Setting measureable goals with young people : qualitative feedback from the Goal Attainment Scale in youth mental health

Cairns, Alice, Dark, F., Kavanagh, David J., & McPhail, Steven (2015) Setting measureable goals with young people : qualitative feedback from the Goal Attainment Scale in youth mental health. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 78(4), pp. 253-259.

View at publisher


Introduction Measuring occupational performance is an essential part of clinical practice; however, there is little research on service user perceptions of measures. The aim of this investigation was to explore the acceptability and utility of one occupational performance outcome measure, Goal Attainment Scaling, with young people (12–25 years old) seeking psychological help.

Method Semi-structured interviews were conducted with ten young people seeking help from a youth mental health clinic. Interviews were audio taped and a field diary kept. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed using content analysis. Results were verified by member checking.

Results All participants were able to engage in using Goal Attainment Scaling to set goals for therapy, and reported the process to be useful. The participants identified the physical location and ownership of the scale was important to help motivate them to work on their goals.

Conclusion Young help-seekers see Goal Attainment Scaling as an acceptable tool to facilitate the establishment of functional goals. Young service users were particularly keen to maintain control over the physical location of completed forms.

Impact and interest:

0 citations in Scopus
Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

ID Code: 79330
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
DOI: 10.1177/0308022614562584
ISSN: 0308-0226
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Mental Health (111714)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Health Clinical and Counselling Psychology (170106)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Deposited On: 03 Feb 2015 23:32
Last Modified: 10 Jun 2015 01:42

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page