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Neuropsychology in Cameroon: First Normative Data for Cognitive Tests among School-Aged Children

Publication date2009
Abstract

Introduction: Very few normative data on psychometric tests are available in sub-Saharan African countries, in spite of the obvious needs and potential benefits from psychological and neuropsychological examination in these contexts. The goal of the ongoing overall project is to assess the cognitive functioning of Cameroonian school-aged children suffering from Sickle Cell Disease. For this purpose, normative data on psychometric tests adapted to the Cameroonian cultural context had to first be established. Method: 125 “healthy” school-aged Cameroonian children were recruited from public schools in the city of Yaoundé and were given a battery of 14 cognitive tests assessing executive functions and memory. Criteria for tests inclusions were: simplicity of administration, few verbal demand, and broad cross-cultural applicability. Results allow concluding that the battery is appropriate for neuropsychological evaluation in Cameroon, with the exception of the Block Design test (WISC-IV) and a Verbal Phonemic Fluency test. A factor analysis shows a division of the tests in a four-factors model that is very consistent with the expected measures of the tests. Effects of gender, age, and education are also discussed. Conclusion: this study is the first to report normative data on neuropsychological tests among children in Cameroon and constitutes an initial step for the advancement of neuropsychology in this country in particular and in sub-Saharan Africa in general. The battery is currently used in Cameroon with children suffering from Sickle Cell Disease as an aid to detect cerebrovascular complications.

Citation (ISO format)
RUFFIEUX, Nicolas et al. Neuropsychology in Cameroon: First Normative Data for Cognitive Tests among School-Aged Children. In: Neuropsychology, development, and cognition. Section C, Child neuropsychology, 2009, vol. 16, n° 1, p. 1–19. doi: 10.1080/09297040902802932
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ISSN of the journal0929-7049
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