The P4C Research Study

Additional Research Activities

During the P4C study, members of the P4C research team provided supervision for Master’s Level occupational therapy students completing evidence-based projects (EBP). EBP projects were completed during the study on topics that emerged during the larger project: development of a P4C fidelity measure; the features required for future program evaluation.

  • Essential attributes that distinguish the P4C service from other school-based services are captured in the fidelity measure that is being developed.
  • Program evaluation conducted by organizations evaluating the P4C model of service delivery should include: workload measurement, chart reviews and feedback from families and educators.

Research to Develop a Fidelity Measure

Two of the student projects were focused on developing tools that can soon be used to determine how closely OTs who are providing the P4C model of service adhere to the principles and intent of the model. This process is defined as measuring the fidelity of the service model and is necessary to ensure that P4C is being delivered consistently and reliably over time and across OTs.

The first student project, completed in 2014, used a consensus approach to identify the “core” or essential attributes that distinguish the P4C model of service from other school-based OT models of service (Castle, Hodson, LeBlanc & Poulson, 2014). This project was a necessary first step in identifying what unique features would need to be measured in the fidelity tool.

The second student project, completed in 2015, continued this research by developing a process for measuring how the P4C core attributes are implemented. The focus of this study was to develop a checklist that could be used to observe an OT’s activities in a school and to record the presence of behaviors consistent with the P4C core attributes. Student research indicated that the core attributes of the P4C service could not all be captured by an observational checklist (Clarke, McKibbon, So & Warren, 2015). Therefore, it was recommended that a compilation of “fidelity measures” be used that will consist of observation, OT self-report, documentation review, and surveys completed by parents and educators.

Research led by two P4C investigators will continue in 2015–2016 to further develop these measures and to evaluate their reliability and validity.

Castle, L., Hodson, N., LeBlanc, S. & Poulson, V. (2014). Recipe for success: Identifying the core ingredients of P4C. Hamilton ON: McMaster University.

Clarke, T., McKibbon, M., So, B., & Warren, E. (2015). Development of a fidelity measure for Partnering for Change. Hamilton ON: McMaster University.

Research to Inform Program Evaluation

During Year 2 of implementation of the P4C model of service, the Central West CCAC chose to expand and offer P4C in 20 additional schools. A research need emerged: how to effectively evaluate the implementation of the P4C model of service in the expansion schools. Student OTs proposed several ways to evaluate the quality, accountability and outcomes of the P4C service. Consistent with the fidelity research findings, it was recommended that multiple methods of evaluation be introduced including: workload versus caseload evaluation, chart reviews, and the potential role of CCAC care coordinators in obtaining parent and educator feedback (Lei & Wong, 2015).

Lei, J. & Wong, K. (2015). Partnering for Change: Development of evidence-based recommendations for future program evaluation within the Central West Community Care Access Centre. Hamilton ON: McMaster University.