OT Definitions

  • The following is a list of definitions that are commonly used in OT. 

    SENSORIMOTOR PROCESSING SKILLS: ability to accept and organize sensory information in order to adapt and respond appropriately to the environment.  Integration occurs when the information comes from the senses and the body produces a motor response.  Areas include taste, smell, sight, sound (auditory), touch (tactile), movement (vestibular), and body position (proprioception). 

      Oculomotor: ability to control eye movement, look at, and follow objects, for example, reading a book, copying from the chalkboard, cutting, catching/throwing a ball 

      Eye-hand coordination: ability to use the eyes and hands together to perform an activity, for example, stringing beads, completing puzzles, playing board games

      Bilateral Coordination: ability to use both sides of the body at the same time, for example, jumping jacks, holding the paper with one hand (stabilizer, "helper" hand) while cutting or writing with the other hand (dominant, "worker" hand)

      Body Awareness: ability to recognize body parts and space on self and others

      Motor Planning:  ability to plan and carry out movement, for example, how to form a letter when writing

    GROSS MOTOR SKILLS: ability to use large motor skills, for example, balance, skipping, tossing a ball

    FINE MOTOR SKILLS: ability to use small motor skills (hands), for example, grasp, color, cut, write

      Grasp: ability to pick up and hold objects with your hand

       Pincer Grasp (on objects): thumb and index finger; AKA "pincher fingers", most mature

      Tripod Grasp (on objects): thumb, index, and middle fingers; less mature than pincer grasp

      Tripod Grasp (on writing implement): three fingered; thumb, index, and middle fingers

      Quadripod Grasp (on writing implement): four fingered; thumb, index, middle, and ring fingers

      Open Webspace: when thumb and index finger form a circle

      Closed Webspace: when thumb crosses/hooks over, typically over the index finger or writing implement

      Dynamic: when fingers move when using the writing implement

      Static: when wrist moves when using a writing implement

      Isolation: ability to separate and use one or more fingers, for example, point with index finger, pincer grasp with remaining fingers tucked in fist, number counting 1-4 on fingers, fingerspelling (sign language)

      Manipulation: ability to move objects within the hand, for example, grasp/release 1 of 3 marbles at a time and hold them in hand

    VISUAL MOTOR SKILLS: ability to use the eyes and hands together to get things on paper, for example, copy shapes/letters, color, cut, write in notebook

    VISUAL PERCEPTUAL SKILLS: how the brain interprets what it sees

      Visual Closure: ability to recognize a shape, object, letter, or word when only part of it is seen, for example, dot-to-dots, photocopy of a page when letter/words are cut off

      Visual Discrimination: ability to tell the difference between objects that differ, for example, square vs rectangle, /b/ vs /d/, uppercase vs lowercase letters

      Visual Figure Ground: ability to pick out objects from a background, for example, Where's Waldo, hidden pictures, scanning a sentence to find the letter /t/

      Visual Form Constancy: ability to recognize the same shape, object, or letter in different situations, /t/ written in textbook is same as /t/written on chalkboard

      Visual Memory: ability to recall the visual image of objects, forms, symbols, and movements, for example, games such as Concentration and Memory

      Visual Sequential Memory: ability to recall a series of objects, forms, symbols, and movements

      Visual Spatial Relations: ability to recognize a shape, object, or letter when presented in different positions, for example, puzzles, block designs, assembly projects

      Reversals: when letters, numbers, or words, appear backwards either visually or written

    SELF-HELP SKILLS: ability to perform skills such as dressing, bathing, eating, brushing teeth, and combing hair