Research

Beginning Power Mobility Phase 2: Exploring power mobility use in early childhood (2017)

Roslyn Watson Livingstone

Mobility allows young children to explore and learn about their world. For children with limited mobility, power mobility devices such as power wheelchairs or powered ride-on toys can facilitate learning, play and social participation. However, little is known about how young children learn to drive power mobility devices, how this should be measured, and what factors influence success.

In this study, children of different ages (6 months - 5 years), diagnoses and abilities, living in different locations in British Columbia, will be purposely selected from our Phase 1 study that explored parent and therapist impressions of four early power mobility devices. Participants will be offered a 6-month loan of one of these devices (Wizzybug, Bugzi, Tiger cub or a ride-on-toy car). Video recordings of children’s power mobility device use, along with ratings of parent-identified learning, play and participation goals, will be collected to compare progress from the start (T1) to the end (T2) of the loan period. Three different standardized power mobility driving skill measures will be scored from video. This study will measure change in children’s driving skill after 6-months' early power mobility experience and will explore whether improved power mobility skills corresponds with young children’s achievement
of parent-identified goals.

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