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Adaptation and initial validation of the Arabic version of the Word Memory Test (WMT(ARB)).

Article type: Published article


BACKGROUND: The feigning of cognitive impairment is common in neuropsychological assessments, especially in a medicolegal setting. The Word Memory Test (WMT) is a forced-choice recognition memory performance validity test (PVT) which is widely used to detect noncredible performance. Though translated to several languages, this was not done for one of the most common languages, Arabic. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the convergent validity of the Arabic adaptation of the WMT (WMT(ARB)) among Israeli Arabic speakers. METHODS: We adapted the WMT to Arabic using the back-translation method and in accordance with relevant guidelines. We then randomly assigned healthy Arabic speaking adults (N = 63) to either a simulation or honest control condition. The participants then performed neuropsychological tests which included the WMT(ARB) and the Test of Memory Malingering (TOMM), a well-validated nonverbal PVT. RESULTS: The WMT(ARB) had high split-half reliability and its measures were significantly correlated with that of the TOMM (p < .001). High concordance was found in classification of participants using the WMT(ARB) and TOMM (specificity = 94.29% and sensitivity = 100% using the conventional TOMM trial 2 cutoff as gold standard). As expected, simulators' accuracy on the WMT(ARB) was significantly lower than that of honest controls. None of the demographic variables significantly correlated with WMT(ARB) measures. CONCLUSION: The WMT(ARB) shows initial evidence of reliability and validity, emphasizing its potential use in the large population of Arabic speakers and universality in detecting noncredible performance. The findings, however, are preliminary and mandate validation in clinical settings.

Full citation

Bajjaleh C, Braw YC, Elkana O. Adaptation and initial validation of the Arabic version of the Word Memory Test (WMTARB). Appl Neuropsychol Adult. 2021 May 27:1-10. doi: 10.1080/23279095.2021.1923495. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34043924.


Methods Condition Gender Age Country Setting Sample size
Both 18 - 60 Israel

Number of items

6 items


Measure does not require training

Required time

31-60 min

Access measure


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Articles last updated: December 2020