Goal attainment scaling as a method of clinical service evaluation.

K. J. Ottenbacher, A. Cusick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

156 Scopus citations


The demand for clinical accountability and the documentation of therapeutic effectiveness continues to increase in health-related settings. Therapists are attempting to address this increasing demand by adapting methods based on traditional experimental models of research to evaluate their clinical practice. Experimental and quasi-experimental designs, however, are often limited usefulness in clinical environments for a variety of practical and ethical reasons. This paper presents a method of evaluating the effectiveness of a therapeutic intervention called goal attainment scaling, which involves goal setting procedures and assessment techniques that are practice-based and practitioner-oriented. The procedures are presented and the argument made that goal attainment scaling is a viable method by which one can document therapeutic change and demonstrate clinical accountability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)519-525
Number of pages7
JournalThe American journal of occupational therapy. : official publication of the American Occupational Therapy Association
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Occupational Therapy


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