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Title: The construct validity of a brief neurocognitive screening battery in a paediatric oncology population
Author: Prince, Elizabeth
ISNI:       0000 0004 5348 0466
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2014
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Introduction: Central nervous system (CNS) tumours and leukaemia in children are associated with detrimental neurocognitive outcomes across a wide range of cognitive domains. It is recommended these children receive regular neuropsychological assessment to screen for deficits that may affect their long term outcomes. Barriers to this include time constraints and practice effects associated with traditional neuropsychological assessment. CogState is a brief computerised neuropsychological battery which assesses the neurocognitive domains at risk in this population. This study aimed to evaluate the construct validity of the battery in this population through convergent validity with standardised neuropsychological measures. A secondary aim was to investigate the relationship between time since diagnosis and performance on the CogState battery. Method: A cross-sectional within subject correlation design was used to assess the construct validity in a sample of 37 children aged 8-16 years treated for leukaemia or CNS tumours. Partial correlation was used to assess the relationship between overall performance on the battery and time since diagnosis controlling for IQ and emotional distress. Results: One subtest of the CogState battery correlated significantly with the standard measure assessing the same cognitive domain, showing a large effect size. Four further subtests showed small to medium correlations, however these were not significant and confidence intervals were large. One subtest showed no clear correlation. No significant correlation was found between overall performance on the battery and time since diagnosis, however there was also no relationship between time since diagnosis and IQ in this sample. Conclusion: This study provides some evidence for the construct validity of sections of the CogState battery in a paediatric oncology population. Sample characteristics and methodological limitations which may have affected the scope and reliability of results are discussed. Further research in larger samples is needed before it can be recommended as a standard follow up assessment.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available