What is it about?

The Developmental, Individual Differences, Relationship-Based (DIR) model, also known as DIR®/Floortime™, is a comprehensive approach for individuals with developmental disabilities and other disorders of relating and communicating, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Limited qualitative research exists regarding the use of the DIR model in public preschools. This article examines perceptions of the DIR model by public preschool staff who use this approach.

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Why is it important?

Our findings show three key themes: participant insight, processes and procedures that enable successful use of the DIR model in a public preschool setting, and challenges with use of the DIR model in a public preschool setting. This information may be beneficial to new DIR preschool staff and administrators and may serve as a guide to other public preschool teams who are considering or have DIR-focused classrooms. Opportunities exist for occupational therapists to add distinct value to DIR preschool programs.


This qualitative research study and journal article contributes to the growing body of research on the DIR model.

Susan Smith-Foley
University of Kansas Medical Center Area Health Education Center

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Qualitative Research: Perceptions of the Developmental, Individual Differences, Relationship-Based (DIR) Model among Preschool Staff in a Public-School Setting, Journal of Occupational Therapy Schools & Early Intervention, August 2019, Taylor & Francis,
DOI: 10.1080/19411243.2019.1647812.
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