On testing the face validity of planning/problem-solving tasks in a normal population

J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 1997 Mar;3(2):108-19.


Clinically, tests of executive functions tend to be chosen on face validity. If such tests are to be used to evaluate a clinical population, their ability to measure executive functions should be reliably demonstrated in a normal population. In order to investigate the reliability of such tests, a sample of 130 normal adults (74 women, 56 men) ages 17 to 55 years were administered 4 tests purporting to measure planning/problem-solving: the Tower of London Test, the Six Element Test, the Twenty Questions Test, and the Rey Complex Figure Test. A structural equation modeling approach provided by the LISREL 8 program was used to evaluate three models hypothesized to explain the relationship among the test variables and the latent construct of planning/problem-solving. An adequate model was unable to be estimated, thus raising questions about the meaning of the latent construct planning/problem-solving and the psychometric structure of the Tower of London Test.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mathematical Computing
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests / statistics & numerical data*
  • Problem Solving*
  • Psychometrics
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results