Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Qual Life Res. 2013 Jun;22(5):1085-92. doi: 10.1007/s11136-012-0215-6. Epub 2012 Jun 14.

Evaluation of a role functioning computer adaptive test (RF-CAT).

Author information

Department of Quantitative Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts Medical School, 55 Lake Avenue North, Worcester, MA 01665-002, USA.



To evaluate the validity and participants' acceptance of an online assessment of role function using computer adaptive test (RF-CAT).


The RF-CAT and a set of established quality of life instruments were administered in a cross-sectional study in a panel sample (n = 444) recruited from the general population with over-selection of participants with selected self-report chronic conditions (n = 225). The efficiency, score accuracy, validity, and acceptability of the RF-CAT were evaluated and compared to existing measures.


The RF-CAT with a stopping rule of six items with content balancing used 25 of the available bank items and was completed on average in 66 s. RF-CAT and the legacy tools scores were highly correlated (.64-.84) and successfully discriminated across known groups. The RF-CAT produced a more precise assessment over a wider range than the SF-36 Role Physical scale. Patients' evaluations of the RF-CAT system were positive overall, with no differences in ratings observed between the CAT and static assessments.


The RF-CAT was feasible, more precise than the static SF-36 RP and equally acceptable to participants as legacy measures. In empirical tests of validity, the better performance of the CAT was not uniformly statistically significant. Further research exploring the relationship between gained precision and discriminant power of the CAT assessment is needed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Springer
    Loading ...
    Support Center