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Validation of a mobile game-based assessment of cognitive control among children and adolescents

 Hyunjoo Song  ;  Do-Joon Yi  ;  Hae-Jeong Park 
 PLOS ONE, Vol.15(3) : e0230498, 2020-03 
Journal Title
Issue Date
Adolescent ; Child ; Cognition / physiology* ; Executive Function / physiology* ; Female ; Humans ; Male ; Mobile Applications* ; Video Games*
Cognitive control is the most fundamental psychological function that underlies the execution of many other psychological functions. A mobile game application could be a useful strategy to evaluate cognitive control in the groups of children and adolescents. Although a serious game that is based on gamification would be an optimal platform for the administration of behavioral and clinical assessments of children and adolescents, most studies on gamification have been conducted among adults and older adults than among children and adolescents. This study aimed to assess cognitive control using a mobile game that used gamification and compared the results to those from traditional neuropsychological tests for children and adolescents. In order to address this objective, this study used a serious game, namely, "CoCon," which was developed to assess cognitive control in children and adolescents. This study included 100 participants from a community sample (mean age = 11.75 years, ranged from 9 to 16 years, SD = 1.40 years; Male = 59(59%), Female = 41(41%)). The analyses interrogated the relationships among various game behaviors scores of CoCon, the standardized neuropsychological tests (K-WISC-IV, CTT, and Stroop), and self-reporting executive function difficulty questionnaire. As results, a mobile game application-based assessment proved to be a reliable and valid measure of the cognitive control in children and adolescents. The index scores from the CoCon were significantly related to various cognitive control functions and differentiated between the high and low cognitive control groups. Specifically, even though the participants completed the mobile game 'CoCon' in their natural habitats, the CoCon scores were comparable to the measures from standard neuropsychological tests. In conclusion, the present findings suggest that mobile games that use advanced technology and sophisticated psychological strategies can serve as a new and expanded platform for the administration of psychological assessments.
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1. College of Medicine (의과대학) > Dept. of Nuclear Medicine (핵의학교실) > 1. Journal Papers
Yonsei Authors
Park, Hae Jeong(박해정) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4633-0756
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