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Ashley Szczesny, Marie R. Kerins, Ed.D.

Using Personalized Alarms to Aid Memory Recall among People with Acquired Brain Injuries

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Deficiencies in memory and attention as well as a lack of independence have a significant impact on people with acquired brain injuries. Many individuals with acquired brain injuries struggle with depression and feel that they are no longer the person they once were (Gurr & Foxhall, 2014).They have a difficult time adjusting to a new lifestyle. However, the use of music in cognitive rehabilitation has been proven to be effective (Gurr & Foxhall, 2014). There is a lack of research that utilizes music as a preferred strategy to improve memory in individuals with ABI.  Using music as an aid to remember a task is the focus of this study. 

A single subject alternating baseline design was used comparing two conditions: an alarm tone and a familiar musical alarm. In this study the following research questions were investigated: Will subjects respond more readily and with greater independence to the personally motivating music versus the generic alarm tone, and will subjects perceive the alarm as helpful in improving attention to a task and perceive greater independence for activities of daily living? Results of this study were inconclusive in determining if personally motivating music is a helpful strategy for increasing independence in clients with ABI; further research is needed. 


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