Comparison between a self-administered and supervised version of a web-based cognitive test battery: results from the NutriNet-Santé cohort study.

J Med Internet Res. 2016 18(4):e68

Assmann KE, Bailet M, Lecoffre A, Galan P, Hercberg S, Amieva H, Kesse-Guyot E

BACKGROUND:
Dementia is a major public health problem, and repeated cognitive data from large epidemiological studies could help to develop efficient measures of early prevention.Data collection by self-administered online-tools could drastically reduce the logistical and financial burden of such large-scale investigations. In this context, it is important to obtain data
OBJECTIVE:
Our objective was to compare self-administration of the web-based NutriNet-Santé cognitive test battery (NutriCog) with administration by a neuropsychologist.
METHODS:
The test battery included four tests, measuring, amongst others, psychomotor speed, attention, executive function, episodic memory, working memory, and associative memory. Both versions of the cognitive battery were completed by 189 volunteers (either self-administered version first, n=99, or supervised version first, n=90). Subjects also completed a satisfactionquestionnaire. Concordance was assessed by Spearman correlations.

RESULTS:

Agreement between both versions varied according to the investigated cognitive task and outcome variable. Spearman correlations ranged between 0.42 and 0.73. Moreover, a large majority of participants responded that they “absolutely” or “rather” agreed that the duration of the self-administered battery was acceptable (99.5 %), that the tasks were amusing (87.6 %),that the instructions were sufficiently detailed (90.8 %) and understandable (88.7 %), and that they had globally enjoyed the test battery (98.4 %).
CONCLUSIONS:
The self-administered version of the web-based NutriCog cognitive test battery provided similar information as the supervised version. Thus, integrating repeated cognitive evaluations into large cohorts via the implementation of self-administered online versions of traditional test batteries appears to be a feasible.