Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management


Voelkl, Judith E


Among older adults with Alzheimer`s disease, 61% to 88% experience problematic passivity (Kolanowski, 1995), which has been linked to a loss of functional abilities (Colling, 1999). In order to prevent this functional decline, social isolation, and development of problematic passivity guidelines can be deduced from the Need-driven Dementia-compromised Behavior (NDB) model for identifying the causes of passive behavior, which can be addressed when designing specialized therapeutic recreation programs.
The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of meaningful activities compared to traditional nursing home activities on the level of alert engagement among individuals with dementia living in a long-term care facility. A single-subject alternating treatment design was used to compare two traditional nursing home activities and a meaningful activity for each participant. Visual analysis of graphs did not consistently demonstrate significantly more alert behaviors during meaningful activity sessions than during traditional nursing home activity sessions.