Neuropsychological Assessment and Ageing Processes (NAAP)

N2CA/Neuropsychology, Neurosciences and Cognitive Assessment (2013-2017) /
NAAP/Neuropsychological Assessment and Ageing Processes (2018-2022)

The activity of this Research Group included 3 main strategic research topics:

  1. Test development, adaptation, validation and norming for Portuguese population.

    This research line includes an extensive number of instruments originally developed or adapted to measure different targets: cognitive functions, cognitive reserve, emotional functioning, functional assessment, personality and symptom validity covering diverse populations including different age and educational groups, various clinical diagnosis, forensic groups, etc. As examples:

    • Specific instruments for ageing assessment, including cognitive, emotional, daily life activities and quality of life domains: Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA); Addenbrooke Cognitive Examination-Revised (ACE-R); Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE); Clock Drawing Test (CDT); Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale (ADAS-Cog); The Irregular Word Reading Test (TeLPI); Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-III); Cantab Alzheimer; Memory Compensation Questionnaire (MCQ), Memory Binding Test (MBT)Adults and Older Adults Functional Assessment Inventory (IAFAI); Financial Capacity Assessment Instrument (IACFin); Geriatric Anxiety Inventory (GAI); Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS-30); Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II); World Health Organization Quality of Life – Older Adults Module (WHOQOL-OLD).
    • Instruments for personality assessment: Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) and others also validated for older people (e.g., NEO Five Factor Inventory [NEO-FFI], Eysenck Personality Questionnaire-Revised [EPQ-R], Social Desirability Scale [EDS-20]).
    • Psycholinguistic Assessment of Language test battery (variables impacting upon online pronoun resolution: e.g., Pragmatic violations, syntactic prominence and aging).
    • Instruments for child and adolescent cognitive assessment: Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-III); Coimbra Neuropsychological Assessment Battery (BANC), a Portuguese comprehensive assessment battery that covers different cognitive functions (and encompass 15 subtests): Memory, Language, Attention, Executive Functions, Orientation but also Motor function and Laterality.
    • Performance Validity Tests (Test of Memory Malingering [TOMM], Rey Fifteen Item Test [Rey 15-IT] and Symptom Validity Tests (Structured Inventory of Malingered Symptomatology [SIMS], Symptom Validity Scale [EVS-2]; Self-Report Symptom Inventory [SRSI]).

    Most of these instruments aims to evaluate the consequences of acquired neurocognitive impairments commonly encountered in psychology, neurology and psychiatry conditions, both non-progressive and progressive.

    The research with these instruments sought to address several other challenges: try to solve a serious gap between clinician’s needs in Portugal and internationally available and appropriate instruments, increase knowledge and the best clinical assessment and research practices.

    The research with these instruments follow several specific objectives: development or Portuguese test adaptation, analysis of the influence of sociodemographic and health variables, item analysis (e.g., classic theory of tests; Rasch models); psychometric (e.g. CFA) and clinical validation studies (e.g., MCI, AD); definition of a protocol for assessing older drivers with suspected cognitive deficits referred by doctors; normative studies.

    Some of these (neuro)psychological assessment instruments are Portuguese original developed instruments (BANC, TeLPI, IAFAI, IACFin, EVS-2).

  2. Psychological elderly interventions (e.g., cognitive training, group intervention, mindfulness therapy for institutionalized elderly people or family caregivers).

  3. Aging Research Processes (e.g., Episodic Future Simulation and Autobiographical Memories; Processing underpinings of executive functions).

Scientific Coordinator