A cognitive assessment test is essentially taken to assess one’s abilities and capabilities pertaining to mental sharpness. There are many brilliant people out there waiting to be given the opportunity to display their true capabilities and talents when it comes to reasoning and problem solving.
Cognitive functioning is vital for future success and growth. A cognitive assessment test ranges from the ability to reason in children to that of adults. This Cognitive test is a deciding factor that evaluates an individual’s chances of success in the future based on his/her ability to think fast and think smart.
What is a Cognitive Abilities Test?
In order to determine where you stand when it comes to logical thinking, it is better that you first understand what a cognitive test (CogAT) is. CogAT consists of questions related to three different areas of a person’s thinking capacity, namely his/her ability to absorb information, his/her ability to process mathematical calculations and his/her ability to make sense of different puzzles and imaging.
An individual’s observational powers come in to question when attempting a CogAT at any level. Based on the results of the cognitive function test, a clear assessment can be made regarding a person’s mental abilities.
A person might have a lot of data to go through and to understand, but if he/she does not have the ability to absorb information and use it to provide solutions then it means that the person has failed to use his/her mental abilities to the fullest.
Without cognitive abilities you will never be able to achieve success at any stage of life. Cognitive abilities can be improved and enhanced through various educational and academic endeavors.
High cognitive functioning is what separates a genius from the rest. There are other ways to test your mental abilities, an IQ test for example is a good way to test your knowledge about general knowledge and facts but a cognitive assessment test truly targets the more specific areas of your mind.
It targets your ability to reason and your ability to think logically and rationally. There are cognitive tests which are performed on animals as well.
For example, chimpanzees that are closest to human in biological terms, the test is comprised of spatial analysis and verbal engagement both of which similar to the cognitive functioning test for humans. Thus, the cognitive assessment test has proved that it is a more accurate measure of one’s intellectual capacity.
The significance of CogAT
No matter what the situation, whether a doctor needs to make an assertion with regards to a patient’s mental condition in determining whether or not he is suffering from a brain disease such as dementia, Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s, or to evaluate and assess a student’s academic prowess, in both circumstance the CogAT is used to determine facts.
Without proper cognitive functioning a human will not be able to distinguish between an animal and himself.
Is There Any Different Between The Standard IQ Test And The Cognitive Assessment Test?
The cognitive functioning test is different than the IQ test in many ways. It involves a broader coverage of brain related abilities through different techniques of questioning compared to direct questioning as in an IQ test which is purely knowledge based.
Furthermore, the IQ test aims to evaluate the capability of an individual to achieve results which are expected of him/her, whereas the cognitive functioning test aims to measure a person’s reasoning skills based on challenges which demand analytical thinking, nothing is expected of the student.
It is purely up to his/her level of reasoning that will determine how well or how poorly he/she performs on the test.
Other Types of Tests
These tests are used to determine the short-term memory capability of individuals. They measure the capacity of a person’s mind to process and store information and events. Memory tests are mostly used for the evaluation of elderly people.
Short-term memory loss or memory loss in general is usually a symptom indicating that a person might be suffering from dementia.
Intelligence Quotient Tests
IQ tests evaluate a person’s general knowledge and general thinking skills. There are two stages in which an IQ test is divided, nonverbal and verbal IQ. These two stages are further divided into subsets, for example math, visual math, logical thinking, and memory challenges, etc.
However, IQ tests are considered somewhat contentious and indicate an intelligence imbalance when broader demographics are compared. IQ tests are fairly popular and are used by psychiatrists for evaluating children.
The (WAIS) Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale is an IQ test most commonly for children. A cognitive assessment test however is a more efficient and non-discriminatory way of assessing one’s true capabilities.
These tests are used in order to evaluate a person’s talent for something prior to gaining any sort of experience in it. An individual’s natural or innate abilities are measured through aptitude tests.
For example a child may be asked to display his/her musical abilities by giving him/her musical challenges. Aptitude tests are used only for children who have higher learning abilities as compared to learning how to attain desired results.
A cognitive assessment test, on the other hand, aims to target a child’s innate mental abilities through reasoning and analytical challenges such as spatial visualizations and mathematical puzzles.
Tests Designed for little Children
Written tests cannot be taken by little children and due to this reason a cognitive assessment test was designed so that a degree of fairness and equality be set for children coming from different ethnicity and cannot speak English.
Cognitive Assessment Test for Elderly People
Cognitive tests are best suited for elderly people who are suffering from mild dementia and memory loss. This test is used by doctors all over the world to determine whether or not someone is susceptible to terminal brain disease, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
Old people who have dementia cannot take written tests due to their inability to remember things. Their cognitive assessment is evaluated through more interactive measures, such as recognizing visualizations, illustrations, naming important events, etc. The Montreal cognitive assessment test is used for such purpose.
The Medical Applications of a Cognitive Abilities Examination
The main purpose of a cognitive assessment test is to extract an individual’s eccentricities and distinctive understanding of past and present events.
Regrettably many doctors confirm that the events though are clear in meaning, but the patient has completely misinterpreted their original meaning.
For instance, patients who have experienced a breakup might tend to become severely disheartened and dejected because they might consider themselves undesirable.
They might think they are incapable of being loved by another person, or take care of themselves and cannot rely on their decision-making abilities.
In a cognitive assessment test a patient’s understanding of events is vital because their understanding is the main purpose of the therapy. The main task of the cognitive analyst will be to obtain repeated or recurring thoughts of the patient, thoughts which are conceived on impulse and ones that the patient believes are true.
These thoughts will be associated with pessimistic and off-putting influences for the patient. Most common off-putting impulses are; “I will always be a failure”, “I’ll always be unhappy”, etc.
More common persistent and omnipresent thoughts are primary suppositions for example statements which always include a ‘should’ in them as in, “I should ask for approval from everybody” and statements which include an ‘if then’ in them as in, “If I do not get permission, then I will surely fail”.
Mostly patients who display a degree of apprehension and nervousness have been recorded as having visual metaphors and imagery. These images cannot necessarily be called delusions or illusions but rather metaphors which involve the idea that something bad or fatal is going to occur.
For instance, a patient who had the panic disorder syndrome visualized that she would be out on a drive on the bridge and then lose control of her car. She saw herself fall to her death below.
Cognitive assessment tests are used in order to evaluate whether or not there are chances that such patients can recover from dementia and other brain related diseases.
Images which are less frightful and more enlightening often tend to reflect the patient’s idea about how certain trials and tribulations might be acceptably and adequately solved and or decided.
When a psychoanalyst questioned a 45-year old unmarried lady whether she could think up of a positive image, the woman began to express her thoughts and said that she could imagine herself with the love of her life, lying in bed holding hands, but this visual image brought out tears as she said that it is highly unlikely that she would end up this way.
Similarly, during a cognitive assessment test, an older woman was reported having a positive image which included the death of her husband in an accident in which she survived.
She had this image due to the fact that her marriage was riddled with disagreements and disputes with her husband which also led to the woman developing neurotic depression. Strangely enough her husband’s death in the image was a source of comfort to her.
Contrary to popular perception that a cognitive assessment test involves evaluating just the positive aspects of a patient, it is a wrong assumption. Many habitual or routine thoughts may be predicted to be true. For example, if a student believes that he/she will fail a particular test then chances are that he/she may in fact fail the test.
But this is beside the point; the main idea is to gauge what a patient makes of it. For example, if you are not invited to a party, what will you think? Will it mean something to you? Many individuals would misinterpret this as permanent rejection meaning they will think that they will always be rejected in the future.
To settle on which though is suitable and which is not, a thorough cognitive assessment test is used to determine your reasoning abilities. Cognitive evaluation in patients involves the extraction of spontaneous thoughts and assessments that individuals demonstrate when they are angry, depressed, anxious and nervous.
The following are some common cognitive misinterpretations related to negative thoughts;
Assuming Too Much:
You think you know what other people are thinking about you in a negative manner, for example “He thinks I am a quitter, a loser.”
You constantly try to predict what is going to happen to you in the near future, for example “I am going to certainly fail this exam.” or “I won’t get hired.”
You tend to exaggerate things and assume that if anything happens you will not be able to bear it. “It will be depressing if I fail.”
You label yourself with negative traits for example, “I am unlovable” or “He’s a really horrible person.”
You never look at the bright side of things, for example “Everybody hates me, no matter what.”
Generalizing Every Single Thing
You tend to relate each negative pattern as a basis of saying “This only happens to me,” or “This usually happens to me. I am a failure.”
You view life events in a negative light and think, “If I do not improve myself, I will always fail.”
You blame yourself for everything. For example, “The divorce was my fault.”
You often blame others for your own mistakes, failing to realize and accept any sort of responsibility. For example, “It was due to him that I am like this now.”
You blame the past and think of your past and base your entire decisions on prior life events. For example, “I could’ve done better, only if I tried.”
A cognitive assessment test is really important in order for you to truly know what you are capable of. Without sharp thinking skills you can never be confident enough to face the many trials and tribulations you encounter in life. Logical thinking and reasoning skills will always come in handy for future developments, both mentally and career wise.