Original article| Volume 27, ISSUE 8, P564-569, December 2005

The Rey–Osterrieth Complex Figure as a measure of executive function in childhood


      In adults, the Rey–Osterrieth Complex Figure (ROCF) can be used for the assessment of not only visuoconstructional ability and visual memory, but also executive function in adults. We studied whether ROCF scores also correlated with executive function in childhood. The subjects consisted of 56 patients with various neurological diseases (5 years 7 months–14 years 11 months; mean: 8 years 8 months; M 42, F 14) whose full-scale IQs were 70 or higher (mean: 93.3). All subjects underwent the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for children third edition (WISC-III) and various psychological tests focusing on executive function. We evaluated the ROCF with the Boston Qualitative Scoring System (BQSS). We calculated the partial correlation coefficients between the BQSS Summary Scores and representative scores of other executive function tests, using age as the control variable. Among the scores of the various examinations, the Perseverative Errors of Nelson of the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, the raw scores of the Mazes (WISC-III), the Digit Span (WISC-III), and the Block Design (WISC-III) were correlated significantly with two to four BQSS Summary Scores (P<0.05 or P<0.01). In contrast, the scores of the Trail Making Test, the Stroop Test, and the Commission Error of Continuous Performance Test-II did not show a significant correlation with any of the BQSS Summary Scores. The ROCF evaluated with the BQSS reflects not only visuoperceptual ability and visuoconstructional ability, but also executive function, especially planning and organization. However, a new BQSS Summary Score should be devised since no existing BQSS index specifically reflects executive functions with an outstandingly strong correlation.


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