Journal Article

Relationships between motor skills and executive functions in Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD): A systematic review


Background: Individuals with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) experience motor skill and executive function (EF) difficulties that challenge their daily activities. Aim/Objective: This systematic review aims to provide an in-depth analysis of the relationships between motor skills and EFs in studies among individuals with DCD. Material and Methods: We conducted a systematic search of eight electronic databases for articles (published 1994–2021) reporting on quantitative studies that estimated relationships between motor skills and EFs when assessing children, adolescents and adults with DCD. Motor skills and EFs were assessed via reliable and validated assessment tools. Two reviewers independently screened the articles. We evaluated the quality of the selected articles according to EPHPP guidelines and the methodological quality of the assessments from these studies using the COSMIN checklist and reported results following the PRISMA-P checklist. This systematic review was registered in PROSPERO (CRD42019124578). Results: A total of 30,808 articles were screened. Eleven articles met the inclusion criteria and were reviewed. Findings from nine studies demonstrated weak to strong correlations between aspects of motor skills and EFs. Conclusions and significance: Limited evidence supports the relationships between motor skills and EFs among individuals with DCD. Occupational therapists should consider the possibility of this relationship and give more consideration to these components when planning intervention for individuals with DCD. 

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Fogel, Yael
Stuart, Nichola
Joyce, Teresa
Barnett, Anna L.

Oxford Brookes departments

Department of Psychology, Health and Professional Development


Year of publication: 2021
Date of RADAR deposit: 2021-12-14

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License

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