Development of the Comprehensive Observations of Proprioception (COP): Validity, Reliability, and Factor Analysis

Publication Date


Document Type



Occupational Therapy


Developmental Neuroscience | Developmental Psychology

Publication Title

American Journal of Occupational Therapy


OBJECTIVE. We developed an observational tool, the Comprehensive Observations of Proprioception (COP), for identifying proprioceptive processing issues in children with developmental disabilities.

METHOD. Development of the COP underwent three phases. First, we developed items representing proprioceptive functions on the basis of an extensive literature review and consultation with occupational therapists. We then established interrater reliability and content, construct, and criterion validity. Finally, we completed a factor analysis of COP ratings of 130 children with known developmental disabilities.

RESULTS. Adequate validity and reliability were established. Factor analysis revealed a four-factor model that explained the underlying structure of the measure as it was hypothesized.

CONCLUSION. The COP is a valid criterion-referenced short observational tool that structures the clinician’s observations by linking a child’s behaviors to areas identified in the literature as relevant to proprioceptive processing. It takes 15 min to administer and can be used in a variety of contexts, such as the home, clinic, and school.


developmental disabilities, observation, proprioception, sensory motor performance, somatosensory disorders


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