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Overview of CANTAB for inclusion in protocols and grant applications

CANTAB (the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery) is a cognitive assessment system containing a collection of language independent, computerised cognitive tests with proven sensitivity to detecting changes in neuropsychological performance designed specifically for academic research purposes.

The touchscreen technology delivers rapid and non-invasive objective cognitive assessments. The cognitive testing suite is simple and intuitive to use, being suitable for use across different age groups and clinical contexts. No technical knowledge or prior familiarity with computers is necessary. The tests are non-invasive, and are enjoyable and engaging for participants.

CANTAB has a strong translational heritage resulting from 30 years of fundamental science transforming research, diagnosis and treatment in mental health worldwide. The tests are sensitive to drug effects and cognitive impairments in different neurological and psychiatric conditions, as well as to the normal ageing process.

CANTAB has been validated in over 2,200 peer-reviewed papers and is used by 800 research institutions worldwide. The CANTAB research products incorporates a normative database from control subjects that can be invaluable in interpreting test data.

Sample screenshot and task description 

Increasingly, ethics committees/IRBs and grant funding bodies request one or more examples of screenshots from cognitive tasks to be included in applications. Screenshots and descriptions of the CANTAB tests can be obtained via www.cantab.com/cantab/cognitive-tests or by contacting us directly. 

An example is provided below:

Sample screenshot from the CANTAB Paired Associates Learning Task (PAL)

Paired Associates Learning assesses visual memory and new learning.

Boxes are displayed on the screen and are “opened” in a randomised order. One or more of them will contain a pattern. The patterns are then displayed in the middle of the screen, one at a time and the participant must select the box in which the pattern was originally located.

If the participant makes an error, the boxes are opened in sequence again to remind the participant of the locations of the patterns. Increased difficulty levels can be used to test high-functioning, healthy individuals. 

For further support with applying for research funding please read our Research Funding & Grant Application Guide.

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