Clinical Validity of the Test of Gross Motor Development-3 in Children With Disabilities from the U.S. National Normative Sample

in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly
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  • 1 Iowa State University
  • 2 Augusta University
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The Test of Gross Motor Development (TGMD) measures fundamental motor skills competency and is frequently used for eligibility determination of adapted physical education services in children with disabilities. The purpose of this study was to determine if the TGMD-3 is clinically sensitive to detect deficits in the fundamental motor skills of children with disabilities (i.e., intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, language and articulation disorders). Eighty-five children with disabilities and 85 matched controls (i.e., typically developing, individually matched on age, sex, ethnicity, and race) completed the TGMD-3. Mann–Whitney U tests identified significant differences in the total TGMD-3 scores for children with intellectual disability (p < .001), autism spectrum disorder (p < .001), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (p = .032). No differences were identified for children with language and articulation disorders. Comparisons of subscales (i.e., locomotor and ball skills) differed across disability groups. This study provides evidence that the TGMD-3 is clinically sensitive to identify deficits in fundamental motor skills competency.

Pitchford is with the Dept. of Kinesiology, Iowa State University, Ames, IA, USA. Webster is with the Inst. of Public and Preventive Health, Augusta University, Augusta, GA, USA.

Pitchford (eapitch@iastate.edu) is corresponding author.
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