Using Ecological Momentary Assessment to Measure Participation: A Preliminary Study

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Purpose/ObjectiveParticipation is emerging as the gold standard of outcome measurement in disability and rehabilitation, but there are few methods for measuring it. This article describes the development of a dynamic measure of participation that uses the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health as the framework for measure development and ecological momentary assessment (EMA) as the data collection methodology.Research Method/DesignResearchers programmed personal data assistants to prompt 5 residents of a rural community to report their location, activity, social contact, environmental barriers and facilitators, secondary conditions, and ratings of community connectedness and fulfillment.ResultsOverall, 5 participants reported data on 1,352 engagements over 7 weeks. Participants reported greater community connectedness and fulfillment when they spent time with others, were not home, and were not experiencing barriers or secondary conditions.Conclusions/ImplicationsEMA measures and methodology are 1 step in answering questions about participation within the ecological framework of disability.

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