Initial validation of a computerized version of the UCSD Performance-Based Skills Assessment (C-UPSA) for assessing functioning in schizophrenia

Schizophr Res. 2013 Mar;144(1-3):87-92. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2012.12.028. Epub 2013 Jan 30.


Objective: This study aimed to validate the Computerized UCSD Performance-Based Skills Assessment (C-UPSA), a newly developed scale for assessing functional capacity in patients with schizophrenia.

Methods: The C-UPSA was administered to 21 middle-aged and older adults with schizophrenia and 20 healthy comparison (HC) subjects. Schizophrenia participants also completed the original UPSA and a symptom inventory (during a separate visit), and cognitive functioning was assessed in both groups using a brief neuropsychological screening battery.

Results: The C-UPSA total score was significantly correlated with UPSA total scores, and the magnitude of the correlation was comparable to the test-retest reliability of the original UPSA. The C-UPSA was also significantly correlated with UPSA-Brief scores and neuropsychological status among schizophrenia participants. Furthermore, the schizophrenia group scored significantly lower than the HCs on the C-UPSA. ROC curves were generated to determine the optimal C-UPSA value for discriminating between the two groups, with results indicating an optimal cutoff of 75, which is consistent with the derived cutoff from the original UPSA. The C-UPSA identified persons with schizophrenia with 95% accuracy.

Conclusions: The C-UPSA appears to be highly related to the original UPSA. It has several advantages over the standard version, including increased portability, decreased administration time, and minimized examiner impact on participant performance. Future research would benefit from establishing this test as a clinical and research tool to effectively assess functional capacity.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living / psychology*
  • Computers / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales / standards*
  • Psychometrics / instrumentation
  • Schizophrenia / diagnosis*
  • Schizophrenic Psychology
  • Sensitivity and Specificity