Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The contribution of haptic and kinesthetic perceptions to handwriting in children ages six to eight years
by Yu, Tzu-Ying, Ph.D., New York University, 2011, 176; 3439662
Abstract (Summary)

Therapists and educators who work with children with handwriting difficulties need to understand the influence of haptic and kinesthetic perceptions on children's handwriting. This study investigated the contribution of haptic and kinesthetic perceptions to handwriting legibility and speed in typically developing children between 6 and 8 years of age.

One hundred and seventy-seven typically developing children in Taiwan aged 6 to 8 years participated in this study. Haptic and kinesthetic perceptions were measured using the Tactual Performance Test (TPT) and the Imitating Hand Positions Subtest (IHP) of the NEPSY-II. Handwriting legibility and speed were measured using the Minnesota Handwriting Assessment (MHA). Covariates included age, gender, visual-motor integration, fine motor coordination as measured by the Grooved Pegboard Test (GPT), and mental processing speed as measured by the Coding Subtest of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-IV. Correlations were employed to examine the relationship between haptic/kinesthetic perceptions and handwriting legibility/speed. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses was used to examine the contribution of haptic and kinesthetic perceptions to handwriting legibility and speed.

For total participants, both haptic and kinesthetic perceptions correlated significantly with handwriting speed and legibility. The results of the regression analyses showed that haptic perception and kinesthetic perception, as well as age and mental processing speed were the significant predictors for handwriting speed. Haptic perception, kinesthetic perception, and age were the significant predictors for handwriting legibility. Haptic perception accounted for a greater amount of unique variance in both handwriting speed and legibility than kinesthetic perception did.

The findings of this study support the theoretical hypothesis that haptic and kinesthetic perceptions are related to handwriting. The findings also demonstrate the contribution of haptic and kinesthetic perceptions to predicting handwriting speed and legibility in typically developing children aged 6 to 8 years. The significant contributions of haptic perception to handwriting speed and legibility were both more than that of kinesthetic perception. Therapists, teachers, and parents should pay close attention to children's haptic and kinesthetic perceptions during handwriting. Professionals should include the haptic perception and kinesthetic perception as part of evaluation when evaluating children with handwriting difficulties.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Hinojosa, Jim
Commitee: Howe, Tsu-Hsin, Voelbel, Gerald
School: New York University
Department: Occupational Therapy
School Location: United States -- New York
Source: DAI-B 72/03, Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Occupational Therapy, Early childhood education, Health sciences
Keywords: Child development, Handwriting, Proprioception, Psychomotor performance, Six to eight years old children, Stereognosis, Touch
Publication Number: 3439662
ISBN: 9781124449746
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