Geometric dissections and occupational therapy!

In January of 2006, I got in contact with Eve Greenfield, an occupational therapist working at the Medical Research Council in Cambridge, England. She had been conducting research into recovery from brain injury and had been using a certain geometric dissection as part of a memory test. The test was to be marketed in a year or two. Well, now that test has been published:
Rivermead Behavioural Memory Test - Third Edition (RBMT-3),
by Barbara A. Wilson, Eve Greenfield, Linda Clare, Alan Baddeley, Janet Cockburn, Peter Watson, Robyn Tate, Sara Sopena, Rory Nannery, and John R. Crawford,
published by PsychCorp, a division of Pearson Education Ltd, 2008.
This test is a standardised cognitive test, for use by psychologists and therapists. It was originally designed in 1985 with the goals of (a) predicting everyday memory problems in people with acquired, non-progressive brain injury and (b) monitoring change over time. This is the third revision of the original test, incorporating a number of changes, including a new subtest, the Novel Task, which assesses the ability of a person to learn a new skill, an accomplishment critical for everyday functioning. Assembling the pieces of the geometric dissection is an example of a new skill that the person must learn. Eve Greenfield was responsible for, among other things, the inclusion of the geometric dissection.

At the request of the publisher, I am refraining from mentioning the particular geometric dissection so that patients will not be able to obtain knowledge on how to complete the task before completing the test. Of course, prospective test-takers could always work through my entire book (listed below). I would hope that such an activity could be of great therapeutic value for patients with brain injuries, as indeed should be the case for reading through many other wonderful books!
Dissections: Plane & Fancy, by Greg N. Frederickson,
Cambridge University Press, 1997.


Last updated October 15, 2009.