Presentation: The Impact of Rapport on Neuropsychological Test Performance

Posted on 11/17/2015 12:44:12 PM

Dr. Michael Barnett will present "The Impact of Rapport on Neuropsychological Test Performance" on November 18, 2015, at 3:00 p.m., in Johnson Hall Room 113.

Dr. Barnett's research addresses cognition, sexuality, and personality over the adult life span.  Research into neuropsychological assessment has typically ignored social and interpersonal factors, yet neuropsychological evaluations often have profound social meaning.  Guides to neuropsychological assessment as well as test manuals emphasize the importance of establishing rapport, with the implication that failure to do so may affect neuropsychological test results; however, no extant study has empirically investigated this. 

The purpose of the study  was to investigate the impact of rapport on neuropsychological test performance.  Participants consisted of undergraduate students (N = 99), who were randomly assigned to complete a brief battery of neuropsychological tests in either a high rapport or low rapport condition.  Results found that the high rapport group demonstrated higher performance on aspects of phonemic verbal fluency and dominant-handed motor functioning.  These results suggest that rapport has an effect on some aspects of neuropsychological test performance.  More broadly, the results affirm the notion that neuropsychological assessment is a social and interpersonal process and that differences in the social environment may manifest themselves, although subtly, in neuropsychological test data.

Note: Dr. Barnett received a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Houston in 2010.  He is currently a lecturer and advisor in the Department of Psychology at the University of North Texas.  He is a candidate for an Assistant Professor position in the Psychology Department.

IUP Psychology Department