Neuroimaging and Cognitive Core (NICC)
The Neuroimaging and Cognitive Core (NICC) at the University of Pennsylvania’s Brain Behavior Laboratory aims to facilitate cutting-edge research in cognitive neuroscience through use of the Computerized Neurocognitive Battery (CNB) and neuroimaging. The CNB is comprised of a series of tests that have been applied in neuroimaging studies and can be used either in a scanner as part of a functional neuroimaging study or outside a scanner for measuring individual differences in performance. Tests measure accuracy and speed of performance in major domains of cognition, including executive-control functions (abstraction, attention, working memory), episodic memory (verbal, facial, spatial), complex cognitive processing (language reasoning, nonverbal reasoning, spatial processing), social cognition (emotion identification, emotion intensity differentiation, age differentiation) and sensorimotor and motor speed.
Developed by Dr. Ruben C. Gur and colleagues at the University of Pennsylvania, the CNB has replaced pencil-and-paper tests and, since it is available on the web it has been in use by investigators worldwide. The CNB has been translated to over 15 languages and is adapted for children and adults. The tests are formatted like computer games and puzzles, and are administered as part of a comprehensive neuropsychiatric assessment. Details regarding the test development process and administration have been published (Gur, Erwin & Gur, 1992, Gur et al. 2001, 2007, 2010, 2012). The battery is still available on the web free of charge to investigators who work under the oversight of an IRB, and the Service Center has been created to help investigators with customized needs that could not be met simply by accessing the test online or who require extra consultation and technical support.
NICC offers a variety of services from online cognitive testing using the CNB, clinical and self-report assessments using REDCap and Neuroimaging support.
The CNB can be customized based on the age of the participant (child or adult), available test-taking time and the testing environment. Our primary goal at the NICC is to facilitate and support high quality CNB data collection for investigators worldwide. We frequently re-examine the services requested by our investigators to ensure the services offered are efficient and economical.
For all funded (government or industry) projects, the rates are delineated by service type and are provided below.
In order to provide the highest level of support for your project, we will schedule an initial consultation to discuss your project in detail. For the initial consultation, you are essentially hiring a CNB expert to review your project requirements. Depending on the project needs and project funding we provide feedback on what CNB battery best fits for your project aims. Our investigators have provided positive feedback regarding the initial consultation, as they felt that the opportunity to have so many questions answered in the beginning of the process and receive project specific feedback was worth their initial investment.
Battery Setup and Licensing
The NICC provides a flexible, secure and reliable way to administer cognitive assessments with CNB. The CNB can be electronically administered online or offline (without internet dependency) and can be administered either with or without a proctor.
We offer both standard project support, and technical programming support services. Standard Support includes "help desk" requests, general assessment and web interface questions, and assistance in locating assessment data in the interface. Technical Programming Support involves a highly trained CNB analyst to review each CNB assessment and identify tests that should be excluded from analysis due to participant performance decline, lack of effort or an incomplete testing session. For CNB assessments administered offline (without internet dependency) Technical Programming Support is mandatory.
We offer both in-person training as well as online training via Skype or Join.me web meeting services. Training involves a comprehensive web meeting/presentation about the CNB web interface, tests, administration techniques, and a FAQ open forum, access to CNB training videos, and access to a certified CNB assessor to provide feedback on your recorded CNB practice videos. The CNB training aims to make administrations consistent thereby more comparable with other administrations. For proctored administrations, the training is mandatory.
We offer both automated data validation and manual data validation services. Automated data validation involves the execution of test-specific algorithms to identify CNB assessments that requires further review prior to inclusion in analysis. Manual data validation involves a highly trained CNB analyst to review each CNB assessment and identify tests that should be excluded from analysis due to participant performance decline, lack of effort or an incomplete testing session.
We offer both standardized scores based on client provided normative sets and standardized scores based on CNB normative cohorts demographically matched to your participant cohort and CNB battery.
Please contact Eirini Zoupou at 215-305-7487 or email Eirini.Zoupou@pennmedicine.upenn.edu if you would like to use the NICC services for your research.
Reduced rates are offered to University of Pennsylvania collaborators. Limited services may be offered to non-funded projects upon request.
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