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Document Type

Campus Access

Degree Program

Psychology

Degree Type

Master of Science (M.S.)

Year Degree Awarded

2010

Month Degree Awarded

February

Keywords

MCI, Processing Speed, Psychological tests

Abstract

Emerging research has suggested that the nature of cognitive deficits in Amnestic-MCI (a-MCI) may extend beyond memory impairments and can include deficits in attention (Gualtieri & Johnson, 2005; 2007). Recent studies have found significant differences between subjects with a-MCI and cognitively healthy individuals on measures of processing speed (Gorus, De Raedt, Lambert, Lemper, & Mets, 2008; Gualtieri & Johnson, 2005; Levinoff, Saumier, & Chertkow, 2005; Silveri et al., 2007). The current study sought to add to the limited research currently available on processing speed in a-MCI by comparing cognitively healthy individuals (M age = 64.57; SD = 6.61) and an age-matched a-MCI group (M age = 64.19; SD = 5.79) on a measure of processing speed, an index of attention. Second, the study evaluated the utility of the “25 Numbers Test” in differentiating individuals with a-MCI from a cognitively healthy group of participants. As expected, the participants with a-MCI performed more poorly (t(72) = -5.96, p < .01) on the 25 Numbers Test and demonstrated greater intra-individual variability in comparison to the cognitively healthy group (t(72) = -3.009, p < .01). The 25 Numbers Test effectively discriminated cognitively healthy individuals from those with a-MCI (AUC = 0.85, p < .01). Results will add to the limited research on processing speed in a-MCI and provide a basis for the importance of evaluating processing speed as part of routine screening for a-MCI.

First Advisor

Susan Whitbourne

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