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viernes, 12 de abril de 2013

Everything you wanted to know about the Assisted Animals Therapies, but were afraid to ask. Part II.

We´ll continue today with a second part of the blog post about Assisted Animal Therapy and this time let's talk about first evaluation program and second play over the designs for research, as the method used in our therapies has to be the scientific method.


 In this assessment we will have  few questions:

-Utility:  Does evaluation serve to the needs of the audience?

-Feasibility: is it viable economically?

-Fitness: is it suited to the people affected?

-Reliability: is the evaluation process systematic and technically correct?

These questions would be the centerpiece of our evaluation work, lack an adequate answer to one or to several of them, should that we must redefine our program. Is it worth  to have a perfect idea if you do not have the budget to make it work, or  if users are not happy with it?
Areas of evaluation.
Now that I know what questions can lead the prcess... where can I ask these questions?
There are a few areas that entire program to be evaluated, and these are:

-Mission: it is the goal of the program. To assess whether there is a clear relationship between the mission and the activities of the AAT.

-Enviroment: you should be willing to facilitate activities. What if it rains, or cold, or excessive heat?

-Users: the ultimate aim of our AAT program is the improvement of the quality of life of these.

-Animals: depending on the characteristics of users and the program. A test of conduct for those animal species where applicable, and it´s absolutely necessary.

-Volunteers: it is essential to provide for drop-outs. So what we must seek will be volunteers with experience, who know how to get involved in the program and know how to work as a team. Don't forget your training and encourage their motivation.

-Staff: therapists will work with the staff of AAT and volunteers to decide the goals and strategies appropriate to each patient. You have to know that the goals of therapy are individual.

-Curriculum: it is the content of the AAT. It must conform to each user in particular.

-Cost-benefit: we talked about this point in the first post about this topic. It will be, especially at the beginning, this is battle horse.

-Results: this is the progress of users.

-Long term impact: it is a little difficult to measure, since it is based on the tracking of users who have left the institution (longitudinal study). We want to know if the effects of therapies are maintained at the time.


Since the method we use is the scientist, we must follow a few sequential steps, where you can dig deeper into the following link: http://www.uv.es/pitarque/TRANSPARENCIAS.pdf, because I believe that the explanation would exceed the limits of this entry, which is intended to be only informative. Therefore confine myself only to state what types of research designs.

Research in statistical designs.

- T Student test: contrast media for two independent samples. The second Hypothesis is that significant difference between two groups there is no. An example of hypothesis would be that those who have dog more linked in the parks.

-Chi square test: to test the relationship or association between two variables. As an example, we can test the study of the relationship between survival after an operation and ownership of a pet.

-Regression analysis: studying the functional relationship between variables. Study variances that explain a problem.

Single subject design.
In this type of design differences in the subject are not deformed by the average required in statistical design (Sidman, 1960). The objective is to demonstrate the functional relationship (cause and effect) between an event and a target behavior.
The single subject term does not refer exclusively to a patient; It means that data from each individual can be evaluated independently and they are not presented as an average.

- AB Design: This design, also called time series, is the simplest of experimental strategies and allows only tentative conclusions about the influence of the treatment. It consists of a phase in which are carried out assessments (phase A) and another that applies the treatment (phase B). The subject has to sign a conduct until the baseline is stabilized and, subsequently, and after entering the intervention, continue taking measures in continuous mode until a particular pattern of execution. Analysis does not provide any information of the natural course of conduct would have been if we had not entered treatment. It should be reduced to those cases that do not make possible a more extensive experimentation.

-Design of reversal: this form of design is the simplest strategies of experimental analysis in which the treatment variable is introduced and subsequently withdrawn. It is first introduced the line base (phase A), then applies the treatment (phase B) and, finally, so the behavior back to the initial state (phase A) withdraws the same (e.g., Hersen, Eisler, Alford and Agras, 1973). This design allows one greater degree of certainty that the treatment variable is responsible for the observed changes in the conducta-problema. Presents ethical problems derived from that the design ends up a baseline phase, which refuses in part the patient benefits of treatment. They have a certain limitation in the generalization to the clinical field.

-Design base multiple: these designs operate like the reversal, making and testing predictions. The logic inherent in them is to start simultaneously all lines bases and sequentially enter the intervention. A number of behaviors are assessed over a period of time to get the base of each of these lines. Once established the same does apply the variable treatment to one of the conduits, which possibly bring a change in it, while the others will continue with the pattern that had up to that point in time. Then enters a second behavior intervention and there is the same with respect to the other base lines where still not entered treatment. Continue with the process of sequential mode until we apply it to all behaviour starting.

-Design of multiple elements. The design of concurrent program, consists of a first stage of observation of the conduct giving rise to the establishment of the base line. Then apply two or more interventions simultaneously, under the same conditions (e.g., place, time, absence or not of other subjects) than those used during the made records to make the base line.  

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