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6 November 2017

Home-based computerised testing: a valid alternative to in-person cognitive assessments?

A comparison of in-person and web-based computerised cognitive testing with CANTAB.

Testing individuals in their own homes and on their own devices has the potential to improve the efficiency of screening into clinical trials by obtaining patient reported or objective cognitive data before participants reach the clinic. However, testing in the home environment needs to be robust and provide equivalent data to that obtained in a supervised setting.

Two studies were conducted with the aim of validating at home web-based testing against in-person assessment.  The first is a between-subjects comparison, which used a large-scale crowdsourced sample to (i) explore the impact of computer hardware on performance, and (ii) derive markers of task performance and behaviour which could indicate lack of attention. The study showed (i) an equivalent distribution of scores in the two conditions using a crowd-sourced sample, and (ii) extractable metrics of inattention from reaction time data which could be used to assess participant attention and compliance.

In the second experiment, the comparability of web-based and in-person testing was directly addressed in a counterbalanced within-subjects study of community dwelling adults. The study confirmed, with this direct within-person test, equivalence of in-person and web-based testing methodologies. Together, the study findings support the validity of home-based computerised assessment.

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Tags : cantab | web-based testing

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Poster by Francesca Cormack and colleagues