General information


Assisting Hand Assessment (AHA) Course

An assessment to evaluate hand function in children with Unilateral CP or Brachial Plexus Palsy.

Wednesday 11th to Friday 13th September 2013




Who should attend? 

This two and a half day course is aimed at experienced allied health professionals working with children with neurodevelopmental disabilities - includes occupational therapists and physiotherapists.

Overview of course 

The Assisting Hand Assessment Course (AHA) measures and describes the effectiveness with which a child who has unilateral disability makes use of their affected hand (assisting hand) during bimanual activities. It is a standardized test intended for children with CP or Brachial Plexus Palsy between the ages of 18 months and 12 years. 

The AHA is performed as an enjoyable 10 to 15 minute semi-structured play session using  a test kit of selected toys requiring bimanual use. The AHA is then scored from structured video recordings of the observable performance skills during this play. 

The AHA measurement contains twenty two items scored on a four-point rating scale.
The course teaches the Assisting Hand Assessment Version 4.4 in two steps. The first step involves a two and a half day workshop where participants will learn about the test construct, testing procedure and scoring practice on a range of children from videos. A manual with detailed scoring criteria and a computer based scoring form will be provided.

Following the course, participants will be required to achieve satisfactory scoring of test cases; some of which are provided by videos and some from self produced AHA play sessions.


Assessment and certification 

On the last day of the course the participants receive a DVD with children recorded and are asked to score these and send their scores back to the tutors for feedback. Individual feedback is given, which is an important part of the process.

The participants are then required to do some self produced play sessions, score them and send the tapes and scores to the tutors for feedback and approval to become a certified AHA rater. This whole process should be completed in three months.

To complete the last part an AHA test kit is needed.

(The AHA test kit for children between 18 months and 12 years with specific toys is not included in the course fees.)


This highly practical course combines presentations, with case studies, examples of good practice, group work and discussions.

An important part of the course is practising scoring children with different ability levels, from video recorded AHA play sessions.

There will also be some pre course reading.

Course Materials

A Course Manual with detailed scoring criteria and a computer based scoring from will be provided. 

AHA Test Kit

The AHA test kit can be ordered from Handfast Inc at the course or later during the certification period.




Aims and objectives 

On completion of the course participants will be able to:-

• Demonstrate how to set up, conduct and video record an Assisting Hand Assessment session
• Produce reliable scores according to the criteria in the manual
• Understand the constructs upon which the AHA is based and describe the psychometric properties
• Interpret and communicate outcomes from the testing procedures.


Asociate Professor Lena Krumlinde-Sundholm

Associate Professor Lena Krumlinde-Sundholm, Reg OT, PhD is a senior researcher at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm and an Occupational Therapist with many years experience of working with children with disabilities. 

She currently works on a part time basis in clinical paediatric rehabilitation at the Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital and with the Habilitation Services  for Stockholm County Council.She is also actively involved in the administration of the Swedish National Cerebral Palsy Register and Follow up Programme.  

For the last ten years her main research interest has been on the development of clinical tools to describe, measure outcome and guide interventions for children with disabilities.  She is the first author and developer of the Assisting Hand Assessment (AHA) and is currently engaged in the further development of  new versions of this test for other diagnostic groups and ages.  She has also been involved in the development of the Manual Ability Classification System (MACS) and the Children’s Hand use Experience Questionnaire (CHEQ) as well as in cultural validation od assessments like the PEDI, the CAPE/PAC and the PEGS.

Britt-Marie Zethraeus      O.T. Msc   

Karolinska University Hospital


The course will be held at the Newcomen Centre, St Thomas' Hospital, London 


11th September     9am to 5pm

12th September     9am to 5pm

13th September     8:30am to 1pm

Exact timings will be sent to delegates two weeks before the start of the course. 

Course fees

The course fees are £550. 

This includes the two and a half day course and the feedback and assessment of the self produced play sessions, in order to become a Certified rater. 

The cost of the AHA test kit is not included in the course fees. 



Enquiries and booking 

For more information or if you have any questions about booking a place, please contact:

Ian Mackie

Events Organiser, Guy’s and St Thomas’

Tel: +44 (0)20 7188 1622

Course content and certification process 

For further information about the course content or Certification process, please contact:

Anne Gordon

Lead Clinician - Paediatric Occupational Therapy

+44 (0)20 7188 9427