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Dunn’s Model of Sensory Processing: An Investigation of the Axes of the Four-Quadrant Model in Healthy Adults

Occupational Therapy Doctoral Program, School of Exercise & Rehabilitation Sciences, College of Health & Human Services, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH 43606, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Brain Sci. 2019, 9(2), 35;
Received: 21 December 2018 / Revised: 1 February 2019 / Accepted: 4 February 2019 / Published: 7 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Brain Mechanisms of Sensory Processing Disorder)
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We examined the behavioral response (BR) and threshold (T) axes of Dunn’s four-quadrant model of sensory processing (1997). We assessed whether they are ordinal ranges and if variation is associated with other similarly described characteristics: Introversion/Extraversion (I/E) of Eysenck’s personality model (Sato, 2005), and somatosensory event related potentials (SERP) and their gating (Davies & Gavin, 2007). From healthy adults (n = 139), we obtained: Adult/Adolescent Profile (A/ASP, Brown & Dunn, 2002) and Eysenck’s Personality Questionnaire, Brief Version (Sato, 2005) scores and peak amplitude and gating factor of SERP P50. We found that BR scores did not differ across normative categories of the A/ASP, but T scores significantly increased along the axis. I/E scores did not vary with BR scores. There were no differences or correlations in P50 amplitudes and gating with T scores. The findings suggest that the BR axis may not reflect a construct with ordinal range, but the T axis may. Dunn’s concept of BR appears to be distinct from Eysenck’s concept of I/E. SERP and its gating may not be directly reflective of sensory processing thresholds in healthy adults. Conclusions are limited by having few participants with passive behavior regulation or low threshold patterns of processing. View Full-Text
Keywords: sensory processing sensory processing

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Metz, A.E.; Boling, D.; DeVore, A.; Holladay, H.; Liao, J.F.; Vlutch, K.V. Dunn’s Model of Sensory Processing: An Investigation of the Axes of the Four-Quadrant Model in Healthy Adults. Brain Sci. 2019, 9, 35.

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