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Action (verb) fluency: Test–retest reliability, normative standards, and construct validity

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 July 2005

STEVEN PAUL WOODS
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California
J. COBB SCOTT
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology, San Diego State University and University of California at San Diego, San Diego, California
DANIELLE A. SIRES
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California
IGOR GRANT
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California
ROBERT K. HEATON
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California
ALEXANDER I. TRÖSTER
Affiliation:
Department of Neurology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
THE HIV NEUROBEHAVIORAL RESEARCH CENTER (HNRC) GROUP
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California

Abstract

Action (verb) fluency is a newly developed verbal fluency task that requires the examinee to rapidly generate as many verbs (i.e., “things that people do”) as possible within 1 min. Existing literature indicates that action fluency may be more sensitive to frontal–basal ganglia loop pathophysiology than traditional noun fluency tasks (e.g., animal fluency), which is consistent with the hypothesized neural dissociation between noun and verb retrieval. In the current study, a series of analyses were undertaken to examine the psychometric properties of action fluency in a sample of 174 younger healthy participants. The first set of analyses describes the development of demographically adjusted normative data for action fluency. Next, a group of hypothesis-driven correlational analyses reveals significant associations between action fluency and putative tests of executive functions, verbal working memory, verbal fluency, and information processing speed, but not between action fluency and tests of learning or constructional praxis. The final set of analyses demonstrates the test–retest stability of the action fluency test and provides standards for determining statistically reliable changes in performance. In sum, this study enhances the potential clinical applicability of action fluency by providing demographically adjusted normative data and demonstrating evidence for its reliability and construct validity. (JINS, 2005, 11, 408–415.)

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© 2005 The International Neuropsychological Society

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