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J Rehabil Med. 2007 Jul;39(6):425-39.

Occurrence and measurement of transfer in cognitive rehabilitation: A critical review.

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  • 1Institute for Rehabilitation Research, Hoensbroek, The Netherlands.



To investigate the occurrence of transfer of cognitive strategy training for persons with acquired brain injury, and to investigate the way in which transfer is measured.


Electronic searches in PubMed, PsychINFO, EMBASE and CINAHL using combinations of search terms in the following categories: type of brain injury, transfer, type of disorder, type of intervention. A total of 39 papers was included in the review. The following aspects were judged: study design and participant characteristics, intervention characteristics and type of outcome measures used.


Transfer outcome measures could be classified into 3 groups: non-trained items, standardized daily tasks and daily life. Most studies reported at least one type of transfer; however, the methodological quality of the studies was low. Cognitive strategy training in the evaluated studies focused on 7 domains of functioning: information processing, problem solving/executive functioning, memory/attention, language, neglect, apraxia and daily activities.


Transfer of training effects of cognitive strategy training has been evaluated in a relatively small number of studies. Outcome measures used in these studies could be classified into 3 groups. Most studies reported the occurrence of transfer of training effects, although some serious remarks can be made concerning the methodological quality of the studies.

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