Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Science


Health and Rehabilitation Sciences


Dr. Andrew Johnson


Although recent clinical and scientific effort has focused on the development of guidelines for post-concussion return to play/work/learn, there is still relatively little literature that addresses specific treatment methods by which this can be accomplished. Accordingly, this study investigated the effect of a 7-week simulated classroom-based intervention on the self-reporting of symptom scores among 71 individuals with persistent concussion symptoms (26 men and 45 women). All participants were provided with novel strategies for reading, writing, study skills, social communication and technology use. Self-assessment of symptoms were obtained weekly, both before and after each session of the treatment program, in an effort to monitor the cognitive demands of each session, and to identify the extent to which the program produced an improvement over the course of seven weeks. Results suggested that concussion symptoms were exacerbated in the short term by treatment, F(1, 343) = 255.69, p < .05, consistently across the 7 weeks of the program. An overall downward trend was, however, observed for symptom scores, over the seven weeks of the treatment program, and a statistically significant difference was noted between the first and last week of the program, F(6, 343) = 2.29, p < .05. Post-hoc analysis of means (using Tukey’s HSD) suggests that there was a significant improvement (alpha = 0.05) of self-reported symptoms when comparing weeks 1 and 6, and between weeks 1 and 7. These results suggest that, transient exacerbation of symptoms aside; the targeted simulated classroom interventions produced a statistically significant benefit in the management of persistent concussion symptoms within this particular return-to-learn protocol.