The Participants’ Perspective on a Cognitive Rehabilitation Program Following Traumatic Brain Injury

  •  Alexandra Vakili    
  •  Robyn Langdon    


Given the recommendations for evidence-based treatment practice, rehabilitation programs are typically evaluated using standardized objective measures of pre- and post-treatment performance. However, the potentially informative opinions and perspectives of the participants themselves are not reported. This paper sought to redress this imbalance by using a semi-structured telephone interview to gather feedback from 19 participants who had undergone a group-based eight-week cognitive rehabilitation program to improve attentional impairment following traumatic brain injury (TBI). The program incorporated cognitive training using an action video game and psycho-education, including a workbook for developing compensatory skills. Findings indicated that the majority of participants found the program to be a positive experience, resulting in self-perceived skill development that generalized beyond the training context. Participants particularly valued the social aspects of the rehabilitation program and reported benefiting from their interactions with the other group members. Most enjoyed the action video game playing, although for some, the opportunity to select between a set of different games rather than playing the single game that featured in the program would have been more appropriate. The majority of participants also found the workbook helpful. Other useful suggestions included extending the program to 10-12 weeks, increasing group size, developing more of a ‘take away’ aspect of the program to be administered at home, and formalizing the ‘mentoring’ roles that emerged in the group.

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