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Rationale and Design of the National Neuropsychology Network

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 March 2021

David W. Loring*
Affiliation:
Department of Neurology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA30329, USA Department of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA30322, USA
Russell M. Bauer
Affiliation:
Department of Clinical and Health Psychology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL32610, USA Brain Rehabilitation Research Center, Malcom Randall VAMC, Gainesville, FL32610, USA
Lucia Cavanagh
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, CA90024, USA
Daniel L. Drane
Affiliation:
Department of Neurology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA30329, USA Department of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA30322, USA
Kristen D. Enriquez
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, CA90024, USA
Steven P. Reise
Affiliation:
Department of Psychology, University of California, Los Angeles, CA90095, USA
KuoChung Shih
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, CA90024, USA
Laura Glass Umfleet
Affiliation:
Department of Neurology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI53226, USA
Dustin Wahlstrom
Affiliation:
Pearson Clinical Assessment, San Antonio, TX78259, USA
Fiona Whelan
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, CA90024, USA
Keith F. Widaman
Affiliation:
Graduate School of Education, University of California, Riverside, CA92521, USA
Robert M. Bilder
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, CA90024, USA
*
Correspondence and reprint requests to: D.W. Loring, Emory Brain Health Center, 12 Executive Park, Atlanta, GA30329, USA. E-mail: dloring@emory.edu

Abstract

Objective.

The National Neuropsychology Network (NNN) is a multicenter clinical research initiative funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH; R01 MH118514) to facilitate neuropsychology’s transition to contemporary psychometric assessment methods with resultant improvement in test validation and assessment efficiency.

Method:

The NNN includes four clinical research sites (Emory University; Medical College of Wisconsin; University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA); University of Florida) and Pearson Clinical Assessment. Pearson Q-interactive (Q-i) is used for data capture for Pearson published tests; web-based data capture tools programmed by UCLA, which serves as the Coordinating Center, are employed for remaining measures.

Results:

NNN is acquiring item-level data from 500–10,000 patients across 47 widely used Neuropsychology (NP) tests and sharing these data via the NIMH Data Archive. Modern psychometric methods (e.g., item response theory) will specify the constructs measured by different tests and determine their positive/negative predictive power regarding diagnostic outcomes and relationships to other clinical, historical, and demographic factors. The Structured History Protocol for NP (SHiP-NP) helps standardize acquisition of relevant history and self-report data.

Conclusions:

NNN is a proof-of-principle collaboration: by addressing logistical challenges, NNN aims to engage other clinics to create a national and ultimately an international network. The mature NNN will provide mechanisms for data aggregation enabling shared analysis and collaborative research. NNN promises ultimately to enable robust diagnostic inferences about neuropsychological test patterns and to promote the validation of novel adaptive assessment strategies that will be more efficient, more precise, and more sensitive to clinical contexts and individual/cultural differences.

Type
Regular Research
Copyright
Copyright © INS. Published by Cambridge University Press, 2021

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Footnotes

*

NNN Study Group Members: Russell M. Bauer, Robert M. Bilder, Lucia Cavanagh, Daniel L. Drane, Kristen Enriquez, Felicia C. Goldstein, Jude Henry. Kelsey C. Hewitt, David W. Loring, Stephen P. Reise, Kuo Chung Shih, Catherine Sugar, Sean Turner, Laura Glass Umfleet, Dustin Wahlstrom, Keith F. Widaman, Patricia Walshaw, Fiona Whelan.

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