Donald E. Trahan, PhD, Glenn J. Larrabee, PhD
The CVMT uses complex, ambiguous designs and a recognition format to measure visual learning and memory. Studies suggest that these features may increase task sensitivity and reduce the confounding influence of verbal encoding strategies. This format also eliminates the motor responses required by drawing tasks and restricts the verbal labeling required by tests that use simplistic geometric figures and common objects.
The CVMT includes three tasks for assessing visual memory:
- The Acquisition Task tests recognition memory by asking the respondents to discriminate "new" from "repeated" stimuli using 112 designs presented at two-second intervals.
- The Delayed Recognition Task measures retrieval from long-term storage after a 30-minute delay, asking respondents to distinguish "old" stimuli from perceptually similar stimuli.
- A Visual Discrimination Task distinguishes visual discrimination deficits from visual memory problems.
The clinical sensitivity of the CVMT has been demonstrated in patients with unilateral right hemisphere CVA, individuals with Alzheimer's disease, as well as patients who have suffered severe head trauma.
The new CVMT Manual Supplement provides normative data for 778 American and Canadian children, extending the age range to include ages 7 to 15 years. Expanded normative data are also provided for older adult respondents and the authors recommend using these new data for individuals ages 50 years and older. The revised Scoring Form incorporates Total score cutoffs for the Delayed Recognition Task by age group.
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