Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor's Name

Pamela Shaffner

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Susan Kaplan

Third Advisor's Name

Alma Abdel-Moty

Date of Defense



The purpose of this study was to determine how autonomy is affected among individuals with spinal cord injuries by being able to drive again or for the first time, after participating in a driving rehabilitation program. Information was collected using a survey originally designed for the purpose of this study on driving-related autonomy. Fifty two surveys were included in this study and met the inclusive criteria. Analysis of the responses indicated that the majority of individuals in this study experienced a high level of autonomy after going through a driving rehabilitation program. The results showed that there was an increase in the number of subjects who did not drive before their injury, disability, or condition by 35.3%, after participating in a driving rehabilitation program. It was also found that 76.9% of the subjects perceived that driving had improved their life by 100% on a daily basis after completing a driving rehabilitation program. The participants perceived driving as being very important in allowing them to remain or become autonomous, by being able to drive themselves to needed and desired locations.





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