Single subject research

Essay by mriousCollege, UndergraduateB, November 2014

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SSRD Workshop 1

Single Subject Research Design (SSRD)

Bill Miller, PhD, OT UBC School of Rehab Sciences

VCHA OT Research Scientist

SSRD Workshop 2


• Define Single Subject Research Design (SSRD) • Rationale for using SSRD • Describe several forms of SSRD • Discuss the methods of analyses using SSRD • Discuss strengths & weaknesses of SSRD

SSRD Workshop 3

Continuum of Research

Quasi-Experimental (Groups -no random selection)

Case report Case Study (Individuals - SSRD)

Experimental (RCT)

Pre Scientific Scientific

SSRD Workshop 4

Other Names for SSRD

• Single case experimental design • Time series design • Small-N design • Single system designs • Within-subject comparison • Idiographic research • N of one trial

SSRD Workshop 5

SSRD Defined

SSRD involves studying a single individual or system by taking repeated measurements of 1

or more dependent variables and systematically applying & sometimes, withdrawing or varying the independent

variable. (Ottenbacher, 1986; Bloom & Fischer, 1982)

SSRD Workshop 6

Why Chose SSRD?

• Demonstrates individual differences • Difficulty obtaining adequate power (N) • Difficulty obtaining homogeneous group • SSRD is relatively easy to do • Helps validate practice • Demonstrate treatment (tx) effectiveness • Great pilot

SSRD Workshop 7

About SSRD

• Collection of methods (eg; AB, ABAC) • Answers research question or tests hypothesis • Involves at least one;

• Subject (individual or clinical unit/department) • Baseline or "A" Phase - series of repeated observations

or measurements with no intervention • Intervention or "B" Phase - introduction of experimental

variable with evaluation to see if change occurs • Dependent variable (quantifiable) • Independent variable (treatment / intervention)

SSRD Workshop 8

SSRD Phases

Baseline • Period of no tx - reflects natural state • Provide standard for evaluating tx effect • Measurements usually repeated until stability

demonstrated • 5 or...