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Appl Neuropsychol Adult. 2019 Aug 6:1-13. doi: 10.1080/23279095.2019.1646745. [Epub ahead of print]

New virtual reality tool (Nesplora Aquarium) for assessing attention and working memory in adults: A normative study.

Author information

1
a Department of I+D+i, Nesplora Technology & Behavior , San Sebastian , Spain.
2
b Department of Psychology, University of Oviedo , Oviedo , Spain.
3
c Department of Psychology, Faculty Padre Ossó , Oviedo , Spain.
4
d Department of Basic Psychology, Development and Education, Autonomous University of Barcelona , Barcelona , Spain.

Abstract

Attentional and working memory (WM) processes undergo significant changes during different stages of development. However, currently there are not many continuous performance tools based on virtual reality (VR) for measuring attentional capacity in adults. The present study aimed to obtain normative data for the Nesplora Aquarium VR test in a Spanish population, looking at sex and age variables. In addition, this study also aimed to analyze the psychometric properties of the tool such as scale, internal consistency, and item difficulty and discrimination indices. A total of 1,469 participants from different regions of Spain (57.6% female) with ages ranging from 16 to 90 years old took part in this normative study. Nesplora Aquarium was developed in order to support clinicians in the assessment of attentional processes and WM in adults over 16 years old. It is an 18-minute individual test performed through a VR system. The system provides better visual and auditory immersion in the task than computerized CPTs. This study revealed that the new VR tool, designed to measure adult attention and working memory levels, exhibited good psychometric properties related to reliability and internal consistency. In addition, item difficulty and discrimination values were also acceptable.

KEYWORDS:

Adults; attention; continuous performance test; diagnosis; virtual reality

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