CPT and ADD/ADHD: Research Review

Self-regulation is important for controlling one’s attention, mental state, behavior and emotion to enhance positive outcomes in life related to physical and mental health, school readiness, learning, academic achievement, relations, development of consciousness, and the ability to overcome of obstacles. However, the deficiency in self-regulation influences almost all psychopathological traits to some extent, which includes poor regulation of attention, working memory (inattention), decision making, andemotion expression(impulsivity).
Nigg, 2016

Attention Deficient Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most prominent symptom complexes of deficient impulse and attention control.

Nigg, 2016

ADHD is characterized by signs of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsiveness. The causes of ADHD is not simple - and can be due to genetics, exposure to environmental toxins and psychosocial influences.

Hall et al., 2016

Traditionally, ADHD was assessed and diagnosed by certified clinicians through observations and gathering of information from parents, teachers and the patients themselves about their patients history and behavior. But this type of diagnostic approach can be subjected to bias.

Ogundele, Ayyash,&Banerjee, 2011

Continuous performance test (CPT) is developed to objectively, reliably and consistently assess attention and impulse control.
Rosvold, Mirsky, Sarason, Bransome, &Beck, 1956

The CPT can supplement clinicians' interview and observations to enhance accurate assessment of ADHD. The CPT have multiple formats, but all share the same features where a stimuli (visual or auditory) is presented to the patient to distinguish target from non-target.
Hall et al., 2016

Test of Variables of Attention (TOVA®) is one form of CPT that is simple to administer, easy to grasp by children and it is a language neutral test that only requires the ability to distinguish up and down, target, non- target test. Thus, this does not confound learning disabilities and problems with distinguishing left and right.

Greenberg & Waldmant,1993; Hall et al., 2016

CPT can provide objective, reliable information and as well as make a contribution to the assessment of inattention and impulsivity problems.
Wu et al., 2007

CPT can also differentiate between ADHD , normal and psychiatric disorders.

Advocate, Martino, Hill & Gouvier, 2007

In a study, CPT was able to identify ADHD with 80% ; the test can make a meaningful contribution to the assessment of children with symptoms of the suggestive attention deficit disorder.
Forbes, 1998

It was also demonstrated that CPT is a valuable tool in monitoring and tracking progress of ADHD patients during therapy.
Hall et al., 2016

Another advantage of CPT is, as it is computerized, it can be coupled with EEG to provide detailed information.
Arns, de Ridder, Strehl, Breteler, & Coenen,2009

It can be incorporated into virtual reality to provide realistic simulations to improve the diagnostic ability of CPT.

Rodríguez,Areces, García, Cueli, & González-Castro, 2018


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Arns, M., de Ridder, S., Strehl, U., Breteler, M., & Coenen, A. (2009). Efficacy of
neurofeedback treatment in adhd: the effects on inattention, impulsivity and
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Greenberg, L. M., & Waldmant, I. D. (1993). Developmental normative data on the
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objective measures of activity for diagnosing and monitoring ADHD in
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Nigg, J. T. (2016). Attention and Impulsivity. Developmental Psychopathology.

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Rodríguez, C., Areces, D., García, T., Cueli, M., & González-Castro, P. (2018).
Comparison between two continuous performance tests for identifying ADHD:
Traditional vs. virtual reality. International Journal of Clinical and Health
Psychology, 18(3), 254–263. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijchp.2018.06.003
Rosvold, H. E., Mirsky, A. F., Sarason, I., Bransome, E. D., Jr., & Beck, L. H. (1956).

A continuous performance test of brain damage. Journal of Consulting
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Wu, Y.-Y., Huang, Y.-S., Chen, Y.-Y., Chen, C.-K., Chang, T.-C., & Chao, C.-C.
(2007). Psychometric study of the test of variables of attention: Preliminary
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