a crucial but often neglected aspect of assessment following ABI. Implementing ecologically valid procedures to evaluate this aspect of functioning can reveal individual strengths and challenges and provide guidance for developing effective intervention programs. Examining potential roles played by planning and strategy execution provides critical assessment information relating to independent living.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Linguistics and Language
- Speech and Hearing