Submitted to: Child Neuropsychology
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/1/2008
Publication Date: 7/1/2008
Citation: Llorente, A.M., Voigt, R., Jensen, C.L., Fraley, J.K., Heird, W.C., Rennie, K.M. 2008. The test of variables of attention (TOVA): Internal consistency (Q1 vs. Q2 and Q3 vs. Q4) in children with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Child Neuropsychology. 14(4):314-322. Interpretive Summary: The Test of Variables of Attention (TOVA) is the most widely used test of reaction time worldwide. It is used to assess sustained visual attention and vigilance in both clinical and experimental settings. Despite the broad applications of the TOVA, little information is available concerning the test's validity and reliability in groups of children with ADHD. Until our study, even the internal consistency of the test (i.e., how a group of children perform during the test when the overall test parameters are compared with subcomponents of the test) had never been determined. This information which is now available is particularly important for the TOVA which is composed of four subcomponents (quarters) with diverging reaction time requirements. In addition, the subjects' vigilance and visual sustained attention also vary over time, particularly in children with ADHD.
Technical Abstract: The internal consistency of the Test of Variables of Attention (TOVA) was examined in a cohort of 6- to 12-year-old children (N = 63) strictly diagnosed with ADHD. The internal consistency of errors of omission (OMM), errors of commission (COM), response time (RT), and response time variability (RTV) of different test conditions (stimulus infrequent condition [Q(1) vs. Q(2)] and stimulus frequent condition [Q(3) vs. Q(4)]) was assessed via correlation analyses. All TOVA index scores under investigation assessing its internal consistency exhibited statistically significant correlations. All correlations fell in the moderate-high range.