Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2005


older adults, Sheridan Elder Research Centre


This report describes a digital video-audio behavioural observation methodology for use in a naturalistic setting to evaluate communication rehabilitation interventions for older adults with dementia. Behavioural observation via recorded video-audio offers a number of advantages over other data collection methodologies, which can be subject to a number of biases and limitations, some of which are discussed. In this study, high quality digital audio-video recordings were collected on participants attending a respite care day program. Recording equipment was inconspicuously placed, and measurement occurred either during normal day-to-day activities or during more directed activities (e.g., playing bingo). The recordings can be used to document the occurrence of behaviours and paired behaviours of interest over extended periods of time or selected samples of interest can be downloaded for detailed analysis including lag-sequential analyses. It was found that behavioural observation can complement traditional objective measures of impairment and subjective questionnaire measures, in accordance with the World Health Organization’s (WHO) International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (2001).


Research Centres


Sheridan Elder Research Centre (SERC)

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Creative Commons License

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Original Publication Citation

Singh, G., Pichora-Fuller, K., Rochon, E., Orange, J., & Spadafora, P. (2005). Observational outcome measures to evaluate assistive technology use by people with dementia. [Report]. Oakville: Sheridan Elder Research Centre (SERC).

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