Upcoming Measures
In partnership with Northwestern University, Sage Bionetworks is developing and validating the Mobile Toolbox collection of  cognitive assessments, which we hope to make broadly available in the first half of 2021.

Flanker

This measure targets inhibitory control and attention. Flanker is a measure of executive attention, which encompasses endogenous attentional processes that are under cognitive control and overlaps considerably with the construct of executive function (EF). Dual task paradigms like Flanker have shown impairments in asymptomatic carriers of familial Alzheimer’s Disease and individuals with CRCI. This measure requires respondents to indicate the left-right orientation of a centrally presented stimulus while inhibiting attention to potentially incongruent stimuli that surround it.

Estimated average time: 3 minutes

 

Face-Name (FNAME)

This measure targets episodic memory function and has excellent psychometric properties associated with memory performance, and is related to amyloid biomarkers. Face-Name is a cross-modal associative memory test which has demonstrated sensitivity to amyloid burden in cognitively normal individuals, a biomarker of preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease. Lower performances on FNAME (retention of face–name associations) were shown to be significantly correlated with higher levels of Aβ deposition in frontal, precuneus, posterior cingulate, and lateral parietal cortices in cognitively normal subjects. Thus, performances on FNAME seem to be sensitive to subtle memory changes due to preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease.

Estimated average time: 5.5 minutes

 

Memory for Sequence (MFS)

This measure assesses working memory – ability to recall unrelated information and cognitively manipulate it to produce a new output. MFS is a newly developed measure of working memory. Working memory deficits have been previously shown in the context of cognitive decline, particularly with Parkinson’s disease and HIV-Associated Neurocognitive Disorders. MFS requires participants to remember a string of letters and numbers and manipulate them in order to put them in alphabetical and numeric order. Trials begin with strings of three alphanumeric characters and become increasingly challenging, reaching a maximum difficulty of 10 characters. Scores reflect the number of correct trials.

Estimated average time: 5 minutes

 

Picture Sequence Memory (PSM)

PSM is a measure of episodic memory that requires the acquisition, storage, and retrieval of new information adapted from the NIHTB version of the same measure. A series of images depicting independent, non-sequential activities are presented in a specific order and placed in specific, ordered locations on the screen. Following this presentation, the images are scrambled and the participant is asked to recall the original order and place the images accordingly. The same task with the same set of images, in the same order, is presented a second time. Participants are given credit for each pair of correctly placed adjacent images, regardless of the absolute location of the pair within the sequence.

Estimated average time: 5 minutes

 

Vocabulary

The Vocabulary test is adapted from the NIHTB Picture Vocabulary Test (Gershon et al., 2014). Participants are asked which of four words most closely matched the meaning of a target word. Vocabulary will be administered as a computerized adaptive test (CAT), with entry points based on the participant’s level of education or previous performance. Scores from this assessment include theta and standard error. This measure draws upon a large existing bank (3,000+) of calibrated words. These are useful in the context of cognitive change as they are known to be relatively less affected by age-related impairment. 

Estimated average time: 2 minutes

 

Number Match

This measure assesses processing speed by instructing participants to use a digit/symbol key to decode a digit series. Number match indexes several cognitive functions including perception, encoding and retrieval, the transformation of information stored in active memory and decision making. Due to the wide range of abilities influencing task performance, this measure provides high sensitivity and low specificity for many types of impairment, including normal age-related decline, dementia, cancer, and multiple sclerosis.

Estimated average time: 2 minutes

 

Spelling

A newly developed test, Auditory Recognition and Spelling assess verbal encoding and retrieval (spelling). Deficits in encoding and storage processes are characteristic of Alzheimer’s Disease and are important for early identification of dementia associated with Parkinson’s Disease and HIV. Participants listen to audio clips and enter the corresponding letters to spell the word. The test will be administered as a CAT, with entry items based on the participant’s level of education or previous performance when available. This measure requires verbal encoding and retrieval. It is an inversion of the Oral Reading Recognition (ORR) measure in the NIH Toolbox.

Estimated average time: 4 minutes

 

Dimensional Change Card Sort (DCCS)

This measure is widely used for executive function and cognitive flexibility, particularly in populations with traumatic brain injury, severe impairment, and/or young children. Respondents are asked to sort images across two dimensions based on visual characteristics (shape and color). The MTB version is a direct conversion of the NIHTB version, but with novel stimuli.

Estimated average time: 3 minutes
 

Change Localization (CL)

This measure is used to measure visual working memory capacity. ‘Visual change detection tasks provide a ‘purer’ measure of the amount of information present in a short-term storage system. In these tasks, participants are shown a sample array containing of a few simple stimuli (e.g., four colored squares) for a short period (e.g., 100ms). After a brief delay (e.g., 1000ms), a test array appears that is either identical to the sample array or differs in some way (e.g., one of the items might have changed color). The change localization task has a change occur in every trial and asks participants to report the location of the change.’ (Johnson 2013)


Jittered Orientation Visual Integration (JOVI)

JOVI measures cognitive impairment. This updated version uses two types odd catch trials to quantify attention lapses in task performance, inclusion of new conditions at the level of difficulty, fewer conditions at extreme difficulty levels, and fewer overall conditions to reduce fatigue. This measure assesses the ability of subjects to visually group non-contiguous edge elements into a single enclosing boundary. The elements are Gabor patches.


Grid Memory

A visuospatial working memory task, with delayed free recall. After a brief exposure, and a short distraction phase, participants are asked to report the location of dots on a grid.

 

Symbol Search

A speeded continuous performance test of conjunctive feature search, where participants are asked to identify matching symbol pairs.

 

Color Shapes

A visual array change detection task, measuring intra-item feature binding, where participants are to determine if shapes change color across two sequential presentations of shape stimuli.

 

Color Dots

A cued-recall, item-location memory binding task, where after viewing 3 dots for a brief period of time, participants are to report: (1) the color at a cued location; (2) the location of a cued color.

 

Shopping List

A delayed forced-choice recognition task, where participants are to incidentally encode item-price pairs for later recall, following a brief judgement of whether the price is “good”.

 

Finger Tapping

A speeded continuous performance test where participants are to tap the target(s) on screen as fast as possible using the indicated finger(s) and hand(s).

 

Multiple Object Tracking

A continuous monitoring visual tracking task where participants are to track specific moving objects (ignoring distracting objects) with their eyes, and report the location after all objects have stopped moving.

 

Go-No-Go

A speeded continuous performance test where participants are asked to respond to each letter presented in a stream of letters, while withholding a response to a certain letter (i.e., X).

 

Go-No-Go City-Mountain

A speeded continuous performance test where participants are asked to respond to each image presented in a stream of images, while withholding a response to a certain image (i.e., mountain).