The Effects of Virtual Reality-Based Occupational Therapy Program on the Physical Function and Learning Capacity of School-Age Intellectual Disability Children

가상현실 기반 작업치료프로그램이 학령기 지적장애 아동의 신체기능 및 학습능력에 미치는 영향

  • Kim, Ko-Un (Thejalam Sensory Integration Development Research Institute) ;
  • Oh, Hye-Won (Dept. of Occupational Therapy, Woosuk University)
  • 김고운 (더자람감각통합발달연구소) ;
  • 오혜원 (우석대학교 작업치료학과)
  • Received : 2020.09.25
  • Accepted : 2020.10.30
  • Published : 2021.02.28


Purpose : The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of a virtual reality-based occupational therapy program on the physical function and learning ability of intellectually disabled school-aged children. Methods : In this study, 20 intellectually disabled children of school age were randomly and evenly divided into experimental and control groups with children in the experimental group receiving a virtual reality-based occupational therapy intervention. The study adopted a pretest-posttest design. The intervention was conducted for a total of 12 sessions for six weeks, twice a week, and 50 minutes per session. As measurement tools, BOT-2 and grooved pegboard tests were used to compare physical function before and after the intervention program, and K-ABC was used to check changes in learning ability. Results : The occupational therapy program produced a significant improvement in both physical function and learning ability of the experimental group. A significant difference was observed between the experimental and control groups. Conclusion : This study confirmed the value and usefulness of virtual reality-based occupational therapy as a tool for enhancing the physical function and learning ability of intellectually disabled school-aged children. Based on the results, a variety of future studies are encouraged that would further test the effects of the occupational therapy program used here.


  1. Bai DS, Koo BH(2006). The characteristic of K-ABC-K performance in children with ADHD: descriptive analysis. J Emot Behav Disord, 22(4), 153-183.
  2. Bruininks RH, Bruininks BD(2005). Bruininks-Oseretsky test of motor proficiency. 2nd ed, Minneapolis, Pearson Assessment, pp.13-72.
  3. Cho MS(2015). Influence of virtual reality games on eye-hand coordination in children with developmental disordered. J Korean Soc Commu Base Occup, 5(1), 63-69.
  4. Han JH, Ko JY(2010). Evaluation of balance and activities of daily living in children with spastic cerebral palsy using virtual reality program with electronic games. J Korea Contents Assoc, 10(6), 480-488.
  5. Jang MY, Hoe SY, Kim EK, et al(2009). The effect and satisfaction of the dynamic tripod handwriting assistive tool in normal preschoolers handwriting skills. J Assist Technol, 3(2), 39-53.
  6. Jo YJ, Hwang BY(2012). The effects of head control training using virtual reality programs on standing balance in children with spastic hemiplegia. J Korea Soc Neurother, 16(1), 45-54.
  7. Joo ES, Bang YS, Hwang MJ(2017). The Effects of cognitive program on cognitive function and vocational competency of an individual with intellectual disability. J Korean Entertain Industr Assoc, 11(6), 255-267.
  8. Kim MG, Han KG(2019). Effectiveness of 360-degree virtual reality video as community simulation learning for students with severe and multiple disabilities. Korean J Phys Multi Health Disabil, 62(4), 231-256.
  9. Kim KU, Oh HW(2019). The effects of digital sensory perceptual training on hand function and visual-motor integration in children with developmental disabilities. J Korean Soc Integrative Med, 7(4), 141-150.
  10. Kim WR, Koh HJ(2013). Trends and issues in studies of social skills interventions for students with intellectual disabilities. J Mental Retardation, 15(3), 25-55.
  11. Kim WR, Ok MW(2019). A review of research on using augmented reality and virtual reality for learning achievement and attitude of students with disabilities. KJLD, 16(3), 51-72.
  12. Kreider CM, Bendixen RM, Huang YY, et al.(2014). Review of occupational therapy intervention research in the practice area of children and youth 2009-2013. Am J Occup Ther, 68(2), e61-e73.
  13. Lee HJ, Go JE(2016). Effects of virtual reality based exercise program on gross motor function and balance of children with spastic cerebral palsy. J Korean Soc Integrative Med, 4(4), 53-65.
  14. Lee TS, Kim YP(2017). Developing and exploring the possibility of virtual reality based communication training program for students with intellectual disabilities. J Korea Contents Assoc, 17(11), 342-353.
  15. Moon SB, Byun CJ(1997). K-ABC: Kaufman assessment battery for children : interpretive manual. Seoul, Hakjisa, pp.59-60.
  16. Nintendo(2010). Instruction manual of Wii sports resort. Seoul, Nintendo, pp.1-16.
  17. Park GT, Jo GR, Lee YH(2015). The effects of bilateral training using virtual reality program on children with cerebral palsy. Korean J Adapt Phys Activity, 23(3), 103-117.
  18. Park GY, You YH, Kim HJ(2012). Effects of brain-wave training on motor competency in individuals with intellectual disability. Korean J Adapt Phys Activity, 20(1), 111-123.
  19. Park JS(2010). Implication on definition and classification of intellectual disability in AAIDD 11th. Korean Assoc Intellectual Disabil, 12(4), 1-19.
  20. Ruff RM, Parker SB(1993). Gender and age-specific changes in motor speed and eye-hand coordination in adults: normative values for the finger tapping and grooved pegboard tests. Percept Mot Skills, 76(3 Pt 2), 1219-1230.
  21. Shin MK, Park JH(2016). Effects of a task-oriented intervention on handwriting of school aged children with ADHD: A case study. J Korean Soc Occup Ther, 24(1), 65-74.
  22. Weiss PL, Rand D, Katz N, et al(2004). Video capture virtual reality as a flexible and effective rehabilitation tool. J Neuroeng Rehabil, 1(1), Printed Online.
  23. Wuang YP, Chiang CS, Su CY, et al(2011). Effectiveness of virtual reality using Wii gaming technology in children with down syndrome. Res Dev Disabil, 32(1), 312-321.
  24. You YH(2017). The effect of participation in virtual reality sports on exercise commitment and lower extremity muscular function of persons with intellectual disability. Korean J Phys Educ, 56(4), 613-623.
  25. Yoon JW, Oh BS, Kim TS(2011). Effect of 8 weeks Nintendo Wii Fit/Sports exercise on body composition and object control function in male high school student with intellectual disability. J Sport Leisure Stud, 46(2), 1099-1108.
  26. 2019 Statistical Yearbook of Disability, Korea Disabled people's Development Institute, 2019. Available at Accessed August 25, 2020.