Development and preliminary evaluation of a music-based Attention assessment for patients with traumatic brain injury

Eunju Jeong, Teresa L. Lesiuk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Impairments in attention are commonly seen in individuals with traumatic brain injury (TBI). While visual attention assessment measurements have been rigorously developed and frequently used in cognitive neurorehabilitation, there is a paucity of auditory attention assessment measurements for patients with TBI. The purpose of this study was to field test a researcher-developed Music-based Attention Assessment (MAA), a melodic contour identification test designed to assess three different types of attention (i.e., sustained attention, selective attention, and divided attention), for patients with TBI. Additionally, this study aimed to evaluate the readability and comprehensibility of the test items and to examine the preliminary psychometric properties of the scale and test items. Fifteen patients diagnosed with TBI completed 3 different series of tasks in which they were required to identify melodic contours. The resulting data showed that (a) test items in each of the 3 subtests were found to have an easy to moderate level of item difficulty and an acceptable to high level of item discrimination, and (b) the musical characteristics (i.e., contour, congruence, and pitch interference) were found to be associated with the level of item difficulty, and (c) the internal consistency of the MAA as computed by Cronbach's alpha was .95. Subsequent studies using a larger sample of typical participants, along with individuals with TBI, are needed to confirm construct validity and internal consistency of the MAA. In addition, the authors recommend examination of criterion validity of the MAA as correlated with current neuropsychological attention assessment measurements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)551-572
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Music Therapy
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2011


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