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TOVA Comments from Practitioners


These comment came as a result of a school psychologist's concern about the usefulness of the TOVA. The comments were posted on the National Association of School Psychologists Listserve. Permission was granted to use the quotes.

"My district purchased the TOVA on an experimental basis. My experience has been similar to Kim's. The observations of the child's behavior are more clinically useful than the actual TOVA data. Furthermore, the data only becomes really useful after repeated administrations (e. g. before & after a trial of meds). But this information can be had in lots of different ways, so it's hard for me to justify the time & expense. Parents seem to like it, so something can be said for face validity. Other than that there's not a whole lot to recommend for $500 plus dollars."

Glenn Williams

"I have had some experience working with the TOVA in a mental health setting. My experience has been unfavorable. It seems to me, and research seems to support this, that children referred for ADHD all fail the test. Which may mean two things: Either the test has a 100 percent accuracy rate, or it doesn't give you any discriminant validity. The reason I gave the TOVA was to determine children's behavior when under stress. The task is so boring. Kids tend to start moving around or they fall asleep. It gives my good information about how they deal with the stress of the non-reinforcement or the boredom of a task. But to use it as a diagnostic tool, I wouldn't."

Kim Dielmann