Affiliations: [a] Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of British Columbia, Canada | [b] Oliver Zangwill Centre for Neuropsychological Rehabilitation, UK | [c] Institute of Health and Wellbeing, University of Glasgow, Scotland | [d] MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge, UK
Address for correspondence: Sinéad M. Hynes, Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, 2211 Wesbrook Mall, Vancouver, BC, Canada V6T 2B5. Tel.: +1 604 827 3383; Fax: +1 604 822 7624; [email protected].
Abstract: Executive function is best measured in loosely structured, multi-component tasks that reflect real-life demands. These tasks require participants to develop a strategy, keep a plan in mind and monitor time. Errors include ignoring stated goals (‘goal neglect’), over-allocation of time to one task and violating rules. Teasing apart such errors can be complicated and these assessments can be difficult to control and time-consuming to administer. This paper reports an evaluation of a new, easy-to-administer computer-based multiple component test, the Computerised Multiple Elements Test (CMET). In Study 1 20 older adults (55–70 years) completed the task under different conditions. Study 2 examines the relationships between CMET and performance on measures of related constructs. The results show that poor CMET performance correlated with self-reported frequency of everyday cognitive lapses. There is a reasonable basis for further exploration of the CMET as a quick, practical and potentially sensitive measure of organisational skills.