Ayres Sensory Integration® for Addressing Play in Autistic Children: A Multiple-Baseline Examination

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date



Importance: Play is an area of difficulty for autistic children, and occupational therapy practitioners need evidence to guide interventions to improve play for this population. Ayres Sensory Integration® (ASI) intervention has not yet been studied for its impact on play outcomes.

Objective: To examine the impact of ASI intervention on play types in autistic children.

Design: Nonconcurrent, multiple-baseline design across subjects.

Setting: Outpatient occupational therapy clinic in New England.

Participants: Three autistic children, ages 5, 6, and 6 yr.

Intervention: Twenty-four ASI sessions.

Outcomes and Measures: Frequency of play type was coded using partial interval coding. Progress monitoring used Goal Attainment Scaling.

Results: All three participants demonstrated changes in the frequency of specific types of play, but changes varied among them.

Conclusions and Relevance: Findings suggest that ASI intervention may alter a child’s patterns of play.


The study was approved by the Sacred Heart University Institutional Review Board (No.161108A).

At the time this article was researched, Heather M. Kuhaneck was affiliated with Sacred Heart University. She is now Founding Program Director and Professor of Occupational Therapy, Department of Recreation, Tourism, and Sports Management, Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven.