Welcome to Allen Conferences, Inc.’s web page,

The official web site of Allen Cognitive Levels.


Active Assisted Range of Motion


Aspect of performance described between Level 1 and current capacity


Allen Cognitive Level


Allen Cognitive Level Screen – A screening tool consisting of 3 leather lacing stitches The range of the scores is from 3.0 to 5.8, also called the leather lacing kit.


Voluntary responses to sensory cues that are consciously willed by the mind.


Collections of actions combined to achieve an intended purpose. An activity is a definite task, project, job or chore assigned, expected, or selected by a person.


Activity of Daily Living


Allen Diagnostic Module


Adaptive Equipment

Allen Battery

Consists of: ACL Screens – The ACLS and the LACLS; ADM manual and the related projects from S&S; Sensory Stim Kits for low ACLs; Safety Series for high ACLs; The two books: Occupational Therapy Treatment Goals for the Physically and Cognitively Disabled, Allen, Earhart & Blue, AOTA, 1992; Understanding Cognitive Performance Modes, Allen Earhart & Blue, 1995; and ACL Documentation Computer Program.

Allen’s Cognitive Disability

A global incapacity to do universal human activities. A biologically determined lack of attention impairs awareness of environmental cues but may spare memories of prior knowledge.

Allen’s Cognitive Levels of Function

A sequence if innate motor and speech performances that result from mental constructions formed to give meaning to an ever changing reality. Six cognitive levels describe a person coming out of a coma (1) to functioning within universal capabilities(6).

Allen Diagnostic Module (ADM)

A collection of craft projects designed to verify scores on the ACL, ranging from 3.0 to 5.8. New information is presented to investigate ability to function in a reality that is always changing. The ADM is standardized for similar actions, on similar material objects, requiring the formation of similar cognitive constructions, for similar reasons.


Active Range of Motion


Directs the mind to preferred information and opens the door to the information processing system. Information that is not attended to is not processed.


Best Ability to Function

Biological Givens

Limit the number of ways that people make sense out of their experience.


Bi-Lateral Upper Extremity


Certified Nursing Assistant

Communication Disabilities

Affect a localized part of speech performance that is caused by a localized injury (dysarthia, damage to Brocca’s or Wernick’s area for linguistic comprehension and production).


Design activities to avoid confrontations with limitations and tap into remaining abilities.


The realization that reality has surface manifestations that are in flux or disarray.


Congestive Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder

Cultural Diversity

Learned by paying attention to sensory cues, and constrained by the historical and ecological conditions that exist for the social group.


Cardio Vascular Accident- Stroke Patient

Demonstrated actions

Display a cause and effect relationship between action and a material object that can be learned through imitation.


is a classification of a problematic solution, in this case a health problem.


Line drawings that show the relationship between parts for assembly.

Disabled activity performance

A combination of impairments and remaining abilities; the whole person does the activity.


The lack of universal human capacity to use energy for motor and speech performance.

Diversified activities

Characterize the human condition and explain successful living in different historical and ecological conditions. A limited ability to pay attention can restrict cultural diversity.


Director of Nursing


The recognition that the same assessment and treatment can be accomplished in multiple ways.


Functional Maintenance Program


The recognition the human knowledge is the outcome of human interpretation of experience. Objectivity is not a possible because the human processes the information.


The realization that there is no single, united system. Context-free, general modes of performance do not exist.


What people do.

Functional ability

The capacity to use mental energy to guide motor and speech performance. A person has to have a working brain to be able to function.

Functional diagnosis

Identifies the psychological and social consequences of the health problem and determines psychological and social answers or solutions whenever possible.

Global Ability to function

Must be present before a focal deficit can be accurately evaluated. (Can Do). Example: Aphasia can’t be evaluated before the patient has the ability to talk


Health Care Financing Agency


Isolated and observable alterations in body functions that indicate the presence of a disease. Impairments and symptoms are used interchangeably.

Independent roles

Occur is social context but rely more on motor performance. The disabled have a right to reasonable accommodation in fulfilling customary roles.

Individual differences

Learned by paying attention to sensory cues, but are constrained by the inborn talents

Information processing speed

An inborn rate of individual differences in acquiring intelligence.


An internal process of understanding , evaluating, storing, and retrieving information that is applied to motor and speech performance.

Just right challenges

Occur when the individual’s energy is fully engaged in using remaining abilities without being frustrated by encountering limitations.


Large Allen Cognitive Level Screen


Lower Body


Lower Extremity

Long Term Goals

Estimate the person’s ability to function in a designated period of time.


Long Term Goals

Medical Diagnosis

determines or analyzes the biological cause and nature of the problem and corrects biological conditions wherever possible.

Modes of Performance

Patterns of motor and speech performance that are subdivisions of the six cognitive levels, designated by a decimal system. The modes range from 0.8 to 6.0 providing a more sensitive scale for 52 modes of performance.

Motor performance

Carried out by the neuromuscular system through conscious control of the head, neck, trunk, and extremities. Movements of self others, and material objects are included.


The realization that human beings make choices to carry out actions that produce intended results in individual situations.


Non Weight Bearing


Out of Bed


Open Reduction Internal Fixation


Occupational Therapist Registered/Licensed


Previous Level of Function


A pattern of acting or responding to a problem in a regular, methodical or predictable manner.

Physical disabilities

Affect a localized part of motor performance that is caused by localized injury (hand injury, spinal cord injury, etc.)

Practical knowledge

Successful in guiding human actions to fulfill intended purposes. Whenever possible, practical knowledge is retrieved from long-term memory.

Prior Knowledge

Information stored in long-term memory that is retrieved and applied to current actions, steps, or activities. People are conservative and draw on prior knowledge for how to do things and acquire new knowledge when prior knowledge does not work as expected.


Point out information from the next mode of performance that have failed to capture or sustain attention.

Prompted actions

Are done after another person points out missed cues. Errors that are recognized and corrected in response to a verbal cue


A process of continuous change that is interpreted by human awareness.

Rhythmic movements

Walk, rock, march


Range of Motion


Routine Task Inventory


A representation of a completed project using the same material objects given to an individual.

Secondary Consequences

The effects of an action, not readily identifiable. Example: Run a stop sign and the secondary consequence could be a car accident.

Sensory Cues

The external bits of information that capture and sustain attention.

Simple sensory cues

Stimulate one of the five senses to produce an associated action.;

Short term goals

match the activity to the person’s current capacity to function.

Social roles

Interactions with other people primarily communicated through speech.

Spatial Properties


Speech performance

Uses verbal and non-verbal patterns of communication to convey and understand the internal state of self and others. Included in speech performance are reading, writing, talking, and listening.

Spontaneous actions

Self initiates and arising from internal forces or causes.


A collection of actions, but the purpose is not completed in doing step, as in 5 steps to successfully completing the activity.


Skilled Nursing Facility


Short Term Goals

Surface Properties

Sheen, texture, shine

Therapeutic Interventions

Functional disabilities change the activity, ass opposed to the biological condition of the patient. The activity is changed to match the individual’s remaining functional abilities.


Upper Extremity

Verbal and written directions

Tells a person what to do in an action, step, or activity.

Verbal Cues

Ask people to form mental constructs to guide their actions on their own.


Within Functional Limits

Rosemary Andrews

A therapist who works with Claudia at UCLA-Harbour. She did the documentation for the handouts.

Tina Blue

Co written several books with Claudia, Used to work with her in CA but now works in Orlando at a SNF. Documented positioning w/cognitive level improvement

Carol Bertrand

OT in FL who puts pt. names in gray book so nursing can check it out. Wrote Starting ACL in SNF book.

Cathy Earhart

Co written several books with Claudia, Used to work with her in CA. Designs most of the projects in the ADM. Invented “EARHART TIME” – the speed at which projects can be completed

Kathy Kehrberg

Designed the LACLS, Lives in MN, has great rockers on her porch.

Terri Thompson

OT in TN who uses the ACL to test driving