The impact of stimulus attributes on engagement of nursing home residents with dementia

Jiska Cohen-Mansfield*, Maha Dakheel-Ali, Khin Thein, Marcia S. Marx

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


We examined the influence of stimulus attributes on the engagement of 69 nursing home residents with dementia. Specifically, we looked at work-related stimuli versus manipulative block stimuli, and whether the color, size, and material of a stimulus affect the duration and quality of engagement. Engagement was assessed using the Observational Measurement of Engagement (OME). Results revealed a clear preference for the work-related rather than manipulative block stimuli. In addition, the study participants showed a significant preference for small rather than large blocks, regardless of color or material. The effect of material and color was not statistically significant. These findings may assist nursing home caregivers who wish to provide appropriate stimuli for engaging nursing home residents with dementia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of Gerontology and Geriatrics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2009


FundersFunder number
National Institutes of Health
National Institute on AgingR01AG021497


    • Dementia in nursing home residents
    • Engagement time
    • Non-pharmacological intervention
    • Stimulus attributes


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