A norm study of a neuropsychological test battery for evaluating cognitive functions in commercial airline pilots

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ARIKAN Z., Ertemir D., Keskinkilic C.

Dusunen Adam, vol.31, no.4, pp.375-388, 2018 (ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 31 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.5350/dajpn2018310406
  • Journal Name: Dusunen Adam
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.375-388
  • Keywords: Attention, memory, neuropsychological tests, norm, pilots, NORMATIVE DATA, TRAIL, AGE
  • Lokman Hekim University Affiliated: No


© 2018 Dusunen Adam. All rights reserved.Objective: This study aims to establish a norm for Turkish commercial airline pilots with a neuropsychological test battery that has been prepared specifically for pilots. The test battery assesses all of the attention components that are critical for piloting: working memory, information processing rate, mental flexibility, reaction time, set switching, inhibiting cognitive interference, several parameters of short/long term visual memory, and spatial comprehension. Method: The study included 147 healthy commercial airline pilots, of whom 144 were men and 3 women. The participants were divided into four age groups: 20-29 years, 30-39 years, 40-49 years, and 50 years and above. They were given the following tests: Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Revised (WAIS-R) Digit Span, Rey Complex Figure Test (RCFT), Continuous Performance Test (CPT), Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT), Reaction Time Test (RTT), d2 Test of Attention (d2TA), Stroop Test (ST), Trail Making Test (TMT), Visual Elevator Test (VET), and Judgement of Line Orientation Test (JLO). Results: There was a relation between age and military vs. civilian background, type of bachelor's degree, and flight experience, but no relation was found between age and hand dominance. It was found that there was a significant difference in all test scores between age groups except for CPT scores, d2 Test percentage of errors and total number of errors, ST 1st, 2nd, 5th card self-corrections and 3rd card errors, TMT A and B Form errors, and VET switching numbers. Conclusion: It was concluded that commercial airline pilots' neuropsychological test scores differ according to age but not by hand dominance. The importance of pilot norms and the necessity of comparing pilots according to professional norms was highlighted in the discussion.