Shao, Z.; Janse, E.; Visser, K.; Meyer, A.S.
This study examined the contributions of verbal ability and executive control to verbal fluency performance in older adults (n=82). Verbal fluency was assessed in letter and category fluency tasks, and performance on these tasks was related to indicators of vocabulary size, lexical access speed,
Shao, Zeshu; Janse, Esther; Visser, Karina; Meyer, Antje S
This study examined the contributions of verbal ability and executive control to verbal fluency performance in older adults (n = 82). Verbal fluency was assessed in letter and category fluency tasks, and performance on these tasks was related to indicators of vocabulary size, lexical access speed, updating, and inhibition ability. In regression analyses the number of words produced in both fluency tasks was predicted by updating ability, and the speed of the first response was predicted by vocabulary size and, for category fluency only, lexical access speed. These results highlight the hybrid character of both fluency tasks, which may limit their usefulness for research and clinical purposes.
Santos Nogueira, Dalia; Azevedo Reis, Elizabeth; Vieira, Ana
This study presents data for semantic fluency, phonemic fluency, action fluency, and alternate fluency. The aim is to provide normative data by age, gender, and education for European Portuguese in each fluency category. Norms for the verbal fluency task were collected from a volunteer population of 444 healthy Portuguese participants. Multiple regression analysis with age, gender, and education as independent variables was performed for the semantic fluency global score, and these variables were considered separately for each phonemic category. Age, education, and gender significantly affected the semantic global score, as well as scores of names, supermarket, kitchen objects, food, and clothes. No gender effect was observed in the categories "p-words," animals, transports, verbs, and alternating fluency. This last category was only influenced by years of education. Equivalent scores of verbal fluency tasks are useful in clinical practice, allowing the comparison between the normal and the abnormal performance of language disorders. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Bárbara Costa Beber
Full Text Available Background : Performance on the verb fluency (VF task may be influenced by administration procedures and demographic factors of each population. Objective : The aim of this study was to verify whether the previous administration of semantic and phonemic verbal fluency tasks can influence performance on VF; and to analyze the correlation of VF performance with education, age and type of errors in Brazilian healthy elderly. Methods : Sixty-two participants were subdivided into experimental (semantic and the phonemic fluency tasks were administered before the VF and control groups (VF only. The total score and the types of errors on the VF task were determined. Additional information was computed for the correlational analysis. Results : VF performance did not differ statistically between experimental and control groups, but correlated positively with education and negatively with intrusions. Conclusion : The lack of influence of other verbal fluency tasks on performance of the VF task in elderly individuals allows the use of this order of administration. A strong influence of educational level on VF task performance reinforces the need for further studies in different populations.
Full Text Available Maria Ghemulet,1,2 Maria Baskini,3 Lambros Messinis,2,4 Eirini Mouza,1 Hariklia Proios1,5 1Department of Speech Therapy, Anagennisis (Revival Physical Recovery and Rehabilitation Centre, Nea Raidestos, Filothei, Thessaloniki, Greece; 2Department of Speech and Language Therapy, Technological Institute of Western Greece, Patra, Greece; 3Department of Neurosurgery, Interbalkan European Medical Centre, Thessaloniki, Greece; 4Neuropsychology Section, Department of Neurology, University of Patras, Medical School, Patras, Greece; 5Department of Education and Social Policy, University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki, Greece Abstract: A verbal fluency (VF task is a test used to examine cognitive perception. The main aim of this study was to explore a possible relationship between taste perception in the basic taste categories (sweet, salty, sour, and bitter and subjects’ taste preferences, using a VF task in healthy and dysphagic subjects. In addition, we correlated the results of the VF task with body mass index (BMI. The hypothesis is that categorical preferences would be consistent with the number of verbal responses. We also hypothesized that higher BMI (.30 kg/m2 would correlate with more responses in either some or all four categories. VF tasks were randomly administered. Analysis criteria included number of verbally produced responses, number of clusters, number of switches, number and type of errors, and VF consistency with taste preferences. Sixty Greek-speaking individuals participated in this study. Forty-three healthy subjects were selected with a wide range of ages, sex, and education levels. Seventeen dysphagic patients were then matched with 17 healthy subjects according to age, sex, and BMI. Quantitative one-way analysis of variance (between groups as well as repeated measures, post hoc, and chi-square, and qualitative analyses were performed. In the healthy subjects’ group, the differences among the mean number of responses for the four
Stolwyk, Renerus; Bannirchelvam, Bavani; Kraan, Claudine; Simpson, Katrina
Despite their widespread use in research and clinical practice, the cognitive abilities purportedly assessed by different verbal fluency task variants remain unclear and may vary across different healthy and clinical populations. The overarching aim of this study was to identify which cognitive abilities contribute to phonemic, semantic, excluded letter, and alternating verbal fluency tasks and whether these contributions differ across younger and older healthy adults. Ninety-six younger (18-36 years) and 83 older (65-87 years) healthy participants completed measures of estimated verbal intelligence, semantic retrieval, processing speed, working memory, and inhibitory control, in addition to phonemic, semantic, excluded letter, and alternating fluency tasks. Eight hierarchical multiple regressions were conducted across the four fluency variants and two age groups to identify which cognitive variables uniquely contributed to these fluency tasks. In the younger group, verbal intelligence and processing speed contributed to phonemic fluency, semantic retrieval to semantic fluency, processing speed and working memory to excluded letter fluency, and semantic retrieval to alternating fluency. In contrast, in the older group, verbal intelligence contributed to phonemic fluency, no cognitive variables contributed to semantic fluency, inhibition to excluded letter fluency, and verbal intelligence to alternating fluency. Our findings highlight that both lower and higher order cognitive skills contribute to verbal fluency tasks; however, these contributions vary considerably across fluency variants and age groups. The heterogeneity of cognitive determinants of verbal fluency, across variants and age, may explain why older people performed less proficiently on semantic and excluded letter fluency tasks while no age effects were found for phonemic and alternating fluency. Interpretation of verbal fluency performances need to be tailored according to which verbal fluency variant
Gawda, Barbara; Szepietowska, Ewa
Trait anxiety is thought to be associated with pathological anxiety, and a risk factor for psychiatric disorders. The present study examines the brain mechanisms associated with trait anxiety during the performing of verbal fluency tasks. The aim is to show how trait anxiety modulates executive functions as measured by verbal fluency, and to explore the link between verbal fluency and anxiety due to the putative negative biases in high-anxious individuals. Seven tasks of verbal fluency were used: letter "k," "f," verbs, "animals," "vehicles," "joy," and "fear." The results of 35 subjects (whole sample), and 17 subjects (nine men, eight women) selected from the whole sample for the low/high-anxious groups on the basis of Trait Anxiety scores were analyzed. The subjects were healthy, Polish speaking, right-handed and aged from 20 to 35 years old. fMRI (whole-brain analysis with FWE corrections) was used to show the neural signals under active participation in verbal fluency tasks. The results confirm that trait anxiety slightly modulates neural activation during the performance of verbal fluency tasks, especially in the more difficult tasks. Significant differences were found in brain activation during the performance of more complex tasks between individuals with low anxiety and those with high anxiety. Greater activation in the right hemisphere, frontal gyri, and cerebellum was found in people with low anxiety. The results reflect better integration of cognitive and affective capacities in individuals with low anxiety.
Full Text Available Trait anxiety is thought to be associated with pathological anxiety, and a risk factor for psychiatric disorders. The present study examines the brain mechanisms associated with trait anxiety during the performing of verbal fluency tasks. The aim is to show how trait anxiety modulates executive functions as measured by verbal fluency, and to explore the link between verbal fluency and anxiety due to the putative negative biases in high-anxious individuals. Seven tasks of verbal fluency were used: letter ‘k’, ‘f’, verbs, ‘animals’, ‘vehicles’, ‘joy’ and ‘fear’. The results of 35 subjects (whole sample, and 17 subjects (9 men, 8 women selected from the whole sample for the low/high-anxious groups on the basis of Trait Anxiety scores were analyzed. The subjects were healthy, Polish speaking, right-handed and aged from 20 to 35 years old. fMRI (whole-brain analysis with FWE corrections was used to show the neural signals under active participation in verbal fluency tasks. The results confirm that trait anxiety slightly modulates neural activation during the performance of verbal fluency tasks, especially in the more difficult tasks. Significant differences were found in brain activation during the performance of more complex tasks between individuals with low anxiety and those with high anxiety. Greater activation in the right hemisphere, frontal gyri, and cerebellum was found in people with low anxiety. The results reflect better integration of cognitive and affective capacities in individuals with low anxiety.
Full Text Available The present study introduces “Emotional Verbal Fluency” as a novel (partially computerized task, which is aimed to investigate the interaction between emotionally loaded words and executive functions. Verbal fluency tasks are thought to measure executive functions but the interaction with emotional aspects is hardly investigated. In the current study, a group of healthy subjects (n = 21, mean age 25 years, 76% females were asked to generate items that are either part of a semantic category (e.g., plants, toys, vehicles; standard semantic verbal fluency or can trigger the emotions joy, anger, sadness, fear and disgust. The results of the task revealed no differences between performance on semantic and emotional categories, suggesting a comparable task difficulty for healthy subjects. Hence, these first results on the comparison between semantic and emotional verbal fluency seem to highlight that both might be suitable for examining executive functioning. However, an interaction was found between the category type and repetition (first vs. second sequence of the same category with larger performance decrease for semantic in comparison to emotional categories. Best performance overall was found for the emotional category “joy” suggesting a positivity bias in healthy subjects. To conclude, emotional verbal fluency is a promising approach to investigate emotional components in an executive task, which may stimulate further research, especially in psychiatric patients who suffer from emotional as well as cognitive deficits.
Cristiane Silva Esteves
Full Text Available This study aims to investigate the influence of sociodemographic characteristics on the performance of older people on two tasks of verbal fluency and provide normative data for a Brazilian population of healthy elderly individuals with different educational levels. The initial sample included 521 individuals aged from 60 years, participating in the Program Family Health Strategy. Participants who had scores suggestive of cognitive decline on the Mini-Mental State Examination, depressive symptoms in Geriatric Depression Scale and self-reported neurological or psychiatric disorders were excluded. The final sample consisted of 218 participants in phonemic verbal fluency task (letters F, A and S and 265 participants for semantic verbal fluency task (animals. The performance in both tests was associated with age and education, but not with sex. Still, the education variable was shown to have a greater impact on scores in phonemic and semantic tests than age in both forms of evocation. The results of this study suggest the importance of providing normative data for elderly Brazilians appropriate to age and education on verbal fluency tasks.
Li, Yunqing; Li, Ping; Yang, Qing X; Eslinger, Paul J; Sica, Chris T; Karunanayaka, Prasanna
Background: Verbal fluency is a measure of cognitive flexibility and word search strategies that is widely used to characterize impaired cognitive function. Despite the wealth of research on identifying and characterizing distinct aspects of verbal fluency, the anatomic and functional substrates of retrieval-related search and post-retrieval control processes still have not been fully elucidated. Methods: Twenty-one native English-speaking, healthy, right-handed, adult volunteers (mean age = 31 years; range = 21-45 years; 9 F) took part in a block-design functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) study of free recall, covert word generation tasks when guided by phonemic (P), semantic-category (C), and context-based fill-in-the-blank sentence completion (S) cues. General linear model (GLM), Independent Component Analysis (ICA), and psychophysiological interaction (PPI) were used to further characterize the neural substrate of verbal fluency as a function of retrieval cue type. Results: Common localized activations across P, C, and S tasks occurred in the bilateral superior and left inferior frontal gyrus, left anterior cingulate cortex, bilateral supplementary motor area (SMA), and left insula. Differential task activations were centered in the occipital, temporal and parietal regions as well as the thalamus and cerebellum. The context-based fluency task, i.e., the S task, elicited higher differential brain activity in a lateralized frontal-temporal network typically engaged in complex language processing. P and C tasks elicited activation in limited pathways mainly within the left frontal regions. ICA and PPI results of the S task suggested that brain regions distributed across both hemispheres, extending beyond classical language areas, are recruited for lexical-semantic access and retrieval during sentence completion. Conclusion: Study results support the hypothesis of overlapping, as well as distinct, neural networks for covert word generation when guided by
Helenice Charchat Fichman
Full Text Available Abstract Cognitive decline, particularly executive dysfunction, is observed in normal aging. In Brazil, the elderly population presents broad educational diversity. Category verbal fluency tests are frequently used to detect cognitive impairment, assessing executive function, language and semantic memory. Objective: To investigate the effects of age and education on category animal fluency task (CAF in healthy elderly. Methods: We evaluated 319 healthy elderly from outpatient care units of two university reference centers of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. The sample was divided into two age, and five schooling subgroups. To be included participants had to demonstrate preservation of global cognitive functioning, independence for activities of daily living and not fulfill diagnostic criteria for dementia. All participants were submitted to neurological and neuropsychological evaluations. Results: There was a correlation between age and CAF performance (r= -0.26, p<0.01, which was not confirmed when years of education were included as a covariant in univariate ANCOVA. Significant differences were found in CAF performance among the different educational level groups on correlation analysis (r=0.42, p<0.01 and ANCOVA analysis (F=18.8, p<0.05. Illiteracy was associated with worst CAF performance, while university level was associated with best performance. Conclusion: The best CAF performance was found in the first years of schooling (literacy learning process compared to illiteracy, and when finishing high school and starting university courses compared to all other educational levels. These stages are associated with significant gains in semantic memory and executive function which are critical for verbal fluency performance.
Background The processing of verbal fluency tasks relies on the coordinated activity of a number of brain areas, particularly in the frontal and temporal lobes of the left hemisphere. Recent studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to study the neural networks subserving verbal fluency functions have yielded divergent results especially with respect to a parcellation of the inferior frontal gyrus for phonemic and semantic verbal fluency. We conducted a coordinate-based activation likelihood estimation (ALE) meta-analysis on brain activation during the processing of phonemic and semantic verbal fluency tasks involving 28 individual studies with 490 healthy volunteers. Results For phonemic as well as for semantic verbal fluency, the most prominent clusters of brain activation were found in the left inferior/middle frontal gyrus (LIFG/MIFG) and the anterior cingulate gyrus. BA 44 was only involved in the processing of phonemic verbal fluency tasks, BA 45 and 47 in the processing of phonemic and semantic fluency tasks. Conclusions Our comparison of brain activation during the execution of either phonemic or semantic verbal fluency tasks revealed evidence for spatially different activation in BA 44, but not other regions of the LIFG/LMFG (BA 9, 45, 47) during phonemic and semantic verbal fluency processing. PMID:24456150
Full Text Available Blepharospasm (BSP has a morbidity of 16 to 133 per million and is characterized by orbicularis oculi spasms. BSP can severely impact daily life. However, to date, its pathophysiology has not been clearly demonstrated. Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS is a portable, non-invasive, and high time resolution apparatus used to measure cerebral blood flow. This study aimed to investigate the hemodynamic response patterns of BSP patients and determine whether BSP alone can be an attributional factor to influence the function of the prefrontal area using a verbal fluency task (VFT and NIRS. Twenty-three BSP patients (10 males and 13 females and 13 healthy controls (HC; five males and eight females matched by gender and education were examined using NIRS. BSP patients were divided into two groups based on the presence or absence of depression and anxiety symptoms. A covariance analysis was conducted to analyze differences between the three groups and reduce the influence of different ages and educational levels. Bonferroni was used to process the post hoc test. The bilateral orbitofrontal area (ch36, 39, and 41; P<0.01 exhibited a lower activation in BSP patients without psychiatric symptoms compared with HC. This study is the first report to identify the prefrontal function in BSP using NIRS. Our findings indicate that BSP alone may cause a hypoactive hemodynamic performance in the prefrontal cortex in the absence of psychiatric symptoms. These findings provide evidence to support novel pathophysiological mechanisms of BSP.
Rusu, Adina C; Pincus, Tamar
Depression is a common feature of chronic pain, but the content of depressed cognitions in groups with chronic pain may be qualitatively different from other depressed groups. Future thinking has been extensively studied in depressed population; however, to our knowledge, this is the first study to investigate future thinking, using a verbal fluency task, in chronic pain. This study investigated the content of cognitions about the future, which are postulated to be a key mechanism in the development of clinical depression, but have not been studied in groups with chronic pain. This study used the future thinking task to investigate general future thinking and health-related future thinking in 4 groups of participants: those with pain and concurrent depression, those with pain without depression, those with depression without pain, and healthy control participants. One hundred seventy-two participants generated positive and negative future events, and rated the valence and likelihood of these events. Responses were coded for health-related content by 2 independent raters. Participants with depression (with and without pain) produced more negative and less positive future events than control participants. Participants with pain (depressed and nondepressed) produced more positive health-related future events than control participants. Participants with depression and pain produced more negative health-related future events than the nondepressed pain group. The findings suggest that participants with pain and depression exhibit a cognitive bias specific to negative aspects of health-related future thinking. This focus facilitates understanding of the relationship between depression and pain processing. The implications for therapeutic interventions are discussed.
Robins Wahlin, Tarja-Brita; Luszcz, Mary A; Wahlin, Åke; Byrne, Gerard J
This study examines non-verbal (design) and verbal (phonemic and semantic) fluency in prodromal Huntington's disease (HD). An accumulating body of research indicates subtle deficits in cognitive functioning among prodromal mutation carriers for HD. Performance was compared between 32 mutation carriers and 38 non-carriers in order to examine the magnitude of impairment across fluency tasks. The predicted years to onset (PYTO) in mutation carriers was calculated by a regression equation and used to divide the group according to whether onset was predicted as less than 12.75 years (HD+CLOSE; n = 16) or greater than 12.75 years (HD+DISTANT; n = 16). The results indicate that both non-verbal and verbal fluency is sensitive to subtle impairment in prodromal HD. HD+CLOSE group produced fewer items in all assessed fluency tasks compared to non-carriers. HD+DISTANT produced fewer drawings than non-carriers in the non-verbal task. PYTO correlated significantly with all measures of non-verbal and verbal fluency. The pattern of results indicates that subtle cognitive deficits exist in prodromal HD, and that less structured tasks with high executive demands are the most sensitive in detecting divergence from the normal range of functioning. These selective impairments can be attributed to the early involvement of frontostriatal circuitry and frontal lobes.
Dan, Haruka; Dan, Ippeita; Sano, Toshifumi; Kyutoku, Yasushi; Oguro, Keiji; Yokota, Hidenori; Tsuzuki, Daisuke; Watanabe, Eiju
In Japan, verbal fluency tasks are commonly utilized as a standard paradigm for neuropsychological testing of cognitive and linguistic abilities. The Japanese "letter fluency task" is a mora/letter fluency task based on the phonological and orthographical characteristics of the Japanese language. Whether there are similar activation patterns across languages or a Japanese-specific mora/letter fluency pattern is not certain. We investigated the neural correlates of overt mora/letter and category fluency tasks in healthy Japanese. The category fluency task activated the bilateral fronto-temporal language-related regions with left-superior lateralization, while the mora/letter fluency task led to wider activation including the inferior parietal regions (left and right supramarginal gyrus). Specific bilateral supramarginal activation during the mora/letter fluency task in Japanese was distinct from that of similar letter fluency tasks in syllable-alphabet-based languages: this might be due to the requirement of additional phonological processing and working memory, or due to increased cognitive load in general. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Whiteside, Douglas M; Kealey, Tammy; Semla, Matthew; Luu, Hien; Rice, Linda; Basso, Michael R; Roper, Brad
Measures of phonemic and semantic verbal fluency, such as FAS and Animal Fluency (Benton, Hamsher, & Sivan, 1989), are often thought to be measures of executive functioning (EF). However, some studies (Henry & Crawford, 2004a , 2004b , 2004c ) have noted there is also a language component to these tasks. The current exploratory factor-analytic study examined the underlying cognitive structure of verbal fluency. Participants were administered language and EF measures, including the Controlled Oral Word Association Test (FAS version), Animal Fluency, Boston Naming Test (BNT), Vocabulary (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III), Wisconsin Card-Sorting Test (WCST, perseverative responses), and Trail-Making Test-Part B (TMT-B). A 2-factor solution was found with the 1st factor, language, having significant loadings for BNT and Vocabulary, while the second factor was labeled EF because of significant loading from the WCST and TMT-B. Surprisingly, FAS and Animal Fluency loaded exclusively on to the language factor and not EF. The current results do not exclude EF as a determinant of verbal fluency, but they do suggest that language processing is the critical component for this task, even without significant aphasic symptoms. Thus, the results indicated that both letter (phonemic) and category (semantic) fluency are related to language, but the relationship to EF is not supported by the results.
Opasso, Patrícia Romano; Barreto, Simone Dos Santos; Ortiz, Karin Zazo
To establish normative parameters for the F-A-S form of the phonemic verbal fluency test, in a population of Brazilian Portuguese speaking adults with high-level literacy. The sample comprised 40 male and female volunteers aged 19 to 59 years, and at least 8 years of formal education. Volunteers were first submitted to the Mini-Mental State Examination and the Clock Drawing cognitive screening tests, then to the F-A-S Verbal Phonemic Fluency Test; in this test, examinees were given 60 seconds to generate as many words as possible beginning with each of the three test letters. The means for number of words beginning the letters F, A and S and for total number of words beginning with either letter generated per minute corresponded to 15.3, 14.4, 13.9 and 43.5, respectively. Reference values obtained from young adults with high levels of literacy submitted to the F-A-S Verbal Phonemic Fluency Test in this study were similar to those reported in the international literature. These reference values can be used for clinical assessment of language disorder and neuropsychological evaluation. Obter parâmetros de normalidade na tarefa de fluência verbal fonêmica, versão F-A-S, em uma população de alto letramento de adultos falantes do português brasileiro. A amostra foi constituída por 40 voluntários, de ambos os sexos, com idade entre 19 e 59 anos, e com mais de 8 anos de estudo. Todos os voluntários foram inicialmente submetidos ao Miniexame do Estado Mental e ao Teste do Desenho do Relógio, para fins de rastreio cognitivo, e, então, ao Teste de Fluência Verbal Fonêmica F-A-S. Neste último, os indivíduos foram orientados a produzirem o maior número de palavras que conseguissem, iniciadas com cada uma das três letras ditas pelo examinador, em um intervalo de 60 segundos cada. As médias das palavras produzidas com as letras F-A-S foram as seguintes: "F" = 15,3 palavras por minuto; "A" = 14,4 palavras por minuto; e "S" = 13,9 palavras por minuto. A m
Alessandra Ferreira Barbosa
Full Text Available Introduction. Executive function deficits are observed in people with Parkinson’s disease (PD from early stages and have great impact on daily living activities. Verbal fluency and oral diadochokinesia involve phonarticulatory coordination, response inhibition, and phonological processing and may also be affected in people with PD. This study aimed to describe the performance of PD patients and an age- and education-matched control group on executive function, verbal fluency, and oral diadochokinesia tests and to investigate possible relationships between them. Methods. Forty people with PD and forty controls were evaluated with Trail Making Test (TMT, executive function and phonemic/semantic verbal fluency and oral diadochokinesia (/pataka/ tests. Groups were compared by ANOVA and relationships were investigated by Pearson tests. Results. People with PD showed longer times in parts A and B of TMT. They also said fewer words in phonemic/semantic verbal fluency tests and less syllables in the diadochokinesia test. Oral diadochokinesia strongly correlated to parts A and B of TMT and to phonemic verbal fluency. Conclusion. Oral diadochokinesia was correlated to executive function and verbal fluency. The cognitive-motor interaction in verbal fluency and oral diadochokinesia must be considered not to overestimate the cognitive or motor impairments in people with PD.
Barbosa, Alessandra Ferreira; Voos, Mariana Callil; Chen, Janini; Francato, Debora Cristina Valente; Souza, Carolina de Oliveira; Barbosa, Egberto Reis; Chien, Hsin Fen; Mansur, Letícia Lessa
Executive function deficits are observed in people with Parkinson's disease (PD) from early stages and have great impact on daily living activities. Verbal fluency and oral diadochokinesia involve phonarticulatory coordination, response inhibition, and phonological processing and may also be affected in people with PD. This study aimed to describe the performance of PD patients and an age- and education-matched control group on executive function, verbal fluency, and oral diadochokinesia tests and to investigate possible relationships between them. Forty people with PD and forty controls were evaluated with Trail Making Test (TMT, executive function) and phonemic/semantic verbal fluency and oral diadochokinesia (/pataka/) tests. Groups were compared by ANOVA and relationships were investigated by Pearson tests. People with PD showed longer times in parts A and B of TMT. They also said fewer words in phonemic/semantic verbal fluency tests and less syllables in the diadochokinesia test. Oral diadochokinesia strongly correlated to parts A and B of TMT and to phonemic verbal fluency. Oral diadochokinesia was correlated to executive function and verbal fluency. The cognitive-motor interaction in verbal fluency and oral diadochokinesia must be considered not to overestimate the cognitive or motor impairments in people with PD.
Full Text Available Rikuei Hirosawa,1 Jin Narumoto,1 Yuki Sakai,1 Seiji Nishida,2 Takuya Ishida,1 Takashi Nakamae,1 Yuichi Takei,3 Kenji Fukui1 1Department of Psychiatry, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Kyoto, 2Maizuru Medical Center, Kyoto, 3Department of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, Gunma University Graduate School of Medicine, Gunma, Japan Background: Near-infrared spectroscopy has helped our understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms of psychiatric disorders and has advantages including noninvasiveness, lower cost, and ease of use compared with other imaging techniques, like functional magnetic resonance imaging. The verbal fluency task is the most common and well established task used to assess cognitive activation during near-infrared spectroscopy. Recent functional neuroimaging studies have shown that the orbitofrontal cortex and other brain regions, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, may play important roles in the pathophysiology of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD. This study aimed to evaluate hemodynamic responses in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex in patients with OCD using near-infrared spectroscopy during the verbal fluency task and to compare these with dorsolateral prefrontal cortex responses in healthy controls. Methods: Twenty patients with OCD and 20 controls matched for age, gender, handedness, and estimated intelligence quotient participated in this study. The verbal fluency task was used to elicit near-infrared spectroscopic activation and consisted of a 30-second pre-task, followed by three repetitions of a 20-second verbal fluency task (total 60 seconds, followed by a 70-second post-task period. The near-infrared spectroscopy experiment was conducted on the same day as surveys of obsessive-compulsive symptoms, depression, and anxiety. Z-scores for changes in the concentration of oxygenated hemoglobin were compared between the OCD patients and controls in 14 channels set over the
Tando, Tomoko; Kaga, Yoshimi; Ishii, Sayaka; Aoyagi, Kakuro; Sano, Fumikazu; Kanemura, Hideaki; Sugita, Kanji; Aihara, Masao
Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) is commonly used to investigate continuous changes of brain activation and has excellent time resolution. Verbal fluency task (VFT) is widely used as a neuropsychological test of frontal lobe function. The aim of this study was to investigate normal developmental change in frontal lobe function during VFT performance using multi-channel NIRS, specifically focusing on oxygenation hemoglobin (oxyHb) changes. The subjects were 9 adults and 37 childrens who were all healthy right-handed volunteers. Children were divided into four age groups (group A, 6-8 years; group B, 9-11 years; group C, 12-14 years; group D, 15-18 years). The [oxyHb] changes were measured with 22 channels of NIRS during VFT. We defined the frontopolar region as the region of interest for analysis, and calculated the Z-score to compare the data between groups. The task performance changed with age. There were significant differences between group A and other groups. The Z-score of [oxyHb] also significantly increased with age, when comparing adults to groups A and B. The task performances decreased with time in all groups. In contrast, [oxyHb] only continued to increase in the adult group. The verbal retrieval functions begin to mature in early adolescence and continue to grow up to adulthood. Copyright © 2014 The Japanese Society of Child Neurology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Jing-Jing Sun,1,2 Xiao-Min Liu,2 Chen-Yu Shen,2 Xiao-Qian Zhang,1,2 Gao-Xiang Sun,2 Kun Feng,2 Bo Xu,2 Xia-Jin Ren,1,2 Xiang-Yun Ma,1,2 Po-Zi Liu2 1Medical Center, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, 2Department of Psychiatry, YuQuan Hospital, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China Purpose: Daytime complaints such as memory and attention deficits and failure to accomplish daily tasks are common in insomnia patients. However, objective psychological tests to detect cognitive impairment are equivocal. Neural function associated with cognitive performance may explain the discrepancy. The aim of this study was to investigate the hemodynamic response patterns of patients with chronic insomnia disorder (CID using the noninvasive and low-cost functional neuroimaging technique of multichannel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS in order to identify changes of neural function associated with cognitive performance.Patients and methods: Twenty-four CID patients and twenty-five healthy controls matched for age, right-hand dominance, educational level, and gender were examined during verbal fluency tasks (VFT using NIRS. A covariance analysis was conducted to analyze differences of oxygenated hemoglobin (oxy-Hb changes in prefrontal cortex (PFC between the two groups and reduce the influence of the severity of depression. Pearson correlation coeffcients were calculated to examine the relationship between the oxy-Hb changes, with the severity of insomnia and depressive symptoms assessed by the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI and the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD.Results: The number of words generated during the VFT in CID groups showed no statistical differences with healthy controls. CID patients showed hypoactivation in the PFC during the cognitive task. In addition, we found that the function of left orbitofrontal cortex (OFC during the VFT was significantly negatively correlated with the PSQI scores and the function of right dorsolateral PFC
Pu, Shenghong; Nakagome, Kazuyuki; Yamada, Takeshi; Yokoyama, Katsutoshi; Matsumura, Hiroshi; Yamada, Sayaka; Sugie, Takuya; Miura, Akihiko; Mitani, Hideaki; Iwata, Masaaki; Nagata, Izumi; Kaneko, Koichi
Despite the known relationship between prefrontal function and increased suicidality during major depressive episodes, the links between prefrontal function and suicidality remain unclear in major depressive disorder (MDD). Suicidal ideation usually precedes a suicide attempt. If prefrontal cortex (PFC) activity is a biomarker for suicidal ideation in depression, monitoring it could be useful for suicide prevention. Therefore, in this study, we assessed the association between prefrontal function and suicidal ideation in MDD. Prefrontal function in 67 patients with MDD (31 with suicidal ideation and 36 without) and 67 age-, gender-, and intelligence quotient-matched healthy controls (HCs) was evaluated using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) during a verbal fluency task (VFT). Suicidal ideation was assessed using item 3 of the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD). Regional hemodynamic changes were significantly smaller in patients with MDD than in HCs in prefrontal and temporal regions. Hemodynamic changes in the right dorsolateral PFC (DLPFC), orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), and right frontopolar cortex (FPC) regions in patients with MDD with suicidal ideation were significantly smaller than in those without suicidal ideation. In addition, hemodynamic changes correlated negatively with the severity of suicidal ideation in the DLPFC, OFC, and FPC in patients with MDD. Further studies with a larger sample size are required to verify our findings. These results suggest that the DLPFC, OFC, and FPC are brain substrates of suicidal ideation in depressive states in patients with MDD, and that NIRS data can be employed as a clinically useful biomarker for the assessment of suicide risk. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Schudlo, Larissa C; Chau, Tom
The majority of proposed NIRS-BCIs has considered binary classification. Studies considering high-order classification problems have yielded average accuracies that are less than favorable for practical communication. Consequently, there is a paucity of evidence supporting online classification of more than two mental states using NIRS. We developed an online ternary NIRS-BCI that supports the verbal fluency task (VFT), Stroop task and rest. The system utilized two sessions dedicated solely to classifier training. Additionally, samples were collected prior to each period of online classification to update the classifier. Using a continuous-wave spectrometer, measurements were collected from the prefrontal and parietal cortices while 11 able-bodied adult participants were cued to perform one of the two cognitive tasks or rests. Each task was used to indicate the desire to select a particular letter on a scanning interface, while rest avoided selection. Classification was performed using 25 iteration of bagging with a linear discriminant base classifier. Classifiers were trained on 10-dimensional feature sets. The BCI's classification decision was provided as feedback. An average online classification accuracy of [Formula: see text]% was achieved, representing an ITR of [Formula: see text] bits/min. The results demonstrate that online communication can be achieved with a ternary NIRS-BCI that supports VFT, Stroop task and rest. Our findings encourage continued efforts to enhance the ITR of NIRS-BCIs.
van den Berg, Esther; Jiskoot, Lize C; Grosveld, Mariëlle J H; van Swieten, John C; Papma, Janne M
Verbal fluency is impaired in patients with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and primary progressive aphasia (PPA). This study explored qualitative differences in verbal fluency (clustering of words, switching between strategies) between FTD and PPA variants. Twenty-nine patients with behavioral variant FTD (bvFTD) and 50 with PPA (13 nonfluent/agrammatic, 14 semantic, and 23 logopenic) performed a semantic and letter fluency task. Clustering (number of multiword strings) and switching (number of transitions between clustered and nonclustered words) were recorded by two independent raters. Between-group differences, associations with memory, language, and executive functioning, and longitudinal change (subsample) in clustering and switching were examined. Interrater reliability was high (median 0.98). PPA patients generated (a) smaller (number of) clusters on semantic and letter fluency than bvFTD patients (p fluency was significantly associated with memory and language (range standardized regression coefficients 0.24-0.38). Switching in letter fluency was associated with executive functioning (0.32-0.35). Clustering and switching in verbal fluency differed between patients with subtypes of FTD and PPA. Qualitative aspects of verbal fluency provide additional information on verbal ability and executive control which can be used for clinically diagnostic purposes. © 2017 The Author(s) Published by S. Karger AG, Basel.
Wauters, Lisa; Marquardt, Thomas P
The purpose of this study was to compare the performance of bilingual speakers on an emotional verbal fluency task to category and letter verbal fluency tasks. A second purpose was to compare performances on these tasks to language proficiency ratings. Twelve verbal fluency tasks were administered to 21 Spanish-English bilingual speakers. Results were analyzed for differences between fluency types (category, letter, and emotional) and languages (English and Spanish). Participants generated the most items in category fluency tasks and the least items in emotional fluency tasks. The number of items generated for letter and emotional fluency tasks were not significantly different, but both were significantly lower than the number of items generated in category fluency. More items were generated for positive emotions than for negative emotions. Differences between languages for category and letter fluency tasks were significantly correlated with differences in language proficiency ratings, but this finding was not found for emotional fluency tasks. Self-ratings of proficiency and language dominance correlated significantly with performance on category and letter fluency tasks and may be useful predictors of differences between languages on these tasks. Emotional fluency was not significantly correlated with language proficiency ratings, suggesting that performance on emotional fluency may be more significantly affected by emotional processing ability. The emotional verbal fluency task has potential as a component of neuropsychological evaluations to screen easily and quickly for emotional processing deficits, including those associated with traumatic brain injury and depression. Additionally, results support a positivity bias in language and cognition processes.
Sutin, Angelina R.; Terracciano, Antonio; Kitner-Triolo, Melissa H.; Uda, Manuela; Schlessinger, David; Zonderman, Alan B.
In a community-dwelling sample (N=4,790; age range 14–94), we examined whether personality traits prospectively predicted performance on a verbal fluency task. Open, extraverted, and emotionally stable participants had better verbal fluency. At the facet level, dispositionally happy and self-disciplined participants retrieved more words; those prone to anxiety and depression and those who were deliberative retrieved fewer words. Education moderated the association between Conscientiousness and fluency such that participants with lower education performed better on the fluency task if they were also conscientious. Age was not a moderator at the domain level, indicating that the personality-fluency associations were consistent across the lifespan. A disposition towards emotional vulnerability and being less open, less happy, and undisciplined may be detrimental to cognitive performance. PMID:21707179
Zimmermann, Nicolle; Branco, Laura; Ska, Bernadette; Gasparetto, Emerson Leandro; Joanette, Yves; Fonseca, Rochele
This study aimed to verify dissociations in the performance of verbal fluency tasks with different production criteria and duration following vascular right-hemisphere damage. We tested the hypothesis that longer fluency tasks would be more sensitive in identifying deficits in the sample. The relationship between verbal fluency performance and sustained attention was also investigated. Forty adults with vascular right-hemisphere damage were assessed using verbal fluency tasks with three different production criteria (unconstrained, phonemic, and semantic fluencies from the Montreal Communication Evaluation Battery). Performance deficits in 1-min and 2-min fluency tasks were calculated (Z score) and compared (chi-square). Results did not suggest a difference in sensitivity between the task lengths in detecting cognitive impairment. However, double dissociations were found, highlighting the contribution of extended verbal fluency tasks to neuropsychological assessment. Analyses also showed that participants exhibited greater levels of impairment in the semantic fluency task. No relationship was identified between performance in sustained attention tasks and verbal fluency tasks, regardless of the latter's duration. The combined use of longer and shorter fluency tasks in the assessment of patients with right brain damage may contribute to the identification of different executive function impairments in this sample.
Krukow, Paweł; Harciarek, Michał; Morylowska-Topolska, Justyna; Karakuła-Juchnowicz, Hanna; Jonak, Kamil
Patients with schizophrenia (SCH) show impaired verbal and non-verbal fluency. However, these individuals' fluctuations in words or designs generation efficiency over time, a phenomenon that may significantly affect fluency, have never been studied. Thus, the aim of this research was to investigate if individuals with SCH may present with alternations in the dynamics of the information production and its control as well as to test if the potential abnormalities in this regard might affect these patients' overall performance on both verbal and non-verbal fluency tasks. Forty-four patients with SCH and 40 healthy controls (HC) completed both verbal (phonological, semantic) and non-verbal fluency tests. To analyse processing efficiency changes over time, the period in which subjects had to generate words or designs (60 s) has been divided into 15-s sections. In comparison to HCs, individuals with SCH obtained significantly lower total scores for all fluency measures. Furthermore, group differences in the dynamics of the test performance also emerged, with SCH patients having a significantly worse production during the initial 15 s of each fluency task. Additionally, the initial production deficiency seen in patients with SCH has accounted for these individuals' total performance. Moreover, comparisons of errors distribution over time during the phonemic and figural fluency performance also revealed differences, suggesting there was a rapid depletion in maintaining of cognitive control in the SCH sample. Inefficient fluency in SCH may arise from a more general initiation deficits that may partly account for these patients' cognitive problems.
Pu, Shenghong; Nakagome, Kazuyuki; Yamada, Takeshi; Yokoyama, Katsutoshi; Matsumura, Hiroshi; Mitani, Hideaki; Adachi, Akiko; Nagata, Izumi; Kaneko, Koichi
This study aimed to identify coping styles used by patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) in comparison with those used by healthy controls, and to explore their association with prefrontal hemodynamic response related to a cognitive task. Regional hemodynamic changes were monitored during a verbal fluency task (VFT) using a 52-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) apparatus in 26 MDD patients in depressive state and 30 matched healthy controls, and their correlation with coping styles assessed by Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations (CISS) were examined. We found the Emotion-oriented coping style was significantly higher, whereas the Task-oriented coping and Avoidance-oriented coping style were lower in the MDD group compared with controls. Emotion-oriented coping style positively correlated with subjective assessment of depression severity. Regional hemodynamic changes were significantly smaller in the MDD group than in the control group in prefrontal and temporal regions, and positively correlated with Task-oriented coping (adaptive coping) in the bilateral ventrolateral and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, and the midline fronto-polar and bilateral orbitofrontal cortex regions. These findings suggest coping styles may be considered an important source of knowledge for patients who struggle with the illness and for mental health professionals who work with MDD patients, and that hemodynamic response in the ventrolateral and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, midline fronto-polar, and orbitofrontal cortex regions during a VFT may reflect the adaptive coping (Task-oriented coping) style in MDD patients in depressive state. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Psychosocial functioning is correlated with activation in the anterior cingulate cortex and left lateral prefrontal cortex during a verbal fluency task in euthymic bipolar disorder: a preliminary fMRI study.
Yoshimura, Yasushi; Okamoto, Yasumasa; Onoda, Keiichi; Okada, Go; Toki, Shigeru; Yoshino, Atsuo; Yamashita, Hidehisa; Yamawaki, Shigeto
Cognitive impairment may account for functional and occupational disability in patients with bipolar disorder even during periods of euthymia. While imaging suggests structural, neurochemical, and functional abnormalities in bipolar disorder patients, the pathophysiology of these deficits has not been elucidated. It was hypothesized that euthymic bipolar patients would have different cortical activation during a verbal fluency task compared to healthy controls, and that psychosocial functioning would be associated with prefrontal cortical activation during the task in the bipolar group. Ten euthymic bipolar patients and 10 healthy control participants (matched for age, gender, and years of education) underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during a verbal fluency task, tapping task and visual task. Correlational analysis between the fMRI brain activation and clinical variables of the participants, including Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) score, was performed. Compared to the controls, euthymic bipolar patients had significantly greater activation in the bilateral precuneus with similar behavioral performance during the verbal fluency task. There were no significant differences between the groups for the visual task or the simple motor task. Activation in both the left anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) were significantly positively correlated with GAF score in the euthymic bipolar patients. Both the ACC and lateral PFC regions are components of a neural network that plays a critical role in psychosocial functioning, and are often found to be affected in bipolar patients.
Gawda, Barbara; Szepietowska, Ewa; Soluch, Pawel; Wolak, Tomasz
The present study was designed to examine the underlying brain mechanisms of positive and negative emotional verbal fluency. Three verbal fluency tasks (one non-emotional phonemic task, two emotional tasks: "Joy" and "Fear") were used in this study. The results were analyzed for 35 healthy, Polish-speaking, right-handed adults…
Smith-Spark, James H; Henry, Lucy A; Messer, David J; Zięcik, Adam P
The executive function of fluency describes the ability to generate items according to specific rules. Production of words beginning with a certain letter (phonemic fluency) is impaired in dyslexia, while generation of words belonging to a certain semantic category (semantic fluency) is typically unimpaired. However, in dyslexia, verbal fluency has generally been studied only in terms of overall words produced. Furthermore, performance of adults with dyslexia on non-verbal design fluency tasks has not been explored but would indicate whether deficits could be explained by executive control, rather than phonological processing, difficulties. Phonemic, semantic and design fluency tasks were presented to adults with dyslexia and without dyslexia, using fine-grained performance measures and controlling for IQ. Hierarchical regressions indicated that dyslexia predicted lower phonemic fluency, but not semantic or design fluency. At the fine-grained level, dyslexia predicted a smaller number of switches between subcategories on phonemic fluency, while dyslexia did not predict the size of phonemically related clusters of items. Overall, the results suggested that phonological processing problems were at the root of dyslexia-related fluency deficits; however, executive control difficulties could not be completely ruled out as an alternative explanation. Developments in research methodology, equating executive demands across fluency tasks, may resolve this issue. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Caldas, Luisa; Espirito-Santo,Helena; Matreno, Joana; Marques, Mariana; Pena, Inês; Costa, Marlene; Costa, André; Simões, Diana; Conde, Ângela; Correia, Ana Raquel; Almeida, Rute; Moitinho,Sara; Rodrigues, Fátima; Simões, Sóniaa; Lemos, Laura
Verbal fluency (VF) involves complex processes and has been a good marker of cognitive decline. However, the literature is inconsistent concerning to witch factors are associated with VF. Our aims are to analyze the relationship between both phonemic verbal fluency (PVF) and semantic verbal fluency (SVF) and sociodemographic and psychopathological variables, and explore which emerge as significant predictors. A subsample of 429 of healthy institutionalized elderly from the Aging Traje...
Scheuringer, Andrea; Wittig, Ramona; Pletzer, Belinda
Sex differences in verbal fluency performance and strategies are highly controversial, nevertheless suggesting a slight female advantage at least for phonemic fluency. A tendency of increased clustering of words into phonemic and semantic subcategories in men and increased switching between those categories in women has been suggested. In spatial tasks, it has been demonstrated that changes in instructions favoring a certain cognitive strategy can alter sex differences in performance. Such an approach has, however, not been attempted previously with verbal tasks. In the present investigation, 19 women in their luteal cycle phase and 23 men performed a phonemic and a semantic fluency task with three different instructions, one neutral, one emphasizing the clustering, and one emphasizing the switching of words. While under neutral instructions no sex differences were observed in verbal fluency performance and strategies, sex differences in switching and overall performance were observed in semantic fluency with an instruction requiring a switching strategy. Furthermore, correlation analyses suggested that the importance of strategies for overall performance differed between women and men. While only switching, but not clustering was related to overall verbal fluency performance in all tasks under all instructions, this relationship was driven by women in the phonemic task, but by men in the semantic task. These results highlight the importance of a consistent methodology in sex difference research. Slight variations in instructions may in part explain inconsistencies regarding sex differences in verbal fluency between previous studies.
Friesen, Deanna C; Luo, Lin; Luk, Gigi; Bialystok, Ellen
The verbal fluency task is a widely used neuropsychological test of word retrieval efficiency. Both category fluency (e.g., list animals) and letter fluency (e.g., list words that begin with F) place demands on semantic memory and executive control functions. However letter fluency places greater demands on executive control than category fluency, making this task well-suited to investigating potential bilingual advantages in word retrieval. Here we report analyses on category and letter fluency for bilinguals and monolinguals at four ages, namely, 7-year-olds, 10-year-olds, young adults, and older adults. Three main findings emerged: 1) verbal fluency performance improved from childhood to young adulthood and remained relatively stable in late adulthood; 2) beginning at 10-years-old, the executive control requirements for letter fluency were less effortful for bilinguals than monolinguals, with a robust bilingual advantage on this task emerging in adulthood; 3) an interaction among factors showed that category fluency performance was influenced by both age and vocabulary knowledge but letter fluency performance was influenced by bilingual status.
Andreou, Georgia; Trott, Kate
It has been increasingly believed that attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a disorder with lifelong course associated with cognitive difficulties including among others, language production, verbal learning, and verbal fluency. However, research is limited to children and adolescents, and very few researchers have examined the impact of ADHD in adulthood on the cognitive domain. The aim of the present study is to examine the performance of adults, diagnosed with ADHD in childhood, on semantic and phonemic verbal fluency tasks. It is hypothesized that adults with ADHD will perform worse on both tasks than matched controls. Sixty university students (30 diagnosed with ADHD in childhood and 30 matched controls) of mean age 20.5 participated in the study. They all completed two verbal fluency tasks. The ADHD group had statistically significant lower scores than the non-ADHD group on the phonemic, but not the semantic task. The study provides some evidence that ADHD in childhood has a negative impact on adults' phonemic verbal fluency. This finding could be probably explained by the fact that phonemic fluency is considered more cognitively demanding and impacting more on the frontal lobe functions, known to be impaired in ADHD, than semantic fluency.
Davis, Andrew S; Finch, W Holmes; Drapeau, Christopher; Nogin, Margarita; E Moss, Lauren; Moore, Brittney
The estimation of premorbid general intellectual functioning using word reading tests has a rich history of validation and is a common assessment practice for neuropsychologists. What is less well-researched is the approach used to estimate premorbid functioning of non-intellectual domains, such as executive functions, including verbal fluency. The current study evaluated this relationship with 41 adult college students who completed the Word Reading subtest of the Wechsler Individual Achievement Test-Second Edition (WIAT-II) and the Verbal Fluency test from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS). Path analysis indicated that only Letter Fluency (a measure of phonemic fluency) was statistically significantly related to Word Reading and the relationship was somewhat weak. The relationship between Category Fluency (a measure of semantic fluency) and Category Switching (a measure of verbal fluency cognitive set-shifting) to Word Reading was nonsignificant. Participants also completed the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Third Edition (WAIS-III), and as expected a strong relationship was found between Word Reading and the Verbal IQ (VIQ), Performance IQ (PIQ), and Full Scale Intelligence Quotient (FSIQ). Results of this study strongly suggest that caution be exercised when extrapolating an estimate of premorbid verbal fluency abilities from measures of word reading.
McDowd, Joan; Hoffman, Lesa; Rozek, Ellen; Lyons, Kelly E; Pahwa, Rajesh; Burns, Jeffrey; Kemper, Susan
Verbal fluency measures are frequently part of batteries designed to assess executive function (EF), but are also used to assess semantic processing ability or word knowledge. The goal of the present study was to identify the cognitive components underlying fluency performance. Healthy young and older adults, adults with Parkinson's disease, and adults with Alzheimer's disease performed letter, category, and action fluency tests. Performance was assessed in terms of number of items generated, clustering, and the time course of output. A series of neuropsychological assessments were also administered to index verbal ability, working memory, EF, and processing speed as correlates of fluency performance. Findings indicated that regardless of the particular performance measure, young adults performed the best and adults with Alzheimer's disease performed most poorly, with healthy older adults and adults with Parkinson's disease performing at intermediate levels. The exception was the action fluency task, where adults with Parkinson's disease performed most poorly. The time course of fluency performance was characterized in terms of slope and intercept parameters and related to neuropsychological constructs. Speed of processing was found to be the best predictor of performance, rather than the efficiency of EF or semantic knowledge. Together, these findings demonstrate that the pattern of fluency performance looks generally the same regardless of how performance is measured. In addition, the primary role of processing speed in performance suggests that the use of fluency tasks as measures of EF or verbal ability warrants reexamination. (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved
Gawda, Barbara; Szepietowska, Ewa; Soluch, Pawel; Wolak, Tomasz
The present study was designed to examine the underlying brain mechanisms of positive and negative emotional verbal fluency. Three verbal fluency tasks (one non-emotional phonemic task, two emotional tasks: Joy and Fear) were used in this study. The results were analyzed for 35 healthy, Polish-speaking, right-handed adults aged 20-35. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (3T) was used to show brain activity during active participation in emotional verbal fluency tasks. The results reported for emotional fluency confirmed activation of different brain regions for the negative and positive emotional verbal fluency: in positive emotional verbal fluency Joy elicits greater activation in the frontal regions and the cingulate cortex, while in negative verbal fluency Fear is reflected in activation of parietal and temporal areas. The study provides an evidence for differentiation in neural mechanisms between positive and negative emotional verbal fluency and/or positive and negative retrieving processes, and differentiation in brain-related determinants of the emotional concepts organization.
Raucher-Chéné, Delphine; Achim, Amélie M; Kaladjian, Arthur; Besche-Richard, Chrystel
One of the main features of bipolar disorder (BD), besides mood dysregulation, is an alteration of the structure of language. Bipolar patients present changes in semantic contents, impaired verbal associations, abnormal prosody and abnormal speed of language highlighted with various experimental tasks. Verbal fluency tasks are widely used to assess the abilities of bipolar patients to retrieve and produce verbal material from the lexico-semantic memory. Studies using these tasks have however yielded discrepant results. The aim of this study was thus to determine the extent of the verbal fluency impairment in BD patients and to evaluate if the deficits are affected by the type of task or by mood states. A systematic literature search was conducted in MEDLINE, EBSCOHost and Google Scholar and relevant data were submitted to a meta-analysis. Thirty-nine studies were retained providing data for 52 independent groups of BD patients. The overall meta-analysis revealed a moderate verbal fluency impairment in BD compared to healthy controls (effect size d=0.61). Comparisons between mood states showed significant differences only between euthymic and manic patients and only on category fluency performances. This review is limited by the heterogeneity between studies for the characteristics of BD populations. Also, few of the retained studies examined depressive or mixed episodes. This work confirms that BD patients present with moderate verbal fluency impairments, and underlines the specific effect of mood state on category fluency. This emphasizes the need to distinguish semantic from phonological processes in verbal fluency assessments in BD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Clark, D G; Wadley, V G; Kapur, P; DeRamus, T P; Singletary, B; Nicholas, A P; Blanton, P D; Lokken, K; Deshpande, H; Marson, D; Deutsch, G
To evaluate assumptions regarding semantic (noun), verb, and letter fluency in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and Alzheimer disease (AD) using novel techniques for measuring word similarity in fluency lists and a region of interest (ROI) analysis of gray matter correlates. Fifty-eight individuals with normal cognition (NC, n=25), MCI (n=23), or AD (n=10) underwent neuropsychological tests, including 10 verbal fluency tasks (three letter tasks [F, A, S], six noun categories [animals, water creatures, fruits and vegetables, tools, vehicles, boats], and verbs). All pairs of words generated by each participant on each task were compared in terms of semantic (meaning), orthographic (spelling), and phonemic (pronunciation) similarity. We used mixed-effects logistic regression to determine which lexical factors were predictive of word adjacency within the lists. Associations between each fluency raw score and gray matter volumes in sixteen ROIs were identified by means of multiple linear regression. We evaluated causal models for both types of analyses to specify the contributions of diagnosis and various mediator variables to the outcomes of word adjacency and fluency raw score. Semantic similarity between words emerged as the strongest predictor of word adjacency for all fluency tasks, including the letter fluency tasks. Semantic similarity mediated the effect of cognitive impairment on word adjacency only for three fluency tasks employing a biological cue. Orthographic similarity was predictive of word adjacency for the A and S tasks, while phonemic similarity was predictive only for the S task and one semantic task (vehicles). The ROI analysis revealed different patterns of correlations among the various fluency tasks, with the most common associations in the right lower temporal and bilateral dorsal frontal regions. Following correction with gray matter volumes from the opposite hemisphere, significant associations persisted for animals, vehicles, and a composite
Scheuringer, Andrea; Pletzer, Belinda
Men typically outperform women in spatial navigation tasks, while the advantage of women in verbal fluency is more controversial. Sex differences in cognitive abilities have been related to sex-specific cognitive strategies on the one hand and sex hormone influences on the other hand. However, sex hormone and menstrual cycle influences on cognitive strategies have not been previously investigated. In the present study we assessed cognitive strategy use during spatial navigation and verbal fluency in 51 men and 49 women. In order to evaluate sex hormone influences, all participants completed two test sessions, which were time-locked to the early follicular (low estradiol and progesterone) and mid-luteal cycle phase (high estradiol and progesterone) in women. As hypothesized, men outperformed women in navigation, whereas women outperformed men in phonemic verbal fluency. Furthermore, women switched more often between categories in the phonemic fluency condition, compared to men, indicating sex-specific strategy use. Sex differences in strategy use during navigation did, however, not follow the expected pattern. Menstrual cycle phase, however, did modulate strategy use during navigation as expected, with improved performance with the landmark strategy in the luteal, compared to the follicular phase. No menstrual cycle effects were observed on clustering or switching during verbal fluency. This suggests a modulation of cognitive strategy use during spatial navigation, but not during verbal fluency, by relative hormone increases during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle.
Stain, Helen J; Hodne, Sigrun; Joa, Inge; Hegelstad, Wenche Ten Velden; Douglas, Katie M; Langveld, Johannes; Gisselgard, Jens P; Johannesen, Jan Olav; Larsen, Tor K
Impairments in speech, communication and Theory of Mind are common in schizophrenia, and compromise social functioning. Some of these impairments may already be present pre-morbidly. This study aimed to investigate verbal functions in relation to written story production and social functioning in people experiencing a first episode of psychosis (FEP). Two groups of participants: FEP (N=31) and healthy controls (HC, N=31), completed measures of clinical status, social functioning, a series of neuropsychological tests targeting verbal functioning, and the "Frog Where Are You?" story production task. Story results showed reduced efficiency (words per minute) and self-monitoring (corrections per minute) for FEP compared with HC groups (pverbal learning and verbal fluency. Story production was positively associated with verbal learning and verbal fluency for the FEP group only (pdecline was associated with impaired verbal learning and memory for the FEP group. Individuals with FEP show a childhood history of reduced social and academic performance that is associated with skills essential for daily social interactions, as evidenced by the findings for story production, verbal learning and verbal fluency. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Demetriou, Eleni; Holtzer, Roee
Mild cognitive impairments (MCI) is a transitional state in aging associated with increased risk of incident dementia. The current study investigated whether MCI status moderated the effect of time on word generation during verbal fluency tasks. Specifically, the objective was to determine whether MCI status had differential effects on initial automatic or latter more effortful retrieval processes of fluency tasks. Participants were community residing older adults enrolled in a longitudinal cohort study. Of the 408 participants, 353 were normal (age=76.06±6.61; %female=57.8) and 55 were diagnosed with MCI (age=78.62±7.00; %female=52.7). Phonemic and category fluency were each administered for 60 s, but performance was recorded at three consecutive 20-s intervals (0-20 s [T1], 21-40 s [T2], 41-60 s [T3]. Separate linear mixed effects models for each fluency task were used to determine the effects of group, time, and their interaction on word generation. In both fluency tasks, word generation declined as a function of time. Individuals with MCI generated fewer words compared to controls during the first 20 s of phonemic (beta=-1.56; pfluency (beta=-1.85; pfluency. Early automatic retrieval processes in verbal fluency tasks are compromised in MCI. (JINS, 2017, 23, 44-55).
Eichstaedt, Katie E; Soble, Jason R; Kamper, Joel E; Bozorg, Ali M; Benbadis, Selim R; Vale, Fernando L; Schoenberg, Mike R
When differences exist, women tend to outperform men on measures of verbal fluency, possibly due to greater bilateral language representation. Patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) have a higher rate of atypical cortical language representation than the general population, making them a population of interest for the study of language. For the current study, 78 TLE patients (51% male, 51% left temporal focus) underwent pre-surgical neuropsychological evaluations. Retrospective data analyses investigated the impact of seizure laterality and sex on letter and semantic verbal fluency. Results indicated an interaction between sex and laterality for semantic, but not letter, verbal fluency. Males with left TLE exhibited significantly worse semantic fluency than males with right TLE, whereas females' semantic fluency did not differ by seizure focus. These data indicate that females with TLE may indeed engage in more bilateral hemispheric processing of semantic verbal fluency, whereas males may be more reliant on left temporal cortical function for this task. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Weakley, Alyssa; Schmitter-Edgecombe, Maureen
The underlying nature of verbal fluency deficits in Alzheimer's disease (AD) was investigated in this study. Participants were 48 individuals with AD and 48 cognitively healthy older adults. Fluency performance on letter and category tasks was analyzed across two 30-s intervals for total words produced, mean cluster size, and total switches. Compared with the control group, AD participants produced fewer words and switches on both fluency tasks and had a reduced category cluster size. The AD group was differentially impaired on category compared with letter fluency and produced more repetitive responses but fewer category exemplars than controls on the category task. A multidimensional scaling approach revealed that AD participants' semantic maps were similar to controls. Overall, the data suggest that executive abilities involving search and retrieval processes and a reduced availability of semantically related words contributed to the AD group's poorer performance despite similar temporal recall and organizational patterns. PMID:24687588
Weakley, Alyssa; Schmitter-Edgecombe, Maureen; Anderson, Jonathan
The purpose of this study was to investigate the pattern of performance on letter and category fluency tests of individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Previous research has suggested that organization strategies, including “clustering” (i.e., groups of related words) and “switching” (i.e., shift from one cluster to another), are important for efficient verbal fluency performance. Participants were 25 individuals with single-domain amnestic MCI (aMCI), 49 with multidomain aMCI, 16 with non-amnestic MCI (naMCI), and 90 cognitively healthy older adults. Fluency performances were analyzed across two 30-s intervals for total words produced, cluster size, and switching. Analyses of variance (ANOVAs) with follow-up tests revealed that the single-domain aMCI group performed comparably with healthy controls on each dependent measure across both fluency tasks. In contrast, the multidomain aMCI group showed performance decrements in total words and switching production compared with healthy controls on both fluency tasks, whereas the naMCI group produced fewer words and switches on letter fluency. Each group generated more words and switches during the first 30-s on both fluency tasks, with the exception of the naMCI group, whose switching on letter fluency did not decrease as the task progressed. As indicated by the single-domain aMCI group's unimpaired performance, our findings demonstrate that verbal fluency performance decreases as domains beyond memory become impaired in MCI. Reduced switching ability, which has been linked to prefrontal executive functioning, contributed the most to the poorer performance of individuals with multidomain MCI and naMCI. PMID:23917346
Chouiter, Leila; Holmberg, Josefina; Manuel, Aurelie L; Colombo, Françoise; Clarke, Stephanie; Annoni, Jean-Marie; Spierer, Lucas
Verbal fluency refers to the ability to generate as many words as possible in a limited time interval, without repetition and according to either a phonologic (each word begins with a given letter) or a semantic rule (each word belongs to a given semantic category). While current literature suggests the involvement of left fronto-temporal structures in fluency tasks, whether the same or distinct brain areas are necessary for each type of fluency remains unclear. We tested the hypothesis for an involvement of partly segregated cortico-subcortical structures between phonologic and semantic fluency by examining with a voxel-based lesion symptom mapping approach the effects of brain lesions on fluency scores corrected for age and education level in a group of 191 unselected brain-damaged patients with a first left or right hemispheric lesion. There was a positive correlation between the scores to the two types of fluency, suggesting that common mechanisms underlie the word generation independent of the production rule. The lesion-symptom mapping revealed that lesions to left basal ganglia impaired both types of fluency and that left superior temporal, supramarginal and rolandic operculum lesions selectively impaired phonologic fluency and left middle temporal lesions impaired semantic fluency. Our results corroborate current neurocognitive models of word retrieval and production, and refine the role of cortical-subcortical interaction in lexical search by highlighting the common executive role of basal ganglia in both types of verbal fluency and the preferential involvement of the ventral and dorsal language pathway in semantic and phonologic fluency, respectively. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Batty, Rachel; Francis, Andrew; Thomas, Neil; Hopwood, Malcolm; Ponsford, Jennie; Johnston, Lisa; Rossell, Susan
Verbal fluency in patients with psychosis following traumatic brain injury (PFTBI) has been reported as comparable to healthy participants. This finding is counterintuitive given the prominent fluency impairments demonstrated post-traumatic brain injury (TBI) and in psychotic disorders, e.g. schizophrenia. We investigated phonemic (executive) fluency (3 letters: 'F' 'A' and 'S'), and semantic fluency (1 category: fruits and/or vegetables) in four matched groups; PFTBI (N=10), TBI (N=10), schizophrenia (N=23), and healthy controls (N=23). Words produced (minus perseverations and errors), and clustering and switching scores were compared for the two fluency types across the groups. The results confirmed that PFTBI patients do show impaired fluency, aligned with existing evidence in TBI and schizophrenia. PFTBI patients produced the least amount of words on the phonemic fluency ('A') trial and total score, and demonstrated reduced switching on both phonemic and semantic tasks. No significant differences in clustering performance were found. Importantly, the pattern of results suggested that PFTBI patients share deficits with their brain-injured (primarily executive), and psychotic (executive and semantic), counterparts, and that these are exacerbated by their dual-diagnosis. These findings add to a very limited literature by providing novel evidence of the nature of fluency impairments in dually-diagnosed PFTBI. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Yilmaz, Rezzak; Akbostancı, M Cenk; Mercan, F Nazlı; Sorgun, Mine H; Savaş, Ali
Subthalamic nucleus deep brain stimulation is an effective treatment for the symptomatic treatment of Parkinson's disease. Apart from the obvious motor benefits, some cognitive side effects have been reported, particularly in verbal fluency. Our aim was to evaluate the effects of the stimulation on verbal fluency and visuospatial orientation with changing stimulation conditions in 35 patients with Parkinson's disease. Patients were randomized for their stimulation conditions as 'both on', 'both off', 'right on', and 'left on' and underwent verbal fluency and visuospatial orientation tasks during their drug-on periods. Letter and categorical fluency tasks and Benton's Judgment of Line Orientation Test were used for assessment. Overall, 6 patients were excluded due to dementia or depression. For verbal fluency, the number of words they produced in 1 min was similar in four stimulation conditions (p > 0.05). No significant difference was found between stimulation conditions in the spatial orientation task. We were unable to find any significant changes in verbal fluency and visuospatial orientation task scores with different stimulation conditions. This result suggests that either stimulation has no effect on given domains or the effect is so small that more detailed batteries are required to detect the difference. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Full Text Available Abstract Introduction: Previous studies have implicated impaired verbal fluency as being associated with anxiety disorders in adolescents. Objectives: To replicate and extend previously reported evidence by investigating whether performance in phonemic verbal fluency tasks is related to severity of anxiety symptoms in young children with anxiety disorders. We also aim to investigate whether putative associations are independent from co-occurring attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD symptoms. Methods: Sixty children (6-12 years old with primary diagnoses of anxiety disorders participated in this study. Severity of symptoms was measured using clinician-based, parent-rated and self-rated validated scales. Verbal fluency was assessed using a simple task that measures the number of words evoked in 1-minute with the letter F, from which we quantified the number of isolated words, number of clusters (groups of similar words and number of switches (transitions between clusters and/or between isolated words. Results: There was a significant association between the number of clusters and anxiety scores. Further analysis revealed associations were independent from co-occurring ADHD symptoms. Conclusion: We replicate and extend previous findings showing that verbal fluency is consistently associated with severity in anxiety disorders in children. Further studies should explore the potential effect of cognitive training on symptoms of anxiety disorders.
Full Text Available Semantic verbal fluency test is reliable instrument for detection of various kinds of neuropsychological deficits. Participants’ attainments in this test are influenced by array of socio-cultural factors. The occurrence of “twofold semilingualism” belongs to these cultural factors.The objective of this research is to determine differences between monolingual and bilingual children with mild mental retardation in semantic verbal fluency test.The sample consisted of 90 participants with mild mental retardation, of both sexes, aged from 12 to 15. The whole sample was divided into three subsets: 30 monolingual children (M1, who speak only Serbian, 30 monolingual Roma children who do not speak Romany (M2 and 30 bilingual Roma children who speak both, Romany and Serbian language (B.It was found that both groups of monolingual children have better performances in semantic fluency tasks than bilingual children.
Teng, Edmond; Leone-Friedman, Judith; Lee, Grace J.; Woo, Stephanie; Apostolova, Liana G.; Harrell, Shelly; Ringman, John M.; Lu, Po H.
Disproportionately greater deficits in semantic relative to phonemic verbal fluency are seen in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and have been attributed to neurodegenerative changes in the temporal lobe. Amnestic (AMN) mild cognitive impairment (MCI), which often represents incipient AD, is also characterized by early temporal lobe neuropathology, but previous comparisons of verbal fluency between AD and AMN MCI have yielded mixed results. We examined semantic and phonemic verbal fluency performance in 399 individuals (78 AD, 138 AMN MCI, 72 non-amnestic MCI, and 111 cognitively normal controls). Similar verbal fluency patterns were seen in AMN MCI and AD; both groups exhibited disproportionately poorer performance on semantic verbal fluency relative to normal controls. However, relative verbal fluency indices performed more poorly than individual semantic or phonemic verbal fluency indices for discriminating AMN MCI or AD participants from normal controls, suggesting that they are unlikely to provide additional utility for predicting progression from MCI to AD. PMID:23752677
Stavroussi, Panayiota; Andreou, Georgia; Karagiannopoulou, Dimitra
The purpose of this study was to examine verbal fluency and verbal short-term memory in 12 adults with Down syndrome (DS) and 12 adults with Intellectual Disability (ID) of unspecified origin, matched for receptive vocabulary and chronological age. Participants' performance was assessed on two conditions of a verbal fluency test, namely, semantic…
Yim, Odilia; Bialystok, Ellen
The study examined individual differences in code-switching to determine the relationship between code-switching frequency and performance in verbal and non-verbal task switching. Seventy-eight Cantonese-English bilinguals completed a semi-structured conversation to quantify natural code-switching, a verbal fluency task requiring language…
Abdel Aziz, Karim; Khater, Mohamed S; Emara, Tamer; Tawfik, Heba M; Rasheedy, Doha; Mohammedin, Ahmed S; Tolba, Mohammad F; El-Gabry, Dina Aly; Qassem, Tarik
The objective of this study is to establish the effects of age, gender, and education and to provide preliminary normative data for letter and category fluency tasks in the Egyptian Arabic-speaking population. We evaluated 139 cognitively healthy volunteers aged 20-93 by adapting the letter and category verbal fluency tasks for the Egyptian population. On the letter fluency task, mean number of words generated in one-minute beginning with the Arabic letter "Sheen" (pronounced "sh") was 8.14 words per minute (SD = 3.25). Letter fluency was significantly influenced by education. On category fluency tasks, mean number of animal names generated in one minute was 14.63 words (SD = 5.28). Category fluency was significantly influenced by age and education. We were able identify that age significantly affects category fluency while education significantly affected both letter and category fluency. We were also able to provide preliminary normative data for both tasks in the Egyptian population.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Impairments in executive function and language processing are characteristic of both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Their functional neuroanatomy demonstrate features that are shared as well as specific to each disorder. Determining the distinct pattern of neural responses in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder may provide biomarkers for their diagnoses. Methods 104 participants underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI scans while performing a phonological verbal fluency task. Subjects were 32 patients with schizophrenia in remission, 32 patients with bipolar disorder in an euthymic state, and 40 healthy volunteers. Neural responses to verbal fluency were examined in each group, and the diagnostic potential of the pattern of the neural responses was assessed with machine learning analysis. Results During the verbal fluency task, both patient groups showed increased activation in the anterior cingulate, left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and right putamen as compared to healthy controls, as well as reduced deactivation of precuneus and posterior cingulate. The magnitude of activation was greatest in patients with schizophrenia, followed by patients with bipolar disorder and then healthy individuals. Additional recruitment in the right inferior frontal and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortices was observed in schizophrenia relative to both bipolar disorder and healthy subjects. The pattern of neural responses correctly identified individual patients with schizophrenia with an accuracy of 92%, and those with bipolar disorder with an accuracy of 79% in which mis-classification was typically of bipolar subjects as healthy controls. Conclusions In summary, both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder are associated with altered function in prefrontal, striatal and default mode networks, but the magnitude of this dysfunction is particularly marked in schizophrenia. The pattern of response to verbal fluency is highly
Hazin, Izabel; Leite, Gilmara; Oliveira, Rosinda M; Alencar, João C; Fichman, Helenice C; Marques, Priscila D N; de Mello, Claudia Berlim
Verbal fluency is a basic function of language that refers to the ability to produce fluent speech. Despite being an essentially linguistic function, its measurements are also used to evaluate executive aspects of verbal behavior. Performance in verbal fluency (VF) tasks varies according to age, education, and cognitive development. Neurodevelopmental disorders that affect the functioning of frontal areas tend to cause lower performance in VF tasks. Despite the relative consensus that has been reached in terms of the use of VF tasks for the diagnosis of dyslexia and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, few studies have considered regional variations in Brazil. The present study sought to provide normative data on VF tasks in children by considering gender, age, education, and geopolitical region of origin with auxiliary purposes in neuropsychological diagnosis of disorders that occur with executive changes The study included 298 participants, 7-10 years of age of both genders, who performed three letter fluency tasks and three category fluency tasks. The data were subjected to correlational and variance analyses, with age and gender as factors. No effect of gender on the children's performance was found. However, significant differences between age groups were observed, with better performance in letter tasks in older children and better performance in letter tasks compared with category tasks. Significant regional differences in performance on the letter VF task were observed. These results reinforce the importance of regional normative data in countries with high regional cultural variations, such as Brazil.
Felix D C C Beacher
Full Text Available Autism spectrum conditions (ASC affect more males than females. This suggests that the neurobiology of autism: 1 may overlap with mechanisms underlying typical sex-differentiation or 2 alternately reflect sex-specificity in how autism is expressed in males and females. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to test these alternate hypotheses. Fifteen men and fourteen women with Asperger syndrome (AS, and sixteen typically developing men and sixteen typically developing women underwent fMRI during performance of mental rotation and verbal fluency tasks. All groups performed the tasks equally well. On the verbal fluency task, despite equivalent task-performance, both males and females with AS showed enhanced activation of left occipitoparietal and inferior prefrontal activity compared to controls. During mental rotation, there was a significant diagnosis-by-sex interaction across occipital, temporal, parietal, middle frontal regions, with greater activation in AS males and typical females compared to AS females and typical males. These findings suggest a complex relationship between autism and sex that is differentially expressed in verbal and visuospatial domains.
Jaywant, Abhishek; Musto, Giovanni; Neargarder, Sandy; Gilbert, Karina Stavitsky; Cronin-Golomb, Alice
Background Parkinson's disease (PD) leads to deficits in executive function, including verbal and nonverbal fluency, as a result of compromised fronto-striatal circuits. It is unknown whether deficits in verbal and nonverbal fluency in PD are driven by certain subgroups of patients, or how strategy use may facilitate performance. Participants Sixty-five non-demented individuals with PD, including 36 with right-body onset (RPD; 20 with tremor as their initial symptom, 16 non-tremor) and 29 with left-body onset (LPD; 14 with tremor as their initial symptom, 15 non-tremor), and 52 normal control participants (NC). Measurements Verbal fluency was assessed using the FAS and Animals tests. Nonverbal fluency was assessed using the Ruff Figural Fluency Test. Results Both RPD and LPD were impaired in generating words and in using clustering and switching strategies on phonemic verbal fluency, whereas different patterns of impairment were found on nonverbal fluency depending on the interaction of side of onset and initial motor symptom (tremor vs. non-tremor). Strategy use correlated with number of correct responses on verbal fluency in LPD, RPD, and NC. By contrast, on nonverbal fluency, strategy use correlated with correct responses for RPD and LPD, but not for NC. Conclusion Our findings demonstrate the importance of considering subgroups in PD and analyzing subcomponents of verbal and nonverbal fluency (correct responses, errors, and strategies), which may depend differently on the integrity of dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, inferior frontal cortex, and anterior cingulate cortex. PMID:24533593
Maseda, Ana; Lodeiro-Fernández, Leire; Lorenzo-López, Laura; Núñez-Naveira, Laura; Balo, Aránzazu; Millán-Calenti, Jose C
To establish the possible relationship among three components of language (verbal fluency, naming and comprehension) and cognitive impairment as well as to determine the usefulness of language assessment tests to predict or monitor the development of cognitive impairment. A comparative, descriptive and cross-sectional study was performed on 82 subjects ≥ 65 years of age who were cognitively assessed with the Mini Mental State Examination and were divided into two groups: Group A comprised of subjects classified as levels 1, 2 and 3 on the Reisberg's Global Deterioration Scale (GDS) and group B comprised of subjects at levels 4 and 5 of the GDS. Language skills were assessed by the Verbal Fluency Test, Boston Naming Test and Token Test. An inverse relationship between performance on language tests and cognitive impairment level was observed with a more pronounced effect observed on fluency and comprehension tests. Language assessments, especially fluency and comprehension, were good indicators of cognitive impairment. The use of these assessments as predictors of the degree of cognitive impairment is discussed in-depth.
Full Text Available Changes of cognitive function in PD have been extensively documented and defined as a ‘frontal’ type executive dysfunction. One of the main components of this executive dysfunction is the impairment of verbal fluency. The aim of the present study was to assess semantic and phonemic fluency in a large sample of PD patients and to investigate the effect of clinical and sociodemographic variables on verbal fluency in this patient group.
Nie, Jia; Zhang, Wei; Liu, Ying
The aims of this study were to explore depression, self-esteem and verbal fluency functions among normal internet users, mild internet addictions and severe internet addictions. The survey sample consisted of 316 college students, and their internet addiction symptoms, depression and self-esteem symptoms were assessed using the Revised Chen Internet Addiction Scale (CIAS-R), Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale (ZSDS), Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES), respectively. From this sample, 16 students with non-addictions, 19 students with mild internet addiction (sub-MIA) and 15 students with severe internet addiction (sub-SIA) were recruited and subjected to the classical verbal fluency tests, including the semantic and phonemic fluency task. The results indicated that severe internet addiction in the survey sample showed the highest tendency towards depressive symptoms and lowest self-esteem scores, and sub-SIA showed poor performance on the semantic fluency task. In conclusion, severe internet addiction was significantly associated with depression, low self-esteem and semantic verbal fluency problems. Copyright Â© 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Carmo, Joana C; Duarte, Elsa; Pinho, Sandra; Marques, J Frederico; Filipe, Carlos N
In the present study, we aimed to evaluate the hypothesis that the reported discrepancy in the performance of verbal fluency in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), characterized by an overall word productivity impairment with normal clustering and switching abilities, may be due to an initiation deficit. In the present study, we evaluated the temporal dynamics of both letter and semantic verbal fluency tasks in a sample of 20 young adults with high-functioning ASD compared with a sample of 20 gender-, age-, education-, and verbal-IQ-matched participants. We first compared both the word productivity and the qualitative analysis of clustering and switching abilities during the entire task to replicate the discrepancy reported in the literature. Importantly, we next analyzed both word productivity and clustering and switching abilities in two time intervals (0-30 s and 31-60 s), as it was our primary interest to evaluate the functioning of the initial component of word retrieval. Directly supporting the idea that the discrepancy found between an impairment in global word productivity combined with normal clustering and switching strategies is due to an activation and initiation deficit, we observed an abnormal performance for the ASD group in the first time period only. We interpreted these results to be preliminary findings of deficits in initiation processes in ASD.
Bertola, Laiss; Cunha Lima, Maria Luiza; Romano-Silva, Marco A; de Moraes, Edgar N; Diniz, Breno Satler; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro F
The semantic verbal fluency task is broadly used in the neuropsychological assessment of elderly subjects. Even some studies have identified differences in verbal fluency clustering and switching measures between subjects with normal aging and a clinical condition such as mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and Alzheimer's disease, the results are not always consistent. This study aimed to compare clustering and switching measures of an animal's semantic verbal fluency task among normal controls (NC, n = 25), amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI; n = 25), amnestic multiple domain Mild Cognitive Impairment (a+mdMCI; n = 25) and Alzheimer's disease (AD; n = 25) Brazilian subjects. The analyses were executed considering three (unifying the MCI subtypes) and four groups. As the data were not normally distributed, we carried out non-parametric tests (Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whitney tests) to evaluate the differences in performance in the measures of the verbal fluency test among the groups. The comparison demonstrated that the groups differed in the total of correct words produced, number of clusters and switching but the measure of new subcategories was the only with significant difference among the NC and all the clinical groups. The measure of new subcategories is the number of original subcategories inside the higher category of animals that the subject produced, such as farm, domestic, African animals. Our results indicate that semantic memory impairment is a visible and recent deficit that occurs even in non-demented subjects with very MCI and the implications of these findings are discussed.
Mayra Jacuviske Venegas
Full Text Available Abstract The distribution of item generation/time in the performance of elderly on verbal fluency (VF remains unknown. Objective: To analyze the number of items, their distribution and impact of the first quartile on the final test result. Methods: 31 individuals performed the tests (average age=74 years; schooling=8.16 years. Results: The number of items produced in the first quartile differed from the other quartiles for both semantic and phonologic VF where 40% of items were produced in the first quartile. No effect of age was found and schooling influenced performance on the first and second quartiles of semantic VF and on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd quartiles of phonemic VF. Discussion: This study contributes with the finding that asymptotic levels are attained prior to the 30 seconds observed in other studies, being reached at the 15-second mark. Furthermore, schooling was found to be associated to the number of items produced in both the first and 2nd quartiles for semantic VF, and in 1st, 2nd and 3rd quartiles for phonemic fluency. Conclusion: The schooling effect was noted both in semantic and executive aspects of VF. The brief form of the VF test may represent a promising tool for clinical evaluation.
Yin, Shufei; Zhu, Xinyi; He, Rongqiao; Li, Rui; Li, Juan
The precuneus is 1 of the major cortical hubs and plays an important role in normal aging and verbal fluency processing. The main aim of present study was to investigate how intrinsic brain activity in the precuneus at rest predicts individual differences in verbal fluency ability among elderly adults. Regional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF) analysis and a correlation-based functional connectivity (FC) approach were used to analyze data acquired from 101 cognitively normal elderly. ALFF in the precuneus declined with normal aging and was significantly correlated with individual differences in performance on the verbal fluency test (VFT). Specifically, ALFF in the precuneus was reduced in elderly with high fluency (HF) ability compared with those with low fluency (LF) ability. In addition, the HF individuals displayed increased functional connectivity of the precuneus with the lateral temporal area and prefrontal lobe, including the inferior frontal, medial frontal, superior temporal, middle temporal, and superior frontal gyri. Spontaneous activity in the precuneus could predict individual differences in verbal fluency processing. Our results suggest that spontaneous activity in the precuneus is an indicator of aging-related changes in semantic verbal fluency processing, or even a potential biomarker for the early detection of semantic verbal fluency deterioration. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Bhojraj, Tejas S; Francis, Alan N; Rajarethinam, Rajaprabhakaran; Eack, Shaun; Kulkarni, Shreedhar; Prasad, Konasale M; Montrose, Debra M; Dworakowski, Diana; Diwadkar, Vaibhav; Keshavan, Matcheri S
Alterations of verbal fluency may correlate with deficits of gray matter volume and hemispheric lateralization of language brain regions like the pars triangularis (PT) in schizophrenia. Examining non-psychotic individuals at high genetic risk (HR) for schizophrenia may clarify if these deficits represent heritable trait markers or state dependent phenomena. We assessed adolescent and young adult HR subjects (N=60) and healthy controls (HC; N=42) using verbal fluency tests and Freesurfer to process T1-MRI scans. We hypothesized volumetric and lateralization alterations of the PT and their correlation with verbal fluency deficits. HR subjects had letter verbal fluency deficits (controlling for IQ), left PT deficits (p=.00), (controlling ICV) and reversal of the L>R PT asymmetry noted in HC. Right Heschl's (p=.00), left supramarginal (p=.00) and right angular gyrii (p=.02) were also reduced in HR subjects. The L>R asymmetry of the Heschl's gyrus seen in HC was exaggerated and asymmetries of L>R of supramarginal and R>L of angular gyri, seen in HC were attenuated in HR subjects. L>R asymmetry of the PT predicted better verbal fluency across the pooled HR and HC groups. Young relatives of schizophrenia patients have verbal fluency deficits, gray matter volume deficits and reversed asymmetry of the pars triangularis. A reversed structural asymmetry of the PT in HR subjects may impair expressive language abilities leading to verbal fluency deficits. Volumetric deficits and altered asymmetry in inferior parietal and Heschl's gyrii may accompany genetic liability to schizophrenia.
Foley, Jennifer A; Foltynie, Tom; Zrinzo, Ludvic; Hyam, Jonathan A; Limousin, Patricia; Cipolotti, Lisa
Objective. Reduced verbal fluency is a strikingly uniform finding following deep brain stimulation (DBS) for Parkinson's disease (PD). The precise cognitive mechanism underlying this reduction remains unclear, but theories have suggested reduced motivation, linguistic skill, and/or executive function. It is of note, however, that previous reports have failed to consider the potential role of any changes in speed of processing. Thus, the aim of this study was to examine verbal fluency changes with a particular focus on the role of cognitive speed. Method. In this study, 28 patients with PD completed measures of verbal fluency, motivation, language, executive functioning, and speed of processing, before and after DBS. Results. As expected, there was a marked decline in verbal fluency but also in a timed test of executive functions and two measures of speed of processing. Verbal fluency decline was associated with markers of linguistic and executive functioning, but not after speed of processing was statistically controlled for. In contrast, greater decline in verbal fluency was associated with higher levels of apathy at baseline, which was not associated with changes in cognitive speed. Discussion. Reduced generativity and processing speed may account for the marked reduction in verbal fluency commonly observed following DBS.
Zalonis, Ioannis; Christidi, Foteini; Artemiadis, Artemios; Psarros, Constantinos; Papadopoulos, George; Tsivgoulis, George; Gatzonis, Stergios; Siatouni, Anna; Velonakis, Georgios; Karavasilis, Efstratios; Kararizou, Evangelia; Triantafyllou, Nikolaos
Clinicians commonly use verbal and nonverbal measures to test fluency in patients with epilepsy, either during routine cognitive assessment or as part of pre- and postsurgical evaluation. We hypothesized that patients with mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) with hippocampal sclerosis would perform worse than patients with lateral TLE in both verbal and design fluency. We assessed semantic, phonemic, and nonverbal fluency in 49 patients with TLE: 31 with lateral TLE and 18 with mesial TLE plus hippocampal sclerosis. We also gave non-fluency cognitive measures: psychomotor speed, attentional set shifting, selective attention, abstract reasoning, verbal and visual episodic memory, and incidental memory. Patients with mesial TLE performed significantly worse on figural fluency than patients with lateral TLE. Even though group differences on verbal fluency measures were not significant, the patients with mesial TLE had a pattern of poorer performance. The patients with mesial TLE scored significantly worse on measures of selective attention, verbal episodic memory, and incidental memory. Our study underlines differences in cognitive function between patients with mesial and lateral TLE, particularly in figural fluency. Although we cannot directly assess the role of the hippocampus in cognitive aspects of creative and divergent thinking related to figural fluency, the cognitive discrepancies between these two TLE groups could be ascribed to the mesial TLE hippocampal pathology shown in our study and addressed in the literature on hippocampal involvement in divergent thinking. Our findings could benefit cognitive rehabilitation programs tailored to the needs of patients with TLE.
The Finger Tapping Test of the Developmental Neuropsychological Test Battery was also used. Results: Tests of motor skill were less sensitive to HIV infection (F (1, 48) = 1.134, p= .292) than verbal fluency tests-Hopkins Verbal Learning (F (1, 48) = 42.994, p=.000, Hopkins Verbal Learning Test- delay (F (1, 48) = 45.886, ...
Li, Mingyang; Zhang, Yumei; Song, Luping; Huang, Ruiwang; Ding, Junhua; Fang, Yuxing; Xu, Yangwen; Han, Zaizhu
Tests of verbal fluency have been widely used to assess the cognitive functioning of persons, and are typically classified into two categories (semantic and phonological fluency). While widely-distributed divergent and convergent brain regions have been found to be involved in semantic and phonological fluency, the anatomical connectivity underlying the fluency is not well understood. The present study aims to construct a comprehensive white-matter network associated with semantic and phonological fluency by investigating the relationship between the integrity of 22 major tracts in the whole brain and semantic fluency (measured by 3 cues) and phonological fluency (measured by 2 cues) in a group of 51 stroke patients. We found five left-lateralized tracts including the anterior thalamic radiation (ATR), inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (IFOF), uncinate fasciculus (UF), superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF) and frontal aslant tract (FAT) were significantly correlated with the scores of both semantic and phonological fluencies. These effects persisted even when we ruled out the influence of potential confounding factors (e.g., total lesion volume). Moreover, the damage to the first three tracts caused additional impairments in the semantic compared to the phonological fluency. These findings reveal the white-matter neuroanatomical connectivity underlying semantic and phonological fluency, and deepen the understanding of the neural network of verbal fluency. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Jaimes-Bautista, A G; Rodríguez-Camacho, M; Martínez-Juárez, I E; Rodríguez-Agudelo, Y
Patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) perform poorly on semantic verbal fluency (SVF) tasks. Completing these tasks successfully involves multiple cognitive processes simultaneously. Therefore, quantitative analysis of SVF (number of correct words in one minute), conducted in most studies, has been found to be insufficient to identify cognitive dysfunction underlying SVF difficulties in TLE. To determine whether a sample of patients with TLE had SVF difficulties compared with a control group (CG), and to identify the cognitive components associated with SVF difficulties using quantitative and qualitative analysis. SVF was evaluated in 25 patients with TLE and 24 healthy controls; the semantic verbal fluency test included 5 semantic categories: animals, fruits, occupations, countries, and verbs. All 5 categories were analysed quantitatively (number of correct words per minute and interval of execution: 0-15, 16-30, 31-45, and 46-60seconds); the categories animals and fruits were also analysed qualitatively (clusters, cluster size, switches, perseverations, and intrusions). Patients generated fewer words for all categories and intervals and fewer clusters and switches for animals and fruits than the CG (P.05). Our results suggest an association between SVF difficulties in TLE and difficulty activating semantic networks, impaired strategic search, and poor cognitive flexibility. Attention, inhibition, and working memory are preserved in these patients. Copyright © 2017 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.
Blumenfeld, Henrike K; Bobb, Susan C; Marian, Viorica
Assessment tools are needed to accurately index performance in bilingual populations. This study examines the verbal fluency task to further establish the relative sensitivities of letter and category fluency in assessing bilingual language skills in Spanish-English bilinguals. English monolinguals and Spanish-English bilinguals had 1 minute to name words belonging to a category (e.g. animals) or starting with a letter (e.g. A). Number of words retrieved, proficiency, cognate and frequency effects were examined. In their dominant language (English), bilinguals and monolinguals showed similar fluency patterns, generating more words in category than letter tasks. This category advantage disappeared for bilinguals tested in their non-dominant language (Spanish). Further, bilinguals retrieved a higher percentage of cognates (e.g. lagoon-laguna) than monolinguals across tasks and languages. In particular, as proficiency increased in their non-dominant language, bilinguals were more likely to produce cognates (including cognates with lower word frequencies). While bilinguals and monolinguals performed largely the same, bilinguals showed fine-grained differences from monolinguals in both their dominant and non-dominant languages. Based on these results, it is recommended that clinicians evaluate findings from bilinguals' verbal fluency tasks with attention to language proficiency, cognate words produced and relative to normative data that match their clients' language histories.
Blumenfeld, Henrike K.; Bobb, Susan C.; Marian, Viorica
Purpose Assessment tools are needed to accurately index performance in bilingual populations. We examine the verbal fluency task to further establish the relative sensitivities of letter and category fluency in assessing bilingual language skills in Spanish-English bilinguals. Method English monolinguals and Spanish-English bilinguals had one minute to name words belonging to a category (e.g., animals) or starting with a letter (e.g., A). Number of words retrieved, proficiency, cognate and frequency effects were examined. Results In their dominant language (English), bilinguals and monolinguals showed similar fluency patterns, generating more words in category than letter tasks. This category advantage disappeared for bilinguals tested in their non-dominant language (Spanish). Further, bilinguals retrieved a higher percentage of cognates (e.g., lagoon-laguna) than monolinguals across tasks and languages. In particular, as proficiency increased in their non-dominant language, bilinguals were more likely to produce cognates (including cognates with lower word frequencies). Conclusion While bilinguals and monolinguals performed largely the same, bilinguals showed fine-grained differences from monolinguals in both their dominant and non-dominant languages. Based on these results, we recommend that clinicians evaluate findings from bilinguals’ verbal fluency tasks with attention to language proficiency, cognate words produced, and relative to normative data that match their clients’ language histories. PMID:27172853
St-Hilaire, Alexandre; Hudon, Carol; Vallet, Guillaume T; Bherer, Louis; Lussier, Maxime; Gagnon, Jean-François; Simard, Martine; Gosselin, Nadia; Escudier, Frédérique; Rouleau, Isabelle; Macoir, Joël
Verbal fluency tasks are principally used to assess lexical access and have shown usefulness for differential diagnosis. The purpose of Study 1 was to provide normative data in the adult French-Quebec population (Canada) for semantic verbal fluency (animals), for two sets of phonemic verbal fluency (TNP and PFL), and for letter P alone (60 seconds per category/letter). The objectives of Study 2 were to establish the diagnostic and predictive validity of the present tasks and normative data in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and major depressive episode (MDE). The normative sample consisted of 932 participants aged 19-91 years. Based on multiple linear regressions, equations to calculate Z-scores were provided. To assess validity, performance of 62 healthy participants was compared to 62 participants with AD and 41 with MDE aged over 50. Age and education, but not gender, predicted performance on each verbal fluency task. Healthy adults aged 50 and younger had a better performance on semantic than phonemic verbal fluency. In comparison to MDE, AD participants had lower performance on animals and TNP, but not on letter P. Ninety percent of people with a Z-score ≤ -1.50 on semantic verbal fluency had AD and the global accuracy was 76.6%. Test-retest reliability over one year was high for both animals (r = .711) and TNP (r = .790) in healthy older participants, but dropped for animals in people with AD (r = .493). These data will strengthen accurate detection of verbal fluency deficits in French-Quebec adults.
O'Shea, Deirdre M; De Wit, Liselotte; Szymkowicz, Sarah M; McLaren, Molly E; Talty, Francis; Dotson, Vonetta M
In the present study, we examined the association between self-reported fatigue and verbal fluency in a sample of healthy adults. Given the co-occurrence of anxiety and depressive symptoms with fatigue, we examined whether these affective dimensions would modify this association. Fifty-nine cognitively normal adults took part in the study. Fatigue symptoms were assessed using the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS), depressive symptomatology with the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), and situational anxiety using the state subscale of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI-S).We used a composite measure of verbal fluency comprising letter fluency and semantic fluency as the outcome measure. Multiple regression analyses revealed higher fatigue was associated with better verbal fluency when STAI-S scores were high. We did not find a significant interaction between the FSS and CES-D. Greater situational anxiety levels may buffer against the negative influence of fatigue on verbal fluency in non-clinical populations, consistent with previous research showing that moderate levels of anxiety can benefit cognitive function. Whether subthreshold depressive symptoms modify the association between fatigue and verbal fluency is still unclear. Measures that assess different symptom dimensions specific to depression would help to clarify this issue. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fagundo, Ana B; Cuyas, Elisabet; Verdejo Garcia, Antonio; Khymenets, Olha, 1974-; Langohr, Klaus; Martín-Santos, Rocío; Farré, Magí; de la Torre, Rafael
Deficits in verbal fluency associated with ecstasy use have been well established; however, the mechanisms underlying this impairment have yet to be elucidated. In this study we investigated for the first time whether there was a disproportionate impairment in two cognitive subcomponents of verbal fluency: clustering (ability to generate words within the same subcategory) and switching (ability to change the subcategory). We also investigated a possible association between ecstasy use and ver...
Sumiyoshi, Chika; Ertugrul, Aygun; Anil Yağcıoğlu, A Elif; Roy, Ajanta; Jayathilake, Karu; Milby, Alan; Meltzer, Herbert Y; Sumiyoshi, Tomiki
Two types of verbal fluency tasks (letter fluency task; LFT, category fluency task; CFT) have been widely used to assess cognitive function in people with psychiatric diseases including schizophrenia. The task demand of the LFT is considered to vary across languages, as the cognitive process largely relies on sound and writing systems. Specifically, a sound unit for a letter (s) and a manner of association between them are assumed to be related with the performance. In the current study, three analyses have been conducted to examine this issue, using Japanese, Turkish, and English-speaking patients with schizophrenia. It was hypothesized that severity of letter fluency impairment would be in the order of Japanese, Turkish, and English speaking patients according to the inflexibility of a word search. First, performance on the LFT and the CFT was compared among Japanese (N=40), Turkish (N=30), and the US (N=31) patients (Analysis 1). A significant difference was found between the US and other two groups only in the LFT. Second, verbal fluency performance was compared between Japanese and Turkish patients by contrasting the degree of disassociations from normal controls (Japanese: N=20, Turkish: N=30) (Analysis 2). In Japanese patients, performance on the LFT was more severely impaired compared to that on the CFT while the opposite trend was found in the Turkish counterpart, suggesting that letter fluency performance was more degraded in Japanese patients. Finally, Analysis 3 was conducted to examine the relative order of letter fluency impairment among Japanese, Turkish and English-speaking patients. Disassociation in English users with schizophrenia was estimated based on previous meta-analytic reviews. The effect size (ES) for the letter fluency deficit was the largest in the Japanese sample, while the other two groups share similar ESs. The results from the three analyses partially supported the hypothesis for the severity of the letter fluency impairment in
Velázquez-Cardoso, J; Marosi-Holczberger, E; Rodríguez-Agudelo, Y; Yañez-Tellez, G; Chávez-Oliveros, M
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a neurodegenerative disease characterised by inflammation and demyelination. It generates irreversible myelin changes, which in turn give rise to physical and cognitive disorders. The verbal fluency test (VF) has been shown to be a sensitive tool for detecting cognitive impairment in these patients. To compare quantitative and qualitative aspects of performance on semantic and phonological fluency tests between MS patients and healthy controls by analysing total words produced and strategies used (clusters and switching). We evaluated 46 patients with MS and 33 healthy controls using the VF test. The semantic VF task revealed no significant differences between groups; for the phonological task, patients demonstrated reduced word production (F =2.286 P<.001) and poorer use of grouping strategies, resulting in more frequent switching (F =3.808 P<.005). These results support using qualitative analysis for recall strategies, since the technique provides data about which components of the task are affected by brain damage. Clusters depend on the integrity of semantic memory, while switching has to do with developing effective search strategies, cognitive flexibility, and the ability to modify responses. Frontal lobe damage has been reported in MS, and this is consistent with results from the phonological VF test. Copyright © 2012 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Published by Elsevier Espana. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Abstract The Semantic Verbal Fluency (SVF test entails the generation of words from a given category within a pre-set time of 60 seconds. Objectives: To verify whether socio-demographic and clinical data of individuals with dementia correlate with the performance on the SVF test and to ascertain whether differences among the criteria of number of answers, clusters and data spread over the intervals, predict clinical results. Methods: This was a retrospective study of 49 charts of demented patients classified according to the Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR scale. We correlated education, age and gender, as well as CDR and Mini-Mental State Exam (MMSE scores with the number of answers, clustering and switching distributed over four 15-second intervals on the SVF test. Results: The correlation between number of answers and quartiles was weak (r=0.407, p=0.004; r=0.484, p<0.001 but correlation between the number of clusters and responses was strong (r=0.883, p<0.001. The number of items on the SVF was statistically significant with MMSE score (p=0.01 and there was a tendency for significance on the CDR (p=0.06. The results indicated little activity regarding what we propose to call cluster recalling in the two groups. Discussion: The SVF test, using number of items generated, was found to be more effective than classic screening tests in terms of speed and ease of application in patients with CDR 2 and 3.
Full Text Available The semantic verbal fluency task is broadly used in the neuropsychological assessment of elderly subjects. Even some studies have identified differences in verbal fluency clustering and switching measures between subjects with normal aging and a clinical condition such as Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI and Alzheimer’s disease, the results are not always consistent. This study aimed to compare clustering and switching measures of an animal’s semantic verbal fluency task among normal controls (n=25, amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (aMCI; n=25, amnestic multiple domain Mild Cognitive Impairment (a+mdMCI; n=25 and Alzheimer’s disease (AD; n=25 Brazilian subjects. The analyses were executed considering three (unifying the MCI subtypes and four groups. As the data were not normally distributed, we carried out non-parametric tests (Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whitney tests to evaluate the differences in performance in the measures of the verbal fluency test among the groups. The comparison demonstrated that the groups differed in the total of correct words produced, number of clusters and switching but the measure of new subcategories was the only with significant difference among the NC and all the clinical groups. The measure of new subcategories is the number of original subcategories inside the higher category of animals that the subject produced, such as farm, domestic, African animals. Our results indicate that semantic memory impairment is a visible and recent deficit that occurs even in non-demented subjects with very mild cognitive impairment and the implications of theses findings are discussed.
Full Text Available Aims: Verbal Fluency (VF tasks are often utilised to assist in the neuropsychological assessment of cognitive impairment and diagnosis of cognitive disorders. VF performance can also provide information about an individual’s vocabulary and speed of cognitive processes. In order to further develop our understanding of predictors of VF, this study explored how age, education and time spent reading and writing can affect performance. Furthermore, this study investigated the effects of a stereotype threat (STT or boost (STB. Method: VF tasks (pre and post stereotype manipulation were administrated to 30 adults with 15 receiving a STT and 15 receiving a STB. The stereotype threat/boost was activated by informing participants that they read and wrote less/more than their peers. Results: Medium to strong positive correlations (with some being significant were found between education level and both the number of words generated and with word commonality scores (i.e. how common the words were for these participants. Negative medium to weak correlations were found between age and both the number of words generated and with commonality scores. There was also a significant interaction showing that the words generated by a category prompt were less common following a STB and more common following a STT. Conclusions: These results support those of previous literature in regards to the respective impacts of education and age on VF. Furthermore, the impacts found of age and education on the commonality of words generated provides information on the nature of their influences. Lastly, the present study sheds light on the potential effects of STT and STB on verbal fluency.
Olabarrieta-Landa, L; Rivera, D; Galarza-Del-Angel, J; Garza, M T; Saracho, C P; Rodríguez, W; Chávez-Oliveros, M; Rábago, B; Leibach, G; Schebela, S; Martínez, C; Luna, M; Longoni, M; Ocampo-Barba, N; Rodríguez, G; Aliaga, A; Esenarro, L; García de la Cadena, C; Perrin, B P; Arango-Lasprilla, J C
To generate normative data for the Verbal Fluency Tests across 11 countries in Latin America, with country-specific adjustments for gender, age, and education, where appropriate. The sample consisted of 3,977 healthy adults who were recruited from Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, and, Puerto Rico. Each subject was administered the Verbal Fluency Test as part of a larger neuropsychological battery. A standardized five-step statistical procedure was used to generate the norms. The final multiple linear regression models for the letter F explained 8-30% of the variance, 7-32% for letter A, 8-32% for the letter S, and 16-43% for the animal category in Verbal Fluency Test scores. Although t-tests showed significant differences between men and women on the Verbal Fluency Test, they did not have an effect size larger than 0.3. As a result, gender-adjusted norms were not generated. This is the first normative multicenter study conducted in Latin America aiming to create norms for the Verbal Fluency Test; this study will have important outcomes for the future of neuropsychology in the region.
Houvenaghel, Jean-François; Le Jeune, Florence; Dondaine, Thibaut; Esquevin, Aurore; Robert, Gabriel Hadrien; Péron, Julie; Haegelen, Claire; Drapier, Sophie; Jannin, Pierre; Lozachmeur, Clément; Argaud, Soizic; Duprez, Joan; Drapier, Dominique; Vérin, Marc; Sauleau, Paul
Objective The decrease in verbal fluency in patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) undergoing subthalamic nucleus deep brain stimulation (STN-DBS) is usually assumed to reflect a frontal lobe-related cognitive dysfunction, although evidence for this is lacking. Methods To explore its underlying mechanisms, we combined neuropsychological, psychiatric and motor assessments with an examination of brain metabolism using F-18 fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography, in 26 patients with PD, 3 months before and after surgery. We divided these patients into two groups, depending on whether or not they exhibited a postoperative deterioration in either phonemic (10 patients) or semantic (8 patients) fluency. We then compared the STN-DBS groups with and without verbal deterioration on changes in clinical measures and brain metabolism. Results We did not find any neuropsychological change supporting the presence of an executive dysfunction in patients with a deficit in either phonemic or semantic fluency. Similarly, a comparison of patients with or without impaired fluency on brain metabolism failed to highlight any frontal areas involved in cognitive functions. However, greater changes in cognitive slowdown and apathy were observed in patients with a postoperative decrease in verbal fluency. Conclusions These results suggest that frontal lobe-related cognitive dysfunction could play only a minor role in the postoperative impairment of phonemic or semantic fluency, and that cognitive slowdown and apathy could have a more decisive influence. Furthermore, the phonemic and semantic impairments appeared to result from the disturbance of distinct mechanisms. PMID:26448131
Soleman, R.S.; Schagen, S.E.E.; Veltman, D.J.; Kreukels, B.P.C.; Cohen-Kettenis, P.T.; Lambalk, C.B.; Wouters, F.M.; Delemarre-van de Waal, H.A.
Introduction: In the literature, verbal fluency (VF) is generally described as a female-favoring task. Although it is conceivable that this sex difference only evolves during adolescence or adulthood under influence of sex steroids, this has never been investigated in young adolescents. Aim: First,
Soleman, Remi S.; Schagen, Sebastian E. E.; Veltman, Dick J.; Kreukels, Baudewijntje P. C.; Cohen-Kettenis, Peggy T.; Lambalk, Cornelis B.; Wouters, Femke; Delemarre-van de Waal, Henriette A.
In the literature, verbal fluency (VF) is generally described as a female-favoring task. Although it is conceivable that this sex difference only evolves during adolescence or adulthood under influence of sex steroids, this has never been investigated in young adolescents. First, to assess sex
Kljajevic, Vanja; Dyrba, Martin; Kasper, Elisabeth; Teipel, Stefan
The association between verbal fluency deficit in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and deterioration of specific white matter (WM) tracts is currently not well understood. Using diffusion tensor imaging, we investigated a possible association between the left uncinate fasciculus, which has been implicated in word retrieval, and verbal fluency deficit in AD. A comparison of five properties of WM (fractional anisotropy, mode of anisotropy, mean diffusivity, radial diffusivity, and axial diffusivity) in 28 mild AD patients and 26 age-, gender- and education-matched healthy controls revealed significant group differences in a range of WM tracts. Looking specifically at diffusion parameters' values for the left uncinate fasciculus and verbal fluency scores in the AD group, we observed a positive trend between the letter fluency scores and mode of anisotropy values (r = 0.36, p = 0.55). Thus, our data suggest more global WM damage in mild AD, which also includes damage to the left uncinate fasciculus. However, damage to this particular tract is not robustly associated with verbal fluency decline at this stage of disease.
Sukumar, Sreenivas R [ORNL; Ainsworth, Keela C [ORNL; Brown, Tyler C [ORNL
In this paper, we present preliminary results of semantic pattern analysis of verbal fluency tests used for assessing cognitive psychological and neuropsychological disorders. We posit that recent advances in semantic reasoning and artificial intelligence can be combined to create a standardized computer-aided diagnosis tool to automatically evaluate and interpret verbal fluency tests. Towards that goal, we derive novel semantic similarity (phonetic, phonemic and conceptual) metrics and present the predictive capability of these metrics on a de-identified dataset of participants with and without neurological disorders.
Elst, W. van der; Hurks, P.; Wassenberg, R.; Meijs, C.; Jolles, J.
The Animal Verbal Fluency (AVF) and Design Fluency (DF) structured and unstructured test versions were administered to N = 294 healthy native Dutch-speaking children who were aged between 6.56 and 15.85 years. The AVF and DF structured test scores increased linearly as a function of age, whilst the
Faroqi-Shah, Yasmeen; Milman, Lisa
The ability to generate words that follow certain constraints, or verbal fluency, is a sensitive indicator of neurocognitive impairment, and is impacted by a variety of variables. To investigate the effect of post-stroke aphasia, elicitation category and linguistic variables on verbal fluency performance. Twenty-eight persons with aphasia (PWA) with a single left-hemisphere lesion and 40 age-matched neurotypical community-dwelling adults were administered three verbal fluency tasks: two semantic (animals and actions) and one phonemic (the letters F, A and S). Data analysis included comparison of total scores, clusters and perseverations. Individual responses were coded for frequency of occurrence, age of acquisition and syllable length to investigate qualitative differences in word generation. PWA performed worse than neurotypical participants across all verbal fluency tasks, and animal fluency scores were farthest from neurotypical performance. PWAs' animal and action fluency were correlated with other language measures, while phonemic fluency was uncorrelated with language measures. While some PWAs showed dissociations between verbal fluency tasks, the dissociations did not pattern along with aphasia fluency. PWAs produced fewer clusters and responses with higher word frequency across all three verbal fluency tasks. Responses had earlier age of acquisition and shorter word length for animal and phonemic fluency, but not action fluency. Verbal fluency, particularly animal fluency, is sensitive to even mild aphasia. PWA produced lexically simpler responses than their neurotypical peers. This study identifies the relevance of qualitative analysis of verbal fluency responses. © 2017 Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists.
ABSTRACT. Objectives: To investigate the performance of HIV infected older adults resident in a rural area in Eastern. Zambia with low education level on the motor skills and verbal fluency. Materials and Methods: A quantitative and cross sectional study consisting of 28 HIV positive and 22 HIV negative rural resident ...
Luo, Lin; Luk, Gigi; Bialystok, Ellen
We use a time-course analysis to examine the roles of vocabulary size and executive control in bilinguals' verbal fluency performance. Two groups of bilinguals and a group of monolingual adults were tested in English with verbal fluency subtests from the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System. The two bilingual groups were equivalent in their self-rated English proficiency but differed in levels of receptive and expressive vocabulary. We hypothesized that the difference between the two bilingual groups in vocabulary and between the monolingual and bilingual groups in executive control would lead to differences in performance on the category and letter fluency tests and dissociate the roles of vocabulary knowledge and executive control in verbal production. Bilinguals and monolinguals performed equivalently in category fluency, but the high-vocabulary bilingual group outperformed both monolinguals and low-vocabulary bilinguals in letter fluency. An analysis of the retrieval time-course functions in letter fluency showed dissociable effects of resources available at the initiation of the trial, considered to reflect vocabulary size, and ability to monitor and retrieve new items using a novel phonemic-based word searching strategy, considered to reflect executive control. The difference in slope of the best-fitting curves reflected enhanced executive control for both bilingual groups compared to monolinguals, whereas the difference in the starting point of the logarithmic functions reflected higher levels of vocabulary for high-vocabulary bilinguals and monolinguals compared to low-vocabulary bilinguals. The results are discussed in terms of the contributions of linguistic resources and executive control to verbal performance.
Radanovic, Marcia; Diniz, Breno Satler; Mirandez, Roberta M; Novaretti, Tânia Maria da Silva; Flacks, Mariana Kneese; Yassuda, Mônica S; Forlenza, Orestes Vicente
Verbal fluency (VF) tasks are simple and efficient clinical tools to detect executive dysfunction and lexico-semantic impairment. VF tasks are widely used in patients with suspected dementia, but their accuracy for detection of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is still under investigation. Schooling in particular may influence the subject's performance. The aim of this study was to compare the accuracy of two semantic categories (animals and fruits) in discriminating controls, MCI patients and Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. 178 subjects, comprising 70 controls (CG), 70 MCI patients and 38 AD patients, were tested on two semantic VF tasks. The sample was divided into two schooling groups: those with 4-8 years of education, and those with 9 or more years. Both VF tasks - animal fluency (VFa) and fruits fluency (VFf) - adequately discriminated CG from AD in the total sample (AUC = 0.88 +/- 0.03, p education groups, and high educated MCI from AD (VFa: AUC = 0.82 +/- 0.05, p discriminating CG from MCI (VFa: AUC = 0.68 +/- 0.04, p level, and MCI from AD in the total sample (VFa: AUC = 0.74 +/- 0.05, p educated MCI from AD. In the total sample, fruits fluency best discriminated CG from MCI and MCI from AD; a combination of the two improved the discrimination between CG and AD. Both categories were similar in discriminating CG from AD; the combination of both categories improved the accuracy for this distinction. Both tasks were less accurate in discriminating CG from MCI, and MCI from AD.
Liu, Xiaomin; Sun, Gaoxiang; Zhang, Xiaoqian; Xu, Bo; Shen, Chenyu; Shi, Lujie; Ma, Xiangyun; Ren, Xiajin; Feng, Kun; Liu, Pozi
Multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) is a noninvasive and low-cost functional neuroimaging technique in psychiatric research, and it has been wildly used for detecting the spatiotemporal characteristics of brain activity. In order to evaluate the clinical value of NIRS data in the assistant diagnosis of major depressive disorder (MDD), prefrontal cortex (PFC) hemoglobin concentration exchange of 30 MDD patients combined with anxious and obsessive-compulsive symptom was detected by NIRS under voice fluency task (VFT), then the relationship between the severity of depressive, anxious and obsessive-compulsive symptom assessed by Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD), Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAMA) and Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (Y-BOCS) with NIRS data in PFC was analyzed. Hypoactivation in lateral and lower PFC of MDD patients was confirmed in this study. Furthermore, Spearman correlation found that oxy-hemoglobin concentration ([oxy-Hb]) exchange in right-lateral PFC was associated with the severity of anxiety, while bilateral PFC and antero-medial PFC were associated with severity of depression. Meanwhile, no statistical correlation was observed on the severity of obsessive-compulsive symptom. The results prompted that MDD patients with anxiety and obsession-compulsion symptom showed a PFC hypoactivation state in NIRS. Furthermore, the function of right-lateral PFC was associated with anxiety symptom, while bilateral PFC and antero-medial PFC were associated with depression symptom. Different from depression and anxiety, obsession-compulsion may have a different biological character in PFC function. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Vannorsdall, Tracy D; van Steenburgh, J Jason; Schretlen, David J; Jayatillake, Rasika; Skolasky, Richard L; Gordon, Barry
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) has been shown to enhance verbal productivity, but the finding and extent of enhancement vary across studies. Few attempts to replicate positive tDCS findings have been reported, suggesting the possibility of publication bias. We aimed to replicate the tDCS methodology and findings of Cattaneo, Pisoni, and Papagno (2011, Neuroscience 183:64-70) in a new population sample. We hypothesized that our study of anodal tDCS would improve verbal fluency production similarly to the original study. In our single-blind, sham-controlled crossover experiment, 14 healthy young adults were randomly assigned to receive 2 mA of anodal and sham stimulation to the Broca area in counterbalanced order before completing verbal fluency tasks. Participants tolerated the stimulation well. Despite closely mirroring the original study methods, we saw no main effect of stimulation condition: F1,13=0.002, P=0.97, letter fluency sham mean (standard deviation)=16.8 (2.3), letter fluency anodal=17.5 (3.8), category fluency sham=25.3 (5.4), or category fluency anodal=24.7 (5.2), η≤0.01. While tDCS may enhance cerebral functions in general, the lack of consistency between studies suggests either that this tDCS protocol does not affect verbal fluency or, at minimum, that tDCS may be more sensitive to experimental conditions than has been thought. Our findings also highlight the need for replication studies in brain stimulation research. ClinicalTrials.gov (Identifier NCT01602263).
Wyman-Chick, Kathryn A
Patients with Parkinson's disease often experience significant decline in verbal fluency over time; however, deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus (STN-DBS) is also associated with post-surgical declines in verbal fluency. The purpose of this study was to determine if Parkinson's patients who have undergone bilateral STN-DBS have greater impairment in verbal fluency compared to Parkinson's patients treated by medication only. A literature search yielded over 140 articles and 10 articles met inclusion criteria. A total of 439 patients with Parkinson's disease who underwent bilateral STN-DBS and 392 non-surgical patients were included. Cohen's d, a measure of effect size, was calculated using a random effects model to compare post-treatment verbal fluency in patients with Parkinson's disease who underwent STN-DBS versus those in the non-surgical comparison group. The random effects model demonstrated a medium effect size for letter fluency (d=-0.47) and a small effect size for category fluency (d=-0.31), indicating individuals with bilateral STN-DBS had significantly worse verbal fluency performance than the non-surgical comparison group. Individuals with Parkinson's disease who have undergone bilateral STN-DBS experience greater deficits in letter and category verbal fluency compared to a non-surgical group.
Hoyo, Laura Del; Xicota, Laura; Sánchez-Benavides, Gonzalo; Cuenca-Royo, Aida; de Sola, Susana; Langohr, Klaus; Fagundo, Ana B; Farré, Magí; Dierssen, Mara; de la Torre, Rafael
Down syndrome (DS) is an intellectual disability (ID) disorder in which language and specifically, verbal fluency are strongly impaired domains; nearly all adults show neuropathology of Alzheimer's disease (AD), including amyloid deposition by their fifth decade of life. In the general population, verbal fluency deficits are considered a strong AD predictor being the semantic verbal fluency task (SVFT) a useful tool for enhancing early diagnostic. However, there is a lack of information about the association between the semantic verbal fluency pattern (SVFP) and the biological amyloidosis markers in DS. In the current study, we used the SVFT in young adults with DS to characterize their SVFP, assessing total generated words, clustering, and switching. We then explored its association with early indicators of dementia, adaptive behavior and amyloidosis biomarkers, using the Dementia Questionnaire for Persons with Intellectual Disability (DMR), the Adaptive Behavior Assessment System-Second Edition (ABAS-II), and plasma levels of Aβ peptides (Aβ40 and Aβ42), as a potent biomarker of AD. In DS, worse performance in SVFT and poorer communication skills were associated with higher plasma Aβ42 concentrations, a higher DMR score and impaired communication skills (ABAS-II). The total word production and switching ability in SVFT were good indicators of plasma Aβ42 concentration. In conclusion, we propose the SVFT as a good screening test for early detection of dementia and amyloidosis in young adults with DS.
Laura eDel Hoyo
Full Text Available Down syndrome is an intellectual disability disorder in which language and, specifically, verbal fluency are strongly impaired domains; nearly all adults show neuropathology of Alzheimer’s disease, including amyloid deposition by their fifth decade of life. In the general population, verbal fluency deficits are considered a strong Alzheimer’s disease predictor being the Semantic Verbal Fluency Task (SVFT a useful tool for enhancing early diagnostic. However, there is a lack of information about the association between the semantic verbal fluency pattern (SVFP and the biological amyloidosis markers in Down syndrome. In the current study, we used the SVFT in young adults with Down syndrome to characterize their SVFP, assessing total generated words, clustering, and switching. We then explored its association with early indicators of dementia, adaptive behavior and amyloidosis biomarkers, using the Dementia Questionnaire for Persons with Intellectual Disability (DMR, the Adaptive Behavior Assessment System-Second Edition (ABAS-II, and plasma levels of Aβ peptides (Aβ40 and Aβ42, as a potent biomarker of Alzheimer's disease. In Down syndrome, worse performance in SVFT and poorer communication skills were associated with higher plasma Aβ42 concentrations, a higher DMR score and impaired communication skills (ABAS–II. The total word production and switching ability in SVFT were good indicators of plasma Aβ42 concentration. In conclusion, we propose the SVFT as a good screening test for early detection of dementia and amyloidosis in young adults with Down syndrome.
Hoyo, Laura Del; Xicota, Laura; Sánchez-Benavides, Gonzalo; Cuenca-Royo, Aida; de Sola, Susana; Langohr, Klaus; Fagundo, Ana B.; Farré, Magí; Dierssen, Mara; de la Torre, Rafael
Down syndrome (DS) is an intellectual disability (ID) disorder in which language and specifically, verbal fluency are strongly impaired domains; nearly all adults show neuropathology of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), including amyloid deposition by their fifth decade of life. In the general population, verbal fluency deficits are considered a strong AD predictor being the semantic verbal fluency task (SVFT) a useful tool for enhancing early diagnostic. However, there is a lack of information about the association between the semantic verbal fluency pattern (SVFP) and the biological amyloidosis markers in DS. In the current study, we used the SVFT in young adults with DS to characterize their SVFP, assessing total generated words, clustering, and switching. We then explored its association with early indicators of dementia, adaptive behavior and amyloidosis biomarkers, using the Dementia Questionnaire for Persons with Intellectual Disability (DMR), the Adaptive Behavior Assessment System-Second Edition (ABAS-II), and plasma levels of Aβ peptides (Aβ40 and Aβ42), as a potent biomarker of AD. In DS, worse performance in SVFT and poorer communication skills were associated with higher plasma Aβ42 concentrations, a higher DMR score and impaired communication skills (ABAS–II). The total word production and switching ability in SVFT were good indicators of plasma Aβ42 concentration. In conclusion, we propose the SVFT as a good screening test for early detection of dementia and amyloidosis in young adults with DS. PMID:26635555
Mueller, Kimberly Diggle; Koscik, Rebecca L.; LaRue, Asenath; Clark, Lindsay R.; Hermann, Bruce; Johnson, Sterling C.; Sager, Mark A.
This study examined the relationship between phonemic and semantic (category) verbal fluency and cognitive status in the Wisconsin Registry for Alzheimer’s Prevention (WRAP), a longitudinal cohort enriched for family history of Alzheimer’s disease. Participants were 283 WRAP subjects (age 53.1[6.5] years at baseline); who had completed three waves of assessment, over ∼6 years and met psychometric criteria either for “cognitively healthy” (CH) or for psychometric amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) using an approach that did not consider fluency scores. CH and aMCI groups differed significantly on phonemic total scores, category total scores, phonemic switching, and category mean cluster size. These results suggest that measures of both phonemic and semantic fluency yield lower scores in persons with evidence of psychometric aMCI compared with those who are CH. Differences have not previously been reported in a group this young, and provide evidence for the importance of including multiple verbal fluency tests targeting preclinical Alzheimer’s disease. PMID:26025231
Murphy, Mike; Spillane, Katie; Cully, James; Navarro-Pardo, Esperanza; Moret-Tatay, Carmen
Verbal fluency is commonly used as a proxy measure of executive functioning, as it involves cognitive flexibility, working memory, and inhibitory control. Previous research has demonstrated that crosswords can be a useful means of improving verbal fluency, results consistent with the cognitive reserve hypothesis; the form of verbal fluency affected has, however, differed across studies. The present study sought to assess the extent to which it was possible to target phonemic (PVF) and semantic verbal fluency (SVF) separately through word puzzles designed to focus on semantic/thematic and structural clues respectively. Fifty-three university students were randomly assigned to one of three groups: semantic/thematic, structural, or a daily diary control group. They were assessed on PVF and SVF at baseline, and immediately following a four-week intervention. Age, sex, and depression scores were controlled for. A 2 × 3 mixed ANCOVA showed that the structural group improved significantly more in PVF during the intervention period than did the semantic/thematic or control groups, with the improvement linked to improved switching performance. The effect size was large. No significant difference in improvement in SVF emerged, although the effect size was moderate. The findings support the notion that it is possible to improve specific forms of verbal fluency through tailored brief word-puzzle interventions.
Nielsen, T. Rune; Waldemar, Gunhild
OBJECTIVE: A significant impact of limited schooling and illiteracy has been found on numerous neuropsychological tests, which may partly be due to the ecological relevance of the tests in the context of illiteracy. The aims of this study were to compare the performance of illiterate and literate...... and ecological relevance of the semantic criterion and extend previous findings to immigrants with different cultural experiences related to the acculturation process....... immigrants on two semantic criteria for the verbal fluency test, and examine the influence of acculturation on test performances. METHOD: Performances of 20 cognitively unimpaired illiterate and 21 literate Turkish immigrants aged ≥50 years were compared on an animal and supermarket criterion...
Van Lancker Sidtis, Diana; Rogers, Tiffany; Godier, Violette; Tagliati, Michele; Sidtis, John J.
Purpose: Speaking, which naturally occurs in different modes or "tasks" such as conversation and repetition, relies on intact basal ganglia nuclei. Recent studies suggest that voice and fluency parameters are differentially affected by speech task. In this study, the authors examine the effects of subcortical functionality on voice and fluency,…
Smirnova, D; Walters, J; Fine, J; Muchnik-Rozanov, Y; Paz, M; Lerner, V; Belmaker, R H; Bersudsky, Y
Due to the large migrations over the past three decades, large numbers of individuals with schizophrenia are learning a second language and being seen in clinics in that second language. We conducted within-subject comparisons to clarify the contribution of clinical, linguistic and bilingual features in the first and second languages of bilinguals with schizophrenia. Ten bilingual Russian(L1) and Hebrew(L2) proficient patients, who developed clinical schizophrenia after achieving proficiency in both languages, were selected from 60 candidates referred for the study; they were resident in Israel 7-32 years with 3-10 years from immigration to diagnosis. Clinical, linguistic and fluency markers were coded in transcripts of clinical interviews. There was a trend toward more verbal productivity in the first language (L1) than the second language (L2). Clinical speech markers associated with thought disorder and cognitive impairment (blocking and topic shift) were similar in both languages. Among linguistic markers of schizophrenia, Incomplete syntax and Speech role reference were significantly more frequent in L2 than L1; Lexical repetition and Unclear reference demonstrated a trend in the same direction. For fluency phenomena, Discourse markers were more prevalent in L1 than L2, and Codeswitching was similar across languages, showing that the patients were attuned to the socio-pragmatics of language use. More frequent linguistic markers of schizophrenia in L2 show more impairment in the syntactic/semantic components of language, reflecting greater thought and cognitive dysfunction. Patients are well able to acquire a second language. Nevertheless, schizophrenia finds expression in that language. Finally, more frequent fluency markers in L1 suggests motivation to maintain fluency, evidenced in particular by codeswitched L2 lexical items, a compensatory resource. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available The objective of this case study was to assess the specific effect of cognitive remediation for schizophrenia on the pattern of cognitive impairments. Case A is a 33-year-old man with a schizophrenia diagnosis and impairments in visual memory, inhibition, problem solving, and verbal fluency. He was provided with a therapist delivered cognitive remediation program involving practice and strategy which was designed to train attention, memory, executive functioning, visual-perceptual processing, and metacognitive skills. Neuropsychological and clinical assessments were administered at baseline and after three months of treatment. At posttest assessment, Case A had improved significantly on targeted (visual memory and problem solving and nontargeted (verbal fluency cognitive processes. The results of the current case study suggest that (1 it is possible to improve specific cognitive processes with targeted exercises, as seen by the improvement in visual memory due to training exercises targeting this cognitive domain; (2 cognitive remediation can produce improvements in cognitive processes not targeted during remediation since verbal fluency was improved while there was no training exercise on this specific cognitive process; and (3 including learning strategies in cognitive remediation increases the value of the approach and enhances participant improvement, possibly because strategies using verbalization can lead to improvement in verbal fluency even if it was not practiced.
Audenaert, K. [Department of Nuclear Medicine, Ghent University Hospital (Belgium); Department of Psychiatry and Medical Psychology, Ghent University Hospital and Ghent University (Belgium); Brans, B.; Laere, K. van; Versijpt, J.; Dierckx, R. [Department of Nuclear Medicine, Ghent University Hospital (Belgium); Lahorte, P. [Department of Nuclear Medicine, Ghent University Hospital (Belgium); Laboratory of Subatomic and Radiation Physics, Ghent University (Belgium); Heeringen, K. van [Department of Psychiatry and Medical Psychology, Ghent University Hospital and Ghent University (Belgium)
This study aimed to investigate the feasibility of brain single-photon emission tomography (SPET) in the letter and category fluency paradigm of the Controlled Oral Word Association (COWA) test in healthy volunteers. Two groups each comprising ten right-handed healthy volunteers were injected twice with 370 MBq technetium-99m ethyl cysteinate dimer following a split-dose paradigm (resting and activation condition). Statistical parametric mapping (SPM96) was used to determine voxelwise significant changes. The letter fluency and the category fluency activation paradigm had a differential brain activation pattern. The posterior part of the left inferior prefrontal cortex (LIPC) was activated in both paradigms, with the category fluency task having an extra activation in the anterior LIPC. In the category fluency task, but not the letter fluency task, an activation in the right inferior prefrontal cortex was found. These findings confirm to a large extent the results of previous functional magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography studies in semantic and phonological activation paradigms. The choice and validity of various methodological characteristics of the experimental design leading to these results are critically discussed. It is concluded that brain SPET activation with the letter fluency and category fluency paradigm under standard neuropsychological conditions in healthy volunteers is both technically and practically feasible. (orig.)
Puranik, Cynthia S.; Patchan, Melissa M.; Sears, Mary M.; McMaster, Kristen L.
Curriculum-based measures (CBMs) are necessary for educators to quickly assess student skill levels and monitor progress. This study examined the use of the alphabet writing fluency task, a CBM of writing, to assess handwriting fluency--that is, how well children access, retrieve, and write letter forms automatically. In the current study, the…
Pae, Hye K.; Sevcik, Rose A.
This study examined the respective contribution of verbal working memory, which was operationalized as immediate digit and sentence recall, to bilingual children's reading fluency and comprehension in the first language (L1) and second language (L2). Fifty children from two international sites took part in this study: One group was English-Korean…
Full Text Available Aging processes and several vascular burden factors have been shown to increase the risk of dementia including Alzheimer's disease. While pathological alterations in dementia precede diagnosis by many years, reorganization of brain processing might temporarily delay cognitive decline. We hypothesized that in healthy elderly individuals both age-related neural and vascular factors known to be related to the development of dementia impact functional cortical hemodynamics during increased cognitive demands.Vascular burden factors and cortical functional hemodynamics during verbal fluency were assessed in 1052 non-demented elderly individuals (51 to 83 years; cross-sectional data of the longitudinal TREND study using functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS. The prediction of functional hemodynamic responses by age in multiple regressions and the impact of single and cumulative vascular burden factors including hypertension, diabetes, obesity, smoking and atherosclerosis were investigated.Replicating and extending previous findings we could show that increasing age predicted functional hemodynamics to be increased in right prefrontal and bilateral parietal cortex, and decreased in bilateral inferior frontal junction during phonological fluency. Cumulative vascular burden factors, with hypertension in particular, decreased left inferior frontal junction hemodynamic responses during phonological fluency. However, age and vascular burden factors showed no statistical interaction on functional hemodynamics.Based on these findings, one might hypothesize that increased fronto-parietal processing may represent age-related compensatory reorganization during increased cognitive demands. Vascular burden factors, such as hypertension, may contribute to regional cerebral hypoperfusion. These neural and vascular hemodynamic determinants should be investigated longitudinally and combined with other markers to advance the prediction of future cognitive decline
Quaranta, Davide; Caprara, Alessia; Piccininni, Chiara; Vita, Maria G; Gainotti, Guido; Marra, Camillo
Semantic verbal fluency (SVF) tests are widely used in clinical neuropsychology. We propose the standardization and clinical validation of a new SVF test based on the production of names of birds and articles of furniture (Birds and Articles of Furniture test-BAF). A sample of 268 subjects aged 40 years or more underwent the test. The clinical validation was conducted on subjects affected by amnesic Mild Cognitive Impairment (aMCI; N = 106), mild (N = 178), and moderate (N = 114) Alzheimer's disease (AD). The BAF total score was influenced by both age and education, whereas the single scores obtained on BAF were also influenced by gender. The percentage of subjects with pathological score on BAF increased from aMCI (19%) to mild (45.5%) and moderate (71.1%) AD, and receiver operating characteristic curves analysis showed that the BAF may be highly reliable in distinguishing aMCI and AD patients from healthy subjects. We also provide typicality norms for birds and articles of furniture that could be useful in the assessment of qualitative features of words produced in semantic fluency tests. The BAF test could be a valid and reliable tool in both clinical practice and research on subjects affected by cognitive impairment. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.
Brébion, Gildas; Stephan-Otto, Christian; Ochoa, Susana; Nieto, Lourdes; Contel, Montserrat; Usall, Judith
Decreased processing speed in schizophrenia patients has been identified as a major impairment factor in various neuropsychological domains. Working memory span has been found to be involved in several deep or effortful cognitive processes. We investigated the impact that these 2 cognitive functions may have on phonological and semantic fluency in schizophrenia patients and healthy participants. Fifty-five patients with schizophrenia and 60 healthy participants were administered a neuropsychological battery including phonological and semantic fluency, working memory, and cognitive and motor speed. Regression analyses revealed that motor speed was related to phonological fluency in female patients, whereas cognitive speed was related to semantic fluency in male patients. In addition, working memory span was related to verbal fluency in women from both the patient and the healthy control groups. Decreased processing speed, but not decreased working memory span, accounted for the verbal fluency deficit in patients. Verbal fluency was inversely related to attention deficit in female patients and to negative symptoms in male patients. Decreased processing speed may be the main factor in verbal fluency impairment of patients. Further, the cognitive and clinical predictors of verbal fluency efficiency are different in men and women. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).
Full Text Available Abstract Background Recent clinical studies point to rapid and sustained clinical, cognitive, and behavioral improvement in both Alzheimer's disease and primary progressive aphasia following weekly perispinal administration of etanercept, a TNF-alpha inhibitor that acts by blocking the binding of this cytokine to its receptors. This outcome is concordant with recent basic science studies suggesting that TNF-alpha functions in vivo as a gliotransmitter that regulates synaptic function in the brain. We hypothesized that perispinal etanercept had the potential to improve verbal function in Alzheimer's disease, so we included several standarized measures of verbal ability to evaluate language skills in a clinical trial of perispinal etanercept for Alzheimer's disease. Methods This was a prospective, single-center, open-label, pilot study, in which 12 patients with mild-to-severe Alzheimer's disease were administered etanercept, 25–50 mg, weekly by perispinal administration for six months. Two additional case studies are presented. Results Two-tailed, paired t-tests were conducted comparing baseline performance to 6-month performance on all neuropsychological measures. Test batteries included the California Verbal Learning Test-Second Edition, Adult Version; Logical Memory I and II(WMS-LM-II from the Wechsler Memory Scale-Abbreviated; the Comprehensive Trail Making Test (TMT; Boston Naming Test; and letter(FAS and category verbal fluency. All measures revealed a significant effect except for the Boston Naming Test and the TMT-4, with WMS-LM-II being marginally significant at p = .05. The FAS test for letter fluency was most highly significant with a p Conclusion In combination with the previously reported results of perispinal etanercept in Alzheimer's disease and primary progressive aphasia, these results further argue that larger scale studies of this therapeutic intervention, including Phase 3 trials, are warranted in dementias. In addition
Golestanirad, Laleh; Das, Sunit; Schweizer, Tom A; Graham, Simon J
Neuropsychological tests of verbal fluency are very widely used to characterize impaired cognitive function. For clinical neuroscience studies and potential medical applications, measuring the brain activity that underlies such tests with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) is of significant interest-but a challenging proposition because overt speech can cause signal artifacts, which tend to worsen as the duration of speech tasks becomes longer. In a novel approach, we present the group brain activity of 12 subjects who performed a self-paced written version of phonemic fluency using fMRI-compatible tablet technology that recorded responses and provided task-related feedback on a projection screen display, over long-duration task blocks (60 s). As predicted, we observed robust activation in the left anterior inferior and medial frontal gyri, consistent with previously reported results of verbal fluency tasks which established the role of these areas in strategic word retrieval. In addition, the number of words produced in the late phase (last 30 s) of written phonemic fluency was significantly less (p fluency.
Vita, Maria Gabriella; Marra, Camillo; Spinelli, Pietro; Caprara, Alessia; Scaricamazza, Eugenia; Castelli, Diana; Canulli, Serena; Gainotti, Guido; Quaranta, Davide
Semantic and, to a lesser extent, phonological verbal fluency tasks are impaired in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and in amnesic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI). Furthermore, both fluency tasks have been considered as possible markers of conversion from aMCI to AD. Up to recent years, the use of fluency tasks has been limited to word count, but, more recently, linguistic variables, such as word frequency, age of acquisition, familiarity, and typicality, have also been considered. In particular, attention has been focused on typicality of words produced on semantic verbal fluency tasks, because the tendency to produce only the more typical members of various categories points to an impoverishment of semantic memory. The aim of our study was to compare in aMCI, AD, and control subjects a lexical (word frequency) and a lexical-semantic variable (item typicality) in a semantic verbal fluency task, and to evaluate the possible value of these variables in predicting conversion from aMCI to AD during a 2 years follow-up period. We found no difference in mean typicality of words produced by aMCI and AD subjects whereas both groups produced words of higher mean typicality than control subjects. Furthermore, to assess the relationship between typicality values and risk of conversion to AD, the aMCI group was split in two subgroups, including subjects who obtained a mean typicality value lower or higher than the median value of the whole aMCI group. Consistent with our hypothesis, conversion to AD was significantly more frequent in high typicality than in low typicality subjects.
Rezazadeh, Mohsen; Tavakoli, Mansoor; Rasekh, Abbas Eslami
The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of two task types on foreign language written production. Particularly it addressed the issue of how three aspects of language production (i.e. fluency, complexity, and accuracy) vary among two different task types (i.e. argumentative writing task and instruction writing task). One hundred sixty…
Van der Elst, Wim; Hurks, Petra; Wassenberg, Renske; Meijs, Celeste; Jolles, Jelle
The Animal Verbal Fluency (AVF) and Design Fluency (DF) structured and unstructured test versions were administered to N = 294 healthy native Dutch-speaking children who were aged between 6.56 and 15.85 years. The AVF and DF structured test scores increased linearly as a function of age, whilst the relation between age and the DF unstructured test score was curvilinear (i.e., the improvement in test scores was much more pronounced for younger children than for older children). A higher mean level of parental education was associated with significantly higher AVF and DF structured test scores. Sex was not associated with any of the outcomes. Demographically corrected norms for the AVF and DF tests were established, and an automatic scoring program was provided.
Demeter, Gyula; Valálik, István; Pajkossy, Péter; Szőllősi, Ágnes; Lukács, Ágnes; Kemény, Ferenc; Racsmány, Mihály
Although the improvement of motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease (PD) after deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) is well documented, there are open questions regarding its impact on cognitive functions. The aim of this study was to assess the effect of bilateral DBS of the STN on executive functions in PD patients using a DBS wait-listed PD control group. Ten PD patients with DBS implantation (DBS group) and ten PD wait-listed patients (Clinical control group) participated in the study. Neuropsychological tasks were used to assess general mental ability and various executive functions. Each task was administered twice to each participant: before and after surgery (with the stimulators on) in the DBS group and with a matched delay between the two task administration points in the control group. There was no significant difference between the DBS and the control groups' performance in tasks measuring the updating of verbal, spatial or visual information (Digit span, Corsi and N-back tasks), planning and shifting (Trail Making B), and conflict resolution (Stroop task). However, the DBS group showed a significant decline on the semantic verbal fluency task after surgery compared to the control group, which is in line with findings of previous studies. Our results provide support for the relative cognitive safety of the STN DBS using a wait-listed PD control group. Differential effects of the STN DBS on frontostriatal networks are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Bizzozero, Ilaria; Scotti, Stefania; Clerici, Francesca; Pomati, Simone; Laiacona, Marcella; Capitani, Erminio
Background/Aims In Alzheimer's dementia (AD), letter fluency is less impaired than category fluency. To check whether category fluency and letter fluency depend differently on semantics and attention, 53 mild AD patients were given animal and letter fluency tasks, two semantic tests (the Verbal Semantic Questionnaire and the BORB Association Match test), and two attentional tests (the Stroop Colour-Word Interference test and the Digit Cancellation test). Methods We conducted a LISREL confirmatory factor analysis to check the extent to which category fluency and letter fluency tasks were related to semantics and attention, viewed as latent variables. Results Both types of fluency tasks were related to the latent variable Semantics but not to the latent variable Attention. Conclusions Our findings warn against interpreting the disproportionate impairment of AD patients on category and letter fluency as a contrast between semantics and attention. PMID:23885263
Full Text Available Background/Aims: In Alzheimer's dementia (AD, letter fluency is less impaired than category fluency. To check whether category fluency and letter fluency depend differently on semantics and attention, 53 mild AD patients were given animal and letter fluency tasks, two semantic tests (the Verbal Semantic Questionnaire and the BORB Association Match test, and two attentional tests (the Stroop Colour-Word Interference test and the Digit Cancellation test. Methods: We conducted a LISREL confirmatory factor analysis to check the extent to which category fluency and letter fluency tasks were related to semantics and attention, viewed as latent variables. Results: Both types of fluency tasks were related to the latent variable Semantics but not to the latent variable Attention. Conclusions: Our findings warn against interpreting the disproportionate impairment of AD patients on category and letter fluency as a contrast between semantics and attention.
Zaninotto, Ana Luiza; de Paula Guirado, Vinícius Monteiro; Baldivia, Beatriz; Núñes, Monica Domiano; Amorim, Robson Luis Oliveira; Teixeira, Manoel Jacobsen; de Lucia, Mara Cristina Souza; de Andrade, Almir Ferreira; Paiva, Wellingson Silva
Diffuse axonal injury (DAI), a common cause of neurological sequelae in patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI), is considered one of the most prevalent forms of primary neuronal injury in patients with severe TBI. Cognitive deficits induced by DAI can persist over time, especially following moderate or severe injuries. The aim of the present study was to compare verbal fluency (VF) performance at 6 and 12 months after the trauma in a same group of patients with DAI. Eighteen patients with moderate to severe DAI and 17 healthy volunteers were enrolled. All DAI participants had sustained a TBI at least 6 months prior to the start of the study, were between 18 and 50 years of age, and had at least 4 years of education. The VF test was administered within an extensive neuropsychological test battery. We evaluated the same patients at 6 months (DAI1 group) and 12 months (DAI2 group) and compared the results of neuropsychological tests with a control group of healthy volunteers who were matched to patients for sex, age, and educational level. In comparison to controls, the DAI1 group produced significantly fewer words. The DAI2 group produced significantly more semantic words than DAI1 (Pplan for long-term TBI rehabilitation that considers the trauma of each patient. Further, our results suggest the VF test is a suitable instrument for the assessment of cognitive difficulties following TBI.
Olabarrieta-Landa, Laiene; Torre, Esther Landa; López-Mugartza, Juan Carlos; Bialystok, Ellen; Arango-Lasprilla, Juan Carlos
To conduct a literature review of the administration and scoring criteria used in normative studies of verbal fluency tests (VFT), and to propose a new model for the administration and scoring of phonological, semantic, and action VFT for use in Spanish-speakers. A literature search was performed using four databases Dialnet, ProQuest (PsycINFO, PsycArticles), Science Direct (Elsevier), and PubMed and 47 articles met the following criteria: 1) articles which contained normative data of phonological, semantic, or action VFT, 2) published between 2000 and 2015, 3) published in English or Spanish, 4) used healthy population. Of 2087 citations retrieved, 47 eligible studies were reviewed. The majority of the studies have been conducted in the USA, and with English and Spanish speakers. Only 12 studies provided the instruction, and 23 clearly describe the scoring guidelines. Moreover, among the studies that provided these information important discrepancies were found. Therefore, a new administration and scoring guidelines are presented, which may resolve this problem and be utilized in Spanish speaking countries. This review showed that still there is no consensus regarding the administration and scoring of VFT. A new method of administration and scoring is presented that can be use with Spanish-speakers.
Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The present study aims to design and standardize the verbal fluency test (VFT among bilingual (Turkish-Persian adolescents in Tabriz, Iran. METHODS: In the designing stage, 190 adolescents who were already selected randomly from among the guidance and high school students in Tabriz were classified into three age groups (11-12, 13-15, 16-18. The screening test including 33 Persian letters and three ‘animal’, ‘fruit’, and ‘supermarket stuff’ categories, and SDQ was administered to them. The results were the three letters ‘M’, ‘D’, and ‘B’ for phonological fluency, and two ‘animal’ and ‘supermarket stuff’ categories for semantic fluency in the Persian language. In the standardization stage, the letters and categories specified in the designing stage were administered in the same order to 302 adolescents. Moreover, 28 adolescents diagnosed with ADHD were selected to estimate the discriminant validity of VFT. RESULTS: Pearson correlation coefficient between test-retest of the three letters ‘M’, ‘D’, and ‘B’ for phonological fluency were estimated at 0.67, 0.66, and 0.75, respectively. Furthermore, for the two categories of ‘animal’ and ‘supermarket stuff’ it was estimated to be 0.80 and 0.65, respectively. All these amounts were significant (P < 0.01. The discriminant validity, which was estimated through comparison between the scores of normal and ADHD adolescents, showed that the obtained t value for all indices except for the letter ‘B’ was meaningful. The results of MANOVA between two gender groups were significant at P < 0.05 for three ‘M’, ‘D’, and ‘B’ variables of verbal fluency and ‘animal’ semantic fluency. In both verbal and semantic fluency the mean of subjects’ performance scores showed that females outperformed males. CONCLUSIONS: The findings of the current study indicated that VFT is reliable in the studied sample group, and has a valid psychometric
Full Text Available Running a concurrent task while speaking clearly interferes with speech planning, but whether verbal vs. non-verbal tasks interfere with the same processes is virtually unknown. We investigated the neural dynamics of dual-task interference on word production using event-related potentials (ERPs with either tones or syllables as concurrent stimuli. Participants produced words from pictures in three conditions: without distractors, while passively listening to distractors and during a distractor detection task. Production latencies increased for tasks with higher attentional demand and were longer for syllables relative to tones. ERP analyses revealed common modulations by dual-task for verbal and non-verbal stimuli around 240 ms, likely corresponding to lexical selection. Modulations starting around 350 ms prior to vocal onset were only observed when verbal stimuli were involved. These later modulations, likely reflecting interference with phonological-phonetic encoding, were observed only when overlap between tasks was maximal and the same underlying neural circuits were engaged (cross-talk.
Marshall, Chloe R.; Rowley, Katherine; Mason, Kathryn; Herman, Rosalind; Morgan, Gary
We adapted the semantic fluency task into British Sign Language (BSL). In Study 1, we present data from twenty-two deaf signers aged four to fifteen. We show that the same "cognitive signatures" that characterize this task in spoken languages are also present in deaf children, for example, the semantic clustering of responses. In Study…
Full Text Available Ana Luiza Zaninotto,1 Vinícius Monteiro de Paula Guirado,2 Beatriz Baldivia,1 Monica Domiano Núñes,1 Robson Luis Oliveira Amorim,2 Manoel Jacobsen Teixeira,2 Mara Cristina Souza de Lucia,1 Almir Ferreira de Andrade,2 Wellingson Silva Paiva2 1Division of Psychology, Hospital das Clínicas, 2Division of Neurosurgery, University of São Paulo Medical School, São Paulo, Brazil Background: Diffuse axonal injury (DAI, a common cause of neurological sequelae in patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI, is considered one of the most prevalent forms of primary neuronal injury in patients with severe TBI. Cognitive deficits induced by DAI can persist over time, especially following moderate or severe injuries. The aim of the present study was to compare verbal fluency (VF performance at 6 and 12 months after the trauma in a same group of patients with DAI. Methods: Eighteen patients with moderate to severe DAI and 17 healthy volunteers were enrolled. All DAI participants had sustained a TBI at least 6 months prior to the start of the study, were between 18 and 50 years of age, and had at least 4 years of education. The VF test was administered within an extensive neuropsychological test battery. We evaluated the same patients at 6 months (DAI1 group and 12 months (DAI2 group and compared the results of neuropsychological tests with a control group of healthy volunteers who were matched to patients for sex, age, and educational level. Results: In comparison to controls, the DAI1 group produced significantly fewer words. The DAI2 group produced significantly more semantic words than DAI1 (P<0.05 and demonstrated a trend towards the production of more clusters for letter A (P=0.09 and total words generated in a phonemic test (P=0.09. No significant differences were observed between DAI2 and the control group in the total number of words generated in phonetic FAS or semantic fluency scores. Conclusion: The present findings may
Bose, Arpita; Wood, Rosalind; Kiran, Swathi
Background: Verbal fluency tasks are included in a broad range of aphasia assessments. It is well documented that people with aphasia (PWA) produce fewer items in these tasks. Successful performance on verbal fluency relies on the integrity of both linguistic and executive control abilities. It remains unclear if limited output in aphasia is…
Yeon Kyung Chi
Full Text Available We developed a weighted composite score of the categorical verbal fluency test (CVFT that can more easily and widely screen Alzheimer's disease (AD than the mini-mental status examination (MMSE. We administered the CVFT using animal category and MMSE to 423 community-dwelling mild probable AD patients and their age- and gender-matched cognitively normal controls. To enhance the diagnostic accuracy for AD of the CVFT, we obtained a weighted composite score from subindex scores of the CVFT using a logistic regression model: logit (case = 1.160+0.474× gender +0.003× age +0.226× education level - 0.089× first-half score - 0.516× switching score -0.303× clustering score +0.534× perseveration score. The area under the receiver operating curve (AUC for AD of this composite score AD was 0.903 (95% CI = 0.883 - 0.923, and was larger than that of the age-, gender- and education-adjusted total score of the CVFT (p<0.001. In 100 bootstrapped re-samples, the composite score consistently showed better diagnostic accuracy, sensitivity and specificity for AD than the total score. Although AUC for AD of the CVFT composite score was slightly smaller than that of the MMSE (0.930, p = 0.006, the CVFT composite score may be a good alternative to the MMSE for screening AD since it is much briefer, cheaper, and more easily applicable over phone or internet than the MMSE.
Full Text Available This paper sought to scrutinize the effects of tasks-based instruction on non-English major students’ speaking fluency. To this aim 40 students were selected who were divided into two homogeneous groups by administering a pretest to determine their current proficiency level in speaking skill. Both control and experimental groups received the same kinds of language material. Only experimental group received material through tasks-based instruction. Findings of post test revealed significant differences between control and experimental groups in term of their speaking fluency.
Larsson, Magnus R; Michel, Per-Olof; Bäckström, Martin; Johanson, Aki
Background We investigated whether individual differences in baseline executive control capacity could predict state anxiety during a potentially life-threatening situation. Methods 19 Swedish military conscripts were assessed during two measurement occasions. During a baseline measurement, data regarding performance on a letter fluency task and state anxiety were assessed. During a second measurement, performed immediately prior to participation in a live hand-grenade throwing exercise, data regarding state anxiety was assessed. All participants were male, right-handed and had fulfilled 12 years of education. Results The level of state anxiety was significantly increased between the two measurement occasions (p < .01). Both the number of words produced (β = -.37; p < .05) and the number of perseveration made (β = .43; p < .05) on the verbal fluency task predicted, while controlling for state anxiety at baseline, the level of experienced state anxiety during the threatening situation. Conclusion Although more research is needed the present finding suggests that individual differences in executive control capacity might be related to emotion regulation ability during acute stressor exposure. PMID:17697315
Anderson, Luke B; Jaroh, Rebekah; Smith, Hillary; Strong, Carrie-Ann H; Donders, Jacobus
The present study was composed of two parts examining the clinical utility of the Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS) Verbal Fluency and Color-Word subtests in traumatic brain injury (TBI). In the first part, the performance of 128 outpatients with mild to severe TBI on the Verbal Fluency and Color-Word subtests was examined in relation to two primary indicators of TBI severity: length of coma and the presence of intracranial lesions on neuroimaging through regression analysis. After controlling for education, ethnicity, and complicating premorbid and comorbid factors, length of coma predicted performance on the Color-Word Inhibition/Switching subtest, whereas the presence of diffuse lesions was related to Verbal Fluency Category Switching performance. In the second part of this study, performance on the Category Switching and Inhibition/Switching subtests was compared between a group of 28 participants with moderate-to-severe TBI and demographically matched groups with mild-uncomplicated TBI (n = 28) and neurologically healthy control participants (n = 56). The moderate-to-severe TBI group performed significantly worse on both subtests than the mild-uncomplicated TBI and control groups, and the latter groups did not differ from each other on these subtests. Logistic regression analysis showed that the combined group classification accuracy of these subtests was 66.07%, with an area under the curve (AUC) of .70 and a likelihood ratio of 1.93. The findings provide modest support for the clinical utility of the Color-Word Inhibition/Switching subtest in the cognitive assessment of TBI, while also replicating prior research suggesting clinical utility of the Category Switching subtest in this population.
Ayyoub Malek; Iesa Hekmati; Shahrokh Amiri; Jaber Pirzadeh; Hossein Gholizadeh
BACKGROUND: The present study aims to design and standardize the verbal fluency test (VFT) among bilingual (Turkish-Persian) adolescents in Tabriz, Iran. METHODS: In the designing stage, 190 adolescents who were already selected randomly from among the guidance and high school students in Tabriz were classified into three age groups (11-12, 13-15, 16-18). The screening test including 33 Persian letters and three ‘animal’, ‘fruit’, and ‘supermarket stuff’ categories, and SDQ was administered t...
Bautista, Romiro G.
This study was designed to analyze the procedural fluency and written-mathematical explanation to select constructed response tasks of students in Thermodynamics problems. The study made use of 2 sections, composed of 26 students, in University Physics 1 to conclude on the research problem. It made use of the assumption that mathematical and…
Keene, Daniel L; Olds, Janet; Logan, William J
Double cortex syndrome is a malformation in which there is a band of subcortical heterotopic grey matter separated from the cortex by white matter. The functional activity of the heterotopic neurons is unclear. A 13-year-old female was evaluated for seizures. The EEG showed bifrontal spike wave disturbance. Band heterotopia, in association with mild reduction of sulcation of the cerebral hemispheres, was found on MRI. Psychological assessment indicated the presence of variable cognitive abilities, with verbal IQ  generally better than nonverbal IQ , and specific difficulties in language comprehension and mathematics. Functional MRI was used to localize the areas of language and motor activation. The language activation paradigm was a visual verb generation task with a visual fixation baseline. The motor paradigm consisted of alternating blocks of sequential finger tapping and rest. Coronal functional and anatomical images were obtained. The motor paradigm produced activation of the primary motor cortex, the band heterotopia and the supplementary motor cortex. The language paradigm produced activation of the left inferior frontal gyrus and left supplementary motor area, but not of the band heterotopia. The activation of heterotopic grey matter during a motor task demonstrates a hemodynamic association with motor activity and suggests that this tissue may be functional. Such association was not seen with the language task. We speculate that later maturing functions such as language are restricted in their development to the normal situated superficial cortex in our patient.
de Jong, N.H.; Steinel, M.P.; Florijn, A.; Schoonen, R.; Hulstijn, J.H.; Housen, A.; Kuiken, F.; Vedder, I.
This study investigated how task complexity affected native and non-native speakers’ speaking performance in terms of a measure of communicative success (functional adequacy), three types of fluency (breakdown fluency, speed fluency, and repair fluency), and lexical diversity. Participants (208
De Jong, Nivja H.; Steinel, Margarita P.; Florijn, Arjen F.; Schoonen, Rob; Hulstijn, Jan H.
This study investigated how task complexity affected native and non-native speakers' speaking performance in terms of a measure of communicative success (functional adequacy), three types of fluency (breakdown fluency, speed fluency, and repair fluency), and lexical diversity. Participants (208 non-native and 59 native speakers of Dutch) carried…
Williams, B R; Sullivan, S K; Morra, L F; Williams, J R; Donovick, P J
Vulnerability to retroactive interference has been shown to increase with cognitive aging. Consistent with the findings of memory and aging literature, the authors of the California Verbal Learning Test-II (CVLT-II) suggest that a non-verbal task be administered during the test's delay interval to minimize the effects of retroactive interference on delayed recall. The goal of the present study was to determine the extent to which retroactive interference caused by non-verbal and verbal intervening tasks affects recall of verbal information in non-demented, older adults. The effects of retroactive interference on recall of words during Long-Delay recall on the California Verbal Learning Test-II (CVLT-II) were evaluated. Participants included 85 adults age 60 and older. During a 20-minute delay interval on the CVLT-II, participants received either a verbal (WAIS-III Vocabulary or Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test-IIIB) or non-verbal (Raven's Standard Progressive Matrices or WAIS-III Block Design) intervening task. Similarly to previous research with young adults (Williams & Donovick, 2008), older adults recalled the same number of words across all groups, regardless of the type of intervening task. These findings suggest that the administration of verbal intervening tasks during the CVLT-II do not elicit more retroactive interference than non-verbal intervening tasks, and thus verbal tasks need not be avoided during the delay interval of the CVLT-II.
Hye K. PAE
Full Text Available This study examined the respective contribution of verbal working memory, which was operationalized as immediate digit and sentence recall, to bilingual children’s reading fluency and comprehension in the first language (L1 and second language (L2. Fifty children from two international sites took part in this study: One group was English-Korean bilinguals in the U.S., while the other was Korean-English bilinguals in Korea. The manifestation of the prediction model varied across the learning contexts or learner groups. L1 forward and backward digit spans accounted for the significant variances in L2 reading fluency and comprehension for the English-speaking children in the U.S., whereas L1 forward digit span was more predictive of L2 reading fluency and comprehension than backward digit span and sentence recall for the Korean-speaking counterparts in Korea. The results were interpreted with respect to the orthographic depth, linguistic differences, and cognitivedemands. Implications and future directions are discussed.
Hye K. Pae
Full Text Available This study examined the respective contribution of verbal working memory, which was operationalized as immediate digit and sentence recall, to bilingual children’s reading fluency and comprehension in the first language (L1 and second language (L2. Fifty children from two international sites took part in this study: One group was English-Korean bilinguals in the U.S., while the other was Korean-English bilinguals in Korea. The manifestation of the prediction model varied across the learning contexts or learner groups. L1 forward and backward digit spans accounted for the significant variances in L2 reading fluency and comprehension for the English-speaking children in the U.S., whereas L1 forward digit span was more predictive of L2 reading fluency and comprehension than backward digit span and sentence recall for the Korean-speaking counterparts in Korea. The results were interpreted with respect to the orthographic depth, linguistic differences, and cognitive demands. Implications and future directions are discussed.
Nowakowska-Domagała, Katarzyna; Jabłkowska-Górecka, Karolina; Mokros, Łukasz; Koprowicz, Jacek; Pietras, Tadeusz
The aim of the study was to assess differences in verbal fluency, working memory and executive functions in two subgroups of alcohol-dependent patients, those undergoing short-term abstinence (STA) and those undergoing long-term abstinence (LTA), and to compare the level of cognitive functions in patients after long-term abstinence with healthy subjects. The study group consisted of 106 alcohol-dependent patients (53 immediately after drinking at least 3 days and 53 after at least one-year abstinence). The control group comprised 53 subjects, whose age, sex and education levels matched those of the patients in the experimental group. The dependence intensity was assessed using SADD and MAST scales. The neuropsychological assessment was based on the FAS Test, Stroop Test and TMT A&B Test. The results obtained for alcohol-dependent patients revealed significant disturbances of cognitive functions. Such results indicate the presence of severe frontal cerebral cortex dysfunctions. Frontal cortex dysfunctions affecting the verbal fluency and working memory subsystems and the executive functions also persisted during long-term abstinence periods. No significant correlations between the duration of dependence, quantity of alcohol consumed and efficiency of the working memory and executive functions were observed in alcohol-dependent subjects after short-term or long-term abstinence. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Liouta, Evangelia; Gatzonis, Stylianos; Kalamatianos, Theodosis; Kalyvas, Aristotelis; Koutsarnakis, Christos; Liakos, Faidon; Anagnostopoulos, Christos; Komaitis, Spyridon; Giakoumettis, Dimitris; Stranjalis, George
Idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus (INPH) diagnosis is challenging as it can be mimicked by other neurological conditions, such as neurodegenerative dementia and motor syndromes. Additionally, outcomes after lumbar puncture (LP) tap test and shunt treatment may vary due to the lack of a common protocol in INPH assessment. The present study aimed to assess whether a post-LP test amelioration of frontal cognitive dysfunctions, characterizing this syndrome, can differentiate INPH from similar neurological conditions and whether this improvement can predict INPH post-shunt outcomes. Seventy-one consecutive patients referred for INPH suspicion and LP testing, were enrolled. According to the consensus guidelines criteria, 29 patients were diagnosed as INPH and 42 were assigned an alternative diagnosis (INPH-like group) after reviewing clinical, neuropsychological and imaging data, and before LP results. A comprehensive neuropsychological assessment for frontal executive, upper extremity fine motor functions, aphasias, apraxias, agnosias and gait evaluation were administered at baseline. Executive, fine motor functions and gait were re-examined post-LP test in all patients and post-shunt placement in INPH patients. Of the INPH patients, 86.2% showed cognitive amelioration in the post-LP test; in addition, all but one (97%) presented with neurocognitive and gait improvement post-shunt. Verbal phonological fluency and finger tapping task post-LP improvement predicted positive clinical outcome post-shunt. None of the INPH-like group presented with neurocognitive improvement post-LP. Post-LP amelioration of verbal fluency and finger tapping deficits can differentiate INPH from similar disorders and predict positive post-shunt clinical outcome in INPH. This becomes of great importance when gait assessment is difficult to perform in clinical practice.
Full Text Available The past twenty years has witnessed a remarkable increase in the number of studies investigating different aspects and features of tasks in the second and foreign language class and their effects on learners’ oral and written task performance. Building up on a review of the studies conducted in the field of task-based language teaching a gap was revealed in the literature on the joint effects of task complexity and types of pre-task planning on L2 learners’ performance. The present study investigates the effects of strategic pre-task planning time and task complexity on a group of L2 learners’ written performance in terms of accuracy and fluency. The means of accuracy and fluency of 50 intermediate English language learners, both male and female, chosen randomly from Iran National Language Institute, Miandoab Branch were compared using T-test as the statistical means of analysis. The findings revealed a positive influence of pre-task strategic planning time in both simple and complex tasks, suggesting significant implications for syllabus and task designers, language teachers, and SLA researchers.
Juste, Fabiola Staróbole; Andrade, Claudia Regina Furquim de
To characterize the speech fluency profile of patients with Parkinson's disease. Study participants were 40 individuals of both genders aged 40 to 80 years divided into 2 groups: Research Group - RG (20 individuals with diagnosis of Parkinson's disease) and Control Group - CG (20 individuals with no communication or neurological disorders). For all of the participants, three speech samples involving different tasks were collected: monologue, individual reading, and automatic speech. The RG presented a significant larger number of speech disruptions, both stuttering-like and typical dysfluencies, and higher percentage of speech discontinuity in the monologue and individual reading tasks compared with the CG. Both groups presented reduced number of speech disruptions (stuttering-like and typical dysfluencies) in the automatic speech task; the groups presented similar performance in this task. Regarding speech rate, individuals in the RG presented lower number of words and syllables per minute compared with those in the CG in all speech tasks. Participants of the RG presented altered parameters of speech fluency compared with those of the CG; however, this change in fluency cannot be considered a stuttering disorder.
John, Sunila; Rajashekhar, Bellur; Guddattu, Vasudeva
Verbal fluency tasks are simple behavioral measures useful in assessing word retrieval abilities. Among the verbal fluency tasks, the utility of the Phonemic Fluency Task in children has received less attention. As the task is dependent on phonemic characteristics of each language, there is a great need for understanding its developmental trend. The present study, therefore, aims to delineate the performance on phonemic fluency in typically developing Malayalam-speaking children. Verbal fluency performance on 2 tasks of phonemic fluency was tested using a cross-sectional study design among 1,015 school-going Malayalam-speaking typically developing children aged 5 to 15 years old. Performance with respect to word productivity and clustering-switching measures was analyzed. The effect of age, gender, and tasks on the outcome measures were investigated in the present study. Study findings revealed a positive influence of age with no statistically significant gender effects. Children employed both task-discrepant and task-consistent organizational strategies during tasks of phonemic fluency, dependent purely on the Malayalam language. Future research focusing on developmental trends across different languages is vital for enhancing the task's clinical sensitivity and specificity among childhood disorders.
Rose, L. Todd; Rouhani, Parisa
Most research on dyslexia to date has focused on early childhood, while comparatively little is known about the nature of dyslexia in adolescence. The current study had two objectives. The first was to investigate the relative contributions of several cognitive and linguistic factors to connected-text oral reading fluency in a sample of…
Fishman, Keera N; Ashbaugh, Andrea R; Lanctôt, Krista L; Cayley, Megan L; Herrmann, Nathan; Murray, Brian J; Sicard, Michelle; Lien, Karen; Sahlas, Demetrios J; Swartz, Richard H
This study examined the relationship between apathy and cognition in patients with cerebrovascular disease. Apathy may result from damage to frontal subcortical circuits causing dysexecutive syndromes, but apathy is also related to depression. We assessed the ability of apathy to predict phonemic fluency and semantic fluency performance after controlling for depressive symptoms in 282 individuals with stroke and/or transient ischemic attack. Participants (N = 282) completed the Phonemic Fluency Test, Semantic Fluency Test, Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale, and Apathy Evaluation Scale. A cross-sectional correlational design was utilized. Using hierarchical linear regressions, apathy scores significantly predicted semantic fluency performance (β = -.159, p = .020), but not phonemic fluency performance (β = -.112, p = .129) after scaling scores by age and years of education and controlling for depressive symptoms. Depressive symptoms entered into the first step of both hierarchical linear regressions did not predict semantic fluency (β = -.035, p = .554) or phonemic fluency (β = -.081, p = .173). Apathy and depressive symptoms were moderately correlated, r(280) = .58, p fluency tasks, whereby phonemic fluency tasks primarily involve frontal regions, and semantic fluency tasks involve recruitment of more extended networks. The results also highlight a distinction between apathy and depressive symptoms and suggest that apathy may be a more reliable predictor of cognitive deficits than measures of mood in individuals with cerebrovascular disease. Apathy may also be more related to cognition due to overlapping motivational and cognitive frontal subcortical circuitry. Future research should explore whether treatments for apathy could be a novel target for improving cognitive outcomes after stroke.
Stokholm, Jette; Jørgensen, Kasper; Vogel, Asmus
cognitively intact elderly Danish subjects aged 60-87 years. We found mean scores similar to what has been reported from other countries. There was little influence of background variables: in four out of fives tests less than 20% of the variance could be explained by age, education, and estimated...... intelligence. Age had a greater impact than education on category based performance, while the opposite was the case for lexical- and action-based fluency. Overall, intelligence was of little importance. There was a positive and significant correlation between all tests, but with only low to moderate strength...
Scaccianoce, Elisa; Laganà, Maria Marcella; Baglio, Francesca; Preti, Maria Giulia; Bergsland, Niels; Cecconi, Pietro; Clerici, Mario; Baselli, Giuseppe; Papadimitriou, George; Makris, Nikos
Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) tractography and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) are powerful techniques to elucidate the anatomical and functional aspects of brain connectivity. However, integrating these approaches to describe the precise link between structure and function within specific brain circuits remains challenging. In this study, a novel DTI-fMRI integration method is proposed, to provide the topographical characterization and the volumetric assessment of the functional and anatomical connections within the language circuit. In a group of 21 healthy elderly subjects (mean age 68.5 ± 5.8 years), the volume of connection between the cortical activity elicited by a verbal fluency task and the cortico-cortical fiber tracts associated with this function are mapped and quantified. An application of the method to a case study in neuro-rehabilitation context is also presented. Integrating structural and functional data within the same framework, this approach provides an overall view of white and gray matter when studying specific brain circuits.
Dalen, K; Hugdahl, K
The purpose of the present experiment was to investigate lateralized effects of concurrent verbal and nonverbal tasks on right- and left-hand finger-tapping. In addition to the verbal vs. nonverbal dichotomy, both motor and sensory tasks were used. It was predicted that a verbal motor task (reading aloud) would lead to more inhibitory interference for right-hand tappings than would a sensory verbal task (watching and remembering slides with nonsense syllables). Similarly, it was predicted that a motor nonverbal task (humming a tune) would lead to more left-hand inhibitory interference than would a sensory nonverbal task (watching pairs of spatial patterns). Results showed a predicted lateralized right-hand decrement in finger-tapping during the motor verbal task. However, an increase in left-hand tapping frequency above baseline was observed during both sensory tasks, while no significant difference was observed between the hands for the motor nonverbal task.
Santos, Amanda Oliveira; Rossi, Natalia Freitas; Tandel, Maria da Conceição Faria Freitas; Richieri-Costa, Antonio; Giacheti, Célia Maria
To investigate the fluency aspects of the oral narrative task in individuals with del22q11.2 syndrome and compare them with those of individuals with typical language development. Fifteen individuals diagnosed with del22q11.2 syndrome, both genders, aged 7-17 years participated in this study. They were compared with 15 individuals with typical language development, with similar gender and chronological age profiles. The oral narrative was elicited using the book "Frog, Where Are You?", and the fluency aspects were analyzed according to speech rate and type and frequency of disfluency (typical and stuttering). The number and duration of pauses were also investigated. The data were statistically analyzed. The group with del22q11.2 syndrome showed a higher average when compared with the group without the syndrome for the percentage of typical disfluencies, mainly hesitation and revision. The group presenting the syndrome also showed a higher average for stuttering disfluencies, with pause as the most frequent disfluency. With respect to speech rate, the group with the syndrome presented a lower average for the number of words and syllables per minute. Individuals with del22q11.2 syndrome showed greater difficulties of narration than their peers. The fluency aspects of the oral narrative task in subjects with del22q11.2 syndrome were similar to those of individuals with typical language development regarding the presence of hesitation, revision, and pause, but they were different with respect to frequency of disfluency, which was higher in individuals with the syndrome.
Jenkinson, Toni-Marie; Muncer, Steven; Wheeler, Miranda; Brechin, Don; Evans, Stephen
Neuropsychological assessment requires accurate estimation of an individual's premorbid cognitive abilities. Oral word reading tests, such as the test of premorbid functioning (TOPF), and demographic variables, such as age, sex, and level of education, provide a reasonable indication of premorbid intelligence, but their ability to predict other related cognitive abilities is less well understood. This study aimed to develop regression equations, based on the TOPF and demographic variables, to predict scores on tests of verbal fluency and naming ability. A sample of 119 healthy adults provided demographic information and were tested using the TOPF, FAS, animal naming test (ANT), and graded naming test (GNT). Multiple regression analyses, using the TOPF and demographics as predictor variables, were used to estimate verbal fluency and naming ability test scores. Change scores and cases of significant impairment were calculated for two clinical samples with diagnosed neurological conditions (TBI and meningioma) using the method in Knight, McMahon, Green, and Skeaff (). Demographic variables provided a significant contribution to the prediction of all verbal fluency and naming ability test scores; however, adding TOPF score to the equation considerably improved prediction beyond that afforded by demographic variables alone. The percentage of variance accounted for by demographic variables and/or TOPF score varied from 19 per cent (FAS), 28 per cent (ANT), and 41 per cent (GNT). Change scores revealed significant differences in performance in the clinical groups, particularity the TBI group. Demographic variables, particularly education level, and scores on the TOPF should be taken into consideration when interpreting performance on tests of verbal fluency and naming ability. © 2017 The British Psychological Society.
Weywadt, Christina R. B; Butler, Karin M
The roles of verbal short-term memory (vSTM) in task selection and task performance processes were examined when individuals were asked to voluntarily choose which of two tasks to perform on each trial randomly...
Eichorn, Naomi; Marton, Klara; Schwartz, Richard G.; Melara, Robert D.; Pirutinsky, Steven
Purpose: The present study examined whether engaging working memory in a secondary task benefits speech fluency. Effects of dual-task conditions on speech fluency, rate, and errors were examined with respect to predictions derived from three related theoretical accounts of disfluencies. Method: Nineteen adults who stutter and twenty adults who do…
Shallice, Tim; Bozzali, Marco; Cipolotti, Lisa
Fluency tasks have been widely used to tap the voluntary generation of responses. The anatomical correlates of fluency tasks and their sensitivity and specificity have been hotly debated. However, investigation of the cognitive processes involved in voluntary generation of responses and whether generation is supported by a common, general process (e.g. fluid intelligence) or specific cognitive processes underpinned by particular frontal regions has rarely been addressed. This study investigates a range of verbal and non-verbal fluency tasks in patients with unselected focal frontal (n = 47) and posterior (n = 20) lesions. Patients and controls (n = 35) matched for education, age and sex were administered fluency tasks including word (phonemic/semantic), design, gesture and ideational fluency as well as background cognitive tests. Lesions were analysed by standard anterior/posterior and left/right frontal subdivisions as well as a finer-grained frontal localization method. Thus, patients with right and left lateral lesions were compared to patients with superior medial lesions. The results show that all eight fluency tasks are sensitive to frontal lobe damage although only the phonemic word and design fluency tasks were specific to the frontal region. Superior medial patients were the only group to be impaired on all eight fluency tasks, relative to controls, consistent with an energization deficit. The most marked fluency deficits for lateral patients were along material specific lines (i.e. left—phonemic and right—design). Phonemic word fluency that requires greater selection was most severely impaired following left inferior frontal damage. Overall, our results support the notion that frontal functions comprise a set of specialized cognitive processes, supported by distinct frontal regions. PMID:22669082
Glikmann-Johnston, Yifat; Oren, Noga; Hendler, Talma; Shapira-Lichter, Irit
Verbal fluency tasks are typically used in neuropsychological practice for assessment of language function in a variety of neurological disorders. Recently, it has been shown that the hippocampus, a region thought to be exclusive to the domain of memory, is also involved in tests of semantic fluency. The present study further explores hippocampal contribution to verbal fluency using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and examining mean activity and inter-regional functional connectivity with known task-related brain regions. Given the clear lateralization of brain areas involved in language, lateralization of hippocampal involvement in semantic and phonemic word fluency was also investigated. Different hippocampal recruitment during semantic and phonemic fluency was found: greater change in activity was seen during semantic fluency, as compared with phonemic fluency. This pattern was obtained in the right and the left hippocampus, with no lateralization effects. Functional connectivity analyses corroborate the notion of selective contribution of the hippocampus to semantic fluency. During the semantic fluency task, connectivity levels between the hippocampi and components of the semantic network did not differ from connectivity levels within the semantic network. In contrast, during the phonemic fluency task, the hippocampi were less correlated with components of the phonemic network, as compared to the within phonemic network connectivity. Importantly, hippocampal connectivity with the semantic network was task-dependent and restricted to periods of semantic fluency performance. Altogether, results suggest that the right and the left hippocampus are integral components of the brain network that selectively supports verbal semantic fluency, but not phonemic fluency. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Mariana Jardim Azambuja
Full Text Available Abstract Verbal fluency tasks have been identified as important indicators of executive functioning impairment in patients with frontal lobe dysfunction. Although the usual evaluation of this ability considers phonologic and semantic criteria, there is some evidence that fluency of verbs would be more sensitive in disclosing frontostriatal physiopathology since frontal regions primarily mediate retrieval of verbs. Huntington's disease usually affects these circuitries. Objective: To compare three types of verbal fluency task in the assessment of frontal-striatal dysfunction in HD subjects. Methods: We studied 26 Huntington's disease subjects, divided into two subgroups: mild (11 and moderate (15 along with 26 normal volunteers matched for age, gender and schooling, for three types of verbal fluency: phonologic fluency (F-A-S, semantic fluency and fluency of verbs. Results: Huntington's disease subjects showed a significant reduction in the number of words correctly generated in the three tasks when compared to the normal group. Both controls and Huntington's disease subjects showed a similar pattern of decreasing task performance with the greatest number of words being generated by semantic elicitation followed by verbs and lastly phonologic criteria. We did not find greater production of verbs compared with F-A-S and semantic conditions. Moreover, the fluency of verbs distinguished only the moderate group from controls. Conclusion: Our results indicated that phonologic and semantic fluency can be used to evaluate executive functioning, proving more sensitive than verb fluency. However, it is important to point out that the diverse presentations of Huntington's disease means that an extended sample is necessary for more consistent analysis of this issue.
Hollebrandse, Bart; van Hout, Angeliek; Hendriks, Petra
We can understand and act upon the beliefs of other people, even when these conflict with our own beliefs. Children’s development of this ability, known as Theory ofMind, typically happens around age 4. Research using a looking-time paradigm, however, established that toddlers at the age of 15 months old pass a non-verbal false-belief task (Onishi and Baillargeon in Science 308:255–258, 2005). This is well before the age at which children pass any of the verbal false-belief tasks. In this stu...
Soleman, Remi S; Schagen, Sebastian E E; Veltman, Dick J; Kreukels, Baudewijntje P C; Cohen-Kettenis, Peggy T; Lambalk, Cornelis B; Wouters, Femke; Delemarre-van de Waal, Henriette A
In the literature, verbal fluency (VF) is generally described as a female-favoring task. Although it is conceivable that this sex difference only evolves during adolescence or adulthood under influence of sex steroids, this has never been investigated in young adolescents. First, to assess sex differences in VF performance and regional brain activation in adolescents. Second, to determine if untreated transsexual adolescents differ from their sex of birth with regard to VF performance and regional brain activation. Twenty-five boys, 26 girls, 8 Male-to-Female transsexual adolescents (MtFs), and 14 Female-to-Male transsexual adolescents (FtMs) were tested in a cross-sectional study, while performing a phonetic and semantic VF task within an MRI scanner. Functional MRI response during VF task. Boys and girls produced similar amounts of words, but the group MtFs produced significantly more words in the phonetic condition compared to control boys, girls, and FtMs. During the semantic condition, no differences were found. With regard to brain activity, control boys showed more activation in the right Rolandic operculum, a small area adjacent to Broca's area, compared to girls. No significant differences in brain activity were found comparing transsexual adolescents, although sub-threshold activation was found in the right Rolandic operculum indicating a trendwise increase in activation from control girls to FtMs to MtFs to control boys. The better performance of MtFs is consistent with our expectation that MtFs perform better on female-favoring tasks. Moreover, they produced more words than girls and FtMs. Even though a trendwise linear increase in brain activity between the four groups only approached significance, it may indicate differences in individuals with gender identity disorder compared to their birth sex. Although our findings should thus be interpreted with caution, they suggest a biological basis for both transgender groups performing in-between the two
Contador, Israel; Almondes, Katie; Fernández-Calvo, Bernardino; Boycheva, Elina; Puertas-Martín, Verónica; Benito-León, Julián; Bermejo-Pareja, Félix
We aimed to provide the normative data stratified by age, sex and educational attainment for two semantic categories (animal and fruits) in older Spanish adults. A representative sample of 2,744 non-demented older individuals with different socioeconomic background was selected from the Neurological Disorders in Central Spain (NEDICES), a population-based study. Normative data are presented in percentile ranks and divided into four age-tables with different midpoints, using the overlapping interval procedure. Correlation analyses showed that age, education and sex influence significantly the scores in both semantic tasks. Normative data presented here covered two urban (Margaritas & Lista) and one rural areas (Arévalo). These norms may provide useful data for screening cognitive impairment more accurately in Spanish older adults. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Zohreh Seifoori; mitra zeraatpishe; Saeedeh Ahangai
Controversy has not been yet resolved among researchers in second language research over the pedagogical efficacy of feedback in enhancing various features of learners’ writing skill. Research findings highlighting the significance of interactive tasks and learners’ engagement in improving the learning process stimulated the present study, the purpose of which was to explore the effect of task-supported interactive feedback on the accuracy, fluency, and organization of seventy two Iranian Eng...
Georges, Carrie; Schiltz, Christine; Hoffmann, Danielle
Evidence for number-space associations comes from the spatial-numerical association of response codes (SNARC) effect, consisting in faster reaction times to small/large digits with the left/right hand, respectively. Two different proposals are commonly discussed concerning the cognitive origin of the SNARC effect: the visuospatial account and the verbal-spatial account. Recent studies have provided evidence for the relative dominance of verbal-spatial over visuospatial coding mechanisms, when both mechanisms were directly contrasted in a magnitude comparison task. However, in these studies, participants were potentially biased towards verbal-spatial number processing by task instructions based on verbal-spatial labels. To overcome this confound and to investigate whether verbal-spatial coding mechanisms are predominantly activated irrespective of task instructions, we completed the previously used paradigm by adding a spatial instruction condition. In line with earlier findings, we could confirm the predominance of verbal-spatial number coding under verbal task instructions. However, in the spatial instruction condition, both verbal-spatial and visuospatial mechanisms were activated to an equal extent. Hence, these findings clearly indicate that the cognitive origin of number-space associations does not always predominantly rely on verbal-spatial processing mechanisms, but that the spatial code associated with numbers is context dependent.
Piri, Faramarz; Barati, Hossein; Ketabi, Saeed
Previous studies on the effect of planning on language production have revealed that planning does have a positive effect on language performance in terms of fluency, complexity, and accuracy. The present study was an attempt to investigate the effects of pre-task, on-line, and both pre-task and on-line planning on fluency, accuracy, and…
Kaemingk, Kris L; Mulvaney, Shelagh; Halverson, Patricia Tanner
Verbal Learning deficits have been reported following prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE). This study examined verbal and visual multitrial learning in children with fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) or fetal alcohol effects (FAE) and controls matched on age and gender from the same community. In this study, the FAS/FAE group's immediate memory on the Verbal Learning and Visual Learning tasks from the Wide Range Assessment of Memory and Learning (WRAML) was significantly weaker than that of the control group. Although the FAS/FAE group also recalled significantly less information after a delay, they did retain an equivalent proportion of the visual and verbal information as compared to the control group. Thus, the overall pattern of performance on both verbal and visual measures was consistent with that observed in previous studies of Verbal Learning: despite weaker learning, the FAS/FAE group's relative retention of information was no different than that of controls.
Vaughan, Roisin M; Coen, Robert F; Kenny, RoseAnne; Lawlor, Brian A
It is widely believed that phonemic fluency is more difficult than naming exemplars from a semantic category. Normative data in this regard are scarce, and there is considerable disagreement in the literature regarding the pattern in normal ageing and neurodegenerative conditions. Our objective was to provide normative data for semantic phonemic discrepancy scores from a large sample of older adults. A total of 5780 community-dwelling older adults were included in this prospective, longitudinal study. Discrepancy scores were calculated by subtracting phonemic fluency score from semantic fluency score for each participant. Quantile regression was used to estimate normative values stratified for age. Subjects did better on testing of semantic fluency. The average discrepancy score was 9.18±6.89 words, (range, -20 to 37; n=5780). At the fiftieth percentile, those in their fifth decade produced 10 more "animals" than "letter F" words. Subjects scored one word less per decade, with an average of seven more "animal" words produced by those in their eighth decade. Our study is the first to provide normative data and confirms that, for animal versus letter F fluency, the semantic advantage persists into later life in a population-based sample of community-dwelling older adults. Given that a majority of clinical samples have confirmed a reverse of this pattern in Alzheimer's dementia (i.e., loss of semantic advantage in Alzheimer's disease, yielding a phonemic advantage), our findings support the clinical utility of brief fluency tests and encourage further research into their use in diagnosis and prediction of progression to dementia.
Scott, Rose M.; He, Zijing; Baillargeon, Renee; Cummins, Denise
Recent research indicates that toddlers and infants succeed at various "non-verbal" spontaneous-response false-belief tasks; here we asked whether toddlers would also succeed at verbal spontaneous-response false-belief tasks that imposed significant linguistic demands. We tested 2.5-year-olds using two novel tasks: a "preferential-looking" task in…
Lamarche, Larkin; Gionfriddo, Alicia M; Cline, Lindsay E; Gammage, Kimberley L; Adkin, Allan L
Verbal persuasion has been shown to influence psychological and behavioral outcomes. The present study had two objectives: (1) to examine the effect of verbal persuasion on task choice in a balance setting and (2) to evaluate the use of verbal persuasion as an approach to experimentally induce mismatches between perceived and actual balance. Healthy young adults (N=68) completed an 8-m tandem walk task without vision and then were randomly assigned to a feedback group (good, control, or poor), regardless of actual balance. Following the feedback, participants chose to perform the task in one of three conditions differing in level of challenge and also were required to perform the task under the same pre-feedback conditions. Balance efficacy and perceived stability were rated before and after each pre- and post-feedback task, respectively. Balance performance measures were also collected. Following the feedback, participants in the good group were more likely to choose the most challenging task while those in the poor group were more likely to choose the least challenging task. Following the feedback, all groups showed improved balance performance. However, balance efficacy and perceived stability increased for the good and control groups but balance efficacy decreased and perceived stability was unchanged for the poor group. Thus, these findings demonstrate that verbal persuasion can influence task choice and may be used as an approach to experimentally create mismatches between perceived and actual balance. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Wakefield, Claire E.; Homewood, Judi; Taylor, Alan J.
Studies of how children who are blind acquire and use language have focused less on cognitive compensations and more on delays in development. Vision is important in the establishment of early communicative patterns, and sighted children regularly use contextual visual information, such as a speaker's gestures and eye gaze, to make sense of speech…
Tracy D Vannorsdall
Full Text Available AbstractBackground: Word retrieval during verbal fluency tasks utilizes both automatic and controlled cognitive processes. A distinction has been made between the generation of clusters and switches on verbal fluency tasks. Clusters, or the reporting of contiguous words within semantic or phonemic subcategories, are thought to reflect a relatively automatic processes In contrast, switching from one subcategory to another is thought to represent more controlled, effortful form of cognitive processing. Objective: In this single-blind experiment, we investigated whether tDCS can modify qualitative aspects of verbal fluency, such as clustering and switching, in healthy adults. Methods: Participants were randomly assigned to receive 1mA of either anodal/excitatory or cathodal/inhibitory active tDCS over the left prefrontal cortex in addition to sham stimulation. In the last segment of each 30-minute session, participants completed letter- and category-cued fluency tasks.Results: Anodal tDCS increased both overall productivity and the number and proportion of words in clusters during category-guided verbal fluency, whereas cathodal stimulation produced the opposite effect. Conclusions: tDCS can selectively alter automatic aspects of speeded lexical retrieval in a polarity-dependent fashion during a category-guided fluency task.
Abeare, Christopher A; Freund, Sabrina; Kaploun, Kristen; McAuley, Tara; Dumitrescu, Claudiu
The clinical assessment of affective functioning has been slow to incorporate findings from affective neuroscience. Of particular interest in the current study is the assessment of affective word production. In a series of four studies, we examined test-retest and interrater reliability for the Emotion Word Fluency Test (EWFT), basic construct validity with existing verbal fluency measures, physiological responses across verbal fluency tasks, and a novel scoring method to examine qualitative aspects of participant response sets. Results demonstrated interrater and test-retest reliability values that were comparable to those of other commonly used verbal fluency tests. Construct validity was demonstrated by relations between the EWFT and other verbal fluency tests as well as through physiological evidence that performance on the EWFT is related to greater sympathetic activity than traditional verbal fluency tasks. Lastly, some of the novel scoring metrics related to two self-report measures of emotional functioning. Taken together, our findings provide initial support for the use of the EWFT as a measure of emotion word generation ability in young adults. This measure may prove to be useful in the assessment of affective language production in patient populations.
This study compares characteristics of fluency in student audio journals recorded in a laboratory setting with those recorded using mobile audio devices. Forty graduate students enrolled in four oral communication courses at an American university recorded weekly audio journals for a 10-week term. Students chose the environment in which they…
Cahill, Mary Ann; Gregory, Anne E.
Based on recent research in fluency instruction, the authors present a scenario in which a teacher focuses her fluency instruction on authentic fluency tasks based in performance. Beginning with establishing a student-friendly definition of fluency and culminating with student engagement in fun fluency activities, this article explores the…
Ahmadian, Mohammad Javad; Tavakoli, Mansoor
This article reports on a study that was primarily aimed at investigating the effects of simultaneous use of careful online planning and task repetition on accuracy, complexity, and fluency in the oral production of learners of English as a foreign language (EFL). The effects of four planning and task repetition conditions (i.e. careful online…
Full Text Available Controversy has not been yet resolved among researchers in second language research over the pedagogical efficacy of feedback in enhancing various features of learners’ writing skill. Research findings highlighting the significance of interactive tasks and learners’ engagement in improving the learning process stimulated the present study, the purpose of which was to explore the effect of task-supported interactive feedback on the accuracy, fluency, and organization of seventy two Iranian English major sophomores at Islamic Azad University-Mashhad Branch. It was hypothesized that engaging learners in both tasks and providing feedback would enhance their writing performance. The participants in three intact classes were randomly assigned to three groups: a control group, with no task (NTG, and two experimental groups: the task-supported group (TG, and the task-supported group with interactive feedback (TFG. Four one way analyses of variance tests were run on the research data indicated that the apparent gain in the task-supported interactive group over the other groups did not reach significance level. However, the TG group outperformed the control group in all three aspects of writing. The findings have pedagogical implications and can be interpreted in terms of socio-cultural characteristics of Iranian students.
Chami, Sara; Munro, Natalie; Docking, Kimberley; McGregor, Karla; Arciuli, Joanne; Baker, Elise; Heard, Rob
Verbal fluency tests are often used as part of an assessment battery to investigate children's lexical knowledge as well as executive function skills. To date, however, issues surrounding consistency of measurement cloud comparisons across studies, with the developmental performance of Australian-English speaking children also currently lacking. This study tracked verbal fluency development as measured by two semantic fluency tasks that included coding of fluency, clustering and switching type responses. Participants included 355 typically developing Australian-English speaking children (4-10 years) and 46 young adults. Total fluency was determined by the number of words produced for each category (Animals or Food), minus repetitions and rule violations. Semantic clusters (words generated within a subcategory) were coded while switches between single words or subcategories were differentiated and coded as either hard or cluster switches. Fluency showed consistent improvement over age. Cluster Switches and Hard Switches showed some evidence of a plateau in performance relative to fluency, but in opposite direction. Other measures showed no strong trends over age. Results were similar for both semantic categories. Our results highlight the rich information available within a semantic fluency task and the importance of differentiating hard and cluster switches in paediatric samples.
Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Gross, Megan; Buac, Milijana
We examined the effects of classroom bilingual experience in children on an array of cognitive skills. Monolingual English-speaking children were compared with children who spoke English as the native language and who had been exposed to Spanish in the context of dual-immersion schooling for an average of two years. The groups were compared on a measure of non-linguistic task-shifting; measures of verbal short-term and working memory; and measures of word-learning. The two groups of children did not differ on measures of non-linguistic task-shifting and verbal short-term memory. However, the classroom-exposure bilingual group outperformed the monolingual group on the measure of verbal working memory and a measure of word-learning. Together, these findings indicate that while exposure to a second language in a classroom setting may not be sufficient to engender changes in cognitive control, it can facilitate verbal memory and verbal learning. PMID:24576079
Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Gross, Megan; Buac, Milijana
We examined the effects of classroom bilingual experience in children on an array of cognitive skills. Monolingual English-speaking children were compared with children who spoke English as the native language and who had been exposed to Spanish in the context of dual-immersion schooling for an average of 2 years. The groups were compared on a measure of non-linguistic task-shifting; measures of verbal short-term and working memory; and measures of word learning. The two groups of children did not differ on measures of non-linguistic task-shifting and verbal short-term memory. However, the classroom-exposure bilingual group outperformed the monolingual group on the measure of verbal working memory and a measure of word learning. Together, these findings indicate that while exposure to a second language in a classroom setting may not be sufficient to engender changes in cognitive control, it can facilitate verbal memory and verbal learning. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Kray, Jutta; Eber, Jutta; Karbach, Julia
This study examined the influence of verbal self-instructions on age differences in task switching. Task-switching ability, measured as the difference between performance in single-task blocks and in mixed-task blocks in which participants switch between two tasks (mixing costs), increases during childhood and decreases in old age. To measure the…
Goel, Vinod; Eimontaite, Iveta; Goel, Amit; Schindler, Igor
While both insight and divergent thinking tasks are used to study creativity, there are reasons to believe that the two may call upon very different mechanisms. To explore this hypothesis, we administered a verbal insight task (riddles) and a divergent thinking task (verbal fluency) to 16 native English speakers and 16 non-native English speakers…
Gallassi, Roberto; Sambati, Luisa; Stanzani Maserati, Michelangelo; Poda, Roberto; Oppi, Federico; De Matteis, Maddalena; Marano, Gianfranco
The simple verbal analogies test (SVAT) is a short neuropsychological task requiring few minutes of administration that explores inductive verbal abstract thinking. It already showed a good specificity and sensitivity in discriminating normal controls from probable Alzheimer's disease patients. Verbal working memory, semantic knowledge and memory and word-finding ability are also involved in performing analogies. The aim of this study is to provide the normative values of this test in a sample of normal controls and corrections of raw scores and equivalent scores. We determined the normative values of SVAT in a sample of 424 normal controls to provide corrections of raw scores and equivalent scores. SVAT is a useful test to assess executive functions, working memory and to discriminate between cognitive deterioration and normal aging.
Full Text Available We modified classical mental exploration task introducing verbal modality. Consequently, we could test robust effects from lexical processing in an attempt to understand whether the underlying mental representation is strictly propositional. In our three experiments, in addition to map modality (visual or verbal, lexical frequency, concreteness and visual frequency were also varied. The symbolic distance effect was replicated, regardless of map modality. Exploration of distances was regularly faster on pictorial maps. Effects of lexical frequency and concreteness were not significant for verbal maps. However, when visual frequency was introduced on pictorial maps both type of frequencies generated measurable effects. Our findings directly contradict the assumptions of propositional theories (1 subjects were faster in the visual modality, which would be difficult to explain if the perceptual code had to be transformed into propositional, (2 word frequency and concreteness did not contribute as would be expected if propositional code were a default.
Wroblewski, Greggory J; Matsuo, Koji; Hirata, Keiko; Matsubara, Toshio; Harada, Kenichiro; Watanabe, Yoshifumi; Shinoda, Koh
Data collected during a phonemic fluency task (or 'FAS test'), a standard component of neuropsychological batteries for assessment of cognitive deficits, may be language-dependent and may differ depending on second-language proficiency. The unique orthographic/phonological system of the task language, and the reported cognitive advantages inherent to bilinguals, may each influence the task's neural correlates. However, language background is not currently assessed in most studies testing phonemic fluency. Here, we used 52-channel functional near-infrared spectroscopy in college-aged native-Japanese subjects to examine functional changes in oxygenated hemoglobin elicited during a phonemic fluency task performed in Japanese and in English. We found activity differences that were related to task language and second-language proficiency. Besides loci activated in the Japanese test, bilateral precentral channels were specifically recruited in the English test. Furthermore, the higher-proficiency group showed almost no increase in oxygenated hemoglobin in either language context, whereas participants with lower proficiency showed widespread increases for both contexts. We interpret precentral increases as the consequence of additional articulatory resource recruitment in a second-language context. As for the lack of such variation in the higher-proficiency group, it may reflect an advantage in nonverbal executive control in this group. Together, our results point to language background and proficiency as confounding variables in neuroimaging studies of phonemic fluency and that the adequacy of such measures in populations with varying language backgrounds needs to be considered in future studies.
Di Berardino, Federica; Forti, Stella; Cesarani, Antonio
The aim of this study was to design a complementary speech audiometry test using verbal tasks and motor responses (VTMR) to assess the ability of a subject to understand and perform simple motor tasks with 3-dimensional objects, to describe its construction, and to show the preliminary results of a pilot study on the Italian version of the test. The items used in the test setting included 1 base, 1 hammer, 1 wooden structure with 4 sticks, and 5 rings of different colors and 20 lists with 5 verbal tasks per list. The VTMR test and bisyllabic speech audiometry were evaluated in normal-hearing subjects with and without cognitive impairment and in subjects with sensorineural hearing loss. All normal-hearing subjects without cognitive impairment performed the VTMR tasks (100%) correctly at 35 dB sound pressure level. In subjects with sensorineural hearing loss, the percentage of correct answers was significantly higher for the VTMR test than for bisyllabic speech audiometry above 50 dB sound pressure level. This percentage was higher for the VTMR also in normal-hearing subjects with poor cognitive skills. The VTMR might make it easier to check patients' ability to understand verbal commands than does traditional speech audiometry, in particular in those patients with poor test-taking skills.
Rossi, Natalia Freitas; Sampaio, Adriana; Gonçalves, Oscar F; Giacheti, Célia Maria
Williams syndrome (WS) is a neurodevelopmental genetic disorder, often referred as being characterized by dissociation between verbal and non-verbal abilities, although the number of studies disputing this proposal is emerging. Indeed, although they have been traditionally reported as displaying increased speech fluency, this topic has not been fully addressed in research. In previous studies carried out with a small group of individuals with WS, we reported speech breakdowns during conversational and autobiographical narratives suggestive of language difficulties. In the current study, we characterized the speech fluency profile using an ecologically based measure--a narrative task (story generation) was collected from a group of individuals with WS (n = 30) and typically developing group (n = 39) matched in mental age. Oral narratives were elicited using a picture stimulus--the cookie theft picture from Boston Diagnosis Aphasia Test. All narratives were analyzed according to typology and frequency of fluency breakdowns (non-stuttered and stuttered disfluencies). Oral narratives in WS group differed from typically developing group, mainly due to a significant increase in the frequency of disfluencies, particularly in terms of hesitations, repetitions and pauses. This is the first evidence of disfluencies in WS using an ecologically based task (oral narrative task), suggesting that these speech disfluencies may represent a significant marker of language problems in WS. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Barrow, Jane H; Baldwin, Carryl L
The impact of interference from irrelevant spatial versus verbal cues is investigated in an auditory spatial Stroop task, and individual differences in navigation strategy are examined as a moderating factor. Verbal-spatial cue conflict in the auditory modality has not been extensively studied, and yet the potential for such conflict can be high in certain settings, such as modern aircraft and automobile cockpits, where multiple warning systems and verbally delivered instructions may compete for the operator's spatial attention. Two studies are presented in which participants responded to either the semantic meaning or the spatial location of directional words, which were presented from congruent and incongruent locations. A subset was selected from the larger sample for additional analyses based on their navigation strategy. Results demonstrated greater interference when participants were responding to the spatial location and thus attempting to ignore conflicting semantic information. Participants with a verbal navigation strategy paralleled this finding. Conversely, highly spatial navigators responded faster to spatially relevant information but did not show corresponding interference when trying to ignore spatial information. The findings suggest that people have fundamentally different approaches to the use of auditory spatial information that manifest at the early level of orienting toward a single word or sound. When designing spatial information displays and warning systems, particularly those with an auditory component, designers should ensure that either verbal-directional or nonverbal-spatial information is utilized by all alerts to reduce interference. © 2014, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.
Full Text Available Abstract Background We investigated whether individual differences in baseline executive control capacity could predict state anxiety during a potentially life-threatening situation. Methods 19 Swedish military conscripts were assessed during two measurement occasions. During a baseline measurement, data regarding performance on a letter fluency task and state anxiety were assessed. During a second measurement, performed immediately prior to participation in a live hand-grenade throwing exercise, data regarding state anxiety was assessed. All participants were male, right-handed and had fulfilled 12 years of education. Results The level of state anxiety was significantly increased between the two measurement occasions (p β = -.37; p β = .43; p Conclusion Although more research is needed the present finding suggests that individual differences in executive control capacity might be related to emotion regulation ability during acute stressor exposure.
Osipowicz, Karol; Sperling, Michael R; Sharan, Ashwini D; Tracy, Joseph I
Predicting cognitive function following resective surgery remains an important clinical goal. Each MRI neuroimaging technique can potentially provide unique and distinct insight into changes that occur in the structural or functional organization of "at-risk" cognitive functions. The authors tested for the singular and combined power of 3 imaging techniques (functional MRI [fMRI], resting state fMRI, diffusion tensor imaging) to predict cognitive outcome following left (dominant) anterior temporal lobectomy for intractable epilepsy. METHODS; The authors calculated the degree of deviation from normal, determined the rate of change in this measure across the pre- and postsurgical imaging sessions, and then compared these measures for their ability to predict verbal fluency changes following surgery. The data show that the 3 neuroimaging techniques, in a combined model, can reliably predict cognitive outcome following anterior temporal lobectomy for medically intractable temporal lobe epilepsy. These findings suggest that these 3 imaging modalities can be used effectively, in an additive fashion, to predict functional reorganization and cognitive outcome following anterior temporal lobectomy.
Although reading fluency has been dismissed and overlooked as an important component of effective reading instruction, the author makes that case that fluency continues to be essential for success in learning to read. Moreover, many students who struggle in reading manifest difficulties in reading fluency. After defining reading fluency, the article explores proven methods for improving reading fluency, and finally explores questions regarding fluency that when answered may lead t...
Marshall, Chloë; Rowley, Katherine; Atkinson, Joanna
We used fluency tasks to investigate lexical organisation in Deaf adults who use British sign language (BSL). The number of responses produced to semantic categories did not differ from reports in spoken languages. However, there was considerable variability in the number of responses across phonological categories, and some signers had difficulty…
Caliandro, Pietro; Silvestri, Gabriella; Padua, Luca; Bianchi, Maria Laura Ester; Simbolotti, Chiara; Russo, Giuseppina; Masciullo, Marcella; Rossini, Paolo Maria
Myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1), the most common muscular dystrophy in adults, is characterized by a multisystem involvement. Cognitive involvement predominantly affecting frono-temporal functions is an established clinical feature in this disorder. Brain imaging and metabolic studies showed a predominant involvement of fronto-temporal regions in DM1 patients, yet correlation studies among these findings and neuropsychological data gave contrasting results. In order to contribute to clarify the relationship between the metabolic changes documented in the frontal cortex of DM1 patients and a related cognitive task, we applied the functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) during the execution of a phonemic verbal fluency task (pVFT). We enrolled 29 consecutive right-handed DM1 patients and 30 controls. A 2-channel fNIRS imaging system was used to investigate changes in oxygenated [O2Hb] and deoxygenated [HHb] hemoglobin concentrations in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) during a pVFT. [O2Hb] and [HHb] baseline-corrected activation values were calculated (respectively [O2Hb]c and [HHb]c). In the control group [O2Hb] significantly increased and [HHb] significantly decreased during the pVFT, in the DM1 group no significant variation was found for both parameters revealing no activation of both PFCs during the task. On the other hand, in the DM1 sample, statistical analysis revealed a direct correlation between [O2Hb]c of the left PFC and the pVFT score, while no correlation was observed in the control group. Our study reveals that DM1 patients show prefrontal hypometabolism during a specific frontal cognitive task compared to controls. Moreover the rapid temporal discrimination of fNIRS allows revealing the correlation between the PFC hypometabolism and the cognitive performance in DM1 patients. fNIRS can be helpful to understand the functional correlates of the frontal cognitive impairment in DM1. Copyright © 2013 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology
Weijer-Bergsma, E. van de; Kroesbergen, E.H.; Jolani, S.; Luit, J.E.H. van
In two studies, the psychometric properties of an online self-reliant verbal working memory task (the Monkey game) for primary school children (6-12 years of age) were examined. In Study 1, children (n = 5,203) from 31 primary schools participated. The participants completed computerized verbal and
van de Weijer-Bergsma, Eva; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H.; Jolani, Shahab; van Luit, Johannes E H
In two studies, the psychometric properties of an online self-reliant verbal working memory task (the Monkey game) for primary school children (6–12 years of age) were examined. In Study 1, children (n = 5,203) from 31 primary schools participated. The participants completed computerized verbal and
Although reading fluency has been dismissed and overlooked as an important component of effective reading instruction, the author makes that case that fluency continues to be essential for success in learning to read. Moreover, many students who struggle in reading manifest difficulties in reading fluency. After defining reading fluency, the…
Full Text Available Although reading fluency has been dismissed and overlooked as an important component of effective reading instruction, the author makes that case that fluency continues to be essential for success in learning to read. Moreover, many students who struggle in reading manifest difficulties in reading fluency. After defining reading fluency, the article explores proven methods for improving reading fluency, and finally explores questions regarding fluency that when answered may lead to a greater emphasis on and understanding of reading fluency as a necessary part of teaching reading.
Desjardins, Catherine; Scherzer, Peter; Braun, Claude M J; Godbout, Lucie; Poissant, Hélène
Though juvenile and adult ADHD cases are well known to have a nonverbal planning impairment, a verbal-planning impairment has been demonstrated only in juvenile ADHD. The purpose of this investigation is to determine whether a verbal planning impairment also characterizes adult ADHD. A cohort of 30 adult ADHD clients of a university psychological clinic are compared to 30 age-, education-, gender-, and IQ-matched persons recruited from the general population who did not have ADHD. The dependent measure is a set of 6 paper/pencil 10-item script generation tasks. The findings reveal that the ADHD cohort was significantly impaired on the script task and the script task correlated significantly with severity of ADHD (CAARS index + WURS), whereas several neuropsychological measures of executive function (Stroop, COWA, Rey's Complex Figure, D2, CVLT, CPT-II) did not. Findings further showed that the script measure was weakly correlated with the other established neuropsychological measures of executive function (r script generation tasks is distinctly impaired in clinically referred adult ADHD.
Cui, Jiaxin; Georgiou, George K; Zhang, Yiyun; Li, Yixun; Shu, Hua; Zhou, Xinlin
Rapid automatized naming (RAN) has been found to predict mathematics. However, the nature of their relationship remains unclear. Thus, the purpose of this study was twofold: (a) to examine how RAN (numeric and non-numeric) predicts a subdomain of mathematics (arithmetic fluency) and (b) to examine what processing skills may account for the RAN-arithmetic fluency relationship. A total of 160 third-year kindergarten Chinese children (83 boys and 77 girls, mean age=5.11years) were assessed on RAN (colors, objects, digits, and dice), nonverbal IQ, visual-verbal paired associate learning, phonological awareness, short-term memory, speed of processing, approximate number system acuity, and arithmetic fluency (addition and subtraction). The results indicated first that RAN was a significant correlate of arithmetic fluency and the correlations did not vary as a function of type of RAN or arithmetic fluency tasks. In addition, RAN continued to predict addition and subtraction fluency even after controlling for all other processing skills. Taken together, these findings challenge the existing theoretical accounts of the RAN-arithmetic fluency relationship and suggest that, similar to reading fluency, multiple processes underlie the RAN-arithmetic fluency relationship. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Frontal and anterior cingulate activation during overt verbal fluency in patients with first episode psychosis Ativação frontal e do cíngulo anterior durante tarefa de fluência verbal em pacientes em primeiro episódio psicótico
Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: Functional neuroimaging studies using phonological verbal fluency tasks allow the assessment of neural circuits relevant to the neuropsychology of psychosis. There is evidence that the prefrontal cortex and anterior cingulate gyrus present different activation patterns in subjects with chronic schizophrenia relative to healthy controls. We assessed the functioning in these brain regions during phonological verbal fluency in subjects with recent-onset functional psychoses, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI. METHODS: Seven patients with functional psychoses (3 schizophreniform, 4 affective and 9 healthy controls were studied. We compared functional magnetic resonance images acquired during articulation of words beginning with letters classified as easy for word production in Portuguese. Statistical comparisons were performed using non-parametric tests. RESULTS: There were no differences between patients and controls in task performance. Controls showed greater activation than patients in the left rostral anterior cingulate gyrus and right inferior prefrontal cortex, whereas patients showed stronger activation than controls in a more dorsal part of the anterior cingulate gyrus bilaterally and in a more superior portion of the right prefrontal cortex. CONCLUSION: Our preliminary findings of attenuated engagement of inferior prefrontal cortex and anterior cingulate gyrus in patients with recent onset psychosis during phonological verbal fluency are consistent with those of previous studies. The greater activation found in other parts of the anterior cingulate gyrus and prefrontal cortex in patients may be related to a compensatory response that is required to maintain normal task performance, and suggests a pattern of disorganized activity of different functional anterior cingulate gyrus units in association with psychotic conditions.OBJETIVO: Estudos de neuroimagem funcional empregando tarefa de fluência verbal fonol
Lee, Gabrielle T.; Singer-Dudek, Jessica
Schools are increasingly being encouraged to teach vocational skills to middle and high school students. Although extensive research exists demonstrating the benefits of fluency instruction when teaching academic skills to this population of students, few studies have examined the importance of fluency training when teaching vocational skills.…
Landmann, Nina; Kuhn, Marion; Maier, Jonathan-Gabriel; Feige, Bernd; Spiegelhalder, Kai; Riemann, Dieter; Nissen, Christoph
Sleep after learning promotes the quantitative strengthening of new memories. Less is known about the impact of sleep on the qualitative reorganization of memory content. This study tested the hypothesis that sleep facilitates both memory strengthening and reorganization as indexed by a verbal creativity task. Sixty healthy university students (30 female, 30 male, 20-30 years) were investigated in a randomized, controlled parallel-group study with three experimental groups (sleep, sleep deprivation, daytime wakefulness). At baseline, 60 items of the Compound Remote Associate (CRA) task were presented. At retest after the experimental conditions, the same items were presented again together with 20 new control items to disentangle off-line incubation from online performance effects. Sleep significantly strengthened formerly encoded memories in comparison to both wake conditions (improvement in speed of correctly resolved items). Offline reorganization was not enhanced following sleep, but was enhanced following sleep-deprivation in comparison to sleep and daytime wakefulness (solution time of previously incubated, newly solved items). Online performance did not differ between the groups (solution time of new control items). The results support the notion that sleep promotes the strengthening, but not the reorganization, of newly encoded memory traces in a verbal creativity task. Future studies are needed to further determine the impact of sleep on different types of memory reorganization, such as associative thinking, creativity and emotional memory processing, and potential clinical translations, such as the augmentation of psychotherapy through sleep interventions. © 2016 Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC.
Much research has examined how different patterns of social interaction shape language learners' interactional roles (e.g., collaborative, dominant, passive) in peer-to-peer conversations. However, little or no research has investigated the co-construction of such roles in multiparty, online task-based dialogues within the framework of discursive…
Palmiero, Massimiliano; Nori, Raffaella; Piccardi, Laura
According to the peak and decline model divergent thinking declines at a specific age (in or after middle age). However, if divergent thinking declines steadily in aging still has to be clarified. In order to explore the age-related changes in verbal and visual divergent thinking, in the present study a sample of 159 participants was divided in five age groups: young adults (18-35 years), middle-aged adults (36-55), young old (56-74), old (75-85) and the oldest-old (86-98). Two divergent thinking tasks were administered: the alternative uses for cardboard boxes, aimed at assessing verbal ideational fluency, flexibility and originality; the completion drawing task, aimed at assessing visual ideational fluency, flexibility and originality. Results showed that after peaking in the young adult group (20-35 years) all components of verbal and visual divergent thinking stabilized in the middle-aged adult group (36-55 years) and then started declining in the young old group (56-75). Interestingly, all components were found to be preserved after declining. Yet, verbal and visual divergent thinking were found at the same extent across age groups, with the exception of visual ideational fluency, that was higher in the young old group, the old group and the oldest-old group than verbal ideational fluency. These results support the idea that divergent thinking does not decline steadily in the elderly. Given that older people can preserve to some extent verbal and visual divergent thinking, these findings have important implications for active aging, that is, divergent thinking might be fostered in aging in order to prevent the cognitive decline.
Although reading fluency has been dismissed and overlooked as an important component of effective reading instruction, the author makes that case that fluency continues to be essential for success in learning to read...
Müller, U; Rowe, J B; Rittman, T; Lewis, C; Robbins, T W; Sahakian, B J
Modafinil, a putative cognitive enhancing drug, has previously been shown to improve performance of healthy volunteers as well as patients with attention deficit disorder and schizophrenia, mainly in tests of executive functions. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of modafinil on non-verbal cognitive functions in healthy volunteers, with a particular focus on variations of cognitive load, measures of motivational factors and the effects on creative problem-solving. A double-blind placebo-controlled parallel design study evaluated the effect of 200 mg of modafinil (N = 32) or placebo (N = 32) in non-sleep deprived healthy volunteers. Non-verbal tests of divergent and convergent thinking were used to measure creativity. A new measure of task motivation was used, together with more levels of difficulty on neuropsychological tests from the CANTAB battery. Improvements under modafinil were seen on spatial working memory, planning and decision making at the most difficult levels, as well as visual pattern recognition memory following delay. Subjective ratings of enjoyment of task performance were significantly greater under modafinil compared with placebo, but mood ratings overall were not affected. The effects of modafinil on creativity were inconsistent and did not reach statistical significance. Modafinil reliably enhanced task enjoyment and performance on several cognitive tests of planning and working memory, but did not improve paired associates learning. The findings confirm that modafinil can enhance aspects of highly demanding cognitive performance in non-sleep deprived individuals. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled 'Cognitive Enhancers'. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Müller, U.; Rowe, J.B.; Rittman, T.; Lewis, C.; Robbins, T.W.; Sahakian, B.J.
Background Modafinil, a putative cognitive enhancing drug, has previously been shown to improve performance of healthy volunteers as well as patients with attention deficit disorder and schizophrenia, mainly in tests of executive functions. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of modafinil on non-verbal cognitive functions in healthy volunteers, with a particular focus on variations of cognitive load, measures of motivational factors and the effects on creative problem-solving. Methods A double-blind placebo-controlled parallel design study evaluated the effect of 200 mg of modafinil (N = 32) or placebo (N = 32) in non-sleep deprived healthy volunteers. Non-verbal tests of divergent and convergent thinking were used to measure creativity. A new measure of task motivation was used, together with more levels of difficulty on neuropsychological tests from the CANTAB battery. Results Improvements under modafinil were seen on spatial working memory, planning and decision making at the most difficult levels, as well as visual pattern recognition memory following delay. Subjective ratings of enjoyment of task performance were significantly greater under modafinil compared with placebo, but mood ratings overall were not affected. The effects of modafinil on creativity were inconsistent and did not reach statistical significance. Conclusions Modafinil reliably enhanced task enjoyment and performance on several cognitive tests of planning and working memory, but did not improve paired associates learning. The findings confirm that modafinil can enhance aspects of highly demanding cognitive performance in non-sleep deprived individuals. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled ‘Cognitive Enhancers’. PMID:22820554
Miles, Sarah J.; Minda, John Paul
Current theories of category learning posit separate verbal and nonverbal learning systems. Past research suggests that the verbal system relies on verbal working memory and executive functioning and learns rule-defined categories; the nonverbal system does not rely on verbal working memory and learns non-rule-defined categories (E. M. Waldron…
Peter, Skehan; Foster, Pauline; Shum, Sabrina
This article reports a study comparing first and second language fluency during narrative retelling tasks of varying degrees of tightness in structural organisation, exploring in particular a distinction between discourse-based and clause-based fluency. We argue that positive and negative influences on fluency are linked to the Conceptualiser and Formulator stages of Levelt's model of speaking. Task structure and degree of subordination, which were related to greater fluency for both native a...
McGregor, Karla K.; Oleson, Jacob
Purpose The purpose of this study is to determine whether deficits in executive function and lexical-semantic memory compromise the linguistic performance of young adults with specific learning disabilities (LD) enrolled in postsecondary studies. Method One hundred eighty-five students with LD (n = 53) or normal language development (ND, n = 132) named items in the categories animals and food for 1 minute for each category and completed tests of lexical-semantic knowledge and executive control of memory. Groups were compared on total names, mean cluster size, frequency of embedded clusters, frequency of cluster switches, and change in fluency over time. Secondary analyses of variability within the LD group were also conducted. Results The LD group was less fluent than the ND group. Within the LD group, lexical-semantic knowledge predicted semantic fluency and cluster size; executive control of memory predicted semantic fluency and cluster switches. The LD group produced smaller clusters and fewer embedded clusters than the ND group. Groups did not differ in switching or change over time. Conclusions Deficits in the lexical-semantic system associated with LD may persist into young adulthood, even among those who have managed their disability well enough to attend college. Lexical-semantic deficits are associated with compromised semantic fluency, and the two problems are more likely among students with more severe disabilities. PMID:28267833
Botting, Nicola; Psarou, Popi; Caplin, Tamara; Nevin, Laura
Background and Design: In recent years, evidence has emerged that suggests specific language impairment (SLI) does not exclusively affect linguistic skill. Studies have revealed memory difficulties, including those measured using nonverbal tasks. However, there has been relatively little research into the nature of the verbal/nonverbal boundaries…
Lancioni, Giulio E.; Singh, Nirbhay N.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Oliva, Doretta; Smaldone, Angela; La Martire, Maria L.; Alberti, Gloria; Scigliuzzo, Francesca
In a recent single-case study, we showed that a new verbal-instruction system, ensuring the automatic presentation of step instructions, was beneficial for promoting the task performance of a woman with multiple disabilities (including blindness). The present study was aimed at replicating and extending the aforementioned investigation with three…
Sensitivity of composite scores to amyloid burden in preclinical Alzheimer's disease: Introducing the Z-scores of Attention, Verbal fluency, and Episodic memory for Nondemented older adults composite score.
Lim, Yen Ying; Snyder, Peter J; Pietrzak, Robert H; Ukiqi, Albulene; Villemagne, Victor L; Ames, David; Salvado, Olivier; Bourgeat, Pierrick; Martins, Ralph N; Masters, Colin L; Rowe, Christopher C; Maruff, Paul
Cognitive composite scores developed for preclinical Alzheimer's disease (AD) often consist of multiple cognitive domains as they may provide greater sensitivity to detect β-amyloid (Aβ)-related cognitive decline than episodic memory (EM) composite scores alone. However, this has never been empirically tested. We compared the rate of cognitive decline associated with high Aβ (Aβ+) and very high Aβ (Aβ++) in cognitively normal (CN) older adults on three multidomain cognitive composite scores and one single-domain (EM) composite score. CN older adults (n = 423) underwent Aβ neuroimaging and completed neuropsychological assessments at baseline, and at 18-, 36-, 54-, and 72-month follow-ups. Four cognitive composite scores were computed: the ADCS-PACC (ADCS-Preclinical Alzheimer Cognitive Composite), ADCS-PACC without the inclusion of the mini-mental state examination (MMSE), an EM composite, and the Z-scores of Attention, Verbal fluency, and Episodic memory for Nondemented older adults (ZAVEN) composite. Compared with Aβ+ CN older adults, Aβ++ CN older adults showed faster rates of decline across all cognitive composites, with the largest decline observed for ZAVEN composite (d = 1.07). Similarly, compared with Aβ- CN older adults, Aβ+ CN older adults also showed faster rates of cognitive decline, but only for the ADCS-PACC no MMSE (d = 0.43), EM (d = 0.53), and ZAVEN (d = 0.50) composites. Aβ-related cognitive decline is best detected using validated neuropsychological instruments. Removal of the MMSE from the ADCS-PACC and replacing it with a test of executive function (verbal fluency; i.e., the ZAVEN) rendered this composite more sensitive even in detecting Aβ-related cognitive decline between Aβ+ and Aβ++ CN older adults.
Stenbäck, Victoria; Hällgren, Mathias; Lyxell, Björn; Larsby, Birgitta
Cognitive functions and speech-recognition-in-noise were evaluated with a cognitive test battery, assessing response inhibition using the Hayling task, working memory capacity (WMC) and verbal information processing, and an auditory test of speech recognition. The cognitive tests were performed in silence whereas the speech recognition task was presented in noise. Thirty young normally-hearing individuals participated in the study. The aim of the study was to investigate one executive function, response inhibition, and whether it is related to individual working memory capacity (WMC), and how speech-recognition-in-noise relates to WMC and inhibitory control. The results showed a significant difference between initiation and response inhibition, suggesting that the Hayling task taps cognitive activity responsible for executive control. Our findings also suggest that high verbal ability was associated with better performance in the Hayling task. We also present findings suggesting that individuals who perform well on tasks involving response inhibition, and WMC, also perform well on a speech-in-noise task. Our findings indicate that capacity to resist semantic interference can be used to predict performance on speech-in-noise tasks. © 2015 Scandinavian Psychological Associations and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Desjardins, Catherine; Scherzer, Peter; Braun, Claude M. J.; Godbout, Lucie; Poissant, Helene
Objective: Though juvenile and adult ADHD cases are well known to have a nonverbal planning impairment, a verbal-planning impairment has been demonstrated only in juvenile ADHD. The purpose of this investigation is to determine whether a verbal planning impairment also characterizes adult ADHD. Methods: A cohort of 30 adult ADHD clients of a…
Bunyan, Peter; Barton, Lorraine
Eleven students of novice paddling ability were divided into two groups, one group receiving verbal, the other nonverbal, instructions on using the kayak stern rudder. The verbal group was significantly better at performing the correct sequence of movements. Results support existing research showing that observation alone does not enable the…
side if necessary and identify by block number) WORD FLUENCY MEASUREMENT NEUROPSYCHOLOGY PSYCHOLOGY DIVING NAVSEA TASK NO. 86-54 SATURATION NEDU TEST...WORDS: <II Word Fluency--,, Neuropsychology’-" Diving Saturation Measurement Pyschology NAVSEA Task #86-54 NEDU Test Plan #86-10 v N. .,#7V REPEATED...function (Fillskov & Boll, -V 1981). One type of test with clinical significance reflects Word Fluency (Borkowski, Benton & Spreen, 1967; Lezak, 1983). Word
Omurtag, Ahmet; Aghajani, Haleh; Onur Keles, Hasan
Objective. Concurrent scalp electroencephalography (EEG) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), which we refer to as EEG+fNIRS, promises greater accuracy than the individual modalities while remaining nearly as convenient as EEG. We sought to quantify the hybrid system’s ability to decode mental states and compare it with its unimodal components. Approach. We recorded from healthy volunteers taking the category fluency test and applied machine learning techniques to the data. Main results. EEG+fNIRS’s decoding accuracy was greater than that of its subsystems, partly due to the new type of neurovascular features made available by hybrid data. Significance. Availability of an accurate and practical decoding method has potential implications for medical diagnosis, brain-computer interface design, and neuroergonomics.
Schmidt, Charlotte S M; Schumacher, Lena V; Römer, Pia; Leonhart, Rainer; Beume, Lena; Martin, Markus; Dressing, Andrea; Weiller, Cornelius; Kaller, Christoph P
Verbal fluency for semantic categories and phonological letters is frequently applied to studies of language and executive functions. Despite its popularity, it is still debated whether measures of semantic and phonological fluency reflect the same or distinct sets of cognitive processes. Word generation in the two task variants is believed to involve different types of search processes. Findings from the lesion and neuroimaging literature further suggest a stronger reliance of phonological and semantic fluency on frontal and temporal brain areas, respectively. This evidence for differential cognitive and neural contributions is, however, strongly challenged by findings from factor analyses, which have consistently yielded only one explanatory factor. As all previous factor-analytical approaches were based on very small item sets, this apparent discrepancy may be due to methodological limitations. In this study, we therefore applied a German version of the verbal fluency task with 8 semantic (i.e. categories) and 8 phonological items (i.e. letters). An exploratory factor analysis with oblique rotation in N=69 healthy young adults indeed revealed a two-factor solution with markedly different loadings for semantic and phonological items. This pattern was corroborated by a confirmatory factor analysis in a sample of N=174 stroke patients. As results from both samples also revealed a substantial portion of common variance between the semantic and phonological factor, the present data further demonstrate that semantic and phonological verbal fluency are based on clearly distinct but also on shared sets of cognitive processes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
McKendrick, Ryan; Ayaz, Hasan; Olmstead, Ryan; Parasuraman, Raja
To better understand the mechanisms by which working memory training can augment human performance we continuously monitored trainees with near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) while they performed a dual verbal-spatial working memory task. Linear mixed effects models were used to model the changes in cerebral hemodynamic response as a result of time spent training working memory. Nonlinear increases in left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) were observed with increased exposure to working memory training. Adaptive and yoked training groups also showed differential effects in rostral prefrontal cortex with increased exposure to working memory training. There was also a significant negative relationship between verbal working memory performance and bilateral VLPFC activation. These results are interpreted in terms of decreased proactive interference, increased neural efficiency, reduced mental workload for stimulus processing, and increased working memory capacity with training. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Blume, Christine; Lechinger, Julia; del Giudice, Renata; Wislowska, Malgorzata; Heib, Dominik P J; Schabus, Manuel
The ability to attribute independent mental states (e.g. opinions, perceptions, beliefs) to oneself and others is termed Theory of Mind (ToM). Previous studies investigating ToM usually employed verbal paradigms and functional neuroimaging methods. Here, we studied oscillatory responses in the electroencephalogram (EEG) in a non-verbal social cognition task. The aim of this study was twofold: First, we wanted to investigate differences in oscillatory responses to animations differing with regard to the complexity of social "interactions". Secondly, we intended to evaluate the basic cognitive processes underlying social cognition. To this end, we analyzed theta, alpha, beta and gamma task-related de-/synchronization (TRD/TRS) during presentation of six non-verbal videos differing in the complexity of (social) "interactions" between two geometric shapes. Videos were adopted from Castelli et al. (2000)and belonged to three conditions: Videos designed to evoke attributions of mental states (ToM), interaction descriptions (goal-directed, GD) and videos in which the shapes moved randomly (R). Analyses revealed that only theta activity consistently varied as a function of social "interaction" complexity. Results suggest that ToM/GD videos attract more attention and working-memory resources and may have activated related memory contents. Alpha and beta results were less consistent. While alpha effects suggest that observation of social "interactions" may benefit from inhibition of self-centered processing, oscillatory responses in the beta range could be related to action observation. In summary, the results provide insight into basic cognitive processes involved in social cognition and render the paradigm attractive for the investigation of social cognitive processes in non-verbal populations. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Tobia, Valentina; Marzocchi, Gian Marco
This study investigates the role of linguistic and visuospatial attentional processes in predicting reading fluency in typical Italian readers attending primary school. Tasks were administered to 651 children with reading fluency z scores > -1.5 standard deviation to evaluate their phonological awareness, rapid automatized naming (RAN), verbal short-term memory, vocabulary, visual search skills, verbal-visual recall, and visual-spatial attention. Hybrid models combining confirmatory factor analysis and path analysis were used to evaluate the data obtained from younger (first and second grade) and older (third-fifth grade) children, respectively. The results showed that phonological awareness and RAN played a significant role among younger children, while also vocabulary, verbal short-term memory, and visuospatial attention were significant factors among older children.
Kaemingk, Kris L; Mulvaney, Shelagh; Tanner Halverson, Patricia
... ), studies of children who have been diagnosed with FAS and FAE document deficits in general intellectual function, verbal abilities, visual–spatial abilities, motor skills, attention, and memory (for reviews, see Kaemingk & Paquette, 1999; Mattson & Riley, 1998 ). Despite significant impairments in multiple cognitive domains, there is some evidenc...
Van de Weijer-Bergsma, Eva; Kroesbergen, Evelyn H; Jolani, Shahab; Van Luit, Johannes E H
In two studies, the psychometric properties of an online self-reliant verbal working memory task (the Monkey game) for primary school children (6-12 years of age) were examined. In Study 1, children (n = 5,203) from 31 primary schools participated. The participants completed computerized verbal and visual-spatial working memory tasks (i.e., the Monkey game and the Lion game) and a paper-and-pencil version of Raven's Standard Progressive Matrices. Reading comprehension and math achievement test scores were obtained from the schools. First, the internal consistency of the Monkey game was examined. Second, multilevel modeling was used to examine the effects of classroom membership. Multilevel multivariate regression analysis was used to examine the Monkey game's concurrent relationship with the Lion game and its predictive relationships with reading comprehension and math achievement. Also, age-related differences in performance were examined. In Study 2, the concurrent relationships between the Monkey game and two tester-led computerized working memory tasks were further examined (n = 140). Also, the 1- and 2-year stability of the Monkey game was investigated. The Monkey game showed excellent internal consistency, good concurrent relationships with the other working memory measures, and significant age differences in performance. Performance on the Monkey game was also predictive of subsequent reading comprehension and mathematics performance, even after controlling for individual differences in intelligence. Performance on the Monkey game was influenced by classroom membership. The Monkey game is a reliable and suitable instrument for the online computerized and self-reliant assessment of verbal working memory in primary school children.
Bose, Arpita; Wood, Rosalind; Kiran, Swathi
Verbal fluency tasks are included in a broad range of aphasia assessments. It is well documented that people with aphasia (PWA) produce fewer items in these tasks. Successful performance on verbal fluency relies on the integrity of both linguistic and executive control abilities. It remains unclear if limited output in aphasia is solely due to their lexical retrieval difficulties or has a basis in their executive control abilities. Analysis techniques, such as temporal characteristics of word retrieved, clustering and switching, are better positioned to inform the debate surrounding the lexical and/or executive control contribution for success in verbal fluency. To investigate the differences in quantitative (i.e., number of correct words) and qualitative (i.e., switching, clustering and word-retrieval times) performances on animal fluency task as a function of time between PWA and healthy control speakers (CS). Animal fluency data for 60 s were collected from 34 PWA and 34 CS, and responses were time stamped. The 60-s period was divided into four equal intervals of 15 s each (i.e., 15, 30, 45 and 60 s). The number of correct words, cluster size, number of switches, within-cluster pause and between-cluster pause were evaluated as a function of four 15-s time intervals between PWA and CS. Compared with CS, PWA produced fewer words, had smaller cluster sizes and switched a fewer number of times. A decrease in the number of switches correlated with an increase in between-cluster pause durations. PWA showed longer within- and between-cluster pauses than CS. The two groups showed specific differences in the temporal pattern of the responses: as time evolved both PWA and CS showed decreased productivity for the number of correct words, but PWA reached the asymptote earlier in the time course than CS, neither group showed a change in cluster size, and the number of switches decreased as a function of time only for CS. The findings suggest that for PWA the search and
Bava Harji, Madhubala; Gheitanchian, Mehrnaz
Albeit Task-Based Language Teaching (TBLT) has been extensively researched, there appears to be limited studies that focus on the effects of multimedia technology (MT) enhanced TBLT approach on EFL development. A study was conducted to examine the effects of a MT imbued TBLT, i.e. Multimedia Task-Based Teaching and Learning (MMTBLT) approach on…
Guastello, Stephen J; Boeh, Henry; Schimmels, Michael; Gorin, Hillary; Huschen, Samuel; Davis, Erin; Peters, Natalie E; Fabisch, Megan; Poston, Kirsten
The aim of this study was to evaluate two cusp catastrophe models for cognitive workload and fatigue. They share similar cubic polynomial structures but derive from different underlying processes and contain variables that contribute to flexibility with respect to load and the ability to compensate for fatigue. Cognitive workload and fatigue both have a negative impact on performance and have been difficult to separate. Extended time on task can produce fatigue, but it can also produce a positive effect from learning or automaticity. In this two-part experiment, 129 undergraduates performed tasks involving spelling, arithmetic, memory, and visual search. The fatigue cusp for the central memory task was supported with the quantity of work performed and performance on an episodic memory task acting as the control parameters. There was a strong linear effect, however. The load manipulations for the central task were competition with another participant for rewards, incentive conditions, and time pressure. Results supported the workload cusp in which trait anxiety and the incentive manipulation acted as the control parameters. The cusps are generally better than linear models for analyzing workload and fatigue phenomena; practice effects can override fatigue. Future research should investigate multitasking and task sequencing issues, physical-cognitive task combinations, and a broader range of variables that contribute to flexibility with respect to load or compensate for fatigue. The new experimental medium and analytic strategy can be generalized to virtually any real-world cognitively demanding tasks. The particular results are generalizable to tasks involving visual search.
Yeung, Michael K; Sze, Sophia L; Woo, Jean; Kwok, Timothy; Shum, David H K; Yu, Ruby; Chan, Agnes S
Individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) have been consistently found to have category fluency deficits. However, little is known about the neural basis of these deficits. A diversity of neuroimaging studies has revealed left-lateralized prefrontal activations due to verbal processing and control functions during the performance of category fluency tasks. Given the reports of structural and functional abnormalities in the prefrontal cortices in individuals with MCI, it is conceivable that these individuals would also exhibit altered prefrontal activation patterns during a category fluency task. The present study aimed to investigate the prefrontal dynamics during the category fluency task in older adults with MCI by using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). Twenty-six older adults with MCI were compared with 26 older adults with normal cognition (NC) who were matched in age, gender, handedness, and educational level. All participants performed a category fluency task while the prefrontal dynamics were recorded. The results showed that the MCI group generated fewer unique words, made fewer switches between subcategories, and generated fewer new subcategories than did the NC group. Importantly, the NIRS results showed that the NC group exhibited a left lateralization of frontal activations during the category fluency task, while the MCI group did not exhibit such a lateralization. Furthermore, there was a significant positive correlation between the category fluency performance and the extent of lateralization, suggesting that the category fluency deficits in the MCI group could be related to frontal dysfunction. That is, the rightward shift of frontal activations in the MCI group may reflect the presence of cortical reorganization in which the contralateral regions (i.e., the right hemisphere) are recruited to take over the function that is declining in the specialized regions (i.e., the left hemisphere). Our lateralization finding may serve as an objective
Gordon, Jean K; Young, Megan; Garcia, Carly
Aging involves many cognitive declines, particularly in fluid intelligence, with relative maintenance of crystallized intelligence. This paradox is evident in the language domain: lexical retrieval becomes slower and less accurate, despite well preserved vocabularies. Verbal fluency assesses both crystallized and fluid aspects of language. Semantic fluency hypothetically reflects semantic knowledge, while letter fluency putatively reflects executive functioning, which would predict a greater impact of aging on the latter. However, the opposite is typically observed. To investigate factors contributing to such asymmetries, we examined verbal fluency in 86 adults (30-89 years). Multiple regression analyses indicated that semantic fluency depends largely on lexical retrieval speed, as well as visualization strategies to support controlled retrieval, skills which may disproportionately decline with age. By contrast, letter fluency relies heavily on vocabulary knowledge, providing some protection against age-related declines. These findings contribute to our understanding of the mechanisms of typical age-related declines in word retrieval.
Morgan, Phillip L; Williams, Craig; Ings, Fay M; Hughes, Nia C
Two experiments examined if exposure to emotionally valent image-based secondary tasks introduced at different points of a free recall working memory (WM) task impair memory performance. Images from the International Affective Picture System (IAPS: Lang, Bradley, & Cuthbert, 2008) varied in the degree of negative or positive valance (mild, moderate, strong) and were positioned at low, moderate, and high WM load points with participants rating them based upon perceived valence. As predicted, and based on previous research and theory, the higher the degree of negative (Experiment 1) and positive (Experiment 2) valence and the higher the WM load when a secondary task was introduced, the greater the impairment to recall. Secondary task images with strong negative valance were more disruptive than negative images with lower valence at moderate and high WM load task points involving encoding and/or rehearsal of primary task words (Experiment 1). This was not the case for secondary tasks involving positive images (Experiment 2), although participant valence ratings for positive IAPS images classified as moderate and strong were in fact very similar. Implications are discussed in relation to research and theory on task interruption and attentional narrowing and literature concerning the effects of emotive stimuli on cognition.
Gilbertson, Donna; Witt, Joseph C.; Duhon, Gary; Dufrene, Brad
This study examined the utility of a brief assessment approach for identifying a potentially effective intervention to improve math performance and on-task behavior. Participants included four elementary students referred for intervention services in the general education classroom. A brief individual assessment was conducted with each participant…
Tindle, Richard; Longstaff, Mitchell G
The time-based resource-sharing (TBRS) model of working memory indicates that secondary tasks that capture attention for relatively long periods can result in the interference of working memory processing and maintenance. The current study investigates if discrete and continuous movements have differing effects on a concurrent, verbal serial recall task. In the listening condition, participants were asked to recall spoken words presented in lists of six. In the drawing conditions, participants performed the same task while producing discrete (star) or continuous (circle) movements. As hypothesised, participants recalled more words overall in the listening condition compared to the combined drawing conditions. The prediction that the continuous movement condition would reduce recall compared to listening was also supported. Fine-grained analysis at each serial position revealed significantly more words were recalled at mid serial positions in the listening condition, with worst recall for the continuous condition at position 5 compared to the listening and discrete conditions. Kinematic analysis showed that participants increased the size and speed of the continuous movements resulting in a similar duration and number of strokes for each condition. The duration of brief pauses in the discrete condition was associated with the number of words recalled. The results indicate that fine motor movements reduced working memory performance; however, it was not merely performing a movement but the type of the movement that determined how resources were diverted. In the context of the TBRS, continuous movements could be capturing attention for longer periods relative to discrete movements, reducing verbal serial recall. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Para estudiar cómo ser observado afecta el rendimiento cognitivo, generalmente se han usado experimentos de laboratorio en los que la tarea predominante ha sido la aritmética mental (por ejemplo, sumar mentalmente números de dos dígitos. Con el fin de aumentar la generalidad de estos efectos, usamos una tarea de fluidez verbal en un ambiente de mayor validez ecológica. Dos grupos de estudiantes (básicos y secundarios participaron en condiciones con o sin obsevadores. Los resultados mostraron que ser observado reduce la fluidez verbal. El patrón de resultados obtenido muestra que los efectos sociales sobre el rendimiento se extienden a una amplia gama de tareas cognitivas. Sugerimos la necesidad de tomar en cuenta estos efectos en el ámbito de la educación.To investigate how being observed influences cognitive performance, researchers have typically used laboratory experiments with mental math as the predominant task (e.g., doing double digit additions in one's mind. In order to increase the generalizability of these effects, we used a verbal fluidity task in a more ecologically valid setting. Elementary and secondary school students performed the task with or without observers. Data showed that being observed reduces verbal fluidity. The pattern of results is consistent with the effect of social factors on cognitive performance extending to a wide range of cognitive tasks. We suggest the need to take these effects into account in educational contexts.
... the Newsletter Who are Board Certified Specialists in Fluency? Board Certified Specialists in Fluency are individuals who ... Fluency Disorders. How can Board Certified Specialists in Fluency help? Board Certified Specialists in Fluency are clinical ...
García-Gallardo, Daniel; Aguilar, Francisco; Armenta, Benjamín; Carpio, Claudio
Two experiments were conducted to assess the emergence of time-place learning in humans. In experiment 1, a computer based software was designed in which participants had to choose to enter one of four rooms in an abandoned house search for a zombie every 3-15s. Zombies could be found in only one of these rooms every trial in 3 min periods during the 12 min sessions. After 4 training sessions, participants were exposed to a probe session in which zombies could be found in any room on every trial. Almost all participants behaved as if they were timing the availability intervals: they anticipated the changes in the location of the zombie and they persisted in their performance patterns during the probe session; however, verbal reports revealed that they were counting the number of trials in each period in order to decide when to switch between rooms. In the second experiment, the task was modified in two ways: counting was made harder by using three different intertrial ranges within each session: 2-6s, 2-11s and 2-16s. Second, labels were displaced during the final session to assess whether participants learned to click on a given place or to follow a set of verbal cues. We found that participants did not notice the label changes suggesting that they learned to click on a given place, and that a win/stay-lose/shift strategy was clearly used to decide when to switch rooms in the second experiment. The implications of verbal behavior when assessing time-place learning with humans and the possible differences in this process between humans and animals are discussed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Hanakawa, Takashi; Honda, Manabu; Okada, Tomohisa; Fukuyama, Hidenao; Shibasaki, Hiroshi
To investigate a possible role of the lateral premotor cortex in human cognitive processes, we compared brain activity during mental-operation numeral (MO-numeral) and verbal rehearsal (VR) tasks, using block-design functional MRI. Sixteen healthy subjects serially added a series of single-digit numbers during the MO-numeral task and silently rehearsed a memorized seven-digit number during the VR task. Each task condition was contrasted with a visual fixation task. Both MO-numeral and VR tasks revealed activity within the lateral premotor cortex among others. The rostral and dorsal part of the lateral premotor cortex (PMdr) showed significantly greater activity during the MO-numeral task than the VR task whereas its caudal part (PMdc) was similarly active during the two tasks. The present study suggests that the PMdr and PMdc are involved in different non-motor cognitive processes.
Sato, Hiroki; Aoki, Ryuta; Katura, Takusige; Matsuda, Ryoichi; Koizumi, Hideaki
Previous studies showed that interindividual variations in mood state are associated with prefrontal cortex (PFC) activity. In this study, we focused on the depressed-mood state under natural circumstances and examined the relationship between within-individual changes over time in this mood state and PFC activity. We used optical topography (OT), a functional imaging technique based on near-infrared spectroscopy, to measure PFC activity for each participant in three experimental sessions repeated at 2-week intervals. In each session, the participants completed a self-report questionnaire of mood state and underwent OT measurement while performing verbal and spatial working memory (WM) tasks. The results showed that changes in the depressed-mood score between successive sessions were negatively correlated with those in the left PFC activation for the verbal WM task (ρ = -0.56, p < 0.05). In contrast, the PFC activation for the spatial WM task did not co-vary with participants' mood changes. We thus demonstrated that PFC activity during a verbal WM task varies depending on the participant's depressed mood state, independent of trait factors. This suggests that using optical topography to measure PFC activity during a verbal WM task can be used as a potential state marker for an individual's depressed mood state.
Sato, Hiroki; Aoki, Ryuta; Katura, Takusige; Matsuda, Ryoichi; Koizumi, Hideaki
Previous studies showed that interindividual variations in mood state are associated with prefrontal cortex (PFC) activity. In this study, we focused on the depressed-mood state under natural circumstances and examined the relationship between within-individual changes over time in this mood state and PFC activity. We used optical topography (OT), a functional imaging technique based on near-infrared spectroscopy, to measure PFC activity for each participant in three experimental sessions repeated at 2-week intervals. In each session, the participants completed a self-report questionnaire of mood state and underwent OT measurement while performing verbal and spatial working memory (WM) tasks. The results showed that changes in the depressed-mood score between successive sessions were negatively correlated with those in the left PFC activation for the verbal WM task (ρ = -0.56, p < 0.05). In contrast, the PFC activation for the spatial WM task did not co-vary with participants' mood changes. We thus demonstrated that PFC activity during a verbal WM task varies depending on the participant's depressed mood state, independent of trait factors. This suggests that using optical topography to measure PFC activity during a verbal WM task can be used as a potential state marker for an individual's depressed mood state.
O'Brien, Beth A.; Wallot, Sebastian
This paper focuses on reading fluency by bilingual primary school students, and the relation of text fluency to their reading comprehension. Group differences were examined in a cross-sectional design across the age range when fluency is posed to shift from word-level to text-level. One hundred five bilingual children from primary grades 3, 4, and 5 were assessed for English word reading and decoding fluency, phonological awareness, rapid symbol naming, and oral language proficiency with standardized measures. These skills were correlated with their silent reading fluency on a self-paced story reading task. Text fluency was quantified using non-linear analytic methods: recurrence quantification and fractal analyses. Findings indicate that more fluent text reading appeared by grade 4, similar to monolingual findings, and that different aspects of fluency characterized passage reading performance at different grade levels. Text fluency and oral language proficiency emerged as significant predictors of reading comprehension. PMID:27630590
O'Brien, Beth A; Wallot, Sebastian
This paper focuses on reading fluency by bilingual primary school students, and the relation of text fluency to their reading comprehension. Group differences were examined in a cross-sectional design across the age range when fluency is posed to shift from word-level to text-level. One hundred five bilingual children from primary grades 3, 4, and 5 were assessed for English word reading and decoding fluency, phonological awareness, rapid symbol naming, and oral language proficiency with standardized measures. These skills were correlated with their silent reading fluency on a self-paced story reading task. Text fluency was quantified using non-linear analytic methods: recurrence quantification and fractal analyses. Findings indicate that more fluent text reading appeared by grade 4, similar to monolingual findings, and that different aspects of fluency characterized passage reading performance at different grade levels. Text fluency and oral language proficiency emerged as significant predictors of reading comprehension.
Full Text Available Studies have shown that numerosity processing (e.g., comparison of numbers of dots in two dot arrays is significantly correlated with arithmetic performance. Researchers have attributed this association to the fact that both tasks share magnitude processing. The current investigation tested an visual perception hypothesis that visual perceptual ability (as measured by a figure-matching task can account for the close relation between numerosity processing and arithmetic performance (computational fluency. Four hundred and twenty four third- to fifth-grade children (220 boys and 204 girls, 8.0 to 11.0 years old; 120 third graders, 146 fourth graders, and 158 fifth graders were recruited from two schools (one urban and one suburban in Beijing, China. Six classes were randomly selected from each school, and all students in each selected class were asked to participate in the study. All children were given a series of cognitive and mathematical tests, including numerosity comparison, figure matching, forward verbal working memory, visual tracing, non-verbal matrices reasoning, mental rotation, choice reaction time, arithmetic tests and curriculum-based mathematical achievement test. Results showed that figure-matching ability had higher correlations with numerosity processing and computational fluency than did other cognitive factors (e.g., forward verbal working memory, visual tracing, non-verbal matrices reasoning, mental rotation, and choice reaction time. More important, hierarchical multiple regression showed that figure matching ability accounted for the well-established association between numerosity processing and computational fluency. The results suggest that visual perceptual ability, rather than magnitude processing, may be the shared component of numerosity processing and arithmetic performance.
Zhou, Xinlin; Wei, Wei; Zhang, Yiyun; Cui, Jiaxin; Chen, Chuansheng
Studies have shown that numerosity processing (e.g., comparison of numbers of dots in two dot arrays) is significantly correlated with arithmetic performance. Researchers have attributed this association to the fact that both tasks share magnitude processing. The current investigation tested an alternative hypothesis, which states that visual perceptual ability (as measured by a figure-matching task) can account for the close relation between numerosity processing and arithmetic performance (computational fluency). Four hundred and twenty four third- to fifth-grade children (220 boys and 204 girls, 8.0–11.0 years old; 120 third graders, 146 fourth graders, and 158 fifth graders) were recruited from two schools (one urban and one suburban) in Beijing, China. Six classes were randomly selected from each school, and all students in each selected class participated in the study. All children were given a series of cognitive and mathematical tests, including numerosity comparison, figure matching, forward verbal working memory, visual tracing, non-verbal matrices reasoning, mental rotation, choice reaction time, arithmetic tests and curriculum-based mathematical achievement test. Results showed that figure-matching ability had higher correlations with numerosity processing and computational fluency than did other cognitive factors (e.g., forward verbal working memory, visual tracing, non-verbal matrix reasoning, mental rotation, and choice reaction time). More important, hierarchical multiple regression showed that figure matching ability accounted for the well-established association between numerosity processing and computational fluency. In support of the visual perception hypothesis, the results suggest that visual perceptual ability, rather than magnitude processing, may be the shared component of numerosity processing and arithmetic performance. PMID:26441740
Hoekstra, Rosa A.; Bartels, Meike; van Leeuwen, Marieke; Boomsma, Dorret I.
The etiology of individual differences in general verbal ability, verbal learning and letter and category fluency were examined in two independent samples of 9- and 18-year-old twin pairs and their siblings. In both age groups, we observed strong familial resemblance for general verbal ability and moderate familial resemblance for verbal learning,…
Marshall, C R; Jones, A; Fastelli, A; Atkinson, J; Botting, N; Morgan, G
Deafness has an adverse impact on children's ability to acquire spoken languages. Signed languages offer a more accessible input for deaf children, but because the vast majority are born to hearing parents who do not sign, their early exposure to sign language is limited. Deaf children as a whole are therefore at high risk of language delays. We compared deaf and hearing children's performance on a semantic fluency task. Optimal performance on this task requires a systematic search of the mental lexicon, the retrieval of words within a subcategory and, when that subcategory is exhausted, switching to a new subcategory. We compared retrieval patterns between groups, and also compared the responses of deaf children who used British Sign Language (BSL) with those who used spoken English. We investigated how semantic fluency performance related to children's expressive vocabulary and executive function skills, and also retested semantic fluency in the majority of the children nearly 2 years later, in order to investigate how much progress they had made in that time. Participants were deaf children aged 6-11 years (N = 106, comprising 69 users of spoken English, 29 users of BSL and eight users of Sign Supported English-SSE) compared with hearing children (N = 120) of the same age who used spoken English. Semantic fluency was tested for the category 'animals'. We coded for errors, clusters (e.g., 'pets', 'farm animals') and switches. Participants also completed the Expressive One-Word Picture Vocabulary Test and a battery of six non-verbal executive function tasks. In addition, we collected follow-up semantic fluency data for 70 deaf and 74 hearing children, nearly 2 years after they were first tested. Deaf children, whether using spoken or signed language, produced fewer items in the semantic fluency task than hearing children, but they showed similar patterns of responses for items most commonly produced, clustering of items into subcategories and switching between
Stephens, Richard; Zile, Amy
This study assessed the effect of experimentally manipulated emotional arousal on swearing fluency. We hypothesised that swear word generation would be increased with raised emotional arousal. The emotional arousal of 60 participants was manipulated by having them play a first-person shooter video game or, as a control, a golf video game, in a randomised order. A behavioural measure of swearing fluency based on the Controlled Oral Word Association Test was employed. Successful experimental manipulation was indicated by raised State Hostility Questionnaire scores after playing the shooter game. Swearing fluency was significantly greater after playing the shooter game compared with the golf game. Validity of the swearing fluency task was demonstrated via positive correlations with self-reported swearing fluency and daily swearing frequency. In certain instances swearing may represent a form of emotional expression. This finding will inform debates around the acceptability of using taboo language.
Iwanami, Akira; Okajima, Yuka; Ota, Haruhisa; Tani, Masayuki; Yamada, Takashi; Hashimoro, Ryuichiro; Kanai, Chieko; Watanabe, Hiromi; Yamasue, Hidenori; Kawakubo, Yuki; Kato, Nobumasa
Dysfunction of the prefrontal cortex has been previously reported in individuals with Asperger's disorder. In the present study, we used multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) to detect changes in the oxygenated hemoglobin concentration ([oxy-Hb]) during two verbal fluency tasks. The subjects were 20 individuals with Asperger's disorder…
Stokić, Miodrag; Milovanović, Dragan; Ljubisavljević, Miloš R; Nenadović, Vanja; Čukić, Milena
The objective of this preliminary study was to quantify changes in complexity of EEG using fractal dimension (FD) alongside linear methods of spectral power, event-related spectral perturbations, coherence, and source localization of EEG generators for theta (4-7 Hz), alpha (8-12 Hz), and beta (13-23 Hz) frequency bands due to a memory load effect in an auditory-verbal short-term memory (AVSTM) task for words. We examined 20 healthy individuals using the Sternberg's paradigm with increasing memory load (three, five, and seven words). The stimuli were four-letter words. Artifact-free 5-s EEG segments during retention period were analyzed. The most significant finding was the increase in FD with the increase in memory load in temporal regions T3 and T4, and in parietal region Pz, while decrease in FD with increase in memory load was registered in frontal midline region Fz. Results point to increase in frontal midline (Fz) theta spectral power, decrease in alpha spectral power in parietal region-Pz, and increase in beta spectral power in T3 and T4 region with increase in memory load. Decrease in theta coherence within right hemisphere due to memory load was obtained. Alpha coherence increased in posterior regions with anterior decrease. Beta coherence increased in fronto-temporal regions. Source localization delineated theta activity increase in frontal midline region, alpha decrease in superior parietal region, and beta increase in superior temporal gyrus with increase in memory load. In conclusion, FD as a nonlinear measure may serve as a sensitive index for quantifying dynamical changes in EEG signals during AVSTM tasks.
Martens, Marilee A.; Jungers, Melissa K.; Steele, Anita L.
Williams syndrome (WS) is a neurogenetic developmental disorder characterized by an increased affinity for music, deficits in verbal memory, and atypical brain development. Music has been shown to improve verbal memory in typical individuals as well as those with learning difficulties, but no studies have examined this relationship in WS. The aim…
Working-memory theories often include domain-specific verbal and visual stores (e.g., the phonological and visuospatial buffers of Baddeley, 1986), and some also posit more general stores thought to be capable of holding verbal or visuospatial materials (Baddeley, 2000; Cowan, 2005). However, it is
Kling, Gina; Bay-Williams, Jennifer M.
In this article, the authors share a variety of ways to formatively assess basic fact fluency. The define fluency, raise some issues related to timed testing, and then share a collection of classroom-tested ideas for authentic fact fluency assessment. This article encourages teachers to try a variety of alternative assessments from this sampling,…
Argyropoulos, Vassilios; Masoura, Elvira; Tsiakali, Thomai K; Nikolaraizi, Magda; Lappa, Christina
This study investigated the relationship between working memory (WM) and reading abilities among students with visual impairment (VI). Seventy-five students with VI (visually impairment and blindness), aged 10-15 years old participated in the study, of whom 44 were visually impaired and 31 were blind. The participants' reading ability was assessed with the standardized reading ability battery Test-A (Padeliadu & Antoniou, 2008) and their verbal working memory ability was assessed with the listening recall task from the Working Memory Test Battery for Children (Pickering et al., 2001). Data analysis indicated a strong correlation between verbal WM and decoding, reading comprehension and overall reading ability among the participants with VI, while no correlation was found between reading fluency and verbal WM. The present study points out the important role of verbal WM in reading among students who are VI and carries implications for the education of those individuals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Balouch, Sara; Rusted, Jennifer M
People with dementia of the Alzheimer-type (DAT) have difficulties with performing everyday tasks, and error awareness is poor. Here we investigate whether recall of actions and error monitoring in everyday task performance improved when they instructed another person on how to make tea. In this situation, both visual and motor cues are present, and attention is sustained by the requirement to keep instructing. The data were drawn from a longitudinal study recording performance in four participants with DAT, filmed regularly for five years in their own homes, completing three tea-making conditions: performed-recall (they made tea themselves); instructed-recall (they instructed the experimenter on how to make tea); and verbal-recall (they described how to make tea). Accomplishment scores (percentage of task they correctly recalled), errors and error-monitoring were coded. Task accomplishment was comparable in the performed-recall and instructed-recall conditions, but both were significantly better than task accomplishment in the verbal-recall condition. Third person instruction did not improve error-monitoring. This study has implications for everyday task rehabilitation for people with DAT.
Grabner, Roland H; Krenn, Julia; Fink, Andreas; Arendasy, Martin; Benedek, Mathias
Transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) is a non-invasive brain stimulation method that allows to directly modulate brain oscillations of a given frequency. Using this method, it was recently shown that increasing alpha (10Hz) oscillations improved creative ideation with figural material and that increasing gamma (40Hz) oscillations speeded up performance in a figural matrices intelligence task. The aim of the present study was to examine whether these findings generalize to verbal creativity and intelligence tasks. In addition, we explored whether the stimulation effects are moderated by individual differences in creative potential and intelligence. Twenty-two adults received 10Hz, 40Hz and sham tACS while they worked on a verbal creativity (alternate uses) task and a verbal intelligence (anagram) task. Analyses revealed that 10Hz stimulation had a marginally significant effect on ideational fluency in the alternate uses task, whereas originality was unaffected. The beneficial effect of stimulation on fluency tended to emerge mainly in the individuals with higher creative potential. In the verbal intelligence task, in contrast, 40Hz stimulation did neither impact on performance nor interacted with individual differences in intelligence. These findings provide first tentative evidence that enhancing alpha oscillations through tACS may improve creative thinking not only in the figural but also in the verbal domain. The previously reported beneficial effect of gamma tACS on figural intelligence, however, could not be observed in a verbal task. In sum, the present study further corroborates the causal link between alpha oscillations and creative thinking and suggests that tACS may be a promising tool to enhance cognitive processes. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Mainela-Arnold, Elina; Evans, Julia L; Coady, Jeffry
This study investigated the impact of lexical processes on target word recall in sentence span tasks in children with and without specific language impairment (SLI). Participants were 42 children (ages 8;2-12;3 [years;months]): 21 with SLI and 21 typically developing peers matched on age and nonverbal IQ. Children completed a sentence span task in which target words to be recalled varied in word frequency and neighborhood density. Two measures of lexical processes were examined: the number of nontarget competitor words activated during a gating task (lexical cohort competition) and word definitions. Neighborhood density had no effect on word recall for either group. However, both groups recalled significantly more high- than low-frequency words. Lexical cohort competition and specificity of semantic representations accounted for unique variance in the number of target word recalled in the SLI and chronological age-matched (CA) groups combined. Performance on verbal working memory span tasks for both SLI and CA children is influenced by word frequency, lexical cohorts, and semantic representations. Future studies need to examine the extent to which verbal working memory capacity is a cognitive construct independent of extant language knowledge representations.
De Jong, Nivja H.; Steinel, Margarita P.; Florijn, Arjen; Schoonen, Rob; Hulstijn, Jan H.
This study investigated how individual differences in linguistic knowledge and processing skills relate to individual differences in speaking fluency. Speakers of Dutch as a second language ("N" = 179) performed eight speaking tasks, from which several measures of fluency were derived such as measures for pausing, repairing, and speed…
Musti-Rao, Shobana; Lynch, Tom Liam; Plati, Erin
As American students struggle with basic mathematical skills, the importance of math fact fluency has gained the attention of educators and researchers. Generalization of math fact fluency is also important for the transfer of skills to other settings and formats, assisting students in the completion of more varied and complicated math tasks. This…
Locuniak, Maria N.
Calculation fluency weaknesses are a key characteristic of children with mathematics difficulties. The major aim of this dissertation was to uncover early predictors of calculation fluency weaknesses in second graders. Children's performance on number sense tasks in kindergarten along with general cognitive abilities, early literacy skills, and…
de Jong, N.H.; Steinel, M.P.; Florijn, A.; Schoonen, R.; Hulstijn, J.H.
This study investigated how individual differences in linguistic knowledge and processing skills relate to individual differences in speaking fluency. Speakers of Dutch as a second language (N = 179) performed eight speaking tasks, from which several measures of fluency were derived such as measures
Denton, Carolyn A.; Barth, Amy E.; Fletcher, Jack M.; Wexler, Jade; Vaughn, Sharon; Cirino, Paul T.; Romain, Melissa; Francis, David J.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the relations among oral and silent reading fluency and reading comprehension for students in Grades 6 to 8 (n = 1,421) and the use of fluency scores to identify middle school students who are at risk for failure on a high-stakes reading test. Results indicated moderate positive relations between measures of fluency and comprehension. Oral reading fluency (ORF) on passages was more strongly related to reading comprehension than ORF on word lists. A group-administered silent reading sentence verification test approximated the classification accuracy of individually administered ORF passages. The correlation between a maze task and comprehension was weaker than has been reported for elementary students. The best predictor of a high-stakes reading comprehension test was the previous year’s administration of the grade-appropriate test; fluency and verbal knowledge measures accounted for only small amounts of unique variance beyond that accounted for by the previous year’s administration. PMID:21637727
Jayakar, Reema; King, Tricia Z; Morris, Robin; Na, Sabrina
We examined the nature of verbal memory deficits and the possible hippocampal underpinnings in long-term adult survivors of childhood brain tumor. 35 survivors (M = 24.10 ± 4.93 years at testing; 54% female), on average 15 years post-diagnosis, and 59 typically developing adults (M = 22.40 ± 4.35 years, 54% female) participated. Automated FMRIB Software Library (FSL) tools were used to measure hippocampal, putamen, and whole brain volumes. The California Verbal Learning Test-Second Edition (CVLT-II) was used to assess verbal memory. Hippocampal, F(1, 91) = 4.06, ηp² = .04; putamen, F(1, 91) = 11.18, ηp² = .11; and whole brain, F(1, 92) = 18.51, ηp² = .17, volumes were significantly lower for survivors than controls (p memory indices of auditory attention list span (Trial 1: F(1, 92) = 12.70, η² = .12) and final list learning (Trial 5: F(1, 92) = 6.01, η² = .06) were significantly lower for survivors (p Memory differences between survivors and controls are largely contingent upon auditory attention list span. Only hippocampal volume is associated with the auditory attention list span component of verbal memory. These findings are particularly robust for survivors treated with radiation. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved.
Ciuffo, Massimo; Myers, Jane; Ingrassia, Massimo; Milanese, Antonio; Venuti, Maria; Alquino, Ausilia; Baradello, Alice; Stella, Giacomo; Gagliano, Antonella
The silent reading fluency is not an observable behaviour and, therefore, its evaluation is perceived as more challenging and less reliable than oral reading fluency. The present research is aimed to measure the silent reading speed in a sample of proficient students, assessed by an original silent reading fluency task, based on behavioural…
Larson, Cathy A; Surber-Berro, Moneach R
Current technology allows the recording of movement for both motion analysis and providing observational feedback. The most effective type of observational feedback is under debate. We compared a child's reach-and-point performance after viewing a videotaped playback of a model's performance and after viewing a split-screen comparison of the model's and child's performances while simultaneously receiving verbal cues. A PTVision system provided observational feedback and recorded spatial trajectory, target accuracy, movement time, and joint angles while a 13 year-old boy with cerebral palsy reached for three targets. The split-screen comparison had the largest effect on reach performance, including slower-yet-more-accurate movements and a more extended wrist, curved spatial trajectories, and an ulnar-deviated wrist. Feedback using split-screen comparison between a model's and the child's performance with verbal cues appears to promote motor learning. When using technology to augment therapy, the intervention should be designed considering current motor learning principles.
We traced spatial, verbal and musical abilities through a seven-year period of adolescence. When we started our study, 60 boys had reached a mean age of 11.72, 60 girls were 11.52 on average. Menarche and mutation served as markers for maturation. We found that early, mid, and late maturers differed on spatial orientation and on tactile-visual discrimination as measured with the Witelson task. No differences between the maturational groups emerged on verbal fluency and on Wing's Standardized Tests of Musical Intelligence. At some stages, sex differences on spatial, verbal, and musical tests emerged, and disappeared at others. The sex differences in performance levels were not associated with a sex-specific relationship between maturation rate and performance levels. We found indications of the usefulness of sex hormone measurement in relation to cognitive and musical development in adolescence.
Sanjuán, Ana; Bustamante, Juan Carlos; García-Porcar, María; Rodríguez-Pujadas, Aina; Forn, Cristina; Martínez, Juan Carlos; Campos, Anabel; Palau, Juan; Gutiérrez, Antonio; Villanueva, Vicente; Avila, César
Language fMRI has been used in the presurgical evaluation of drug-resistant temporal lobe epilepsy patients. Previous studies have demonstrated that left temporal lobe epilepsy (LTLE) patients with atypical language lateralization are at lower risk of postsurgical verbal memory decline, hypothesizing co-occurrence of verbal memory and language reorganization presurgically. Furthermore, it has been proposed that the recruitment of right frontal language-related areas is associated with the preservation of verbal memory performance in these patients. However, less is known about the correlation between these functions specifically in LTLE patients with left language dominance, although they are more prone to postsurgical verbal memory decline. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the relationship between verbal memory scores and frontal language activation is also observed in LTLE patients with typical language dominance. Eighteen healthy controls, 12 right temporal lobe epilepsy patients and 12 LTLE patients with typical language distribution as assessed by an fMRI verbal fluency task were selected. Verbal memory scores were obtained from the patients' neuropsychological presurgical evaluation. Our results showed a positive correlation between verbal recall and activation of bilateral inferior frontal areas in LTLE patients. These results support the hypothesis of a link between language representation in inferior frontal areas and hippocampal functioning, and indicate that both hemispheres are related to the preservation of verbal memory in patients with hippocampal damage and typical language dominance. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Background: This study is a part of a larger research project where the effect of instructional guidance in terms of role definition and role switching was investigated on students' learning of Basic Life Support (BLS) during a 20-minute reciprocal learning episode with task cards. BLS is a lifesaving skill consisting of nine sub skills to be…
Peter, Jessica; Kaiser, Jannis; Landerer, Verena; Köstering, Lena; Kaller, Christoph P; Heimbach, Bernhard; Hüll, Michael; Bormann, Tobias; Klöppel, Stefan
The exploration and retrieval of words during category fluency involves different strategies to improve or maintain performance. Deficits in that task, which are common in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), mirror either impaired semantic memory or dysfunctional executive control mechanisms. Relating category fluency to tasks that place greater demands on either semantic knowledge or executive functions might help to determine the underlying cognitive process. The aims of this study were to compare performance and strategy use of 20 patients with aMCI to 30 healthy elderly controls (HC) and to identify the dominant component (either executive or semantic) for better task performance in category fluency. Thus, the relationship between category fluency, design fluency and naming was examined. As fluency tasks have been associated with the superior frontal gyrus (SFG), the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), and the temporal pole, we further explored the relationship between gray matter volume in these areas and both performance and strategy use. Patients with aMCI showed significantly lower performance and significantly less strategy use during fluency tasks compared to HC. However, both groups equally improved their performance when repeatedly confronted with the same task. In aMCI, performance during category fluency was significantly predicted by design fluency performance, while in HC, it was significantly predicted by naming performance. In HC, volume of the SFG significantly predicted both category and design fluency performance, and strategy use during design fluency. In aMCI, the SFG and the IFG predicted performance during both category and design fluency. The IFG significantly predicted strategy use during category fluency in both groups. The reduced category fluency performance in aMCI seems to be primarily due to dysfunctional executive control mechanisms rather than impaired semantic knowledge. This finding is directly relevant to
Pelletier, Amandine; Bernard, Charlotte; Dilharreguy, Bixente; Helmer, Catherine; Le Goff, Melanie; Chanraud, Sandra; Dartigues, Jean-François; Allard, Michèle; Amieva, Hélène; Catheline, Gwénaëlle
The cerebral substratum of age-related cognitive decline was evaluated in an elderly-cohort followed for 12 years (n=306). Participants, free of dementia, received neuropsychological assessments every two years and an MRI exam at baseline and four years later. Cognitive decline was evaluated on two broadly used tests to detect dementia: the Free and Cued Selective Reminding Test (FCSRT), a verbal episodic memory task, and the Isaacs Set Test (IST), a semantic fluency task. Using voxel-based approach, the relationship between cognitive decline with 1/ baseline grey matter volumes and 2/ grey matter volume loss between the two scans was explored. Baseline volumes analysis revealed that FCSRT and IST declines were both associated with lower volumes of the medial temporal region. Volumes loss analysis confirmed that both declines are related to medial temporal lobe atrophy and revealed that FCSRT decline was specifically associated with atrophy of the posterior cingulate cortex whereas IST decline was specifically related to temporal pole atrophy. These results suggest that cognitive decline across aging is firstly related to structural modifications of the medial temporal lobe, followed by an atrophy in the posterior midline structures for episodic memory and an atrophy of the temporal pole for semantic fluency.
Full Text Available An extensive body of work has focused on the processes underpinning perceptual-cognitive expertise. The majority of researchers have used film-based simulations to capture superior performance. We combined eye movement recording and verbal reports of thinking to explore the processes underpinning skilled performance in a complex, dynamic, and externally paced representative volleyball task involving in situ data collection. Altogether, 27 female volleyball players performed as centre backcourt defenders in simulated sessions while wearing an eye-tracking device. After each sequence, athletes were questioned concerning their perception of the situation. The visual search strategies employed by the highly-skilled players were more exploratory than those used by skilled players, involving more fixations to a greater number of locations. Highly-skilled participants spent more time fixating on functional spaces between two or more display areas, while the skilled participants fixated on the ball trajectory and specific players. Moreover, highly-skilled players generated more condition concepts with higher levels of sophistication than their skilled counterparts. Findings highlight the value of using representative task designs to capture performance in situ
Full Text Available Abstract Background This paper aimed to investigate cognitive rigidity and decision making impairments in patients diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa Restrictive type (AN-R, assessing also verbal components. Methods Thirty patients with AN-R were compared with thirty age-matched healthy controls (HC. All participants completed a comprehensive neuropsychological battery comprised of the Trail Making Test, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, Hayling Sentence Completion Task, and the Iowa Gambling Task. The Beck Depression Inventory was administered to evaluate depressive symptomatology. The influence of both illness duration and neuropsychological variables was considered. Body Mass Index (BMI, years of education, and depression severity were considered as covariates in statistical analyses. Results The AN-R group showed poorer performance on all neuropsychological tests. There was a positive correlation between illness duration and the Hayling Sentence Completion Task Net score, and number of completion answers in part B. There was a partial effect of years of education and BMI on neuropsychological test performance. Response inhibition processes and verbal fluency impairment were not associated with BMI and years of education, but were associated with depression severity. Conclusions These data provide evidence that patients with AN-R have cognitive rigidity in both verbal and non-verbal domains. The role of the impairment on verbal domains should be considered in treatment. Further research is warranted to better understand the relationship between illness state and cognitive rigidity and impaired decision-making.
Becerra, María-Teresa; Montanero, Manuel; Lucero, Manuel
Research into workplace adjustments for people with disabilities is a fundamental challenge of supported employment. The aim of the present work is to investigate the effect of several graphic resources as natural support for workers with intellectual disability. Two case studies were conducted to assess the performance of five workers engaged in office tasks, with three different support conditions. Results reveal a 20% increase in quality of performance of the tasks undertaken with graphic support as compared to support in which the participants received verbal instructions (VIs) from a work mate; and between 25 and 30% as compared to a control condition which included no help of any kind. These findings are consistent with previous studies which support the possibility of generating, at low cost, iconic materials (with maps or simple graphics), which progressively facilitate workers' autonomy, without dependence or help from the job trainer. We observed that the worst performance is in the support condition with VIs, this shows the limitations of this type of natural support, which is provided on demand by work mates without specialist knowledge of work support. Implications for Rehabilitation We studied the use of various types of natural support for people with intellectual disability in their workplace. The findings suggest that, with some brief training, the simple use in the workplace of graphic help on a card can increase between 20 and 30% the quality of performance of certain work tasks carried out by workers with intellectual disability. This advantage contrasts with the high cost or lower "manageability" of other material resources of natural support based on the use of technology.
De Andrade, Claudia Regina Furquim; Martins, Vanessa De Oliveira
The Speech Fluency Profile of fluent adolescent speakers of Brazilian Portuguese, were examined with respect to gender and neurolinguistic variations. Speech samples of 130 male and female adolescents, aged between 12;0 and 17;11 years were gathered. They were analysed according to type of speech disruption; speech rate; and frequency of speech…
Fuller, Rebecca L; Van Winkle, Elizabeth P; Anderson, Karen E; Gruber-Baldini, Ann L; Hill, Terra; Zampieri, Cris; Weiner, William J; Shulman, Lisa M
Dual task (DT) performance assesses the ability to perform two tasks simultaneously. Difficulty with DT performance may be a sensitive indicator of early Parkinson's disease (PD) impairment. The objective of this study was to assess what elements of a DT performance (cognition or gait) are most associated with impairment and disability in PD. Performance in single and DT conditions was examined in 154 PD patients. The single task assessments included the time required to walk 50 feet (gait speed) and the number of words generated in a verbal fluency task (word generation). The DT comprised simultaneous performance of the single tasks. Impairment and disability were measured with the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, Hoehn &Yahr, Berg Balance Scale, and Older Americans Resource and Services Scale. Age, education, and gender were control variables. Standardized residuals from regressions of DT upon single task performance were computed separately for word and gait, indicating the extent that the individual performed proportionally better/worse than predicted in DT considering their single task performance. Multiple regressions revealed that individuals who performed worse than expected in DT-word had greater impairment and disability. Dual task-gait was not significant in any model. Verbal fluency during DT performance is more closely associated with PD-related impairment and disability than gait speed during DT. This suggests that subjects prioritize gait performance at the expense of cognitive performance, and that DT word generation may be a sensitive indicator of early PD impairment and disability. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Herting, Megan M; Nagel, Bonnie J
Aerobic fitness is associated with better memory performance as well as larger volumes in memory-related brain regions in children, adolescents, and elderly. It is unclear if aerobic exercise also influences learning and memory functional neural circuitry. Here, we examine brain activity in 17 high-fit (HF) and 17 low-fit (LF) adolescents during a subsequent memory encoding paradigm using fMRI. Despite similar memory performance, HF and LF youth displayed a number of differences in memory-related and default mode (DMN) brain regions during encoding later remembered versus forgotten word pairs. Specifically, HF youth displayed robust deactivation in DMN areas, including the ventral medial PFC and posterior cingulate cortex, whereas LF youth did not show this pattern. Furthermore, LF youth showed greater bilateral hippocampal and right superior frontal gyrus activation during encoding of later remembered versus forgotten word pairs. Follow-up task-dependent functional correlational analyses showed differences in hippocampus and DMN activity coupling during successful encoding between the groups, suggesting aerobic fitness during adolescents may impact functional connectivity of the hippocampus and DMN during memory encoding. To our knowledge, this study is the first to examine the influence of aerobic fitness on hippocampal function and memory-related neural circuitry using fMRI. Taken together with previous research, these findings suggest aerobic fitness can influence not only memory-related brain structure, but also brain function.
Verbal memory is impaired in neurological and psychiatric conditions and provides one of the main targets of intervention. Specifically, this cognitive domain has been shown to provide a major determinant of outcome in schizophrenia and mood disorders. Therefore, verbal memory disturbances should be focused in the development of novel pharmacological and psychosocial therapeutics. Effective integration between preclinical and clinical studies should provide a key to the pursuit of drugs enhancing verbal memory.
Okuhara, Tsuyoshi; Ishikawa, Hirono; Okada, Masahumi; Kato, Mio; Kiuchi, Takahiro
Health materials to promote health behaviors should be readable and generate favorable evaluations of the message. Processing fluency (the subjective experience of ease with which people process information) has been increasingly studied over the past decade. In this review, we explore effects and instantiations of processing fluency and discuss the implications for designing effective health materials. We searched seven online databases using "processing fluency" as the key word. In addition, we gathered relevant publications using reference snowballing. We included published records that were written in English and applicable to the design of health materials. We found 40 articles that were appropriate for inclusion. Various instantiations of fluency have a uniform effect on human judgment: fluently processed stimuli generate positive judgments (e.g., liking, confidence). Processing fluency is used to predict the effort needed for a given task; accordingly, it has an impact on willingness to undertake the task. Physical perceptual, lexical, syntactic, phonological, retrieval, and imagery fluency were found to be particularly relevant to the design of health materials. Health-care professionals should consider the use of a perceptually fluent design, plain language, numeracy with an appropriate degree of precision, a limited number of key points, and concrete descriptions that make recipients imagine healthy behavior. Such fluently processed materials that are easy to read and understand have enhanced perspicuity and persuasiveness.
Brennan R. Payne
Full Text Available Effective language understanding is crucial to maintaining cognitive abilities and learning new information through adulthood. However, age-related declines in working memory (WM have a robust negative influence on multiple aspects of language comprehension and use, potentially limiting communicative competence. In the current study (N = 41, we examined the effects of a novel home-based computerized cognitive training program targeting verbal WM on changes in verbal WM and language comprehension in healthy older adults relative to an active component-control group. Participants in the WM training group showed non-linear improvements in performance on trained verbal WM tasks. Relative to the active control group, WM training participants also showed improvements on untrained verbal WM tasks and selective improvements across untrained dimensions of language, including sentence memory, verbal fluency, and comprehension of syntactically ambiguous sentences. Though the current study is preliminary in nature, it does provide initial promising evidence that WM training may influence components of language comprehension in adulthood and suggests that home-based training of WM may be a viable option for probing the scope and limits of cognitive plasticity in older adults.
Payne, Brennan R; Stine-Morrow, Elizabeth A L
Effective language understanding is crucial to maintaining cognitive abilities and learning new information through adulthood. However, age-related declines in working memory (WM) have a robust negative influence on multiple aspects of language comprehension and use, potentially limiting communicative competence. In the current study (N = 41), we examined the effects of a novel home-based computerized cognitive training program targeting verbal WM on changes in verbal WM and language comprehension in healthy older adults relative to an active component-control group. Participants in the WM training group showed non-linear improvements in performance on trained verbal WM tasks. Relative to the active control group, WM training participants also showed improvements on untrained verbal WM tasks and selective improvements across untrained dimensions of language, including sentence memory, verbal fluency, and comprehension of syntactically ambiguous sentences. Though the current study is preliminary in nature, it does provide initial promising evidence that WM training may influence components of language comprehension in adulthood and suggests that home-based training of WM may be a viable option for probing the scope and limits of cognitive plasticity in older adults.
Cozijn, R.; Maes, A.; Schilperoord, J.; Scheiter, K.
In three tasks (similarity rating, feature production, sentence judgment), respondents were asked to exploit the metaphoric potential of either visual or verbal object pairs. The results showed that respondents rated the similarity of visual pairs higher than verbal pairs. Respondents also produced
Montiel, José Maria; Cecato, Juliana Francisca; Bartholomeu,Daniel; Martinelli, José Eduardo
Abstract: The clock drawing (CDT) and verbal fluency tests (VF) is a simple application widely used in neuropsychological evaluations aimed to investigate dementia in elderly. The diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease is clinical, but the cognitive tests are of great help during the anamnesis. The objective this study was to evaluate the correlation between the tests of verbal fluency and clock drawing test and other cognitive tests used in Alzheimer’s disease screening. Cross-sectional study with...
Depression is known to be associated with deficits in effortful processing and word fluency. Automatic processes, instead, appear largely intact in depressed patients. It was investigated whether active word definition could be a less appropriate method than passive word recognition as a measure of verbal intelligence in depression. The valid assessment of premorbid IQ is important for correct comparison with current cognitive efficiency of depressed individuals, since premorbid IQ serves as baseline or control parameter to estimate the extent and severity of acquired cognitive impairments, both in the clinical and the research context. Two vocabulary tests were administered to 90 patients (31 women) with unipolar depression and 30 control subjects (15 women): a word definition task [the vocabulary subtest of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-R)] and a word recognition task [the Multiple choice vocabulary test (MWT)]. In the depressed sample, scores of the MWT tended to be higher than WAIS-R scores. For depressed women, the MWT score was significantly higher than the WAIS-R score. In the control sample, no differences between MWT and WAIS-R scores were observed. Our findings indicate that word definition tasks could underestimate verbal intelligence especially in depressed women. For depressed women, it could be more appropriate to administer word recognition than word definition as an estimate of premorbid or verbal intelligence.
Kim, Young-Suk; Park, Chea Hyeong; Wagner, Richard K.
In the present study we investigated developmental relations among word reading fluency, listening comprehension, and text reading fluency to reading comprehension in a relatively transparent language, Korean. A total of 98 kindergartners and 170 first graders in Korea were assessed on a series of tasks involving listening comprehension, word…
Leynes, P. Andrew; Zish, Kevin
Two experiments investigated the influence of perceptual fluency on recognition memory. Words were studied using a shallow encoding task to decrease the contribution of recollection on recognition. Fluency was manipulated by blurring half of the test probes. Clarity varied randomly across trials in one experiment and was grouped into two blocks…
Glassman, R B
It is remarkable that working memory (WM) capacity for numbers of items remains modest, at approximately 7+/-2 (the so-called "magical number"), across a wide variety of kinds of material. Indeed, consideration of radial maze studies together with more traditional memory research shows that WM capacity remains fairly constant whether the items are verbal or visuospatial, and that this same capacity is true of other species as of humans. In contrast to their limited numerousness, WM items are extremely flexible in ways that are here brought under the heading of "dimensionality." Therefore, the physical items represented in WM, can vary widely in any quantitative characteristic and in the temporal pace at which they are encountered. Combinatorial considerations suggest that WM numerousness results from evolution of a middle ground between a sterile parsimony and an overwhelming excess, for organizing neurocognitive associations. Such natural selection seems likely to have worked opportunistically to yield diverse characteristics of neuronal tissue, from subcellular components to properties of ensembles, which converge on the required cognitive properties of WM. Priming and implicit memory may play supporting roles with WM. These intermediate-term memory phenomena allow certain kinds of background information to be accumulated at higher volume than seems possible from the textbook, "modal model" of memory. By expediting attentional focus on subsets of information already in long-term memory, priming may help WM chunks to emerge in limited number as appropriately scaled "figures" from the primed "ground." The larger neuronal dynamic patterns that embody these cognitive phenomena must regulate their microscopic component systems, automatically selecting those having parameters of temporal persistence, rhythm, and connectivity patterns that are pertinent to the current task. Relevant neural phenomena may include "Hebbian" associativity and persistence of firing patterns
Kim, Young-Suk Grace; Park, Chea Hyeong; Wagner, Richard K.
In the present study we investigated developmental relations among word reading fluency, listening comprehension, and text reading fluency to reading comprehension in a relatively transparent language, Korean. A total of 98 kindergartners and 170 first graders in Korea were assessed on a series of tasks involving listening comprehension, word reading fluency, text reading fluency, and reading comprehension. Results from multigroup structural equation models showed that text reading fluency was a dissociable construct for both kindergartners and first graders. In addition, a developmental pattern emerged: listening comprehension was not uniquely related to text reading fluency for first graders, but not for kindergartners, over and above word reading fluency. In addition, text reading fluency was uniquely related to reading comprehension for kindergartners, but not for first graders, after accounting for word reading fluency and listening comprehension. For first graders, listening comprehension dominated the relations. There were no differences in the pattern of relations for skilled and less skilled readers in first grade. Results are discussed from a developmental perspective for reading comprehension component skills including text reading fluency. PMID:25653474
Stocker, James D., Jr.; Kubina, Richard M., Jr.
Fluency, a combination of response accuracy and speed, enables students to work efficiently through academic tasks. Students with disabilities and math deficits often struggle to learn math facts fluently. Although issues with fluency frequently coexist with a disability, problems gaining fluency also stem from a lack of practice and appropriate…
Joanna A Christodoulou
Full Text Available Although the neural systems supporting single word reading are well studied, there are limited direct comparisons between typical and dyslexic readers of the neural correlates of reading fluency. Reading fluency deficits are a persistent behavioral marker of dyslexia into adulthood. The current study identified the neural correlates of fluent reading in typical and dyslexic adult readers, using sentences presented in a word-by-word format in which single words were presented sequentially at fixed rates. Sentences were presented at slow, medium, and fast rates, and participants were asked to decide whether each sentence did or did not make sense semantically. As presentation rates increased, participants became less accurate and slower at making judgments, with comprehension accuracy decreasing disproportionately for dyslexic readers. In-scanner performance on the sentence task correlated significantly with standardized clinical measures of both reading fluency and phonological awareness. Both typical readers and readers with dyslexia exhibited widespread, bilateral increases in activation that corresponded to increases in presentation rate. Typical readers exhibited significantly larger gains in activation as a function of faster presentation rates than readers with dyslexia in several areas, including left prefrontal and left superior temporal regions associated with semantic retrieval and semantic and phonological representations. Group differences were more extensive when behavioral differences between conditions were equated across groups. These findings suggest a brain basis for impaired reading fluency in dyslexia, specifically a failure of brain regions involved in semantic retrieval and semantic and phonological representations to become fully engaged for comprehension at rapid reading rates.
In this article, Derek Hurrell, points out that while it's easy to fall into the impression that the proficiency strand "Fluency" is all about knowing basic number facts in all its many and splendid ways. He add it is easy to overlook, that within Fluency there are requirements that are based in Algebra; Measurement and Geometry; and…
This essay describes the struggle to get one second grade reader who was in need of fluency practice to overcome his resistance to rereading familiar texts. This was done through the use of videos which were sent to parents on a weekly basis after the texts had been practiced several time with an eye toward all aspects of fluency--phrasing,…
Muller, T; Brown, P; Herder, S
In EFL contexts, an absence of chances to develop fluency in the language classroom can lead to marked limitations in English proficiency. This volume explores fluency development from a number of different perspectives, investigating measurements and classroom strategies for promoting its development.
Zhao, Jing; Kwok, Rosa K W; Liu, Menglian; Liu, Hanlong; Huang, Chen
Reading fluency is a critical skill to improve the quality of our daily life and working efficiency. The majority of previous studies focused on oral reading fluency rather than silent reading fluency, which is a much more dominant reading mode that is used in middle and high school and for leisure reading. It is still unclear whether the oral and silent reading fluency involved the same underlying skills. To address this issue, the present study examined the relationship between the visual rapid processing and Chinese reading fluency in different modes. Fifty-eight undergraduate students took part in the experiment. The phantom contour paradigm and the visual 1-back task were adopted to measure the visual rapid temporal and simultaneous processing respectively. These two tasks reflected the temporal and spatial dimensions of visual rapid processing separately. We recorded the temporal threshold in the phantom contour task, as well as reaction time and accuracy in the visual 1-back task. Reading fluency was measured in both single-character and sentence levels. Fluent reading of single characters was assessed with a paper-and-pencil lexical decision task, and a sentence verification task was developed to examine reading fluency on a sentence level. The reading fluency test in each level was conducted twice (i.e., oral reading and silent reading). Reading speed and accuracy were recorded. The correlation analysis showed that the temporal threshold in the phantom contour task did not correlate with the scores of the reading fluency tests. Although, the reaction time in visual 1-back task correlated with the reading speed of both oral and silent reading fluency, the comparison of the correlation coefficients revealed a closer relationship between the visual rapid simultaneous processing and silent reading. Furthermore, the visual rapid simultaneous processing exhibited a significant contribution to reading fluency in silent mode but not in oral reading mode. These
Full Text Available Ambiguity is often associated with negative affective responses, and enjoying ambiguity seems restricted to only a few situations, such as experiencing art. Nevertheless, theories of judgment formation, especially the "processing fluency account", suggest that easy-to-process (non-ambiguous stimuli are processed faster and are therefore preferred to (ambiguous stimuli, which are hard to process. In a series of six experiments, we investigated these contrasting approaches by manipulating fluency (presentation duration: 10 ms, 50 ms, 100 ms, 500 ms, 1000 ms and testing effects of ambiguity (ambiguous versus non-ambiguous pictures of paintings on classification performance (Part A; speed and accuracy and aesthetic appreciation (Part B; liking and interest. As indicated by signal detection analyses, classification accuracy increased with presentation duration (Exp. 1a, but we found no effects of ambiguity on classification speed (Exp. 1b. Fifty percent of the participants were able to successfully classify ambiguous content at a presentation duration of 100 ms, and at 500 ms even 75% performed above chance level. Ambiguous artworks were found more interesting (in conditions 50 ms to 1000 ms and were preferred over non-ambiguous stimuli at 500 ms and 1000 ms (Exp. 2a - 2c, 3. Importantly, ambiguous images were nonetheless rated significantly harder to process as non-ambiguous images. These results suggest that ambiguity is an essential ingredient in art appreciation even though or maybe because it is harder to process.
Bayram, Ece; Akbostanci, Muhittin C
Cortical motor regions are considered to play a role in action related language. These regions are affected differently in different types of movement disorders. Parkinson's disease, a hypokinetic movement disorder, has been shown to cause action language disruptions alongside movement deficits. Action language, however, has not been investigated in primary cervical dystonia, a hyperkinetic movement disorder. The aim of this study is to investigate whether action language is affected differently in hypokinetic and hyperkinetic movement disorders which have different effects on movements. Thirty patients with Parkinson's disease, thirty primary cervical dystonia patients and thirty healthy controls were included in the study. Participants performed phonemic, semantic and action fluency tasks. Verbs produced during action fluency were grouped as action and non-action verbs and group differences were investigated. Our results showed that all participants performed similarly in all of the fluency tasks. Mean action content of the verbs produced in action fluency did not differ between groups. During action fluency, however, whereas healthy controls produced more action verbs than non-action verbs, both patient groups did not have this difference between verb groups. Primary cervical dystonia patients produced less action verbs compared to healthy controls. The lack of action language deficits in Parkinson's disease and only an action verb deficit in primary cervical dystonia without any other action language deficits reject strong embodiment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Jacobson, Lisa A; Ryan, Matthew; Martin, Rebecca B; Ewen, Joshua; Mostofsky, Stewart H; Denckla, Martha B; Mahone, E Mark
Processing-speed deficits affect reading efficiency, even among individuals who recognize and decode words accurately. Children with ADHD who decode words accurately can still have inefficient reading fluency, leading to a bottleneck in other cognitive processes. This "slowing" in ADHD is associated with deficits in fundamental components of executive function underlying processing speed, including response selection. The purpose of the present study was to deconstruct processing speed in order to determine which components of executive control best explain the "processing" speed deficits related to reading fluency in ADHD. Participants (41 ADHD, 21 controls), ages 9-14 years, screened for language disorders, word reading deficits, and psychiatric disorders, were administered measures of copying speed, processing speed, reading fluency, working memory, reaction time, inhibition, and auditory attention span. Compared to controls, children with ADHD showed reduced oral and silent reading fluency and reduced processing speed-driven primarily by deficits on WISC-IV Coding. In contrast, groups did not differ on copying speed. After controlling for copying speed, sex, severity of ADHD-related symptomatology, and GAI, slowed "processing" speed (i.e., Coding) was significantly associated with verbal span and measures of working memory but not with measures of response control/inhibition, lexical retrieval speed, reaction time, or intrasubject variability. Further, "processing" speed (i.e., Coding, residualized for copying speed) and working memory were significant predictors of oral reading fluency. Abnormalities in working memory and response selection (which are frontally mediated and enter into the output side of processing speed) may play an important role in deficits in reading fluency in ADHD, potentially more than posteriorally mediated problems with orienting of attention or perceiving the stimulus.
Lanska, Meredith; Olds, Justin M.; Westerman, Deanne L.
On a recognition memory test, both perceptual and conceptual fluency can engender a sense of familiarity and elicit recognition memory illusions. To date, perceptual and conceptual fluency have been studied separately but are they interchangeable in terms of their influence on recognition judgments? Five experiments compared the effect of…
Shiliang Chang; Waid, Erin; Martinec, Danny V; Bin Zheng; Swanstrom, Lee L
The impact of verbal communication on laparoscopic team performance was examined. A total of 24 dyad teams, comprised of residents, medical students, and office staff, underwent 2 team tasks using a previously validated bench model. Twelve teams (feedback groups) received instant verbal instruction and feedback on their performance from an instructor which was compared with 12 teams (control groups) with minimal or no verbal feedback. Their performances were both video and audio taped for analysis. Surgical backgrounds were similar between feedback and control groups. Teams with more verbal feedback achieved significantly better task performance (P = .002) compared with the control group with less feedback. Impact of verbal feedback was more pronounced for tasks requiring team cooperation (aiming and navigation) than tasks depending on individual skills (knotting). Verbal communication, especially the instructions and feedback from an experienced instructor, improved team efficiency and performance.
Tikhomirova, T.N.; Malykh, S.B.; Bogomaz, S.A.; Sudneva, O.V.; Kovas, Yulia
The study investigated spatial ability and visuo-spatial memory in groups of high school students with different levels of mathematical fluency. We used the Mental Rotation Task and Corsi Block-Tapping Task to measure spatial ability and visuo-spatial memory, respectively. A statistically significant difference was found between the groups with different levels of math fluency in terms of effectiveness of spatial ability and level of visuo-spatial memory. Statistically significant sex differe...
Meijer, Julia H.; Schmitz, Nicole; Nieman, Dorien H.; Becker, Hiske E.; van Amelsvoort, Therese A. M. J.; Dingemans, Peter M.; Linszen, Don H.; de Haan, Lieuwe
Early identification of subjects with an increased risk of psychosis is necessary to develop interventions to delay or prevent disease onset. We recently reported that decreased semantic verbal fluency performance in ultra high risk (UHR) subjects predicts the development of psychosis (Becker et
Acheson, Daniel J.; MacDonald, Maryellen C.
Verbal working memory (WM) tasks typically involve the language production architecture for recall; however, language production processes have had a minimal role in theorizing about WM. A framework for understanding verbal WM results is presented here. In this framework, domain-specific mechanisms for serial ordering in verbal WM are provided by…
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by an impairment of the semantic memory responsible for processing meaning-related knowledge. This study was aimed at examining how Finnish-speaking healthy elderly subjects (n = 30) and mildly (n=20) and moderately (n = 20) demented AD patients utilize semantic knowledge to performa semantic fluency task, a method of studying semantic memory. In this task subjects are typically given 60 seconds to generate words belonging to the semantic category of ...
Ana Cláudia C. Vieira
Full Text Available ABSTRACT Sub-arachnoid hemorrhage (SAH promotes impairment of upper cortical functions. However, few information is available emphasizing changes in language after aneurismal SAH and aneurysm location influence. Objective To assess the language and verbal fluency performance in aneurismal SAH pre- and post-surgery in patients caused by an aneurysm of the anterior communicating artery (AcomA, left middle cerebral artery (L-MCA and left posterior comunicating artery (L-PcomA. Methods Assessment in 79 patients with SAH, on two occasions: pre- and post surgical treatment. They were divided into three groups by the aneurysms’ location. Results Deterioration is detected in the performance of all patients during the post-surgical period; L-MCA aneurysm patients displayed a reduction in verbal naming and fluency; L-PcomA patients deteriorated in the written language and fluency tasks. Conclusion After the surgical procedure the patients decreased in various language tasks and these differences in performance being directly related to the location of the aneurysm.
Razumnikova, O M; Bryzgalova, A O
Gender differences in EEG patterns associated with verbal creativity were studied by EEG mapping. The EEGs of 18 males and 21 females (right-handed university students) were recorded during a performance of Remote Associates Task (RAT) compared with the letter-fluency and simple associate's tasks. Gender differences were found in a factor structure of the indices of verbal thinking and a score of generating words was greater in women than men. No significant gender differences in originality of associations were revealed, however, gender-related differences in the EEG-patterns were found at the final and initial stages of RAT. In men, the beta2-power was increased in both hemispheres at the beginning of test. To the end of testing, the power of oscillations in the beta2 band increased only in the central part of the cortex. In women, the beta2-power was increased to a greater extent in the right than in the left hemisphere at the initial stage of task performance, whereas the final stage was characterized by a relative decrease in beta-activity in parietotemporal cortical regions and increase in the left prefrontal region. It is suggested that the verbal creative thinking in men is based mostly on "insight" strategy whereas women additionally involve the "intellectual" strategy.
Nascimento, Tânia Augusto; Carvalho, Carolina Alves Ferreira de; Kida, Adriana de Souza Batista; Avila, Clara Regina Brandão de
To characterize the performance of students with reading difficulties in decoding and reading comprehension tasks as well as to investigate the possible correlations between them. Sixty students (29 girls) from 3rd to 5th grades of public Elementary Schools were evaluated. Thirty students (Research Group - RG), ten from each grade, were nominated by their teachers as presenting evidences of learning disabilities. The other thirty students were indicated as good readers, and were matched by gender, age and grade to the RG, composing the Comparison Group (CG). All subjects were assessed regarding the parameters of reading fluency (rate and accuracy in words, pseudowords and text reading) and reading comprehension (reading level, number and type of ideas identified, and correct responses on multiple choice questions). The RG presented significantly lower scores than the CG in fluency and reading comprehension. Different patterns of positive and negative correlations, from weak to excellent, among the decoding and comprehension parameters were found in both groups. In the RG, low values of reading rate and accuracy were observed, which were correlated to low scores in comprehension and improvement in decoding, but not in comprehension, with grade increase. In CG, correlation was found between different fluency parameters, but none of them was correlated to the reading comprehension variables. Students with reading and writing difficulties show lower values of reading fluency and comprehension than good readers. Fluency and comprehension are correlated in the group with difficulties, showing that deficits in decoding influence reading comprehension, which does not improve with age increase.
Geisseler, Olivia; Pflugshaupt, Tobias; Bezzola, Ladina; Reuter, Katja; Weller, David; Schuknecht, Bernhard; Brugger, Peter; Linnebank, Michael
Cognitive impairment is as an important feature of Multiple Sclerosis (MS), and might be even more relevant to patients than mobility restrictions. Compared to the multitude of studies investigating memory deficits or basic cognitive slowing, executive dysfunction is a rarely studied cognitive domain in MS, and its neural correlates remain largely unexplored. Even rarer are topological studies on specific cognitive functions in MS. Here we used several structural MRI parameters - including cortical thinning and T2 lesion load - to investigate neural correlates of executive dysfunction, both on a global and a regional level by means of voxel- and vertex-wise analyses. Forty-eight patients with relapsing-remitting MS and 48 healthy controls participated in the study. Five executive functions were assessed, i.e. verbal and figural fluency, working memory, interference control and set shifting. Patients scored lower than controls in verbal and figural fluency only, and displayed widespread cortical thinning. On a global level, cortical thickness independently predicted verbal fluency performance, when controlling for lesion volume and central brain atrophy estimates. On a regional level, cortical thinning in the anterior cingulate region correlated with deficits in verbal and figural fluency and did so in a lateralised manner: Left-sided thinning was related to reduced verbal - but not figural - fluency, whereas the opposite pattern was observed for right-sided thinning. We conclude that executive dysfunction in MS patients can specifically affect verbal and figural fluency. The observed lateralised clinico-anatomical correlation has previously been described in brain-damaged patients with large focal lesions only, for example after stroke. Based on focal grey matter atrophy, we here show for the first time comparable lateralised findings in a white matter disease with widespread pathology.
Full Text Available Cognitive impairment is as an important feature of Multiple Sclerosis (MS, and might be even more relevant to patients than mobility restrictions. Compared to the multitude of studies investigating memory deficits or basic cognitive slowing, executive dysfunction is a rarely studied cognitive domain in MS, and its neural correlates remain largely unexplored. Even rarer are topological studies on specific cognitive functions in MS. Here we used several structural MRI parameters – including cortical thinning and T2 lesion load – to investigate neural correlates of executive dysfunction, both on a global and a regional level by means of voxel- and vertex-wise analyses. Forty-eight patients with relapsing-remitting MS and 48 healthy controls participated in the study. Five executive functions were assessed, i.e. verbal and figural fluency, working memory, interference control and set shifting. Patients scored lower than controls in verbal and figural fluency only, and displayed widespread cortical thinning. On a global level, cortical thickness independently predicted verbal fluency performance, when controlling for lesion volume and central brain atrophy estimates. On a regional level, cortical thinning in the anterior cingulate region correlated with deficits in verbal and figural fluency and did so in a lateralised manner: Left-sided thinning was related to reduced verbal – but not figural – fluency, whereas the opposite pattern was observed for right-sided thinning. We conclude that executive dysfunction in MS patients can specifically affect verbal and figural fluency. The observed lateralised clinico-anatomical correlation has previously been described in brain-damaged patients with large focal lesions only, for example after stroke. Based on focal grey matter atrophy, we here show for the first time comparable lateralised findings in a white matter disease with widespread pathology.
Rommers, Joost; Meyer, Antje S; Huettig, Falk
During language comprehension, listeners often anticipate upcoming information. This can draw listeners' overt attention to visually presented objects before the objects are referred to. We investigated to what extent the anticipatory mechanisms involved in such language-mediated attention rely on specific verbal factors and on processes shared with other domains of cognition. Participants listened to sentences ending in a highly predictable word (e.g., "In 1969 Neil Armstrong was the first man to set foot on the moon") while viewing displays containing three unrelated distractor objects and a critical object, which was either the target object (e.g., a moon), an object with a similar shape (e.g., a tomato), or an unrelated control object (e.g., rice). Language-mediated anticipatory eye movements were observed to targets and to shape competitors. Importantly, looks to the shape competitor were systematically related to individual differences in anticipatory attention, as indexed by a spatial cueing task: Participants whose responses were most strongly facilitated by predictive arrow cues also showed the strongest effects of predictive language input on their eye movements. By contrast, looks to the target were related to individual differences in vocabulary size and verbal fluency. The results suggest that verbal and nonverbal factors contribute to different types of language-mediated eye movements. The findings are consistent with multiple-mechanism accounts of predictive language processing.
has examined such task types as linear categorical and conditional syllogisms , and verbal and schematic-picture analogies. Componen- tial models...have focused on verbal and imaginal encoding; retrieval; code access; categorization ; execu- tive control; rule induction; inference; semantic
Panos, Joseph A; Hoffman, Joshua T; Wordeman, Samuel C; Hewett, Timothy E
Correction of neuromuscular impairments after anterior cruciate ligament injury is vital to successful return to sport. Frontal plane knee control during landing is a common measure of lower-extremity neuromuscular control and asymmetries in neuromuscular control of the knee can predispose injured athletes to additional injury and associated morbidities. Therefore, this study investigated the effects of anterior cruciate ligament injury on knee biomechanics during landing. Two-dimensional frontal plane video of single leg drop, cross over drop, and drop vertical jump dynamic movement trials was analyzed for twenty injured and reconstructed athletes. The position of the knee joint center was tracked in ImageJ software for 500 milliseconds after landing to calculate medio-lateral knee motion velocities and determine normal fluency, the number of times per second knee velocity changed direction. The inverse of this calculation, analytical fluency, was used to associate larger numerical values with fluent movement. Analytical fluency was decreased in involved limbs for single leg drop trials (P=0.0018). Importantly, analytical fluency for single leg drop differed compared to cross over drop trials for involved (Pfluency values exhibited a stepwise trend in relative magnitudes. Decreased analytical fluency in involved limbs is consistent with previous studies. Fluency asymmetries observed during single leg drop tasks may be indicative of abhorrent landing strategies in the involved limb. Analytical fluency differences in unilateral tasks for injured limbs may represent neuromuscular impairment as a result of injury. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Biesbroek, J. Matthijs; van Zandvoort, Martine J E; Kappelle, L. Jaap; Velthuis, Birgitta K.; Biessels, Geert Jan; Postma, Albert
Semantic and phonemic fluency tasks are frequently used to test executive functioning, speed and attention, and access to the mental lexicon. In semantic fluency tasks, subjects are required to generate words belonging to a category (e.g., animals) within a limited time window, whereas in phonemic
Seok, Soonhwa; DaCosta, Boaventura
This research investigated oral reading fluency as a predictor of silent reading fluency at the secondary and postsecondary levels. Several measures were used, including the Gray Oral Reading Test, the Test of Silent Word Reading Fluency, the Test of Silent Contextual Reading Fluency, and the Reading Observation Scale. A total of 223 students…
Rasinski, Timothy V.
This article explores problems that have surfaced in the teaching of reading fluency and how teachers and reading coaches can resolve those problems. Specific issues addressed include reading fluency being defined as reading fast and instruction that is focused on having students read fast, reading fluency viewed as solely and oral reading…
Frank, Michael C.; Fedorenko, Evelina; Lai, Peter; Saxe, Rebecca; Gibson, Edward
Language for number is an important case study of the relationship between language and cognition because the mechanisms of non-verbal numerical cognition are well-understood. When the Piraha (an Amazonian hunter-gatherer tribe who have no exact number words) are tested in non-verbal numerical tasks, they are able to perform one-to-one matching…
This book takes a new and holistic approach to fluency in English speech and differentiates between productive, perceptive, and nonverbal fluency. The in-depth corpus-based description of productive fluency points out major differences of how fluency is established in native and nonnative speech. It also reveals areas in which even highly advanced learners of English still deviate strongly from the native target norm and in which they have already approximated to it. Based on these findings, selected learners are subjected to native speakers' ratings of seven perceptive fluency variables in or
There are many different definitions of information literacy, but perhaps the best succinct and comprehensive definition is: Information literacy (or fluency) is a set of abilities requiring individuals to "recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information." This skill set will be invaluable throughout life in making informed decisions.
Pham, Andy V; Hasson, Ramzi M
Children with reading difficulties often demonstrate weaknesses in working memory (WM). This research study explored the relation between two WM systems (verbal and visuospatial WM) and reading ability in a sample of school-aged children with a wide range of reading skills. Children (N = 157), ages 9-12, were administered measures of short-term memory, verbal WM, visuospatial WM, and reading measures (e.g., reading fluency and comprehension). Although results indicated that verbal WM was a stronger predictor in reading fluency and comprehension, visuospatial WM also significantly predicted reading skills, but provided more unique variance in reading comprehension than reading fluency. These findings suggest that visuospatial WM may play a significant role in higher level reading processes, particularly in reading comprehension, than previously thought. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.
Sitek, Emilia J; Wieczorek, Dariusz; Konkel, Agnieszka; Dąbrowska, Magda; Sławek, Jarosław
Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is regarded either within spectrum of atypical parkinsonian syndromes or frontotemporal lobar degeneration. We compared the verbal, visuospatial and procedural learning profiles in patients with PSP and Parkinson's disease (PD). Furthermore, the relationship between executive factors (initiation and inhibition) and learning outcomes was analyzed. Thirty-three patients with the clinical diagnosis of PSP-Richardson's syndrome (PSP-RS), 39 patients with PD and 29 age -and education -matched controls were administered Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), phonemic and semantic fluency tasks, Auditory Verbal Learning Test (AVLT), Visual Learning and Memory Test for Neuropsychological Assessment by Lamberti and Weidlich (Diagnosticum für Cerebralschädigung, DCS), Tower of Toronto (ToT) and two motor sequencing tasks. Patients with PSP-RS and PD were matched in terms of MMSE scores and mood. Performance on DCS was lower in PSP-RS than in PD. AVLT delayed recall was better in PSP-RS than PD. Motor sequencing task did not differentiate between patients. Scores on AVLT correlated positively with phonemic fluency scores in both PSP-RS and PD. ToT rule violation scores were negatively associated with DCS performance in PSP-RS and PD as well as with AVLT performance in PD. Global memory performance is relatively similar in PSP-RS and PD. Executive factors (initiation and inhibition) are closely related to memory performance in PSP-RS and PD. Visuospatial learning impairment in PSP-RS is possibly linked to impulsivity and failure to inhibit automatic responses.
Forster, Michael; Leder, Helmut; Ansorge, Ulrich
According to the processing fluency theory, higher ease of processing a stimulus leads to higher feelings of fluency and more positive evaluations. However, it is unclear whether feelings of fluency are positive or an unspecific activation and whether feelings of fluency are directly attributed to the stimulus even without much positive feelings. In two experiments, we tested how variations in the ease of processing influenced feelings of fluency and affect, in terms of evaluations (Exp. 1) and physiological responses (Exp. 2). Higher feelings of fluency were associated with more positive stimulus ratings and did not affect stimulus arousal ratings, but perceivers' feelings showed higher felt arousal ratings and left felt valence ratings unaffected. Physiological indices only showed small effects of a subtle positive reaction. These findings show that feelings of fluency can be sources of positive object evaluations, but do not affect one's own positive feelings.
Siddi, Sara; Petretto, Donatella Rita; Burrai, Caterina; Scanu, Rosanna; Baita, Antonella; Trincas, Pierfranco; Trogu, Emanuela; Campus, Liliana; Contu, Augusto; Preti, Antonio
Auditory verbal hallucinations (AVHs) are a cardinal characteristic of psychosis. Recent research on the neuropsychological mechanism of AVHs has focused on source monitoring failure, but a few studies have suggested the involvement of attention, working memory, processing speed, verbal learning, memory, and executive functions. In this study we examined the neuropsychological profile of patients with AVHs, assuming that the mechanism underlying this symptom could be a dysfunction of specific cognitive domains. A large neuropsychological battery including set-shifting, working memory, processing speed, attention, fluency, verbal learning and memory, and executive functions was administered to 90 patients with psychotic disorders and 44 healthy controls. The group of patients was divided into two groups: 46 patients with AVHs in the current episode and 44 who denied auditory hallucinations or other modalities in the current episode. AVHs were assessed with the Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales (PSYRATS); the Launay-Slade Hallucination Scale was used to measure long-term propensity to auditory verbal hallucination-like experiences (HLEs) in the sample. Patients showed poorer performances on all neuropsychological measures compared to the healthy controls' group. In the original dataset without missing data (n=58), patients with AVHs (n=29) presented poorer set shifting and verbal learning, higher levels of visual attention, and marginally significant poorer semantic fluency compared to patients without AVHs (n=29). In the logistic model on the multiple imputed dataset (n=90, 100 imputed datasets), lower capacity of set shifting and semantic fluency distinguished patients with AVHs from those without them. Patients experiencing persistent AVHs might fail to shift their attention away from the voices; poorer semantic fluency could be a secondary deficit of set-shifting failure. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Hartley, Calum; Allen, Melissa L.
Previous word learning studies suggest that children with autism spectrum disorder may have difficulty understanding pictorial symbols. Here we investigate the ability of children with autism spectrum disorder and language-matched typically developing children to contextualize symbolic information communicated by pictures in a search task that did…
Duttlinger, Cari; Ayres, Kevin M.; Bevill-Davis, Alicia; Douglas, Karen H.
We investigated instruction of independent creation of picture activity schedules (PASs) and how four middle school students with intellectual disability used them to complete tasks independently. A withdrawal design (A-BC-B-A-B) was used to evaluate whether the intervention had an effect on the dependent variable and to test for generalization to…
Schretlen, David J; van der Hulst, Egberdina-Józefa; Pearlson, Godfrey D; Gordon, Barry
Openness is a personality trait that has been linked to intelligence and divergent thinking. DeYoung, Peterson, and Higgins (2005) theorized that trait Openness depends on dopamine function, especially in the prefrontal cortex. We tested their theory in 335 healthy adults by hypothesizing that individual differences in Openness would correlate more strongly with performance on tests of executive function than on tests of intelligence and fluency. However, Openness correlated more strongly with verbal/crystallized intelligence (Gc; r = .44) than with executive functioning (r = .16) and fluency (r = .24). Further, the partial correlation between Openness and Gc increased from r = .26 among young adults to r = .53 among elderly adults. These findings suggest that Openness is more closely associated with the acquisition of broad verbal intellectual skills and knowledge than with executive abilities localized to a specific brain region or neurotransmitter system.
Guenther, R Kim
Processing fluency is known to affect a variety of cognitive assessments, but most research has not examined such effects in the context of a real-life experience. In the first experiment, college students, enrolled in either a statistics or cognitive psychology course, read a course syllabus which varied in the clarity of its font and frequency of its vocabulary. Based on the syllabus, students then forecasted their final course grade and the course's difficulty. Despite methodological similarity to other fluency experiments and adequate statistical power, there were no significant differences in forecasts across fluency conditions. Fluency may be discounted in a task which provides information that affects people's lives. This interpretation was bolstered by a second experiment whose participants were students in a statistics course. These students read the cognitive course's syllabus and forecasted better grades and less difficulty in the cognitive course when the font of the syllabus was more clear than unclear.
Olive, Thierry; Kellogg, Ronald T.; Piolat, Annie
Two experiments examined whether text composition engages verbal, visual, and spatial working memory to different degrees. In Experiment 1, undergraduate students composed by longhand a persuasive text while performing a verbal, visual, or spatial concurrent task that was presented visually. In Experiment 2, participants performed a verbal or…
Ikeda, Haruka; Ikeda, Eiji; Shiozaki, Kazumasa; Hirayasu, Yoshio
The aim of this study was to investigate the biological background of the five-factor model using near-infrared spectroscopy and cognitive tasks. Twenty right-handed healthy volunteers participated in this study. Their personality traits were assessed using the NEO Five-Factor Inventory, and changes in oxyhemoglobin concentration ([oxy-Hb]) were measured during cognitive tasks using a wireless near-infrared spectroscopy. The average [oxy-Hb] in the right prefrontal area had a significant positive correlation with the agreeableness score during the Stroop test at incongruent stimulus block. For the verbal fluency task, there were no significant correlations of bilateral [oxy-Hb] changes with any items. Higher agreeableness scores may involve less suppression to the default mode network related to resting state brain function. Keeping selective attention during the Stroop test may require more power of concentration than retrieving words during the verbal fluency task. © 2014 The Authors. Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences © 2014 Japanese Society of Psychiatry and Neurology.
Full Text Available Objective To identify the sensitivity and specificity of Animal-City Alternating Form Fluency Test (ACFT differentiating mild cognitive impairment (MCI and Alzheimer's disease (AD from normal controls. Methods A total of 121 MCI patients, 104 AD patients and 104 healthy controls, who were matched in sex, age and education level, were enrolled in this study. They performed Animal Category Verbal Fluency Test (AFT, City Category Verbal Fluency Test (CFT and ACFT. A series of standard neuropsychological tests were also administered to reflect episodic memory, verbal ability, working memory, executive function and processing speed. The validity and related influencing factors of ACFT was evaluated. Results Compared with control group, the ACFT correct number in MCI and AD groups reduced significantly (P = 0.000, 0.000. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC curve revealed the sensitivity and specificity of ACFT in discriminating MCI (P = 0.012, 0.030 and AD (P = 0.004, 0.003 from normal controls were higher than those of AFT and CFT. There was no correlation of correct number in ACFT with age and education (P > 0.05, for all. The correlations of ACFT with Stroop Color-Word Test (SCWT, Digital Symbol Substitution Test (DSST, Shape Trail Test (STT and Digit Span Test (DS, all of which reflected attention and executive function, were significantly closer than those of AFT and CFT (P < 0.05, for all. Conclusions ACFT is more efficient in early cognitive impairment identification than the other traditional category verbal fluency tests. It is a new variant form of category verbal fluency test that could assess cognitive function and could be broadly applied in clinical practice. DOI: 10.3969/j.issn.1672-6731.2015.07.010
Panos, Joseph A.; Hoffman, Joshua T.; Wordeman, Samuel C.; Hewett, Timothy E.
Background Correction of neuromuscular impairments after anterior cruciate ligament injury is vital to successful return to sport. Frontal plane knee control during landing is a common measure of lower-extremity neuromuscular control and asymmetries in neuromuscular control of the knee can predispose injured athletes to additional injury and associated morbidities. Therefore, this study investigated the effects of anterior cruciate ligament injury on knee biomechanics during landing. Methods Two-dimensional frontal plane video of single leg drop, cross over drop, and drop vertical jump dynamic movement trials was analyzed for twenty injured and reconstructed athletes. The position of the knee joint center was tracked in ImageJ software for 500 milliseconds after landing to calculate medio-lateral knee motion velocities and determine normal fluency, the number of times per second knee velocity changed direction. The inverse of this calculation, analytical fluency, was used to associate larger numerical values with fluent movement. Findings Analytical fluency was decreased in involved limbs for single leg drop trials (P=0.0018). Importantly, analytical fluency for single leg drop differed compared to cross over drop trials for involved (P<0.001), but not uninvolved limbs (P=0.5029). For involved limbs, analytical fluency values exhibited a stepwise trend in relative magnitudes. Interpretation Decreased analytical fluency in involved limbs is consistent with previous studies. Fluency asymmetries observed during single leg drop tasks may be indicative of abhorrent landing strategies in the involved limb. Analytical fluency differences in unilateral tasks for injured limbs may represent neuromuscular impairment as a result of injury. PMID:26895446
Langer, Nicolas; Benjamin, Christopher; Minas, Jennifer; Gaab, Nadine
Multiple studies have shown that individuals with a reading disability (RD) demonstrate deficits in posterior left-hemispheric brain regions during reading-related tasks. These studies mainly focused on reading sub-skills, and it remains debated whether such dysfunction is apparent during more ecologically valid reading skills, such as reading fluency. In this fMRI study, reading fluency was systematically varied to characterize neural correlates of reading fluency in 30 children with (RD) and without (typical developing children, TYP) a RD. Sentences were presented at constrained, comfortable, and accelerated speeds, which were determined based on individual reading speed. Behaviorally, RD children displayed decreased performance in several reading-related tasks. Using fMRI, we demonstrated that both TYP and RD children display increased activation in several components of the reading network during fluent reading. When required to read at an accelerated speed, RD children exhibited less activation in the fusiform gyrus (FG) compared with the TYP children. A region of interest analysis substantiated differences in the FG and demonstrated a relationship to behavioral reading performance. These results suggest that the FG plays a key role in fluent reading and that it can be modulated by speed. These results and their implications for remediation strategies should be considered in educational practice. Published by Oxford University Press 2013. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.
Graber, Doris A.
This book illustrates how and why knowledge of verbal behavior is important to an understanding of politics by analyzing and describing verbal behavior studies pertaining to politics. Chapters in the first part of the book discuss the various characteristics of verbal behavior: the importance of verbal behavior in politics, construction of…
Yildirim, Kasim; Rasinski, Timothy
Reading fluency is one of the underlying factors of successful language curricula and it is also one of the defining characteristics of good readers. A lack of fluency is a common characteristic of struggling readers. There is a growing body of research that demonstrates proficiency in reading fluency is important for success in learning to read…
Smith, Sherri L; Pichora-Fuller, M Kathleen
Listeners with hearing loss commonly report having difficulty understanding speech, particularly in noisy environments. Their difficulties could be due to auditory and cognitive processing problems. Performance on speech-in-noise tests has been correlated with reading working memory span (RWMS), a measure often chosen to avoid the effects of hearing loss. If the goal is to assess the cognitive consequences of listeners' auditory processing abilities, however, then listening working memory span (LWMS) could be a more informative measure. Some studies have examined the effects of different degrees and types of masking on working memory, but less is known about the demands placed on working memory depending on the linguistic complexity of the target speech or the task used to measure speech understanding in listeners with hearing loss. Compared to RWMS, LWMS measures using different speech targets and maskers may provide a more ecologically valid approach. To examine the contributions of RWMS and LWMS to speech understanding, we administered two working memory measures (a traditional RWMS measure and a new LWMS measure), and a battery of tests varying in the linguistic complexity of the speech materials, the presence of babble masking, and the task. Participants were a group of younger listeners with normal hearing and two groups of older listeners with hearing loss (n = 24 per group). There was a significant group difference and a wider range in performance on LWMS than on RWMS. There was a significant correlation between both working memory measures only for the oldest listeners with hearing loss. Notably, there were only few significant correlations among the working memory and speech understanding measures. These findings suggest that working memory measures reflect individual differences that are distinct from those tapped by these measures of speech understanding.
Kim, Young-Suk; Petscher, Yaacov; Foorman, Barbara
Despite many previous studies on reading fluency (measured by a maze task) as a screening measure, our understanding is limited about the utility of silent reading fluency in predicting later reading comprehension and contextual influences (e.g., schools and districts) on reading comprehension achievement. In the present study we examined: (1) How…
Full Text Available Abstract Background Dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC, posterior parietal cortex, and regions in the occipital cortex have been identified as neural sites for visual working memory (WM. The exact involvement of the DLPFC in verbal and non-verbal working memory processes, and how these processes depend on the time-span for retention, remains disputed. Methods We used functional MRI to explore the neural correlates of the delayed discrimination of Gabor stimuli differing in orientation. Twelve subjects were instructed to code the relative orientation either verbally or non-verbally with memory delays of short (2 s or long (8 s duration. Results Blood-oxygen level dependent (BOLD 3-Tesla fMRI revealed significantly more activity for the short verbal condition compared to the short non-verbal condition in bilateral superior temporal gyrus, insula and supramarginal gyrus. Activity in the long verbal condition was greater than in the long non-verbal condition in left language-associated areas (STG and bilateral posterior parietal areas, including precuneus. Interestingly, right DLPFC and bilateral superior frontal gyrus was more active in the non-verbal long delay condition than in the long verbal condition. Conclusion The results point to a dissociation between the cortical sites involved in verbal and non-verbal WM for long and short delays. Right DLPFC seems to be engaged in non-verbal WM tasks especially for long delays. Furthermore, the results indicate that even slightly different memory maintenance intervals engage largely differing networks and that this novel finding may explain differing results in previous verbal/non-verbal WM studies.
Constable, Merryn D; Bayliss, Andrew P; Tipper, Steven P; Kritikos, Ada
People tend to prefer fluently processed over harder to process information. In this study we examine two issues concerning fluency and preference. First, previous research has pre-selected fluent and non-fluent materials. We did not take this approach yet show that the fluency of individuals' idiosyncratic on-line interactions with a given stimulus can influence preference formation. Second, while processing fluency influences preference, the opposite also may be true: preferred stimuli could be processed more fluently than non-preferred. Participants performed a visual search task either before or after indicating their preferred images from an array of either paintings by Kandinsky or decorated coffee mugs. Preferred stimuli were associated with fluent processing, reflected in facilitated search times. Critically, this was only the case for participants who gave their preferences after completing the visual search task, not for those stating preferences prior to the visual search task. Our results suggest that the spontaneous and idiosyncratic experience of processing fluency plays a role in forming preference judgments and conversely that our first impressions of preference do not drive response fluency. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Cribbs, Aimee M.
This study focused on the relationships between educator reading fluency constructs, reading fluency instruction and oral reading fluency assessment. Survey responses from sixty-six elementary educators in rural and urban north Georgia were analyzed to reach an understanding of why educators are likely to equate reading fluency with reading fast…
Hartley, Calum; Allen, Melissa L
Previous word learning studies suggest that children with autism spectrum disorder may have difficulty understanding pictorial symbols. Here we investigate the ability of children with autism spectrum disorder and language-matched typically developing children to contextualize symbolic information communicated by pictures in a search task that did not involve word learning. Out of the participant's view, a small toy was concealed underneath one of four unique occluders that were individuated by familiar nameable objects or unfamiliar unnamable objects. Children were shown a picture of the hiding location and then searched for the toy. Over three sessions, children completed trials with color photographs, black-and-white line drawings, and abstract color pictures. The results reveal zero group differences; neither children with autism spectrum disorder nor typically developing children were influenced by occluder familiarity, and both groups' errorless retrieval rates were above-chance with all three picture types. However, both groups made significantly more errorless retrievals in the most-iconic photograph trials, and performance was universally predicted by receptive language. Therefore, our findings indicate that children with autism spectrum disorder and young typically developing children can contextualize pictures and use them to adaptively guide their behavior in real time and space. However, this ability is significantly influenced by receptive language development and pictorial iconicity. © The Author(s) 2014.
Klein, Carina; Diaz Hernandez, Laura; Koenig, Thomas; Kottlow, Mara; Elmer, Stefan; Jäncke, Lutz
Previous work highlighted the possibility that musical training has an influence on cognitive functioning. The suggested reason for this influence is the strong recruitment of attention, planning, and working memory functions during playing a musical instrument. The purpose of the present work was twofold, namely to evaluate the general relationship between pre-stimulus electrophysiological activity and cognition, and more specifically the influence of musical expertise on working memory functions. With this purpose in mind, we used covariance mapping analyses to evaluate whether pre-stimulus electroencephalographic activity is predictive for reaction time during a visual working memory task (Sternberg paradigm) in musicians and non-musicians. In line with our hypothesis, we replicated previous findings pointing to a general predictive value of pre-stimulus activity for working memory performance. Most importantly, we also provide first evidence for an influence of musical expertise on working memory performance that could distinctively be predicted by pre-stimulus spectral power. Our results open novel perspectives for better comprehending the vast influences of musical expertise on cognition.
Full Text Available Because of permanent use-dependent cerebral plasticity, all lifelong individuals’ experiences are believed to influence the cognitive aging quality. In old individuals, both former and current musical practices have been associated with better verbal skills, visual memory, processing speed, and planning function. This work sought for an interaction between musical practice and cognitive aging by comparing musician and nonmusician individuals for two periods of life (late adulthood and old age. Long-term memory, auditory verbal short-term memory, processing speed, nonverbal reasoning, and verbal fluencies were assessed. In study 1, measures of processing speed and auditory verbal short-term memory showed significant better performances for musicians compared with controls, but both groups displayed the same age-related difference. For verbal fluencies, musician individuals scored higher and displayed different age effects compared with controls. In study 2, we revealed that the life period at training onset (childhood versus adulthood was associated with phonemic, but not semantic fluency performances (musicians who had started practice in adulthood did not perform better on phonemic fluency compared with nonmusicians. For these two measures, current frequency of training did not account for musicians’ scores. These patterns of results are discussed by confronting the hypothesis of a transformative effect of musical practice with non-causal explanation.
Papadopoulos, Timothy C.; Spanoudis, George C.; Georgiou, George K.
We examined the prominent theoretical explanations of the RAN-reading relationship in a relatively transparent language (Greek) in a sample of children (n = 286) followed from Grade 1 to Grade 2. Specifically, we tested the fit of eight different models, as defined by the type of reading performance predicted (oral vs. silent word reading fluency), the type of RAN tasks (non-alphanumeric vs. alphanumeric), and the RAN effects (direct vs. indirect). Working memory, attention, processing speed, and motor skills were used as “common cause” variables predicting both RAN and reading fluency and phonological awareness and orthographic processing were used as mediators of RAN's effects on reading fluency. The findings of both concurrent and longitudinal analyses indicated that RAN is a unique predictor of oral reading fluency, but not silent reading fluency. Using alphanumeric or non-alphanumeric RAN did not particularly affect the RAN-reading relationship. Both phonological awareness and orthographic processing partly mediated RAN's effects on reading fluency. Theoretical implications of these findings are discussed. PMID:27605918
TIMOTHY C PAPADOPOULOS
Full Text Available We examined the prominent theoretical explanations of the RAN-reading relationship in a relatively transparent language (Greek in a sample of children (n= 286 followed from Grade 1 to Grade 2. Specifically, we tested the fit of eight different models, as defined by the type of reading performance predicted (oral vs. silent word reading fluency, the type of RAN tasks (non-alphanumeric vs. alphanumeric, and the RAN effects (direct vs. indirect. Working memory, attention, processing speed, and motor skills were used as common cause variables predicting both RAN and reading fluency and phonological awareness and orthographic processing were used as mediators of RAN’s effects on reading fluency. The findings of both concurrent and longitudinal analyses indicated that RAN is a unique predictor of oral reading fluency, but not silent reading fluency. Using alphanumeric or non-alphanumeric RAN did not particularly affect the RAN-reading relationship. Both phonological awareness and orthographic processing partly mediated RAN’s effects on reading fluency. Theoretical implications of these findings are discussed.
Papadopoulos, Timothy C; Spanoudis, George C; Georgiou, George K
We examined the prominent theoretical explanations of the RAN-reading relationship in a relatively transparent language (Greek) in a sample of children (n = 286) followed from Grade 1 to Grade 2. Specifically, we tested the fit of eight different models, as defined by the type of reading performance predicted (oral vs. silent word reading fluency), the type of RAN tasks (non-alphanumeric vs. alphanumeric), and the RAN effects (direct vs. indirect). Working memory, attention, processing speed, and motor skills were used as "common cause" variables predicting both RAN and reading fluency and phonological awareness and orthographic processing were used as mediators of RAN's effects on reading fluency. The findings of both concurrent and longitudinal analyses indicated that RAN is a unique predictor of oral reading fluency, but not silent reading fluency. Using alphanumeric or non-alphanumeric RAN did not particularly affect the RAN-reading relationship. Both phonological awareness and orthographic processing partly mediated RAN's effects on reading fluency. Theoretical implications of these findings are discussed.
Hendrawan, Donny; Hatta, Takeshi; Ohira, Hideki
The letters F, A and S, originally used in the English letter fluency stimuli test, have been frequently adopted to assess executive function in many languages. However, few studies reported the significance of FAS testing employed in different languages. The current study explored whether FAS could be widely applied to the Indonesian language. A total of 211 undergraduate students from state and private universities who participated in this study were randomly assigned into four groups. Each group was exposed to six different letter fluency stimuli. The total number of words the participants produced for each letter stimulus were averaged and ranked to determine the degree of difficulty in generating words. Furthermore, the normal distribution and equal ratio comparison were examined to verify the representative letter fluency stimuli. In addition, the effect of sex and university affiliation on letter fluency performance was also analyzed. The letters A and S were among the easiest letters used to generate words; however, the letter F was regarded as a difficult stimulus. Furthermore, only the number of words beginning the letter S was distributed according to a normal curve. The number of words starting with the letters F and A were not normally distributed. Although sex difference was not associated with letter fluency performance, difference in university affiliation showed a significant effect on performance. Our findings suggest that consideration of several stimuli factors is required to accurately measure performance in the letter fluency task in a specific language. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.
Whitson, Heather E; Chou, Ying-Hui; Potter, Guy G; Diaz, Michele T; Chen, Nan-Kuei; Lad, Eleonora M; Johnson, Micah A; Cousins, Scott W; Zhuang, Jie; Madden, David J
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of blindness in developed nations, has been associated with poor performance on tests of phonemic fluency. This pilot study sought to (1) characterize the relationship between phonemic fluency and resting-state functional brain connectivity in AMD patients and (2) determine whether regional connections associated with phonemic fluency in AMD patients were similarly linked to phonemic fluency in healthy participants. Behavior-based connectivity analysis was applied to resting-state, functional magnetic resonance imaging data from seven patients (mean age=79.9±7.5 years) with bilateral AMD who completed fluency tasks prior to imaging. Phonemic fluency was inversely related to the strength of functional connectivity (FC) among six pairs of brain regions, representing eight nodes: left opercular portion of inferior frontal gyrus (which includes Broca's area), left superior temporal gyrus (which includes part of Wernicke's area), inferior parietal lobe (bilaterally), right superior parietal lobe, right supramarginal gyrus, right supplementary motor area, and right precentral gyrus. The FC of these reference links was not related to phonemic fluency among 32 healthy individuals (16 younger adults, mean age=23.5±4.6 years and 16 older adults, mean age=68.3±3.4 years). Compared with healthy individuals, AMD patients exhibited higher mean connectivity within the reference links and within the default mode network, possibly reflecting compensatory changes to support performance in the setting of reduced vision. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that phonemic fluency deficits in AMD reflect underlying brain changes that develop in the context of AMD.
Assessing pragmatic knowledge in the instructed setting is seen as a complex but necessary task, which requires the design of appropriate research methodologies to examine pragmatic performance. This study discusses the use of two different research methodologies, namely those of Discourse Completion Tests/Tasks (DCTs) and verbal reports. Research…
Kim, Young-Suk Grace
The primary goal was to expand our understanding of text reading fluency (efficiency or automaticity)—how its relation to other constructs (e.g., word reading fluency and reading comprehension) changes over time and how it is different from word reading fluency and reading comprehension. We examined (1) developmentally changing relations among word reading fluency, listening comprehension, text reading fluency, and reading comprehension; (2) the relation of reading comprehension to text readi...
Zugel, Kevin M.
The purpose of this report was to examine the effects reading fluency has on reading comprehension. The analysis was done through a synthesis of recent literature on the topic. Research shows improvement in reading fluency does improve reading comprehension and suggests reading development similarities for all readers. This consistency in…
Geurten, Marie; Willems, Sylvie
Fluency is one of many cues that are involved in memory decisions. To date, however, the extent to which fluency-based decisions are preserved in amnesia is not yet clear. In this study, we tested and found differences in how patients with amnesia (n=8) and control participants (n=16) use fluency when making recognition decisions (Experiment 1). Our results suggested that these differences could be due to changes in the readiness with which patients attribute the subjective feeling of fluency to pre-exposure when an alternative explanation is available (i.e., the perceptual quality of the item). Secondly, we explored the hypothesis that changes in attribution processes in patients with amnesia are explained by a decrease in contingency between processing fluency and previous occurrence of stimuli in patients' daily lives, leading them to consider that fluency is not a relevant cue for memory (Experiment 2). Specifically, 42 healthy participants were put either in a condition where the positive contingency between fluent processing and previous encounters with an item was systematically confirmed (classic condition) or in a condition where the classical association between fluency and prior exposure was systematically reversed (reversed condition). Results indicated that participants more readily attribute fluency to the alternative external source than to past experience in the reversed condition than in the classic condition, mimicking the pattern of results shown by participants with amnesia in Experiment 1. Implications of these findings are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Erz, Antonia; Christensen, Bo
The results of three laboratory experiments contribute to our understanding of effects of phonological fluency on correct recognition and recall of novel brand names, being relevant to the areas of information processing, memory, and branding. Employing the full range of fluency, the results offer...
Biesbroek, J Matthijs; van Zandvoort, Martine J E; Kappelle, L Jaap; Velthuis, Birgitta K; Biessels, Geert Jan; Postma, Albert
Semantic and phonemic fluency tasks are frequently used to test executive functioning, speed and attention, and access to the mental lexicon. In semantic fluency tasks, subjects are required to generate words belonging to a category (e.g., animals) within a limited time window, whereas in phonemic fluency tasks subjects have to generate words starting with a given letter. Anatomical correlates of semantic and phonemic fluency are currently assumed to overlap in left frontal structures, reflecting shared executive processes, and to be distinct in left temporal and right frontal structures, reflecting involvement of distinct memory processes and search strategies. Definite evidence for this assumption is lacking. To further establish the anatomical correlates of semantic and phonemic fluency, we applied assumption-free voxel-based and region-of-interest-based lesion-symptom mapping in 93 patients with ischemic stroke. Fluency was assessed by asking patients to name animals (semantic), and words starting with the letter N and A (phonemic). Our findings indicate that anatomical correlates of semantic and phonemic fluency overlap in the left inferior frontal gyrus and insula, reflecting shared underlying cognitive processes. Phonemic fluency additionally draws on the left rolandic operculum, which might reflect a search through phonological memory, and the middle frontal gyrus. Semantic fluency additionally draws on left medial temporal regions, probably reflecting a search through semantic memory, and the right inferior frontal gyrus, which might reflect the application of a visuospatial mental imagery strategy in semantic fluency. These findings establish shared and distinct anatomical correlates of semantic and phonemic fluency.
Full Text Available According to attribution models of familiarity assessment, people can use a heuristic in recognition-memory decisions, in which they attribute the subjective ease of processing of a memory probe to a prior encounter with the stimulus in question. Research in social cognition suggests that experienced positive affect may be the proximal cue that signals fluency in various experimental contexts. In the present study, we compared the effects of positive affect and fluency on recognition-memory judgments for faces with neutral emotional expression. We predicted that if positive affect is indeed the critical cue that signals processing fluency at retrieval, then its manipulation should produce effects that closely mirror those produced by manipulations of processing fluency. In two experiments, we employed a masked-priming procedure in combination with a Remember-Know paradigm that aimed to separate familiarity- from recollection-based memory decisions. In addition, participants performed a prime-discrimination task that allowed us to take inter-individual differences in prime awareness into account. We found highly similar effects of our priming manipulations of processing fluency and of positive affect. In both cases, the critical effect was specific to familiarity-based recognition responses. Moreover, in both experiments it was reflected in a shift towards a more liberal response bias, rather than in changed discrimination. Finally, in both experiments, the effect was found to be related to prime awareness; it was present only in participants who reported a lack of such awareness on the prime-discrimination task. These findings add to a growing body of evidence that points not only to a role of fluency, but also of positive affect in familiarity assessment. As such they are consistent with the idea that fluency itself may be hedonically marked.
Vrij, Aldert; Taylor, Paul J.; Picornell, Isabel; Oxburgh, Gavin; Myklebust, Trond; Grant, Tim; Milne, Rebecca
In this chapter, we discuss verbal lie detection and will argue that speech content can be revealing about deception. Starting with a section discussing the, in our view, myth that non-verbal behaviour would be more revealing about deception than speech, we then provide an overview of verbal lie
McIntyre, Joseph Anthony
Verbal compounds abound in Hausa (a Chadic language). A very broad definition of Hausa verbal compounds (henceforth: VC) is “a compound with a verb”. Four types of verbal compound are analysed: V[erb]+X compounds, PAC+V compounds (a PAC is a pronoun complex indicating TAM), VCs with a ma prefix
log P3 Intelligence P1 Quick reference V4 Verbal (Direct informal) (n V3 Verbal (Direc• formal) 1-.U V2 • Verbal (ICS informal) V1 I =-Verbal (ICS...Bierbaum, 1989) attd the repertoire of sc des available now includes visual, either unaided or with night vision goggles, auditory, kinesthetic , cognitive...secondary task and physiological methodologies. Physiological indices of mental workload are based on the assumption that bodily states vary in a
Yamashita, Junko; Ichikawa, Shingo
Grouping words into meaningful chunks is a fundamental process for fluent reading. The present study is an attempt to understand the relationship between chunking and second language (L2) reading fluency. The effects of text segmentation on comprehension, rate, and regression in L2 reading were investigated using a self-paced reading task in a…
Xue, Jin; Shu, Hua; Li, Hong; Li, Wenling; Tian, Xiaomei
The present study examined the developmental issue of cognitive factors that explain Chinese literacy. Phonological awareness, rapid automatized naming, short-term memory, orthographic awareness and morphological awareness and two literacy tasks (character naming and reading fluency) were administered to 408 second-graders, 428 fourth-graders and…
The purpose of the present study was to explore the contribution of phonological and general language skills to reading fluency of pointed and unpointed Hebrew scripts. Reading, language and memory tasks were performed by 48 fifth-grade monolingual native Hebrew speakers. Results showed that the most marked predictor for both pointed and unpointed…
Despite recent findings that show fluency deficits in developmental readers, the field of developmental reading remains remiss in fluency instruction. This article provides a summary intended to increase college reading teachers' understanding of reading fluency and fluency instruction. In addition, included are the step-by-step procedures of…
Alisaari, Jenni; Heikkola, Leena Maria
Fluency is an essential part of a language learner's skills. Despite various studies on fluency, little is known about the effects of different pedagogical methods on the development of written fluency. In this paper, we examine how different pedagogical methods affect the development of second language learners' written fluency. Participants in…
Kim, Young-Suk Grace
The primary goal was to expand our understanding of text reading fluency (efficiency or automaticity)—how its relation to other constructs (e.g., word reading fluency and reading comprehension) changes over time and how it is different from word reading fluency and reading comprehension. We examined (1) developmentally changing relations among word reading fluency, listening comprehension, text reading fluency, and reading comprehension; (2) the relation of reading comprehension to text reading fluency; (3) unique emergent literacy predictors (i.e., phonological awareness, orthographic awareness, morphological awareness, letter name knowledge, vocabulary) of text reading fluency vs. word reading fluency; and (4) unique language and cognitive predictors (e.g., vocabulary, grammatical knowledge, theory of mind) of text reading fluency vs. reading comprehension. These questions were addressed using longitudinal data (two timepoints; Mean age = 5;24 & 6;08) from Korean-speaking children (N = 143). Results showed that listening comprehension was related to text reading fluency at time 2, but not at time 1. At both times text reading fluency was related to reading comprehension, and reading comprehension was related to text reading fluency over and above word reading fluency and listening comprehension. Orthographic awareness was related to text reading fluency over and above other emergent literacy skills and word reading fluency. Vocabulary and grammatical knowledge were independently related to text reading fluency and reading comprehension whereas theory of mind was related to reading comprehension, but not text reading fluency. These results reveal developmental nature of relations and mechanism of text reading fluency in reading development. PMID:26435550
Griffiths, Thomas L; Steyvers, Mark; Firl, Alana
Human memory and Internet search engines face a shared computational problem, needing to retrieve stored pieces of information in response to a query. We explored whether they employ similar solutions, testing whether we could predict human performance on a fluency task using PageRank, a component of the Google search engine. In this task, people were shown a letter of the alphabet and asked to name the first word beginning with that letter that came to mind. We show that PageRank, computed on a semantic network constructed from word-association data, outperformed word frequency and the number of words for which a word is named as an associate as a predictor of the words that people produced in this task. We identify two simple process models that could support this apparent correspondence between human memory and Internet search, and relate our results to previous rational models of memory.
Tikhomirova, Tatiana N.
Full Text Available This article presents the results of a study of mathematical fluency in high school students. We provide a definition of mathematical fluency and illustrate the relevance of the research by presenting an overview of studies examining mathematical fluency development and its relationship with success in mathematical disciplines. A computerized test “Problem Verification Task” (Tosto et al., 2013 was administered to 692 high school students from one public secondary school (grades 9/10/11: n = 336/210/146 in the Moscow region. The stimuli consisted of 48 elementary arithmetic equations along with answer options. To indicate a correct answer, participants were instructed to press the corresponding key on the keyboard as quickly as possible. Two-way ANOVA was used to estimate grade and sex similarities and differences in mathematical fluency at the high school level. The current study has two primary findings: (1 students differed in math fluency across grades, and (2 there were no sex differences in mathematical fluency at the high school level. ANOVA exhibited significant differences in mathematical fluency among all three groups of students at grades 9, 10 and 11 with a 19% effect size. These results may be associated with the accumulating effects of the educational process: high school students in each subsequent year of schooling demonstrate a higher level of mathematical fluency on average compared to the previous year. At the same time, we observed no sex differences in mathematical fluency at the high school level. The results are discussed in terms of educational effects.
Smirni, Daniela; Turriziani, Patrizia; Mangano, Giuseppa Renata; Bracco, Martina; Oliveri, Massimiliano; Cipolotti, Lisa
A growing body of evidence have suggested that non-invasive brain stimulation techniques, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), can improve the performance of aphasic patients in language tasks. For example, application of inhibitory rTMS or tDCs over the right frontal lobe of dysphasic patients resulted in improved naming abilities. Several studies have also reported that in healthy controls (HC) tDCS application over the left prefrontal cortex (PFC) improve performance in naming and semantic fluency tasks. The aim of this study was to investigate in HC, for the first time, the effects of inhibitory repetitive TMS (rTMS) over left and right lateral frontal cortex (BA 47) on two phonemic fluency tasks (FAS or FPL). 44 right-handed HCs were administered rTMS or sham over the left or right lateral frontal cortex in two separate testing sessions, with a 24h interval, followed by the two phonemic fluency tasks. To account for possible practice effects, an additional 22 HCs were tested on only the phonemic fluency task across two sessions with no stimulation. We found that rTMS-inhibition over the left lateral frontal cortex significantly worsened phonemic fluency performance when compared to sham. In contrast, rTMS-inhibition over the right lateral frontal cortex significantly improved phonemic fluency performance when compared to sham. These results were not accounted for practice effects. We speculated that rTMS over the right lateral frontal cortex may induce plastic neural changes to the left lateral frontal cortex by suppressing interhemispheric inhibitory interactions. This resulted in an increased excitability (disinhibition) of the contralateral unstimulated left lateral frontal cortex, consequently enhancing phonemic fluency performance. Conversely, application of rTMS over the left lateral frontal cortex may induce a temporary, virtual lesion, with effects similar to those reported in left frontal
Forgeot d'Arc, Baudouin; Ramus, Franck
False-belief (FB) tasks have been widely used to study the ability of individuals to represent the content of their conspecifics' mental states (theory of mind). However, the cognitive processes involved are still poorly understood, and it remains particularly debated whether language and inner speech are necessary for the attribution of beliefs to other agents. We present a completely nonverbal paradigm consisting of silent animated cartoons in five closely related conditions, systematically teasing apart different aspects of scene analysis and allowing the assessment of the attribution of beliefs, goals, and physical causation. In order to test the role of language in belief attribution, we used verbal shadowing as a dual task to inhibit inner speech. Data on 58 healthy adults indicate that verbal interference decreases overall performance, but has no specific effect on belief attribution. Participants remained able to attribute beliefs despite heavy concurrent demands on their verbal abilities. Our results are most consistent with the hypothesis that belief attribution is independent from inner speech.
This article attempts to find a systematic structure behind French verbal idiomatic expressions, specifically the opposition between the verb, article, noun sequence and the sequence verb, noun. (Text is in French.) (AM)
Briley, P M; Barnes, M P; Kalinowski, J S
understood as somewhat inevitable. Researchers and clinicians fail to recognize that immediate amelioration of stuttering and its attendant carry-over fluency are signs of a different pathway to fluency. In this path, clinicians focus on extreme prolongations and the extent of their carry-over. While fluency is automatically generated under these extreme prolongations, the realization is that communication at this rate in routine speaking tasks is not feasible. The perceived solution is a systematic reduction in the duration of these prolongations, which attempts to approximate "normal speech." Typically, the reintroduction of speech at a normalized rate precipitates a laborious style that is undesirable to the person who stutters (PWS) and is discontinued, once departed from the comforts of the clinical setting. The inevitable typically occurs; the well-intentioned therapist instructs the PWS to focus on the techniques while speaking at a rate that is nearest normal speech, but the overlooked extreme prolongations are unlikely to ever be revisited. The foundation of this hypothesis is that the departure from fluency generators (e.g. extreme prolongations) is the cause of regression to the stuttering set point. In turn, we postulate that the continued use of extreme prolongations, as a solitary practice method, will establish and nurture different neural pathways that will create a modality of fluent speech, able to be experienced without cognitive or motoric mediation. This would therefore result in fewer occurrences of stuttering due to a phenomenon called carry-over fluency. Thus, we hypothesize that the use of extreme prolongations fosters neural pathways for fluent speech, which will result in carry-over fluency that does not require mediation by the speaker. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Lambert, Craig; Kormos, Judit; Minn, Danny
This study examines the relationship between the repetition of oral monologue tasks and immediate gains in L2 fluency. It considers the effect of aural-oral task repetition on speech rate, frequency of clause-final and midclause filled pauses, and overt self-repairs across different task types and proficiency levels and relates these findings to…
Sozda, Christopher N; Muir, James J; Springer, Utaka S; Partovi, Diana; Cole, Michael A
Memory complaints are particularly salient among veterans who experience combat-related mild traumatic brain injuries and/or trauma exposure, and represent a primary barrier to successful societal reintegration and everyday functioning. Anecdotally within clinical practice, verbal learning and memory performance frequently appears differentially reduced versus visual learning and memory scores. We sought to empirically investigate the robustness of a verbal versus visual learning and memory discrepancy and to explore potential mechanisms for a verbal/visual performance split. Participants consisted of 103 veterans with reported history of mild traumatic brain injuries returning home from U.S. military Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom referred for outpatient neuropsychological evaluation. Findings indicate that visual learning and memory abilities were largely intact while verbal learning and memory performance was significantly reduced in comparison, residing at approximately 1.1 SD below the mean for verbal learning and approximately 1.4 SD below the mean for verbal memory. This difference was not observed in verbal versus visual fluency performance, nor was it associated with estimated premorbid verbal abilities or traumatic brain injury history. In our sample, symptoms of depression, but not posttraumatic stress disorder, were significantly associated with reduced composite verbal learning and memory performance. Verbal learning and memory performance may benefit from targeted treatment of depressive symptomatology. Also, because visual learning and memory functions may remain intact, these might be emphasized when applying neurocognitive rehabilitation interventions to compensate for observed verbal learning and memory difficulties.
Miriam eDe Boer
Full Text Available There is a vast amount of potential mappings between behaviours and intentions in communication: a behaviour can indicate a multitude of different intentions, and the same intention can be communicated with a variety of behaviours. Humans routinely solve these many-to-many referential problems when producing utterances for an Addressee. This ability might rely on social cognitive skills, for instance, the ability to manipulate unobservable summary variables to disambiguate ambiguous behaviour of other agents (mentalizing and the drive to invest resources into changing and understanding the mental state of other agents (communicative motivation. Alternatively, the ambiguities of verbal communicative interactions might be solved by general-purpose cognitive abilities that process cues that are incidentally associated with the communicative interaction. In this study, we assess these possibilities by testing which cognitive traits account for communicative success during a verbal referential task. Cognitive traits were assessed with psychometric scores quantifying motivation, mentalizing abilities, and general-purpose cognitive abilities, taxing abstract visuo-spatial abilities. Communicative abilities of participants were assessed by using an on-line interactive task that required a speaker to verbally convey a concept to an Addressee. The communicative success of the utterances was quantified by measuring how frequently a number of Evaluators would infer the correct concept. Speakers with high motivational and general-purpose cognitive abilities generated utterances that were more easily interpreted. These findings extend to the domain of verbal communication the notion that motivational and cognitive factors influence the human ability to rapidly converge on shared communicative innovations.
Milhau, Audrey; Brouillet, Thibaut; Brouillet, Denis
According to the body specificity hypothesis, the way we interact with our environment participates in our conceptualization of concepts and word meanings. For instance, valence is associated to horizontal space because of the motor fluency by which one acts with one's dominant hand. We propose that the decisive factor in the compatibility effects between valence and lateral actions is the interaction between the fluency of response movement and the situational constraints of the task. In a valence judgement task with positive and negative words, right-handers (Experiment 1) and left-handers (Experiment 2) responded with lateralized actions of either their dominant or their nondominant hand. To do so, we used a response device that was either congruent or noncongruent with the fluency of the response hand. Results highlighted that when the response device was congruent with the fluency of the responding hand, response times to positive evaluations were shorter than those to negative evaluations. Conversely, when the response device was noncongruent with the fluency of the responding hand, we observed faster responses for negative evaluations than for positive evaluations. Furthermore, we obtained similar patterns for right- and left-handers, supporting the idea that compatibility effects are driven by the situated fluency of the responding hand.
Stephens, R.; Zile, A
This study assessed the effect of experimentally manipulated emotional arousal on swearing fluency. We hypothesised that swear word generation would be increased with raised emotional arousal. The emotional arousal of 60 participants was manipulated by having them play a first-person shooter video game or, as a control, a golf video game, in a randomised order. A behavioural measure of swearing fluency based on the Controlled Oral Word Association Test was employed. Successful experimental ma...
Fifer, Joanne M; Barutchu, Ayla; Shivdasani, Mohit N; Crewther, Sheila G
To date, few studies have focused on the behavioural differences between the learning of multisensory auditory-visual and intra-modal associations. More specifically, the relative benefits of novel auditory-visual and verbal-visual associations for learning have not been directly compared. In Experiment 1, 20 adult volunteers completed three paired associate learning tasks: non-verbal novel auditory-visual (novel-AV), verbal-visual (verbal-AV; using pseudowords), and visual-visual (shape-VV). Participants were directed to make a motor response to matching novel and arbitrarily related stimulus pairs. Feedback was provided to facilitate trial and error learning. The results of Signal Detection Theory analyses suggested a multisensory enhancement of learning, with significantly higher discriminability measures (d-prime) in both the novel-AV and verbal-AV tasks than the shape-VV task. Motor reaction times were also significantly faster during the verbal-AV task than during the non-verbal learning tasks. Experiment 2 (n = 12) used a forced-choice discrimination paradigm to assess whether a difference in unisensory stimulus discriminability could account for the learning trends in Experiment 1. Participants were significantly slower at discriminating unisensory pseudowords than the novel sounds and visual shapes, which was notable given that these stimuli produced superior learning. Together the findings suggest that verbal information has an added enhancing effect on multisensory associative learning in adults.
Palma, Tomás A; Santos, Ana Sofia; Garcia-Marques, Leonel
Recent research has emphasised the role of episodic memory in both remembering past events and in envisaging future events. On the other hand, it has been repeatedly shown that judgments about past events are affected by the fluency with which retrieval cues are processed. In this paper we investigate whether perceptual fluency also plays a role in judgments about future events. For this purpose we conducted four experiments. The first experiment replicated recent findings showing that stimuli that are processed fluently tend to be wrongly recognised as having been encountered in the past outside the laboratory walls [Brown, A. S., & Marsh, E. J. (2009). Creating illusions of past encounter through brief exposure. Psychological Science, 20, 534-538. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2009.02337.x ]. Two follow-up experiments using Brown and Marsh's [(2009). Creating illusions of past encounter through brief exposure. Psychological Science, 20, 534-538. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2009.02337 ] task tested the influence of perceptual fluency on future judgments. The fourth and last experiment was designed to rule out a potential confounding factor in the two previous experiments. Across experiments, we found that people rely on fluency when making judgments about events that are yet to come. These results suggest that fluency is an equally valid cue for past and future judgments.
Full Text Available Background Stuttering is a developmental speech disorder that affects the fluency of speech. Persons who stutter perceive speaking situations and social interactions as threatening. Participants and procedure Nineteen (47.50% adults with speech fluency disorders (SFD and 21 (52.50% without participated in the study. All participants completed the following measures individually: the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, the Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations (CISS, and an informational survey. Results Our study confirmed that persons with SFD experience more stressful situations in life and feel greater anxiety, both as a trait and as a state, which influences their daily life. The negative affect experienced contributed to their preferred use of Emotion-Oriented Coping strategies, at the expense of more proactive Task-Oriented Coping. Experienced stress and anxiety influenced and consolidated their habitual stress coping styles, devoted mainly to dealing with negative emotions. Conclusions Stuttering affects daily activities, interpersonal relationships, and the quality of life. Therefore, professional support should include adaptive, task-oriented coping.
Relações entre controle executivo e memória episódica verbal no comprometimento cognitivo leve e na demência tipo Alzheimer Relationships between executive control and verbal episodic memory in the mild cognitive impairment and the Alzheimer-type dementia
Amer Cavalheiro Hamdan
Full Text Available Este estudo comparou e relacionou o desempenho de idosos com Comprometimento Cognitivo Leve e Demência Tipo Alzheimer em testes de controle executivo e de memória episódica verbal. Para a avaliação da memória episódica verbal utilizamos a Tarefa de Recordação de Palavras Imediata e a Tarefa de Recordação de Palavras com Intervalo. Na avaliação do controle executivo foram utilizados, os seguintes testes: Random Number Generation, Trail Making Test, Fluência Verbal semântica e fonológica, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, Reading Span Test e Brow-Peterson Test. Treze idosos do grupo controle foram equiparados quanto à idade e escolaridade com nove idosos com Comprometimento Cognitivo Leve e oito idosos com Demência Tipo Alzheimer. Foram encontradas diferenças e associações estatisticamente significantes em relação aos testes de controle executivo entre os grupos investigados. Apesar da presença de associações significativas entre a memória episódica verbal e o controle executivo, não foram evidenciados déficits do controle executivo nos idosos com Comprometimento Cognitivo Leve.This study compared and related the performance of older people with Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer-type dementia in tests of executive control and of verbal episodic memory. In the evaluation of the verbal episodic memory we used the Task of Immediate Word Recall and the Task of Delayed Word Recall. In the evaluation of executive control we used the following tests: Random Number Generation, Trail Making Test, Semantic and Phonological Verbal Fluency, Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, Reading Span Test, and Brow-Peterson Test. Thirteen elders of the control group were compared by age and education with nine elders with Mild Cognitive Impairment and eight elders with Alzheimer-type dementia. Differences and significant statistical associations were found in relation to the tests of executive control with the groups investigated. Despite the
Gidley Larson, Jennifer C; Suchy, Yana
Previous studies have shown that verbalization, in the form of self-guided instruction, is an effective cognitive strategy used to enhance motor skill acquisition and performance. However, past research has not explicitly examined which aspects of motor output are affected (whether beneficially or deleteriously) by verbalization. In the current study, we conducted two separate experiments in which a total of 80 healthy participants, aged 18-27, completed a novel motor sequence learning task. Half of the participants in each experiment were pre-trained in the sequence using verbalization, while the other half was either trained motorically, or not trained at all. Rote memorization of verbal labels facilitated motor sequence learning, motor control, and action maintenance, but not action planning of the motor sequence. Potential underlying mechanisms as well as clinical implications are discussed.
Yadegari, Fariba; Azimian, Mojtaba; Rahgozar, Mahdi; Shekarchi, Babak
Background: As both oral and verbal apraxia are related to vocal orofacial musculature, this study aimed at identifying brain regions impaired in cases with oral and verbal apraxia. Methods: In this non-experimental study, 46 left brain damaged subjects (17 females) aged 23–84 years, were examined by oral and verbal apraxia tasks. Impaired and spared Broca’s area, insula, and middle frontal gyrus in the left hemisphere were checked from magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography scans...
Kim, Young-Suk Grace
The primary goal was to expand our understanding of text-reading fluency (efficiency or automaticity): how its relation to other constructs (e.g., word reading fluency, reading comprehension) changes over time and how it is different from word-reading fluency and reading comprehension. The study examined (a) developmentally changing relations…
Kim, Young-Suk Grace
The primary goal was to expand our understanding of text-reading fluency (efficiency or automaticity): how its relation to other constructs (e.g., word-reading fluency, reading comprehension) changes over time and how it is different from word-reading fluency and reading comprehension. The study examined (a) developmentally changing relations…
E N Lobanova
Full Text Available Obtaining information on an employee’s emotional state may present a significant task for the manager in planning everyday organizational processes, because the emotional component affects business relations and, to a certain extent, the quality of the work done. The article focuses on determining the possibilities of applying the analysis of non-verbal information (compared to verbal methods, and on considering the advantages and disadvantages of each of them.
This article presents an historical framework of fluency assessment and instruction, while at the same time advocating for a broader definition of fluency itself. Practical suggestions are made that seek to align reading rate and accuracy, alongside expression and comprehension, with the goal of developing "real" readers.
Calo, Kristine M.; Woolard-Ferguson, Taylor; Koitz, Ellen
This article shares an oral reading practice that develops children's fluency skills, with a particular emphasis on performance reading and prosody. The authors share their experiences with Fluency Idol! as a way to engage young children by tapping into pop culture. The practice emphasizes repeated readings, feedback, practice, and…
Jäncke, Lutz; Brügger, Eliane; Brummer, Moritz; Scherrer, Stephanie; Alahmadi, Nsreen
BACKGROUND: Whether listening to background music enhances verbal learning performance is still a matter of dispute. In this study we investigated the influence of vocal and instrumental background music on verbal learning. METHODS: 226 subjects were randomly assigned to one of five groups (one control group and 4 experimental groups). All participants were exposed to a verbal learning task. One group served as control group while the 4 further groups served as experimental groups. The con...
Jancke L.; Brugger E; Brummer M.; Scherrer S; Alahmadi N
BACKGROUND: Whether listening to background music enhances verbal learning performance is still a matter of dispute. In this study we investigated the influence of vocal and instrumental background music on verbal learning. METHODS: 226 subjects were randomly assigned to one of five groups (one control group and 4 experimental groups). All participants were exposed to a verbal learning task. One group served as control group while the 4 further groups served as experimental groups. The contro...
Faulkner, Hayley G; Myrden, Andrew; Li, Michael; Mamun, Khondaker; Chau, Tom
Evidence suggests that the cerebral blood flow patterns accompanying cognitive activity are retained in many locked-in patients. These patterns can be monitored using transcranial Doppler ultrasound (TCD), a medical imaging technique that measures bilateral cerebral blood flow velocities. Recently, TCD has been proposed as an alternative imaging modality for brain-computer interfaces (BCIs). However, most previous TCD-BCI studies have performed offline analyses with impractically lengthy tasks. In this study, we designed a BCI that automatically differentiates between counting and verbal fluency tasks using sequential hypothesis testing to make decisions as quickly as possible. Ten able-bodied participants silently alternated between counting and verbal fluency tasks within the paradigm of a simulated on-screen keyboard. During this experiment, blood flow velocities were recorded within the left and right middle cerebral arteries using bilateral TCD. Twelve features were used to characterize TCD signals. In a simulated online analysis, sequential hypothesis testing was used to update estimates of class probability every 250 ms as TCD data were processed. Classification was terminated once a threshold level of certainty was reached. Mean classification accuracy across all participants was 72% after an average of 23s, compared to an offline analysis which obtained a classification accuracy of 80% after 45 s. This represents a substantial gain in data transmission rate, while maintaining classification accuracies exceeding 70%. Furthermore, a range of decision times between 19 and 28s was observed, suggesting that the ability of sequential hypothesis testing to adapt the task duration for each individual participant is critical to achieving consistent performance across participants. These results indicate that sequential hypothesis testing is a promising alternative for online TCD-BCIs. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and the Japan Neuroscience Society. All
Pani, Ethan; Zheng, Xin; Wang, Jasmine; Norton, Andrea; Schlaug, Gottfried
We sought to determine via a cross-sectional study the contribution of (1) the right hemisphere's speech-relevant white matter regions and (2) interhemispheric connectivity to speech fluency in the chronic phase of left hemisphere stroke with aphasia. Fractional anisotropy (FA) of white matter regions underlying the right middle temporal gyrus (MTG), precentral gyrus (PreCG), pars opercularis (IFGop) and triangularis (IFGtri) of the inferior frontal gyrus, and the corpus callosum (CC) was correlated with speech fluency measures. A region within the superior parietal lobule (SPL) was examined as a control. FA values of regions that significantly predicted speech measures were compared with FA values from healthy age- and sex-matched controls. FA values for the right MTG, PreCG, and IFGop significantly predicted speech fluency, but FA values of the IFGtri and SPL did not. A multiple regression showed that combining FA of the significant right hemisphere regions with the lesion load of the left arcuate fasciculus-a previously identified biomarker of poststroke speech fluency-provided the best model for predicting speech fluency. FA of CC fibers connecting left and right supplementary motor areas (SMA) was also correlated with speech fluency. FA of the right IFGop and PreCG was significantly higher in patients than controls, while FA of a whole CC region of interest (ROI) and the CC-SMA ROI was significantly lower in patients. Right hemisphere white matter integrity is related to speech fluency measures in patients with chronic aphasia. This may indicate premorbid anatomical variability beneficial for recovery or be the result of poststroke remodeling. © 2016 American Academy of Neurology.
Peeters, Marieke; Verhoeven, Ludo; de Moor, Jan
The goal of the present study was to examine the precursors of verbal working memory in 52 children with cerebral palsy with varying degrees of speech impairments in the first grade of special education. Following Baddeley's model of working memory, children's verbal working memory was measured by means of a forced-recognition task. As precursors…
This study examines whether two frequently reported causes of dyslexia, phonological processing problems and verbal memory impairments, represent a double-deficit or whether they are two expressions of the same deficit. Two-hundred-and-sixty-seven Dutch children aged 10-14 with dyslexia completed a list-learning task and several phonological…
necessary and identify by block number) FIELD I GROUP SUB-GROUP Decontextualization , information processing, causal inferenc.I learning from context...verbal intell- igence are reviewed, and then a componential theory of verbal romprehension is proposed. The theory specifies the information -processing
Ahmad, Fahad N; Hockley, William E
We examined whether processing fluency contributes to associative recognition of unitized pre-experimental associations. In Experiments 1A and 1B, we minimized perceptual fluency by presenting each word of pairs on separate screens at both study and test, yet the compound word (CW) effect (i.e., hit and false-alarm rates greater for CW pairs with no difference in discrimination) did not reduce. In Experiments 2A and 2B, conceptual fluency was examined by comparing transparent (e.g., hand bag) and opaque (e.g., rag time) CW pairs in lexical decision and associative recognition tasks. Lexical decision was faster for transparent CWs (Experiment 2A) but in associative recognition, the CW effect did not differ by CW pair type (Experiment 2B). In Experiments 3A and 3B, we examined whether priming that increases processing fluency would influence the CW effect. In Experiment 3A, CW and non-compound word pairs were preceded with matched and mismatched primes at test in an associative recognition task. In Experiment 3B, only transparent and opaque CW pairs were presented. Results showed that presenting matched versus mismatched primes at test did not influence the CW effect. The CW effect in yes-no associative recognition is due to reliance on enhanced familiarity of unitized CW pairs.
Mashal, Nira; Kasirer, Anat
This research extends previous studies regarding the metaphoric competence of autistic and learning disabled children on different measures of visual and verbal non-literal language comprehension, as well as cognitive abilities that include semantic knowledge, executive functions, similarities, and reading fluency. Thirty seven children with…
... Stages Listen Español Text Size Email Print Share Cognitive and Verbal Skills Needed for Toilet Training Page ... coordinate an equally complex combination of physical and cognitive tasks. She must familiarize herself with the necessary “ ...
Shimamune, S; Jitsumori, M
In a computer-assisted sentence completion task, the effects of grammar instruction and fluency training on learning the use of the definite and indefinite articles of English were examined. Forty-eight native Japanese-speaking students were assigned to four groups: with grammar/accuracy (G/A), without grammar/accuracy (N/A), with grammar/fluency (G/F), and without grammar/fluency (N/F). In the G/A and N/A groups, training continued until performance reached 100% accuracy (accuracy criterion). In the G/F and N/F groups, training continued until 100% accuracy was reached and the correct responses were made at a high speed (fluency criterion). Grammar instruction was given to participants in the G/A and G/F groups but not to those in the N/A and N/F groups. Generalization to new sentences was tested immediately after reaching the required criterion. High levels of generalization occurred, regardless of the type of mastery criterion and whether the grammar instruction was given. Retention tests were conducted 4, 6, and 8 weeks after training. Fluency training effectively improved retention of the performance attained without the grammar instruction. This effect was diminished when grammar instruction was given during training. Learning grammatical rules was not necessary for the generalized use of appropriate definite and indefinite articles or for the maintenance of the performance attained through fluency training.
Rahimpour, Massoud; Mehrang, Faezeh
It is argued that tasks with different structures yield different performances in terms of accuracy, fluency and complexity. The present study is thus an attempt to investigate the impact of task structure on second language task performance. Thirty two upper-intermediate Iranian learners of English performed two narrative tasks (Structured vs.…
Poletti, Barbara; Carelli, Laura; Solca, Federica; Lafronza, Annalisa; Pedroli, Elisa; Faini, Andrea; Ticozzi, Nicola; Ciammola, Andrea; Meriggi, Paolo; Cipresso, Pietro; Lulé, Dorothée; Ludolph, Albert C; Riva, Giuseppe; Silani, Vincenzo
We assessed language, attention, executive, and social cognition abilities in a sample of patients with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) by means of a recently developed cognitive battery based on oculomotor control with eye-tracking (ET) technology. Twenty-one ALS patients and 21 age- and education-matched healthy subjects underwent the ET-based cognitive assessment, together with the standard cognitive screening tools [Frontal Assessment Battery (FAB); Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA); and Digit Sequencing Task]. Psychological measures of anxiety (State-Trait Anxiety Inventory-Y) and depression (Beck Depression Inventory) were also collected, and an ET usability questionnaire was administered. For patients, clinical and respiratory examinations were also performed, together with behavioural assessment (Frontal Behavioural Inventory). The developed battery discriminated among patients and controls with regard to measures of verbal fluency, frontal abilities, and social cognition. Measures of diagnostic utility confirmed a higher diagnostic accuracy of such ET-based tests with respect to FAB; similar diagnostic accuracy emerged when comparing them to the other standard cognitive tools (MoCA, WM). Usability ratings about the ET tests were comparable among the two groups. The ET-based neuropsychological battery demonstrated good levels of diagnostic accuracy and usability in a clinical population of non-demented ALS patients, compared to matched healthy controls. Future studies will be aimed at further investigate validity and usability components by recruiting larger sample of patients, both in moderate-to-severe stages of the disease and affected by more severe cognitive impairment.
Full Text Available Emotions play a significant role in fluency disorders. In this research we wanted to examine immediate and delayed verbal recall for auditory presented words that carry information about different emotional state (emotion-related words and emotionally neutral words in children who stutter (N=35 and their peers (N=35. Using only word semantics, we wanted to eliminate emotional verbal expression of words as a factor that can influence memory abilities. In addition, we also wanted to examine skin conductance measure as an indicator of autonomic nervous system arousal during short-term memory task for emotion-related and emotionally neutral words. Parental questionnaire (Stuttering Intensity in Children Who Stutter in Positive and Negative Emotion-Related Everyday Situations was given to parents of children who stutter in order to collect data regarding stuttering severity in emotionally arousing situations in everyday life. Differences between the experimental and the control group in global memory capacity are highest in immediate recall (p=0,01 with the tendency for lowering statistical significance with prolongation of retention interval. According to the questionnaire results, children who stutter show a higher degree of stuttering in situations with positive emotional valence (p< 0.00. Skin conductance measurements showed higher autonomic nervous system arousal during perception and free recall of positive emotion-related words in children who stutter when compared to negative and emotionally neutral words. The results indicate higher emotional arousal to positive emotions in children who stutter (p=0.02, leading to either less fluent speech or suppression of verbal short-term memory capacity.
Silva, Rita R; Garcia-Marques, Teresa; Mello, Joana
Two experiments contrast the effects of fluency due to repetition and fluency due to color contrast on judgments of truth, after participants learn to associate high levels of fluency with falseness (i.e., a reversal of the fluency-truth link). Experiment 1 shows that the interpretation of fluency as a sign of truth is harder to reverse when learning is promoted with repetition rather than with perceptual fluency. Experiment 2 shows that when color contrast and repetition are manipulated orthogonally, the reversal of the truth effect learned with color contrast does not generalize to repetition. These results suggest specificities in the processing experiences generated by different sources of fluency, and that their influences can be separated in contexts that allow the contrast of their distinctive features. We interpret and discuss these results in light of the research addressing the convergence vs. dissociation of the effects elicited by different fluency sources.
Morra, Jennifer; Tracey, Dianne H.
This study investigates the effectiveness of multiple fluency interventions on a single subject in grade three. Fluency interventions, including choral reading, echo reading, repeated reading, audio book modeling, and teacher modeling were implemented over a period of eight weeks. Results indicated that using multiple fluency strategies, rather…
This study measured the impact of targeted reading interventions on improving reading fluency for second-grade students as indicated by their performance on a statewide standardized assessment of reading fluency proficiency. Reading fluency scores for students who received intervention in second grade were measured again in their third-grade year…
Wilson, Judith K.
Fluency is known as the bridge between phonics and comprehension. Teachers of reading provide high-quality instruction in phonics and decoding strategies, usually in a small-group format, but may be unsure how to insert fluency instruction into the small-group lesson. This article presents key concepts in fluency instruction and a description of…
Bosker, Hans Rutger; Quené, Hugo; Sanders, Ted; de Jong, Nivja H.
Where native speakers supposedly are fluent by default, nonnative speakers often have to strive hard to achieve a nativelike fluency level. However, disfluencies (such as pauses, fillers, repairs, etc.) occur in both native and nonnative speech and it is as yet unclear how fluency raters weigh the fluency characteristics of native and nonnative…
What is second language fluency? What is a foreign accent? Is it possible for an adult second language learner to speak fluently with a heavy accent or vice versa? What factors contribute to the perception of fluency and a foreign accent? What acoustic attributes correlate with the perception of fluency and a foreign accent? To answer these…
Rafaeli, Anat; Erez, Amir; Ravid, Shy; Derfler-Rozin, Rellie; Treister, Dorit Efrat; Scheyer, Ravit
In 4 experimental studies, we show that customer verbal aggression impaired the cognitive performance of the targets of this aggression. In Study 1, customers' verbal aggression reduced recall of customers' requests. Study 2 extended these findings by showing that customer verbal aggression impaired recognition memory and working memory among employees of a cellular communication provider. In Study 3, the ability to take another's perspective attenuated the negative effects of customer verbal aggression on participants' cognitive performance. Study 4 linked customer verbal aggression to quality of task performance, showing a particularly negative influence of aggressive requests delivered by high-status customers. Together, these studies suggest that the effects of even minor aggression from customers can strongly affect the immediate cognitive performance of customer service employees and reduce their task performance. The implications for research on aggression and for the practice of customer service are discussed.
In clinical work, our main task as music therapists is to make interventions: we give our clients guidance, encouragement, and support; we offer interpretations; we play with and for them. Most of the interventions are either musical or verbal. As a music therapy clinician, supervisor, and educator, I wanted to explore the following questions: (a) How do music therapists define musical and verbal interventions? (b) When does a music therapist intervene musically and when does the therapist intervene verbally? (c) When and why do music therapists suggest to their clients exploring an issue musically or verbally? (d) Do musical and verbal interventions serve the same purpose or different purposes? (d) How is the decision about the type of intervention made? and, (e) is there a difference between the power and meaning of musical interventions versus verbal interventions for both the therapist and the client?
Full Text Available The purpose of this longitudinal study was to examine the role of three morphological awareness (MA skills (inflection, derivation, and compounding in word reading fluency and reading comprehension in a relatively transparent orthography (Greek. Two hundred and fifteen (104 girls; Mage = 67.40 months, at kindergarten Greek children were followed from kindergarten (K to grade 2 (G2. In K and grade 1 (G1, they were tested on measures of MA (two inflectional, two derivational, and three compounding, letter knowledge, phonological awareness, rapid automatized naming (RAN, and general cognitive ability (vocabulary and non-verbal IQ. At the end of G1 and G2, they were also tested on word reading fluency and reading comprehension. The results of hierarchical regression analyses showed that the inflectional and derivational aspects of MA in K as well as all aspects of MA in G1 accounted for 2–5% of unique variance in reading comprehension. None of the MA skills predicted word reading fluency, after controlling for the effects of vocabulary and RAN. These findings suggest that the MA skills, even when assessed as early as in kindergarten, play a significant role in reading comprehension development.
Manolitsis, George; Grigorakis, Ioannis; Georgiou, George K.
The purpose of this longitudinal study was to examine the role of three morphological awareness (MA) skills (inflection, derivation, and compounding) in word reading fluency and reading comprehension in a relatively transparent orthography (Greek). Two hundred and fifteen (104 girls; Mage = 67.40 months, at kindergarten) Greek children were followed from kindergarten (K) to grade 2 (G2). In K and grade 1 (G1), they were tested on measures of MA (two inflectional, two derivational, and three compounding), letter knowledge, phonological awareness, rapid automatized naming (RAN), and general cognitive ability (vocabulary and non-verbal IQ). At the end of G1 and G2, they were also tested on word reading fluency and reading comprehension. The results of hierarchical regression analyses showed that the inflectional and derivational aspects of MA in K as well as all aspects of MA in G1 accounted for 2–5% of unique variance in reading comprehension. None of the MA skills predicted word reading fluency, after controlling for the effects of vocabulary and RAN. These findings suggest that the MA skills, even when assessed as early as in kindergarten, play a significant role in reading comprehension development. PMID:29081759
Walbaum, Sharlene D.
Three variables (verbal aptitude, listening ability, and notetaking) that may mediate how much college students learn from a lecture were studied. Verbal aptitude was operationalized as a Verbal Scholastic Aptitude Test (VSAT) score. Listening ability was measured as the score on an auditory short-term memory task, using the serial running memory…
Brown, Charity; Brandimonte, Maria A.; Wickham, Lee H. V.; Bosco, Andrea; Schooler, Jonathan W.
Verbal overshadowing reflects the impairment in memory performance following verbalization of nonverbal stimuli. However, it is not clear whether the same mechanisms are responsible for verbal overshadowing effects observed with different stimuli and task demands. In the present article, we propose a multiprocess view that reconciles the main…
Reverberi, Carlo; Cherubini, Paolo; Baldinelli, Sara; Luzzi, Simona
Semantic fluency is widely used both as a clinical test and as a basic tool for understanding how humans extract information from the semantic store. Recently, major efforts have been made to devise fine-grained scoring procedures to measure the multiple cognitive processes underlying fluency performance. Nevertheless, it is still unclear how many and which independent components are necessary to thoroughly describe performance on the fluency task. Furthermore, whether a combination of multiple indices can improve the diagnostic performance of the test should be assessed. In this study, we extracted multiple indices of performance on the semantic fluency test from a large sample of healthy controls (n = 307) and patients (n = 145) suffering from three types of focal dementia or Alzheimer's Disease (AD). We found that five independent components underlie semantic fluency performance. We argue that these components functionally map onto the generation and application of a search strategy (component 2), to the monitoring of the overall sequence to avoid repetitions (component 3) and out-of-category items (component 4), and to the full integrity of the semantic store (component 5). The integrated and effective work of all these components would relate to a "general effectiveness" component (component 1). Importantly, while all the focal dementia groups were equally impaired on general effectiveness measures, they showed differential patterns of failure in the other components. This finding suggests that the cognitive deficit that impairs fluency differs among the three focal dementia groups: a semantic store deficit in the semantic variant of primary progressive aphasia (sv-PPA), a strategy deficit in the non-fluent variant of primary progressive aphasia (nfv-PPA), and an initiation deficit in the behavioural variant of fronto-temporal dementia (bv-FTD). Finally, we showed that the concurrent use of multiple fluency indices improves the diagnostic accuracy of
de Jong, N.H.; Groenhout, R.; Schoonen, R.; Hulstijn, J.H.
In second language (L2) research and testing, measures of oral fluency are used as diagnostics for proficiency. However, fluency is also determined by personality or speaking style, raising the question to what extent L2 fluency measures are valid indicators of L2 proficiency. In this study, we
Young, Chase; Mohr, Kathleen A. J.; Rasinski, Timothy
The article describes a reading fluency intervention called Reading Together that combines the method of repeated readings (Samuels, 1979) and the Neurological Impress Method (Heckelman, 1969). Sixteen volunteers from various backgrounds were recruited and trained to deliver the Reading Together intervention to struggling readers in third through…
Schmidt, Karen L; Lingler, Jennifer H; Schulz, Richard
Primary care visits of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) often involve communication among patients, family caregivers, and primary care physicians (PCPs). The objective of this study was to understand the nature of each individual's verbal participation in these triadic interactions. To define the verbal communication dynamics of AD care triads, we compared verbal participation (percent of total visit speech) by each participant in patient/caregiver/PCP triads. Twenty-three triads were audio taped during a routine primary care visit. Rates of verbal participation were described and effects of patient cognitive status (MMSE score, verbal fluency) on verbal participation were assessed. PCP verbal participation was highest at 53% of total visit speech, followed by caregivers (31%) and patients (16%). Patient cognitive measures were related to patient and caregiver verbal participation, but not to PCP participation. Caregiver satisfaction with interpersonal treatment by PCP was positively related to caregiver's own verbal participation. Caregivers of AD patients and PCPs maintain active, coordinated verbal participation in primary care visits while patients participate less. Encouraging verbal participation by AD patients and their caregivers may increase the AD patient's active role and caregiver satisfaction with primary care visits.
Bigozzi, Lucia; Tarchi, Christian; Vagnoli, Linda; Valente, Elena; Pinto, Giuliana
This study analyzed the predictive relationship between reading fluency and school outcomes across school levels (primary, secondary, and high school), after controlling on the effect of reading comprehension. The sample included 489 children attending Italian primary (grades 4 and 5), secondary (grades 6 and 8), and high schools (grade 9). Students' reading fluency and comprehension were examined with a standardized reading achievement test. At the end of the school year, we requested the school reports of each participant. According to our data, reading fluency predicted all school marks in all literacy-based subjects, with reading rapidity being the most important predictor. School level did not moderate the relationship between reading fluency and school outcomes, confirming the importance of effortless and automatized reading even in higher school levels. Overall this study emphasizes the importance of identifying evidence-based tasks that can be administered in a short time and to many different individuals, which are easy to create, and are linked to school outcomes.
Bigozzi, Lucia; Tarchi, Christian; Vagnoli, Linda; Valente, Elena; Pinto, Giuliana
This study analyzed the predictive relationship between reading fluency and school outcomes across school levels (primary, secondary, and high school), after controlling on the effect of reading comprehension. The sample included 489 children attending Italian primary (grades 4 and 5), secondary (grades 6 and 8), and high schools (grade 9). Students' reading fluency and comprehension were examined with a standardized reading achievement test. At the end of the school year, we requested the school reports of each participant. According to our data, reading fluency predicted all school marks in all literacy-based subjects, with reading rapidity being the most important predictor. School level did not moderate the relationship between reading fluency and school outcomes, confirming the importance of effortless and automatized reading even in higher school levels. Overall this study emphasizes the importance of identifying evidence-based tasks that can be administered in a short time and to many different individuals, which are easy to create, and are linked to school outcomes. PMID:28261134
Bruett, Heather; Leynes, P Andrew
Recent evidence suggests that fluency may be capable of supporting recognition independently of familiarity. This hypothesis was further tested in the present study. 29 participants encoded name-brand and off-brand products in an incidental task. Participants then judged whether the product was old or new during two tests with products from one category (i.e., only name-brand or only off-brand products) and a mixed test (where both name-brand and off-brand products were shown). The ERP data elicited by off-brand products varied as a function of test format. During the mixed test, off-brand products were correlated with a FN400 effect, whereas a fluency ERP (old ERPs were more negative than new at parietal electrodes 225-400ms) was observed during the other test. Importantly, no FN400 was detected during this test. The ERP results suggest that viewing the off-brand products during the mixed test produced a familiarity experience; however, fluency supported recognition when viewing off-brand products on the other test. The results are strong evidence that top-down processing of visual features during recognition interprets the information relative to the context. This process results in either fluency or, in other contexts, it is interpreted as familiarity as the Discrepancy-Attribution Hypothesis (Whittlesea and Williams, 2001a, 2001b) contends. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Firestone, Philip; Douglas, Virginia I.
Impulsive and reflective children performed in a discrimination learning task which included four reinforcement conditions: verbal-reward, verbal-punishment, material-reward, and material-punishment. (SB)
Shune, Samantha; Duff, Melissa Collins
Verbal play, or the playful manipulation of elements of language, is a pervasive component of social interaction, serving important interpersonal functions. We analyzed verbal play in the interactional discourse of ten healthy younger pairs and ten healthy older pairs as they completed a collaborative referencing task. A total of 1,893 verbal play episodes were coded. While there were no group differences in verbal play frequency, age-related differences in the quality and function of these e...
Groussard, M; Viader, F; Hubert, V; Landeau, B; Abbas, A; Desgranges, B; Eustache, F; Platel, H
Semantic memory has been investigated in numerous neuroimaging and clinical studies, most of which have used verbal or visual, but only very seldom, musical material. Clinical studies have suggested that there is a relative neural independence between verbal and musical semantic memory. In the present study, "musical semantic memory" is defined as memory for "well-known" melodies without any knowledge of the spatial or temporal circumstances of learning, while "verbal semantic memory" corresponds to general knowledge about concepts, again without any knowledge of the spatial or temporal circumstances of learning. Our aim was to compare the neural substrates of musical and verbal semantic memory by administering the same type of task in each modality. We used high-resolution PET H(2)O(15) to observe 11 young subjects performing two main tasks: (1) a musical semantic memory task, where the subjects heard the first part of familiar melodies and had to decide whether the second part they heard matched the first, and (2) a verbal semantic memory task with the same design, but where the material consisted of well-known expressions or proverbs. The musical semantic memory condition activated the superior temporal area and inferior and middle frontal areas in the left hemisphere and the inferior frontal area in the right hemisphere. The verbal semantic memory condition activated the middle temporal region in the left hemisphere and the cerebellum in the right hemisphere. We found that the verbal and musical semantic processes activated a common network extending throughout the left temporal neocortex. In addition, there was a material-dependent topographical preference within this network, with predominantly anterior activation during musical tasks and predominantly posterior activation during semantic verbal tasks. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kim, Y.S.; Wagner, Richard K.; Foster, E.
The present study examined oral and silent reading fluency and their relations with reading comprehension. In a series of structural equation models (SEM) with latent variables using data from 316 first-grade students, (1) silent and oral reading fluency were found to be related yet distinct forms of reading fluency; (2) silent reading fluency predicted reading comprehension better for skilled readers than for average readers; (3) list reading fluency predicted reading comprehension better for average readers than for skilled readers; and (4) listening comprehension predicted reading comprehension better for skilled readers than for average readers. PMID:21747658
Kawasaki, Masahiro; Kitajo, Keiichi; Yamaguchi, Yoko
In humans, theta phase (4-8 Hz) synchronization observed on electroencephalography (EEG) plays an important role in the manipulation of mental representations during working memory (WM) tasks; fronto-temporal synchronization is involved in auditory-verbal WM tasks and fronto-parietal synchronization is involved in visual WM tasks. However, whether or not theta phase synchronization is able to select the to-be-manipulated modalities is uncertain. To address the issue, we recorded EEG data from subjects who were performing auditory-verbal and visual WM tasks; we compared the theta synchronizations when subjects performed either auditory-verbal or visual manipulations in separate WM tasks, or performed both two manipulations in the same WM task. The auditory-verbal WM task required subjects to calculate numbers presented by an auditory-verbal stimulus, whereas the visual WM task required subjects to move a spatial location in a mental representation in response to a visual stimulus. The dual WM task required subjects to manipulate auditory-verbal, visual, or both auditory-verbal and visual representations while maintaining auditory-verbal and visual representations. Our time-frequency EEG analyses revealed significant fronto-temporal theta phase synchronization during auditory-verbal manipulation in both auditory-verbal and auditory-verbal/visual WM tasks, but not during visual manipulation tasks. Similarly, we observed significant fronto-parietal theta phase synchronization during visual manipulation tasks, but not during auditory-verbal manipulation tasks. Moreover, we observed significant synchronization in both the fronto-temporal and fronto-parietal theta signals during simultaneous auditory-verbal/visual manipulations. These findings suggest that theta synchronization seems to flexibly connect the brain areas that manipulate WM.
Full Text Available In humans, theta phase (4–8 Hz synchronization observed on electroencephalography (EEG plays an important role in the manipulation of mental representations during working memory (WM tasks; fronto-temporal synchronization is involved in auditory-verbal WM tasks and fronto-parietal synchronization is involved in visual WM tasks. However, whether or not theta phase synchronization is able to select the to-be-manipulated modalities is uncertain. To address the issue, we recorded EEG data from subjects who were performing auditory-verbal and visual WM tasks; we compared the theta synchronizations when subjects performed either auditory-verbal or visual manipulations in separate WM tasks, or performed both two manipulations in the same WM task. The auditory-verbal WM task required subjects to calculate numbers presented by an auditory-verbal stimulus, whereas the visual WM task required subjects to move a spatial location in a mental representation in response to a visual stimulus. The dual WM task required subjects to manipulate auditory-verbal, visual, or both auditory-verbal and visual representations while maintaining auditory-verbal and visual representations. Our time-frequency EEG analyses revealed significant fronto-temporal theta phase synchronization during auditory-verbal manipulation in both auditory-verbal and auditory-verbal/visual WM tasks, but not during visual manipulation tasks. Similarly, we observed significant fronto-parietal theta phase synchronization during visual manipulation tasks, but not during auditory-verbal manipulation tasks. Moreover, we observed significant synchronization in both the fronto-temporal and fronto-parietal theta signals during simultaneous auditory-verbal/visual manipulations. These findings suggest that theta synchronization seems to flexibly connect the brain areas that manipulate WM.
Apperly, Ian A; Samson, Dana; Chiavarino, Claudia; Bickerton, Wai-Ling; Humphreys, Glyn W
To test the domain-specificity of "theory of mind" abilities we compared the performance of a case-series of 11 brain-lesioned patients on a recently developed test of false belief reasoning () and on a matched false photograph task, which did not require belief reasoning and which addressed problems with existing false photograph methods. A strikingly similar pattern of performance was shown across the false belief and false photograph tests. Patients who were selectively impaired on false belief tasks were also impaired on false photograph tasks; patients spared on false belief tasks also showed preserved performance with false photographs. In some cases the impairment on false belief and false photograph tasks coincided with good performance on control tasks matched for executive demands. We discuss whether the patients have a domain-specific deficit in reasoning about representations common to both false belief and false photograph tasks.
Kormos, Judit; Trebits, Anna
The study reported in this paper investigated the relationship between components of aptitude and the fluency, lexical variety, syntactic complexity, and accuracy of performance in two types of written and spoken narrative tasks. We also addressed the question of how narrative performance varies in tasks of different cognitive complexity in the…
Saeedi, Masoud; Rahimi Kazerooni, Shirin
This article reports on an empirical study which attempted to explore the influence of repeating two different types of narrative tasks on complexity, accuracy, and fluency (CAF) in the oral production of learners of English as a foreign language (EFL). For this purpose, the effects of four conditions (i.e. no task repetition with a loosely…
Full Text Available This paper will outline an instructional approach that proposes a Complexity, Accuracy, Fluency (CAF paradigm as a means of providing learners with the CAF-based communication consciousness and CAF-oriented manipulative skills that are increasingly important in language use in Language for Specific Purposes. Given the complex combinations of communicative tasks, communicative formats and communicative circumstances that accompany the wide-ranging and various contexts of contemporary professional communication, communicative competence demands a combinative consciousness and informed application of Complexity, Accuracy and Fluency as a communication paradigm. Viewed as a combination of its three components, a CAF paradigm constitutes a fundamental ‘information, language and communication’ triad that can guide professional language use in any communicative circumstance. Viewed as a communicative skill set, the CAF triad implies the capability to adjust specific elements and aspects of information, language and communication as needed for a communicative task, whether in oral or print communication and regardless of task category. Adjusting complexity in this context refers to both content and language complexity. Adjusting accuracy refers to the conventions that dictate appropriate or acceptable language in a given context. Finally, adjusting fluency refers to a sense of communicative fluency, that which yields either smooth and persuasive language as in a native-speaker normative view or explicit and clearly explanatory language as necessary in some communicative encounters. The need to manipulate these three components depends on circumstance variables such as objective, available time, audience characteristics and the degree of detail desired. This paper will outline this combinative CAF notion as background to a materials development project being undertaken in a Japanese university, introducing the specifics of an Extended Reading Aloud
Schendel, Zachary A; Palmer, Caroline
Three experiments contrasted the effects of articulatory suppression on recognition memory for musical and verbal sequences. In Experiment 1, a standard/comparison task was employed, with digit or note sequences presented visually or auditorily while participants remained silent or produced intermittent verbal suppression (saying "the") or musical suppression (singing "la"). Both suppression types decreased performance by equivalent amounts, as compared with no suppression. Recognition accuracy was lower during suppression for visually presented digits than during that for auditorily presented digits (consistent with phonological loop predictions), whereas accuracy was equivalent for visually presented notes and auditory tones. When visual interference filled the retention interval in Experiment 2, performance with visually presented notes but not digits was impaired. Experiment 3 forced participants to translate visually presented music sequences by presenting comparison sequences auditorily. Suppression effects for visually presented music resembled those for digits only when the recognition task required sensory translation of cues.
Sanjuan, Ana; Avila, Cesar [Universitat Jaume I, Departamento de Psicologia Basica, Clinica y Psicobiologia, Castellon de la Plana (Spain); Hospital La Fe, Unidad de Epilepsia, Servicio de Neurologia, Valencia (Spain); Bustamante, Juan-Carlos; Forn, Cristina; Ventura-Campos, Noelia; Barros-Loscertales, Alfonso [Universitat Jaume I, Departamento de Psicologia Basica, Clinica y Psicobiologia, Castellon de la Plana (Spain); Martinez, Juan-Carlos [Hospital La Fe, Eresa, Valencia (Spain); Hospital La Fe, Unidad de Epilepsia, Servicio de Neurologia, Valencia (Spain); Villanueva, Vicente [Hospital La Fe, Unidad de Epilepsia, Servicio de Neurologia, Valencia (Spain)
Presurgical evaluation of language is important in patients who are candidates for neurosurgery since language decline is a frequent complication after an operation. Different functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) tasks, such as the verb generation task (VGT) and the verbal fluency task (VFT) have been employed. Our objective was to compare how effective these tasks are at evaluating language functioning in controls (study 1) and patients (study 2). Eighteen controls and 58 patient candidates for neurosurgery (16 patients with temporal lobe epilepsy and 42 patients with brain lesions: 11 astrocytomas, six cavernomas, 14 gliomas, four AVM and seven meningiomas) were recruited in order to compare the activation patterns of language areas as determined by the VGT and VFT. In both samples, the VGT produced a more specific activation of left Broca's area. In contrast, the VFT yielded a wider and more intense activation of the left Broca's area in controls, as well as other activations in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the striatum. Additionally, both studies showed good agreement on language dominance derived from the tasks, although there was some variability in laterality index scores. Both language tasks are useful in evaluation of expressive language. The VGT is a more specific task, while the VFT is more unspecific but activates language-related areas that are not found with the VGT owing to its phonological component. Therefore, each task contributes to the lateralisation and localisation of expressive language areas with complementary information. The advisability of combining tasks to improve fMRI presurgical evaluation is confirmed. (orig.)
Isaki, Emi; Spaulding, Tammie J; Plante, Elena
The purpose of this study is to investigate the performance of adults with language-based learning disorders (L/LD) and normal language controls on verbal short-term and verbal working memory tasks. Eighteen adults with L/LD and 18 normal language controls were compared on verbal short-term memory and verbal working memory tasks under low, moderate, and high linguistic processing loads. Results indicate no significant group differences on all verbal short-term memory tasks and verbal working memory tasks with low and moderate language loads. Statistically significant group differences were found on the most taxing condition, the verbal working memory task involving high language processing load. The L/LD group performed significantly worse than the control group on both the processing and storage components of this task. These results support the limited capacity hypothesis for adults with L/LD. Rather than presenting with a uniform impairment in verbal memory, they exhibit verbal memory deficits only when their capacity limitations are exceeded under relatively high combined memory and language processing demands. The reader will (1) understand the relationship between increased linguistic demands and working memory, and (2) learn about working memory skills in adults with language learning disorders.
Yadegari, Fariba; Azimian, Mojtaba; Rahgozar, Mahdi; Shekarchi, Babak
As both oral and verbal apraxia are related to vocal orofacial musculature, this study aimed at identifying brain regions impaired in cases with oral and verbal apraxia. In this non-experimental study, 46 left brain damaged subjects (17 females) aged 23-84 years, were examined by oral and verbal apraxia tasks. Impaired and spared Broca's area, insula, and middle frontal gyrus in the left hemisphere were checked from magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography scans utilizing Talairach Atlas. Data were analyzed using chi-square test. Insula was significantly impaired in both forms of oral and verbal apraxia and different severities and prominent forms of both apraxias (P apraxia. As the damage of insula was more prominent in both forms of apraxias, it seems that oral and verbal apraxia may have commonalities regarding their underlying brain lesions.
Lerner, Alan J; Ogrocki, Paula K; Thomas, Peter J
Category fluency is impaired early in Alzheimer disease (AD). Graph theory is a technique to analyze complex relationships in networks. Features of interest in network analysis include the number of nodes and edges, and variables related to their interconnectedness. Other properties important in network analysis are "small world properties" and "scale-free" properties. The small world property (popularized as the so-called "6 degrees of separation") arises when the majority of connections are local, but a number of connections are to distant nodes. Scale-free networks are characterized by the presence of a few nodes with many connections, and many more nodes with fewer connections. To determine if category fluency data can be analyzed using graph theory. To compare normal elderly, mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and AD network graphs, and characterize changes seen with increasing cognitive impairment. Category fluency results ("animals" recorded over 60 s) from normals (n=38), MCI (n=33), and AD (n=40) completing uniform data set evaluations were converted to network graphs of all unique cooccurring neighbors, and compared for network variables. For Normal, MCI and AD, mean clustering coefficients were 0.21, 0.22, 0.30; characteristic path lengths were 3.27, 3.17, and 2.65; small world properties decreased with increasing cognitive impairment, and all graphs showed scale-free properties. Rank correlations of the 25 commonest items ranged from 0.75 to 0.83. Filtering of low-degree nodes in normal and MCI graphs resulted in properties similar to the AD network graph. Network graph analysis is a promising technique for analyzing changes in category fluency. Our technique results in nonrandom graphs consistent with well-characterized properties for these types of graphs.
Zhao, Jing; Liu, Menglian; Liu, Hanlong; Huang, Chen
With reading development, some children fail to learn to read fluently. However, reading fluency difficulty (RFD) has not been fully investigated. The present study explored the underlying mechanism of RFD from the aspect of visual attention span. Fourteen Chinese children with RFD and fourteen age-matched normal readers participated. The visual 1-back task was adopted to examine visual attention span. Reaction time and accuracy were recorded, and relevant d-prime (d') scores were computed. Results showed that children with RFD exhibited lower accuracy and lower d' values than the controls did in the visual 1-back task, revealing a visual attention span deficit. Further analyses on d' values revealed that the attention distribution seemed to exhibit an inverted U-shaped pattern without lateralization for normal readers, but a W-shaped pattern with a rightward bias for children with RFD, which was discussed based on between-group variation in reading strategies. Results of the correlation analyses showed that visual attention span was associated with reading fluency at the sentence level for normal readers, but was related to reading fluency at the single-character level for children with RFD. The different patterns in correlations between groups revealed that visual attention span might be affected by the variation in reading strategies. The current findings extend previous data from alphabetic languages to Chinese, a logographic language with a particularly deep orthography, and have implications for reading-dysfluency remediation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available This paper explored a new concept, verbal competence, to present a challenge to Chomsky’s linguistic competence and Hymes’ communicative competence. It is generally acknowledged that Chomsky concerned himself only with the syntactic/grammatical structures, and viewed the speaker’s generation and transformation of syntactic structures as the production of language. Hymes challenged Chomsky’s conception of linguistic competence and argued for an ethnographic or sociolinguistic concept, communicative competence, but his concept is too broad to be adequately grasped and followed in such fields as linguistics and second language acquisition. Communicative competence can include abilities to communicate with nonverbal behaviors, e.g. gestures, postures or even silence. The concept of verbal competence concerns itself with the mental and psychological processes of verbal production in communication. These processes originate from the speaker’s personal experience, in a certain situation of human communication, and with the sudden appearance of the intentional notion, shape up as the meaning images and end up in the verbal expression.
Shune, Samantha; Duff, Melissa Collins
Verbal play, or the playful manipulation of elements of language, is a pervasive component of social interaction, serving important interpersonal functions. We analyzed verbal play in the interactional discourse of ten healthy younger pairs and ten healthy older pairs as they completed a collaborative referencing task. A total of 1,893 verbal play episodes were coded. While there were no group differences in verbal play frequency, age-related differences in the quality and function of these episodes emerged. While older participants engaged in more complex, extended, and reciprocal episodes that supported the social nature of communicative interactions (e.g., teasing), younger participants were more likely to engage in verbal play episodes for the purpose of successful task completion. Despite these age-related variations in the deployment of verbal play, verbal play is a robust interactional discourse resource in healthy aging, highlighting an element of human cognition that does not appear to decline with age.
Shune, Samantha; Duff, Melissa Collins
Verbal play, or the playful manipulation of elements of language, is a pervasive component of social interaction, serving important interpersonal functions. We analyzed verbal play in the interactional discourse of ten healthy younger pairs and ten healthy older pairs as they completed a collaborative referencing task. A total of 1,893 verbal play episodes were coded. While there were no group differences in verbal play frequency, age-related differences in the quality and function of these episodes emerged. While older participants engaged in more complex, extended, and reciprocal episodes that supported the social nature of communicative interactions (e.g., teasing), younger participants were more likely to engage in verbal play episodes for the purpose of successful task completion. Despite these age-related variations in the deployment of verbal play, verbal play is a robust interactional discourse resource in healthy aging, highlighting an element of human cognition that does not appear to decline with age. PMID:25485072
Wang, Wei; Li, Bingbing; Gao, Chuanji; Xu, Huifang; Guo, Chunyan
It is widely established that fluency can contribute to recognition memory. Previous studies have found that enhanced fluency increases familiarity, but not recollection. The present study was motivated by a previous finding that conceptual priming affected recollection. We used event-related potentials to investigate the electrophysiological correlates of these effects with conceptually related two-character Chinese words. We found that previous conceptual priming effects on conceptual fluency only increased the incidence of recollection responses. We also found that enhanced conceptual fluency was associated with N400 attenuation, which was also correlated with the behavioral indicator of recollection. These results suggest that the N400 effect might be related to the impact of conceptual fluency on recollection recognition. These study findings provide further evidence for the relationship between fluency and recollection.
Shelley C. Heaton
Full Text Available Verbal memory problems, along with other cognitive difficulties, are common in children diagnosed with neurological and/or psychological disorders. Historically, these “memory problems” have been poorly characterized and often present with a heterogeneous pattern of performance across memory processes, even within a specific diagnostic group. The current study examined archival neuropsychological data from a large mixed clinical pediatric sample in order to understand whether functioning in other cognitive areas (i.e., verbal knowledge, attention, working memory, executive functioning may explain some of the performance variability seen across verbal memory tasks of the Children’s Memory Scale (CMS. Multivariate analyses revealed that among the cognitive functions examined, only verbal knowledge explained a significant amount of variance in overall verbal memory performance. Further univariate analyses examining the component processes of verbal memory indicated that verbal knowledge is specifically related to encoding, but not the retention or retrieval stages. Future research is needed to replicate these findings in other clinical samples, to examine whether verbal knowledge predicts performance on other verbal memory tasks and to explore whether these findings also hold true for visual memory tasks. Successful replication of the current study findings would indicate that interventions targeting verbal encoding deficits should include efforts to improve verbal knowledge.
Mona Roxana Botezatu
Background: There are at least three distinct accounts of fluency deficits in aphasia. The traditional view is that fluency deficits are specific to language production. The reduced lexical activation theory proposes that non-fluent language production in aphasia is a consequence of reduced overall activation of the lexicon, making it difficult for word representations to reach sufficient activation to drive production. The cognitive control view proposes that fluency deficits in aphasia aris...
Griffis, Joseph C; Nenert, Rodolphe; Allendorfer, Jane B; Szaflarski, Jerzy P
The preservation of near-typical function in distributed brain networks is associated with less severe deficits in chronic stroke patients. However, it remains unclear how task-evoked responses in networks that support complex cognitive functions such as semantic processing relate to the post-stroke brain anatomy. Here, we used recently developed methods for the analysis of multimodal MRI data to investigate the relationship between regional tissue concentration and functional MRI activation evoked during auditory semantic decisions in a sample of 43 chronic left hemispheric stroke patients and 43 age, handedness, and sex-matched controls. Our analyses revealed that closer-to-normal levels of tissue concentration in left temporo-parietal cortex and the underlying white matter correlated with the level of task-evoked activation in distributed regions associated with the semantic network. This association was not attributable to the effects of left hemispheric lesion or brain volumes, and similar results were obtained when using explicit lesion data. Left temporo-parietal tissue concentration and the associated task-evoked activations predicted patient performance on the in-scanner task, and also predicted patient performance on out-of-scanner naming and verbal fluency tasks. Exploratory analyses using the average HCP-842 tractography dataset revealed the presence of fronto-temporal, fronto-parietal, and temporo-parietal semantic network connections in the locations where tissue concentration was found to correlate with task-evoked activation in the semantic network. In summary, our results link the preservation of left posterior temporo-parietal structures with the preservation of task-evoked semantic network function in chronic left hemispheric stroke patients. Speculatively, this relationship may reflect the status of posterior temporo-parietal areas as cortical and white matter convergence zones that support coordinated processing in the distributed semantic
Siddi, Sara; Petretto, Donatella Rita; Scanu, Rosanna; Burrai, Caterina; Baita, Antonella; Trincas, Pierfranco; Trogu, Emanuela; Campus, Liliana; Contu, Augusto; Preti, Antonio
There is scant evidence that the verbal cognitive deficits observed in patients with psychosis are related to auditory verbal hallucinations. The understanding of metaphors and idiomatic expressions was investigated in a cohort of 90 patients with active psychosis, and in 44 healthy controls. The Psychotic Symptom Rating Scales (PSYRATS: verbal hallucinations subscale) was used to measure the current verbal hallucinations episode; a subscore of the Launay-Slade Hallucination Scale was used to measure long-term propensity to auditory verbal hallucination-like experiences (HLEs) in the sample. The concurrent influence of education, IQ, and cognitive functioning in memory, attention, fluency, and processing speed on metaphor and idioms processing was investigated. Patients performed worse than healthy controls on all neuropsychological measures. Metaphor, but not idioms processing was poorer in patients with verbal hallucinations (n=46) when compared to patients without verbal hallucinations in the current episode (n=44). By taking into account confounding variables, the ability to produce explanations of metaphors was related to scores on the verbal HLEs in the whole sample of patients. Metaphor-comprehension deficit was related to the occurrence of auditory verbal hallucinations in patients with psychosis, suggesting that abnormal pragmatic inferential abilities have an impact on the mechanisms that cause hallucinatory experiences. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Marr, M Jackson
"Behavior which is effective only through the mediation of other persons has so many distinguishing dynamic and topographical properties that a special treatment is justified and indeed demanded" (Skinner, 1957, p. 2). Skinner's demand for a special treatment of verbal behavior can be extended within that field to domains such as music, poetry, drama, and the topic of this paper: mathematics. For centuries, mathematics has been of special concern to philosophers who have continually argued to the present day about what some deem its "special nature." Two interrelated principal questions have been: (1) Are the subjects of mathematical interest pre-existing in some transcendental realm and thus are "discovered" as one might discover a new planet; and (2) Why is mathematics so effective in the practices of science and engineering even though originally such mathematics was "pure" with applications neither contemplated or even desired? I argue that considering the actual practice of mathematics in its history and in the context of acquired verbal behavior one can address at least some of its apparent mysteries. To this end, I discuss some of the structural and functional features of mathematics including verbal operants, rule-and contingency-modulated behavior, relational frames, the shaping of abstraction, and the development of intuition. How is it possible to understand Nature by properly talking about it? Essentially, it is because nature taught us how to talk. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Sabat, Steven R.; Cagigas, Xavier E.
The case study of an older woman with Alzheimer's disease shows that while her command of words and syntax had deteriorated, her ability to use other forms of communication had not. Her alternative forms of communication included use of gesture, facial expression, posture, and tone of voice. (MSE)
range of 5-7 years drawn from the main sample in the 6 clinics in Lusaka. Some aspects of the ZNTB were used to measure cognitive functioning. The Finger Tapping. Test of the Developmental Neuropsychological Test. Battery was also used. Results: Tests of motor skill were less sensitive to HIV infection (F (1, 48) = 1.134, ...
Gross Hyman; Tobinick Edward L
Abstract Background Recent clinical studies point to rapid and sustained clinical, cognitive, and behavioral improvement in both Alzheimer's disease and primary progressive aphasia following weekly perispinal administration of etanercept, a TNF-alpha inhibitor that acts by blocking the binding of this cytokine to its receptors. This outcome is concordant with recent basic science studies suggesting that TNF-alpha functions in vivo as a gliotransmitter that regulates synaptic function in the b...
Litt, Robin A.; de Jong, Peter F.; van Bergen, Elsje; Nation, Kate
Recent research suggests that visual-verbal paired associate learning (PAL) may tap a crossmodal associative learning mechanism that plays a distinct role in reading development. However, evidence from children with dyslexia indicates that deficits in visual-verbal PAL are strongly linked to the verbal demands of the task. The primary aim of this…
Brock, Jon; Jarrold, Christopher
Background: Individuals with Down syndrome consistently perform less well than appropriately matched comparison groups on tests of verbal short-term memory, despite performing relatively well on non-verbal short-term memory tasks. However, it is not clear whether these findings constitute evidence for a selective deficit in verbal short-term…
de Jong, C.A.M.; Perfetti, C.A.
The present study investigates the role of speech repetition in oral fluency development. Twenty-four students enrolled in English-as-a-second-language classes performed three training sessions in which they recorded three speeches, of 4, 3, and 2 min, respectively. Some students spoke about the
Kuhn, Melanie R.; Schwanenflugel, Paula J.; Meisinger, Elizabeth B.
Over the past decade, fluent reading has come to be seen as a central component of skilled reading and a driving force in the literacy curriculum. However, much of this focus has centered on a relatively narrow definition of reading fluency, one that emphasizes automatic word recognition. This article attempts to expand this understanding by…
Jong, de C.A.M.; Perfetti, C.A.
The present study investigates the role of speech repetition in oral fluency development. Twenty-four students enrolled in English as a second language classes performed three training sessions in which they recorded three speeches, of four, three, and two minutes respectively. Some students spoke
Jong, N. de; Perfetti, C.A.
The present study investigates the role of speech repetition in oral fluency development. Twenty-four students enrolled in English-as-a-second-language classes performed three training sessions in which they recorded three speeches, of 4, 3, and 2 min, respectively. Some students spoke about the
Besken, Miri; Mulligan, Neil W.
Judgments of learning (JOLs) are sometimes influenced by factors that do not impact actual memory performance. One recent proposal is that perceptual fluency during encoding affects metamemory and is a basis of metacognitive illusions. In the present experiments, participants identified aurally presented words that contained inter-spliced silences…
Engelhardt, Paul E; Nigg, Joel T; Ferreira, Fernanda
There has been little research on the fluency of language production and individual difference variables, such as intelligence and executive function. In this study, we report data from 106 participants who completed a battery of standardized cognitive tasks and a sentence production task. For the sentence production task, participants were presented with two objects and a verb and their task was to formulate a sentence. Four types of disfluency were examined: filled pauses (e.g. uh, um), unfilled pauses, repetitions, and repairs. Repetitions occur when the speaker suspends articulation and then repeats the previous word/phrase, and repairs occur when the speaker suspends articulation and then starts over with a different word/phrase. Hierarchical structural equation modeling revealed a significant relationship between repair disfluencies and inhibition. Conclusions focus on the role of individual differences in cognitive ability and their role in models and theories of language production. © 2013.
Full Text Available The research presented in this paper was an attempt to find differences in the use of grammatical information carried by the function words in Serbian. The aim was to determine the level of word processing at which grammatical information shows its differential effects in groups of subjects who themselves differ in verbal ability. For this purpose, the psycholinguistic tasks applied were grammatically primed reading aloud and grammatically primed grammatical classification with an appropriate control of extra-linguistic factors that may have affected aforementioned tasks. Verbal aptitude was assessed in a psychometric manner, and the subjects were divided into "high verbal" and "low verbal" groups. Taking into account statistical control of extra-linguistic factors, the results indicate that groups of high verbal and low verbal subjects cannot be differentiated based on reading aloud performance. The high verbal subjects, however, were more efficient in grammatical classification than low verbal subjects. The results also indicated that the presence of grammatical information embedded in function words-primes had a stronger effect on word processing in low verbal group. Such pattern of results testify to the advantage of high verbal subjects in lexical and post lexical processing, while no differences were established in the word recognition processes. The implications of these findings were considered in terms of test construction for the assessment of verbal ability in Serbian language. .
Full Text Available Although many behavioural studies have investigated the effect of processing fluency on subsequent recognition memory, little research has examined the neural mechanism of this phenomenon. The present study aimed to explore the electrophysiological correlates of the effects of processing fluency on subsequent recognition memory by using an event-related potential (ERP approach. The masked repetition priming paradigm was used to manipulate processing fluency in the study phase, and the R/K paradigm was utilised to investigate which recognition memory process (familiarity or recollection was affected by processing fluency in the test phase. Converging behavioural and ERP results indicated that increased processing fluency impaired subsequent recollection. Results from the analysis of ERP priming effects in the study phase indicated that increased perceptual processing fluency of object features, reflected by the N/P 190 priming effect, can hinder encoding activities, reflected by the LPC priming effect, which leads to worse subsequent recollection based recognition memory. These results support the idea that processing fluency can influence subsequent recognition memory and provide a potential neural mechanism underlying this effect. However, further studies are needed to examine whether processing fluency can affect subsequent familiarity.
In spite of the vast numbers of articles devoted to vocabulary acquisition in a foreign language, few studies address the contribution of lexical knowledge to spoken fluency. The present article begins with basic definitions of the temporal characteristics of oral fluency, summarizing L1 research over several decades, and then presents fluency…
Veenendaal, Nathalie J.; Groen, Margriet A.; Verhoeven, Ludo
Text reading fluency--the ability to read quickly, accurately and with a natural intonation--has been proposed as a predictor of reading comprehension. In the current study, we examined the role of oral text reading fluency, defined as text reading rate and text reading prosody, as a contributor to reading comprehension outcomes in addition to…
Veenendaal, N.J.; Groen, M.A.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.
Text reading fluency – the ability to read quickly, accurately and with a natural intonation – has been proposed as a predictor of reading comprehension. In the current study, we examined the role of oral text reading fluency, defined as text reading rate and text reading prosody, as a contributor
Gatbonton, Elizabeth; Segalowitz, Norman
Discusses the theory and practice of a "creative automatization" process through which learners can develop the automaticity component of fluency in second language production in a classroom setting, and explains five design criteria to help teachers develop their own activities for promoting fluency within this framework. (Author/CB)
Kolomitz, Kara; Cabellon, Edmund T.
This chapter describes the opportunity for senior student affairs officers (SSAOs) to develop an increased digital fluency to meet the needs of various constituencies in the digital age. The authors explore what a digital fluency is, how it might impact SSAOs' leadership potential, and the benefits for their respective divisions.
Reggev, Niv; Hassin, Ran R.; Maril, Anat
Fluency, the subjective experience of ease associated with information processing, has been shown to affect a host of judgments. Previous research has typically focused on specific factors that affect the use of a single, specific fluency source. In the present study we examine how cognitive mindsets, or processing modes, moderate fluency…
Carr, Evan W; Rotteveel, Mark; Winkielman, Piotr
It is well established that processing fluency impacts preference judgments and physiological reactions indicative of affect. Yet, little is known about how fluency influences motivation-related action. Here, we offer a novel demonstration that fluency facilitates action-tendencies related to approach. Four experiments investigated this action effect, its boundary conditions, and concomitant affective responses. Experiment 1 found faster approach movements (reaction times [RTs] to initiate arm flexion) to perceptually fluent stimuli when participants acted to rapidly classify stimuli as either "good" or "bad." Experiment 2 eliminated this fluency effect on action when participants performed nonaffective classifications ("living" or "nonliving"), even though fluency robustly enhanced liking judgments. Experiment 3 demonstrated that fluency can also facilitate approach action that is not immediate, as long as the delayed action involves affective classification. This experiment also found that fluent stimuli elicit genuine hedonic responses, as reflected in facial electromyography (fEMG) activity over zygomaticus "smiling" muscle. Experiment 4 replicated the physiological (fEMG) evidence for hedonic responses to fluent stimuli, but similar to Experiment 2, we observed no fluency effects on actions involving nonaffective classification. The current studies offer the first evidence that perceptual fluency can facilitate approach-related movements, when such movements are embedded in the context of affective decisions. Generally, these results suggest that variations in processing dynamics can flexibly and implicitly shape action-tendencies. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).
Li, Bingbing; Gao, Chuanji; Wang, Wei; Guo, Chunyan
Although many behavioral studies have investigated the effect of processing fluency on subsequent recognition memory, little research has examined the neural mechanism of this phenomenon. The present study aimed to explore the electrophysiological correlates of the effects of processing fluency on subsequent recognition memory by using an event-related potential (ERP) approach. The masked repetition priming paradigm was used to manipulate processing fluency in the study phase, and the R/K paradigm was utilized to investigate which recognition memory process (familiarity or recollection) was affected by processing fluency in the test phase. Converging behavioral and ERP results indicated that increased processing fluency impaired subsequent recollection. Results from the analysis of ERP priming effects in the study phase indicated that increased perceptual processing fluency of object features, reflected by the N/P 190 priming effect, can hinder encoding activities, reflected by the LPC priming effect, which leads to worse subsequent recollection based recognition memory. These results support the idea that processing fluency can influence subsequent recognition memory and provide a potential neural mechanism underlying this effect. However, further studies are needed to examine whether processing fluency can affect subsequent familiarity.
Young, Chase; Valadez, Corinne; Gandara, Cori
The quasi-experimental study examined the effects of pairing Rock and Read with Readers Theater and only Rock and Read on second grade students' reading fluency scores. The 51 subjects were pre- and post-tested on five different reading fluency measures. A series of 3 × 2 repeated measures ANOVAs revealed statistically significant interaction…
This study investigated two widely-used early literacy skill's indicators in reflecting growth in first-grade language achievement skills. It compared two curriculum-based assessments of letter knowledge: Letter Naming Fluency (LNF) and Letter Sound Fluency (LSF) in the Arabic language. A sample of 125 first-grade students, 100 average readers and…
Reed, Helen C.; Gemmink, Michelle; Broens-Paffen, Marije; Kirschner, Paul A.; Jolles, Jelle
Developing fluency in arithmetic facts is instrumental to mathematics learning. This study compares the effects of two practice conditions on children's fluency in simple multiplication facts. Third and fourth graders in the Netherlands (N = 282) practised in either a conventional "recall" condition where they produced answers to…
Reed, Helen; Gemmink, Michelle; Brouns-Paffen, Marije; Kirschner, Paul A.; Jolles, Jelle
Developing fluency in arithmetic facts is instrumental to mathematics learning. This study compares the effects of two practice conditions on children’s fluency in simple multiplication facts. Third and fourth graders in the Netherlands (N = 282) practised in either a conventional recall condition
Bolaños, Daniel; Cole, Ron A.; Ward, Wayne H.; Tindal, Gerald A.; Hasbrouck, Jan; Schwanenflugel, Paula J.
This article describes a comprehensive approach to fully automated assessment of children's oral reading fluency (ORF), one of the most informative and frequently administered measures of children's reading ability. Speech recognition and machine learning techniques are described that model the 3 components of oral reading fluency: word accuracy,…
Apperly, Ian A.; Samson, Dana; Chiavarino, Claudia; Bickerton, Wai-Ling; Humphreys, Glyn W.
To test the domain-specificity of ''theory of mind'' abilities we compared the performance of a case-series of 11 brain-lesioned patients on a recently developed test of false belief reasoning (Apperly, Samson, Chiavarino, & Humphreys, 2004) and on a matched false photograph task, which did not require belief reasoning and which addressed problems…
Kim, Young-Suk; Wagner, Richard K.; Lopez, Danielle
From a developmental framework, relations among list reading fluency, oral and silent reading fluency, listening comprehension, and reading comprehension might be expected to change as children’s reading skills develop. We examined developmental relations among these constructs in a latent-variable longitudinal study of first- and second-grade students. Results showed that list reading fluency was uniquely related to reading comprehension in grade one, but not in grade two after accounting for text reading fluency (oral or silent) and listening comprehension. In contrast, text reading fluency was uniquely related to reading comprehension in grade two, but not in grade one, after accounting for list reading fluency and listening comprehension. When oral and silent reading fluency were compared, oral reading fluency was uniquely related to reading comprehension after accounting for silent reading fluency in grade one whereas in grade two, silent reading fluency was uniquely related to reading comprehension after accounting for oral reading fluency. PMID:22726256
Wallot, Sebastian; Hollis, Geoff; van Rooij, Marieke
The process of connected text reading has received very little attention in contemporary cognitive psychology. This lack of attention is in parts due to a research tradition that emphasizes the role of basic lexical constituents, which can be studied in isolated words or sentences. However, this lack of attention is in parts also due to the lack of statistical analysis techniques, which accommodate interdependent time series. In this study, we investigate text reading performance with traditional and nonlinear analysis techniques and show how outcomes from multiple analyses can used to create a more detailed picture of the process of text reading. Specifically, we investigate reading performance of groups of literate adult readers that differ in reading fluency during a self-paced text reading task. Our results indicate that classical metrics of reading (such as word frequency) do not capture text reading very well, and that classical measures of reading fluency (such as average reading time) distinguish relatively poorly between participant groups. Nonlinear analyses of distribution tails and reading time fluctuations provide more fine-grained information about the reading process and reading fluency. PMID:23977177
Full Text Available ABSTRACT Purpose: to compare the frequency of disfluencies and speech rate in spontaneous speech and reading in adults with and without stuttering in non-altered and delayed auditory feedback (NAF, DAF. Methods: participants were 30 adults: 15 with Stuttering (Research Group - RG, and 15 without stuttering (Control Group - CG. The procedures were: audiological assessment and speech fluency evaluation in two listening conditions, normal and delayed auditory feedback (100 milliseconds delayed by Fono Tools software. Results: the DAF caused a significant improvement in the fluency of spontaneous speech in RG when compared to speech under NAF. The effect of DAF was different in CG, because it increased the common disfluencies and the total of disfluencies in spontaneous speech and reading, besides showing an increase in the frequency of stuttering-like disfluencies in reading. The intergroup analysis showed significant differences in the two speech tasks for the two listening conditions in the frequency of stuttering-like disfluencies and in the total of disfluencies, and in the flows of syllable and word-per-minute in the NAF. Conclusion: the results demonstrated that delayed auditory feedback promoted fluency in spontaneous speech of adults who stutter, without interfering in the speech rate. In non-stuttering adults an increase occurred in the number of common disfluencies and total of disfluencies as well as reduction of speech rate in spontaneous speech and reading.
James, Lori E; Chambers, Brittany N; Placzek, Chelsea L
We compared young and older adults' speech during an error detection task, with some pictures containing visual errors and anomalies and other pictures error-free. We analyzed three disfluency types: mid-phrase speech fillers (e.g., It's a little, um, girl), repetitions (e.g., He's trying to catch the- the birds), and repairs (e.g., She- you can see her legs). Older adults produced more mid-phrase fillers than young adults only when describing pictures containing errors. These often reflect word retrieval problems and represent clear disruptions to fluency, so this interaction indicates that the need to form and maintain representations of novel information can specifically compromise older adults' speech fluency. Overall, older adults produced more repetitions and repairs than young adults, regardless of picture type, indicating general age-related increases in these disfluencies. The obtained patterns are discussed in the context of the Transmission Deficit Hypothesis and other approaches to age-related changes in speech fluency.
Babel, Molly; McGuire, Grant
Research has shown that processing dynamics on the perceiver's end determine aesthetic pleasure. Specifically, typical objects, which are processed more fluently, are perceived as more attractive. We extend this notion of perceptual fluency to judgments of vocal aesthetics. Vocal attractiveness has traditionally been examined with respect to sexual dimorphism and the apparent size of a talker, as reconstructed from the acoustic signal, despite evidence that gender-specific speech patterns are learned social behaviors. In this study, we report on a series of three experiments using 60 voices (30 females) to compare the relationship between judgments of vocal attractiveness, stereotypicality, and gender categorization fluency. Our results indicate that attractiveness and stereotypicality are highly correlated for female and male voices. Stereotypicality and categorization fluency were also correlated for male voices, but not female voices. Crucially, stereotypicality and categorization fluency interacted to predict attractiveness, suggesting the role of perceptual fluency is present, but nuanced, in judgments of human voices. © 2014 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.
Leong, Danielle F; Master, Christina L; Messner, Leonard V; Pang, Yi; Smith, Craig; Starling, Amaal J
Eye movements are necessary for the physical act of reading and have been shown to relate to underlying cognitive and visuoattentional processes during reading. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of saccadic training using the King-Devick remediation software on reading fluency. In this prospective, single-blinded, randomized, crossover trial, a cohort of elementary students received standardized reading fluency testing pre- and posttreatment. Treatment consisted of in-school training 20 minutes per day, 3 days per week for 6 weeks. The treatment group had significantly higher reading fluency scores after treatment (P Saccadic training can significantly improve reading fluency. We hypothesize that this improvement in reading fluency is a result of rigorous practice of eye movements and shifting visuospatial attention, which are vital to the act of reading. © The Author(s) 2014.
Fliss, Rafika; Lemerre, Marion; Mollard, Audrey
Compromised theory of mind (ToM) can be explained either by a failure to implement specific representational capacities (mental state representations) or by more general executive selection demands. In older adult populations, evidence supporting affected executive functioning and cognitive ToM in normal aging are reported. However, links between these two functions remain unclear. In the present paper, we address these shortcomings by using a specific task of ToM and classical executive tasks. We studied, using an original cognitive ToM task, the effect of age on ToM performances, in link with the progressive executive decline. 96 elderly participants were recruited. They were asked to perform a cognitive ToM task, and 5 executive tests (Stroop test and Hayling Sentence Completion Test to appreciate inhibitory process, Trail Making Test and Verbal Fluency for shifting assessment and backward span dedicated to estimate working memory capacity). The results show changes in cognitive ToM performance according to executive demands. Correlational studies indicate a significant relationship between ToM performance and the selected executive measures. Regression analyzes demonstrates that level of vocabulary and age as the best predictors of ToM performance. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that ToM deficits are related to age-related domain-general decline rather than as to a breakdown in specialized representational system. The implications of these findings for the nature of social cognition tests in normal aging are also discussed.
Franco Justo, Clemente
Full Text Available This study analyzes the effects of a meditation program on level of verbal creativity (fluency, flexibility and originality in a group of students in Spain’s two-year educational program for university preparation (Bachillerato. Participants formed two groups: a experimental group that participated in a meditation program, and a control group that did not take part in this intervention. Creativitylevels for the two groups were assessed using the verbal battery of the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking, with significant improvement found in the experimental group as compared to the control group for the variables studied.
Iliana M. Vargas
Full Text Available In some circumstances, accurate recognition of repeated images in an explicit memory test is driven by implicit memory. We propose that this “implicit recognition” results from perceptual fluency that influences responding without awareness of memory retrieval. Here we examined whether recognition would vary if images appeared in the same or different visual hemifield during learning and testing. Kaleidoscope images were briefly presented left or right of fixation during divided-attention encoding. Presentation in the same visual hemifield at test produced higher recognition accuracy than presentation in the opposite visual hemifield, but only for guess responses. These correct guesses likely reflect a contribution from implicit recognition, given that when the stimulated visual hemifield was the same at study and test, recognition accuracy was higher for guess responses than for responses with any level of confidence. The dramatic difference in guessing accuracy as a function of lateralized perceptual overlap between study and test suggests that implicit recognition arises from memory storage in visual cortical networks that mediate repetition-induced fluency increments.
Vargas, Iliana M; Voss, Joel L; Paller, Ken A
In some circumstances, accurate recognition of repeated images in an explicit memory test is driven by implicit memory. We propose that this "implicit recognition" results from perceptual fluency that influences responding without awareness of memory retrieval. Here we examined whether recognition would vary if images appeared in the same or different visual hemifield during learning and testing. Kaleidoscope images were briefly presented left or right of fixation during divided-attention encoding. Presentation in the same visual hemifield at test produced higher recognition accuracy than presentation in the opposite visual hemifield, but only for guess responses. These correct guesses likely reflect a contribution from implicit recognition, given that when the stimulated visual hemifield was the same at study and test, recognition accuracy was higher for guess responses than for responses with any level of confidence. The dramatic difference in guessing accuracy as a function of lateralized perceptual overlap between study and test suggests that implicit recognition arises from memory storage in visual cortical networks that mediate repetition-induced fluency increments.
Crockett, Lee; Jukes, Ian; Churches, Andrew
Educating students to traditional literacy standards is no longer enough. If students are to thrive in their academic and 21st century careers, then independent and creative thinking hold the highest currency. The authors explain in detail how to add these new components of literacy: (1) Solution Fluency; (2) Information Fluency; (3) Creativity…
Marsh, John E; Crawford, Jessica C; Pilgrim, Lea K; Sörqvist, Patrik; Hughes, Robert W
It is widely held that single-word lexical access is a competitive process, a view based largely on the observation that naming a picture is slowed in the presence of a distractor-word. However, problematic for this view is that a low-frequency distractor-word slows the naming of a picture more than does a high-frequency word. This supports an alternative, response-exclusion, account in which a distractor-word interferes because it must be excluded from an articulatory output buffer before the right word can be articulated (the picture name): A high, compared to low, frequency word accesses the buffer more quickly and, as such, can also be excluded more quickly. Here we studied the respective roles of competition and response-exclusion for the first time in the context of semantic verbal fluency, a setting requiring the accessing of, and production of, multiple words from long-term memory in response to a single semantic cue. We show that disruption to semantic fluency by a sequence of to-be-ignored spoken distractors is also greater when those distractors are low in frequency, thereby extending the explanatory compass of the response-exclusion account to a multiple-word production setting and casting further doubt on the lexical-selection-by-competition view. The results can be understood as reflecting the contribution of speech output processes to semantic fluency. © 2017 Scandinavian Psychological Associations and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Hirvonen, Riikka; Georgiou, George K.; Lerkkanen, Marja-Kristiina; Aunola, Kaisa; Nurmi, Jari-Erik
The purpose of this study was twofold: (a) to examine the effect of task-focused behaviour on reading fluency, spelling and comprehension; and (b) to examine the role of the different literacy skills in subsequent task-focused behaviour. Two hundred and seven Finnish-speaking children were followed from preschool until their fourth year at school…
Full Text Available Problem: The study of cognitive deficits in patients who are addicted to alcohol is an important topic of contemporary research. Several studies demonstrate that for this group of patients is typical diffused cognitive deficit that impairs more cognitive abilities including executive functions. Recent researches shows that executive dysfunctions among this patients is connected with poor therapeutic prognosis and coping with alcohol addiction. Diagnostic of executive functions among this group is often underestimated. Our aim in this study is to assess executive function among this group of patients by new Olomouc test of figural fluency that is intended for measurement of executive functioning and comparing their results with control group. Methods: We assess performance of 44 patients with alcohol dependence syndrome and 146 volunteers in control group with Olomouc test of figural fluency. We refer about main specific of this method compared to other tools for assessing of figural fluency. Selection of all participants in both groups was voluntary and based on their motivation. Results: We found that clinical and control group differ statistically significantly in overall numbers of produced designs (CP, in overall numbers of unique designs (CV and in the index of precision of their work (V/P. The main test criterion (number of unique designs, CV shows as a most powerful and useful in differentiation of both groups from statistical (t=-4,73; p < 0,01 and practical points of view (effect size d=0,86. Discussion: Our research findings correspond with recent research studies about executive deficit among group of patients addicted to alcohol and overall poor performance in executive tasks. We considered that number of unique designs produced in Olomouc test of figural fluency should be important criterion for discrimination between research and control group. For prediction of impact of executive deficit to coping with addiction is further
Full Text Available Objective: Oral and verbal apraxias represent motor programming deficits of nonverbal and verbal movements respectively. Studying their properties may shed light on speech motor control processes. This study was focused on identifying cases with oral or verbal apraxia, their co–occurrences and severities. Materials & Methods: In this non-experimental study, 55 left adult subjects with left brain lesion including 22 women and 33 men with age range of 23 to 84 years, were examined and videotaped using oral apraxia and verbal apraxia tasks. Three speech and language pathologists independently scored apraxia severities. Data were analyzed by independent t test, Pearson, Phi and Contingency coefficients using SPSS 12. Results: Mean score of oral and verbal apraxias in patients with and without oral and verbal apraxias were significantly different (P<0.001. Forty- two patients had simultaneous oral and verbal apraxias, with significant correlation between their oral and verbal apraxia scores (r=0.75, P<0.001. Six patients showed no oral or verbal apraxia and 7 had just one type of apraxia. Comparison of co-occurrence of two disorders (Phi=0.59 and different oral and verbal intensities (C=0.68 were relatively high (P<0.001. Conclusion: The present research revealed co-occurrence of oral and verbal apraxias to a great extent. It appears that speech motor control is influenced by a more general verbal and nonverbal motor control.
Chen, Qun-Lin; Xu, Ting; Yang, Wen-Jing; Li, Ya-Dan; Sun, Jiang-Zhou; Wang, Kang-Cheng; Beaty, Roger E; Zhang, Qing-Lin; Zuo, Xi-Nian; Qiu, Jiang
There have been many structural and functional imaging studies of creative thinking, but combining structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) investigations with respect to creative thinking is still lacking. Thus, the aim of the present study was to explore the associations among inter-individual verbal creative thinking and both regional homogeneity and cortical morphology of the brain surface. We related the local functional homogeneity of spontaneous brain activity to verbal creative thinking and its dimensions--fluency, originality, and flexibility--by examining these inter-individual differences in a large sample of 268 healthy college students. Results revealed that people with high verbal creative ability and high scores for the three dimensions of creativity exhibited lower regional functional homogeneity in the right precuneus. Both cortical volume and thickness of the right precuneus were positively associated with individual verbal creativity and its dimensions. Moreover, originality was negatively correlated with functional homogeneity in the left superior frontal gyrus and positively correlated with functional homogeneity in the right occipito-temporal gyrus. In contrast, flexibility was positively correlated with functional homogeneity in the left superior and middle occipital gyrus. These findings provide additional evidence of a link between verbal creative thinking and brain structure in the right precuneus--a region involved in internally--focused attention and effective semantic retrieval-and further suggest that local functional homogeneity of verbal creative thinking has neurobiological relevance that is likely based on anatomical substrates. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
The face-name association task can be employed to examine functional alterations of hippocampal activation during encoding of both verbal and non-verbal material in one fMRI paradigm. Further, the left SFG seems to be a convergence region for encoding of verbal and non-verbal material.
Petrill, Stephen; Logan, Jessica; Hart, Sara; Vincent, Pamela; Thompson, Lee; Kovas, Yulia; Plomin, Robert
The authors examined whether math fluency was independent from untimed math and from reading using 314 pairs of school-aged twins drawn from the Western Reserve Reading and Math Projects. Twins were assessed through a 90-min home visit at approximately age 10 and were reassessed in their homes approximately 1 year later. Results suggested that the shared environment and genetics influenced the covariance among math fluency, untimed math measures, and reading measures. However, roughly two thirds of the variance in math fluency was independent from untimed math measures and reading, including reading fluency. The majority of this independent variance was the result of genetic factors that were longitudinally stable across two measurement occasions. These results suggest that math fluency, although related to other math measures, may also be a genetically distinct dimension of mathematics performance. PMID:21890908
Richardson, Michael J; Marsh, Kerry L; Schmidt, R C
Previous research has demonstrated that people's movements can become unintentionally coordinated during interpersonal interaction. The current study sought to uncover the degree to which visual and verbal (conversation) interaction constrains and organizes the rhythmic limb movements of coactors. Two experiments were conducted in which pairs of participants completed an interpersonal puzzle task while swinging handheld pendulums with instructions that minimized intentional coordination but facilitated either visual or verbal interaction. Cross-spectral analysis revealed a higher degree of coordination for conditions in which the pairs were visually coupled. In contrast, verbal interaction alone was not found to provide a sufficient medium for unintentional coordination to occur, nor did it enhance the unintentional coordination that emerged during visual interaction. The results raise questions concerning differences between visual and verbal informational linkages during interaction and how these differences may affect interpersonal movement production and its coordination.
Full Text Available Abstract Objective To study the neurocognitive profile and its relationship to prefrontal dysfunction in non-demented Parkinson's disease (PD with deficient haptic perception. Methods Twelve right-handed patients with PD and 12 healthy control subjects underwent thorough neuropsychological testing including Rey complex figure, Rey auditory verbal and figural learning test, figural and verbal fluency, and Stroop test. Test scores reflecting significant differences between patients and healthy subjects were correlated with the individual expression coefficients of one principal component, obtained in a principal component analysis of an oxygen-15-labeled water PET study exploring somatosensory discrimination that differentiated between the two groups and involved prefrontal cortices. Results We found significantly decreased total scores for the verbal learning trials and verbal delayed free recall in PD patients compared with normal volunteers. Further analysis of these parameters using Spearman's ranking correlation showed a significantly negative correlation of deficient verbal recall with expression coefficients of the principal component whose image showed a subcortical-cortical network, including right dorsolateral-prefrontal cortex, in PD patients. Conclusion PD patients with disrupted right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex function and associated diminished somatosensory discrimination are impaired also in verbal memory functions. A negative correlation between delayed verbal free recall and PET activation in a network including the prefrontal cortices suggests that verbal cues and accordingly declarative memory processes may be operative in PD during activities that demand sustained attention such as somatosensory discrimination. Verbal cues may be compensatory in nature and help to non-specifically enhance focused attention in the presence of a functionally disrupted prefrontal cortex.
Bohlhalter, Stephan; Abela, Eugenio; Weniger, Dorothea; Weder, Bruno
To study the neurocognitive profile and its relationship to prefrontal dysfunction in non-demented Parkinson's disease (PD) with deficient haptic perception. Twelve right-handed patients with PD and 12 healthy control subjects underwent thorough neuropsychological testing including Rey complex figure, Rey auditory verbal and figural learning test, figural and verbal fluency, and Stroop test. Test scores reflecting significant differences between patients and healthy subjects were correlated with the individual expression coefficients of one principal component, obtained in a principal component analysis of an oxygen-15-labeled water PET study exploring somatosensory discrimination that differentiated between the two groups and involved prefrontal cortices. We found significantly decreased total scores for the verbal learning trials and verbal delayed free recall in PD patients compared with normal volunteers. Further analysis of these parameters using Spearman's ranking correlation showed a significantly negative correlation of deficient verbal recall with expression coefficients of the principal component whose image showed a subcortical-cortical network, including right dorsolateral-prefrontal cortex, in PD patients. PD patients with disrupted right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex function and associated diminished somatosensory discrimination are impaired also in verbal memory functions. A negative correlation between delayed verbal free recall and PET activation in a network including the prefrontal cortices suggests that verbal cues and accordingly declarative memory processes may be operative in PD during activities that demand sustained attention such as somatosensory discrimination. Verbal cues may be compensatory in nature and help to non-specifically enhance focused attention in the presence of a functionally disrupted prefrontal cortex.
de Almeida Brites, José; Ladera, Valentina; Perea, Victoria; García, Ricardo
The aim of this study was to compare the verbal functions and language skills of male psychopathic individuals (in prison and outside) with non-psychopaths. The purpose was therefore to analyze phonological processing, reading and writing skills, the meaning of words and images, and the understanding of sentences. Ninety individuals with an average age of 38.19 (SD = 7.67) voluntarily participated in this study. The data were collected in different settings: prisons, a private charitable organization, and private clinics and health centers. All participants completed the Psychopathy Checklist Revised and the Psycholinguistic Assessment of Language Processing in Aphasia, to assess psychopathy traits and language skills, respectively. Participants were allocated into four different groups: incarcerated psychopathic offenders (n = 13), non-incarcerated psychopathic non-offenders living in the community (n = 13), incarcerated non-psychopathic offenders (n = 25), and non-psychopathic non-offenders living in the community (n = 39). The results showed that the verbal functions and language skills between psychopaths and non-psychopaths are very similar, showing a common profile. The data presented indicate the need for more specific work opportunities for both groups within the correctional setting, with the use of appropriate language and individualized programs as necessary. © The Author(s) 2014.
Piper, Benjamin; Zuilkowski, Stephanie Simmons
In recent years, the Education for All movement has focused more intensely on the quality of education, rather than simply provision. Many recent and current education quality interventions focus on literacy, which is the core skill required for further academic success. Despite this focus on the quality of literacy instruction in developing countries, little rigorous research has been conducted on critical issues of assessment. This analysis, which uses data from the Primary Math and Reading Initiative (PRIMR) in Kenya, aims to begin filling this gap by addressing a key assessment issue - should literacy assessments in Kenya be administered orally or silently? The authors compared second-grade students' scores on oral and silent reading tasks of the Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) in Kiswahili and English, and found no statistically significant differences in either language. They did, however, find oral reading rates to be more strongly related to reading comprehension scores. Oral assessment has another benefit for programme evaluators - it allows for the collection of data on student errors, and therefore the calculation of words read correctly per minute, as opposed to simply words read per minute. The authors therefore recommend that, in Kenya and in similar contexts, student reading fluency be assessed via oral rather than silent assessment.
Kraemer, David J M; Rosenberg, Lauren M; Thompson-Schill, Sharon L
It has long been thought that propensities for visual or verbal learning styles influence how children acquire knowledge successfully and how adults reason in everyday life. There is no direct evidence to date, however, linking these cognitive styles to specific neural systems. In the present study, visual and verbal cognitive styles are measured by self-report survey, and cognitive abilities are measured by scored tests of visual and verbal skills. Specifically, we administered the Verbalizer-Visualizer Questionnaire (VVQ) and modality-specific subtests of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) to 18 subjects who subsequently participated in a functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment. During the imaging session, participants performed a novel psychological task involving both word-based and picture-based feature matching conditions that was designed to permit the use of either a visual or a verbal processing style during all conditions of the task. Results demonstrated a pattern of activity in modality-specific cortex that distinguished visual from verbal cognitive styles. During the word-based condition, activity in a functionally defined brain region that responded to viewing pictorial stimuli (fusiform gyrus) correlated with self-reported visualizer ratings on the VVQ. In contrast, activity in a phonologically related brain region (supramarginal gyrus) correlated with the verbalizer dimension of the VVQ during the picture-based condition. Scores from the WAIS subtests did not reliably correlate with brain activity in either of these regions. These findings suggest that modality-specific cortical activity underlies processing in visual and verbal cognitive styles.
Georgiadou, Effrosyni; Roehr-Brackin, Karen
This paper reports the findings of a study investigating the relationship of executive working memory (WM) and phonological short-term memory (PSTM) to fluency and self-repair behavior during an unrehearsed oral task performed by second language (L2) speakers of English at two levels of proficiency, elementary and lower intermediate. Correlational…
Poulsen, Mads; Elbro, Carsten
The present study investigated the relationships between lexical access, reading fluency, and comprehension. Two components of speed of lexical access were studied: phonological and semantic. Previous studies have mainly investigated these components of lexical access separately. The present study examined both components in naming tasks--with…
Torppa, Minna; Eklund, Kenneth; Sulkunen, Sari; Niemi, Pekka; Ahonen, Timo
The present study examined gender gap in Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) Reading and mediators of the gender gap in a Finnish sample (n = 1,309). We examined whether the gender gap in PISA Reading performance can be understood via the effects of reading fluency, achievement behaviour (mastery orientation and task-avoidant…
Poulsen, Mads; Elbro, Carsten
examined both components in naming tasks – with isolated letters (phonological) and pictures (semantic). Seventy-five Grade 5 students were administered measures of letter and picture naming speed, word and nonword reading fluency, reading comprehension, together with control measures of vocabulary...
Lobier, Muriel; Zoubrinetzky, Rachel; Valdois, Sylviane
The visual attention (VA) span deficit hypothesis of dyslexia posits that letter string deficits are a consequence of impaired visual processing. Alternatively, some have interpreted this deficit as resulting from a visual-to-phonology code mapping impairment. This study aims to disambiguate between the two interpretations by investigating performance in a non-verbal character string visual categorization task with verbal and non-verbal stimuli. Results show that VA span ability predicts performance for the non-verbal visual processing task in normal reading children. Furthermore, VA span impaired dyslexic children are also impaired for the categorization task independently of stimuli type. This supports the hypothesis that the underlying impairment responsible for the VA span deficit is visual, not verbal. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Srl. All rights reserved.
Préfontaine, Yvonne; Kormos, Judit; Johnson, Daniel Ezra
While the research literature on second language (L2) fluency is replete with descriptions of fluency and its influence with regard to English as an additional language, little is known about what fluency features influence judgments of fluency in L2 French. This study reports the results of an investigation that analyzed the relationship between…
Abdel Latif, Muhammad M. Mahmoud
Fluency is an essential component in writing ability and development. Writing fluency research is important to researchers and teachers interested in facilitating students' written text production and in assessing writing. This calls for reaching a better understanding of writing fluency and how it should be measured. Although fluency is the…
Fujita Mariangela Spotti Lopes
Full Text Available Verifies the applicability to research on indexers' reading strategies of the process observing technique known as Verbal Protocol or Thinking Aloud. This interpretative-qualitative data collecting technique allows the observation of different kinds of process during the progress of different kinds of tasks. Presents a theoretical investigation into "reading" and into formal methodological procedures to observe reading processes. Describes details of the methodological procedures adopted in five case studies with analysis of samples of data. The project adopted three kinds of parameters for data analysis: theoretical, normative, empirical (derived from observations made in the first case study. The results are compared, and important conclusions regarding documentary reading are drawn.
Full Text Available The dorsal and ventral aspects of the prefrontal cortex (PFC are the two regions most consistently recruited in divergent thinking tasks. Given that frontal tasks have been shown to be vulnerable to sleep loss, we explored the impact of a single night of sleep deprivation on fluency (i.e., number of generated responses and PFC function during divergent thinking. Participants underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI scanning twice while engaged in the Alternate Uses Task (AUT—once following a single night of sleep deprivation and once following a night of normal sleep. They also wore wrist activity monitors, which enabled us to quantify daily sleep and model cognitive effectiveness. The intervention was effective, producing greater levels of fatigue and sleepiness. Modelled cognitive effectiveness and fluency were impaired following sleep deprivation, and sleep deprivation was associated with greater activation in the left inferior frontal gyrus during AUT. The results suggest that an intervention known to temporarily compromise frontal function can impair fluency, and that this effect is instantiated in the form of an increased haemodynamic response in the left inferior frontal gyrus.
Koroscik, Judith S.; And Others
The purpose of this study was to determine the extent to which cultural biases contribute to the effect of verbalization on comprehending the structures and meaning of art in the United States, Brazil, and Egypt. Findings indicate a verbal task instructing viewers to generate their own title for each work promoted superior retention in all three…
Guerard, Katherine; Tremblay, Sebastien
The authors revisited evidence in favor of modularity and of functional equivalence between the processing of verbal and spatial information in short-term memory. This was done by investigating the patterns of intrusions, omissions, transpositions, and fill-ins in verbal and spatial serial recall and order reconstruction tasks under control,…
Sense, Florian; Morey, Candice C.; Prince, Melissa; Heathcote, Andrew; Morey, Richard D.
Evidence suggests that there is a tendency to verbally recode visually-presented information, and that in some cases verbal recoding can boost memory performance. According to multi-component models of working memory, memory performance is increased because task-relevant information is
Bechtereva, N P; Korotkov, A D; Pakhomov, S V; Roudas, M S; Starchenko, M G; Medvedev, S V
This paper deals with the investigation of the brain organization of verbal creativity. Psychological tasks were designed in accordance with two main strategies used by volunteers in solving creative tasks. Regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was measured with positron emission tomography (PET) when performing two types of creative tasks in two groups of subjects, each type of the task organizing the creativity process in its own way. Valuable brain correlates of creativity were revealed in the left parieto-temporal regions (Brodmann areas 39 and 40). Copyright 2004 Elsevier B.V.