Classroom performance of students with an acquired brain injury: the impact of aide programs

Tesselaar, Ruth (2010) Classroom performance of students with an acquired brain injury: the impact of aide programs. Other Degree thesis, Victoria University.


A number of studies have examined the behavioural and academic difficulties that follow paediatric Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) and made recommendations that students with an ABI be provided with an aide program. However, there is a lack of studies that have been carried out to examine the outcomes of the implementation of aide programs in the paediatric ABI population. The current study investigated the impact of aide programs on eight students (aged nine to fifteen years) with an ABI. In addition, the current study also investigated factors that were found to promote positive outcomes of aide programs. Measures used included: direct observation; interviews with the students, parents, teachers and aides; and neuropsychological tests including the BRIEF, CAFT, TEA-Ch, and WISC-IV Digit Span subtest. The data were analysed descriptively using both qualitative and quantitative techniques. Results demonstrated that the provision of an aide program resulted in a decrease in negative behaviours in the classroom and an increase in students‟ access to the curriculum. In addition to three frequently discussed factors (including individual assessments of students' cognitive profile, the provision of education and support to teaching staff on the impact of ABI), additional factors important to the outcome of aide programs were raised. These factors included aides having an adequate knowledge of the curriculum, aides being able to provide support through a positive helping style, and awareness of the students' need to fit-in. A model to promote positive outcomes of aide programs for students with an ABI was then proposed based on these six factors. This model suggested that these six factors fall into one of two stages required for the provision of aide programs with positive outcomes. The factors in stage one are those that require consideration during preparation for the implementation of an aide program. The factors in stage two require consideration during service delivery of an aide program (i.e. in the classroom). Consideration of both stages was found to lead to positive outcomes of aide programs, with an absence of either stage found to lead to negative outcomes of aide programs for students with an ABI.

Additional Information

Doctor of Psychology (Clinical Neuropsychology)

Item type Thesis (Other Degree thesis)
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education
Historical > FOR Classification > 1701 Psychology
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Social Sciences and Psychology
Keywords classroom performance, student performance, cognitive performance, child behaviour, paediatric acquired brain injury, child psychology, aide programs
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