Embedded performance validity tests within the Hopkins Verbal Learning Test–Revised and the Brief Visuospatial Memory Test–Revised

R. John Sawyer, S. Marc Testa, Moira Dux

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Objective: Various research studies and neuropsychology practice organizations have reiterated the importance of developing embedded performance validity tests (PVTs) to detect potentially invalid neurocognitive test data. This study investigated whether measures within the Hopkins Verbal Learning Test–Revised (HVLT-R) and the Brief Visuospatial Memory Test–Revised (BVMT-R) could accurately classify individuals who fail two or more PVTs during routine clinical assessment. Method: The present sample of 109 United States military veterans (Mean age = 52.4, SD = 13.3), all consisted of clinically referred patients and received a battery of neuropsychological tests. Based on performance validity findings, veterans were assigned to valid (n = 86) or invalid (n = 23) groups. Of the 109 patients in the overall sample, 77 were administered the HLVT-R and 75 were administered the BVMT-R, which were examined for classification accuracy. Results: The HVLT-R Recognition Discrimination Index and the BVMT-R Retention Percentage showed good to adequate discrimination with an area under the curve of.78 and.70, respectively. The HVLT-R Recognition Discrimination Index showed sensitivity of.53 with specificity of.93. The BVMT-R Retention Percentage demonstrated sensitivity of.31 with specificity of.92. Conclusions: When used in conjunction with other PVTs, these new embedded PVTs may be effective in the detection of invalid test data, although they are not intended for use in patients with dementia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-218
Number of pages12
JournalClinical Neuropsychologist
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • BVMT
  • Embedded performance validity tests (PVTs)
  • HVLT
  • sensitivity and specificity
  • veterans

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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