A battery approach for measuring neuropsychological change

Steven Paul Woods, Meredith Childers, Ronald J. Ellis, Stephanie Guaman, Igor Grant, Robert K. Heaton, J. Hampton Atkinson, J. Allen McCutchan, Thomas D. Marcotte, Mark R. Wallace, Scott Letendre, Rachel Schrier, Mariana Cherner, Sharron Dawes, Lei Lu, Corinna Young, Terry Jernigan, Michael J. Taylor, John Hesselink, Eliezer MasliahDianne Langford, Michelle Frybarger, Ian Abramson, Deborah Lazzaretto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


The accurate interpretation of serial neuropsychological testing is a fundamental activity of neuropsychologists in clinical and research settings. Although prior research supports the construct validity of several individual tests for the reliable measurement of cognitive change, neuropsychologists are often interested in detecting changes in cognitive functioning across a battery of tests. In the present study, we examined the specificity of a modified Reliable Change Index (RCI) methodology applied across a focused battery of commonly used neuropsychological tests. Fifty-seven healthy controls underwent neuropsychological assessment at two time points separated by approximately 1 year. Test-retest reliability coefficients and standard RCI confidence intervals for the individual tests were broadly comparable with prior research in healthy populations. Battery change scores were generated by calculating z-scores of change for each individual test, which were summed across the entire test battery. The RCI methodology was applied to the summed z-score to provide a 90% confidence interval as an indicator of overall cognitive stability. These battery RCI normative standards demonstrated adequate specificity when applied to 29 persons with HIV-1 infection who were classified as medically and neurologically stable. Findings from this study may be useful for both clinicians and researchers seeking normative standards for determining reliable changes in performance across a commonly used battery of neuropsychological tests.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-89
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Clinical Neuropsychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Neuropsychological assessment
  • Quantitative methods
  • Test reliability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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