Utility of Diffusion Modeling of Cogstate Brief Battery Test Performance in Detecting Mild Cognitive Impairment

May 18, 2022

Authors: Kyler Mulhauser, Bruno Giordani, Voyko Kavcic, L D Nicolas May, Arijit Bhaumik, Sarah Shair, Kristen Votruba

Journal: Assessment

DOI: 10.1177/10731911211069089

Year Published: 2022

Cognitive testing data are essential to the diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and computerized cognitive testing, such as the Cogstate Brief Battery, has proven helpful in efficiently identifying harbingers of dementia. This study provides a side-by-side comparison of traditional Cogstate outcomes and diffusion modeling of these outcomes in predicting MCI diagnosis. Participants included 257 older adults (160 = normal cognition; 97 = MCI). Results showed that both traditional Cogstate and diffusion modeling analyses predicted MCI diagnosis with acceptable accuracy. Cogstate measures of recognition learning and working memory accuracy and diffusion modeling variable of decision-making efficiency (drift rate) and nondecisional time were most predictive of MCI. While participants with normal cognition demonstrated a change in response caution (boundary separation) when transitioning tasks, participants with MCI did not evidence this change.

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