Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management

Committee Member

Marieke Van Puymbroeck, Committee Chair

Committee Member

Brent Hawkins

Committee Member

Julie Vidotto


The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of sensory gardens on agitation and quality of life for people with dementia. The sensory garden consisted of plants that stimulated all the senses. Four people diagnosed with dementia residing in assisted living participated in the multiple treatment single-subject design (A1-B-BC-A2) study. Baseline phase A1 lasted two-weeks, intervention B and BC were four-weeks each, and return to baseline A2 was two-weeks, for a total of 12 weeks. Intervention B was an indoor sensory garden and intervention BC was an approximated outside sensory garden. Data revealed positive trends following the sensory garden interventions on decreasing agitation and improving quality of life. Intervention B worked best for two participants and intervention BC for the remaining two participants. Applications to recreational therapy practice are provided.



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