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Design of a video game for assessment of executive functions in deaf and hearing children.

This study investigates the effectiveness of a computerized cognitive test battery embedded within a video game to assess executive functions (EF) in deaf and hearing children. We evaluated a diverse cohort of 290 elementary school students aged 5 to 13 years (mean age = 8.86, SD = 1.96), comprising 74 sign language users, 14 Spanish-speaking deaf participants, 23 children with mixed communication methods, and 179 typically hearing individuals. Our statistical analysis focused on item discrimination, reliability, and criterion validation of the game-based assessments. The results indicated high reliability and effective discrimination of EF across the game's three primary stages. External validation was conducted using the Matrices Test, educational attainment, and age as variables. A significant positive correlation (r = 0.377, p  < 0.001) was observed between the Matrices Test scores and game-based achievement scores. Furthermore, linear regression analysis revealed education (Standardized Beta = 0.339) and age (Standardized Beta = 0.179) as significant predictors of performance in these scores. This study underscores the value of integrating computerized cognitive assessments within a video game environment for comprehensive neuropsychological evaluations, highlighting its potential in diverse child populations.

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