Applications in Educational Assessment

HealthMeasures hold great potential in educational assessment. The NIH Toolbox® (NIHTB) was developed to evaluate and monitor child health outcomes. All of the NIHTB test batteries (Cognition, Motor, Sensation, and Emotion) are relevant to educational assessment. The selection of NIHTB subdomains was, in part, guided by educational significance. You can utilize a full battery or select specific measures from a battery.

Assessment of Cognitive and Emotional Function

A clear application of the NIHTB in education involves cognitive and emotional functioning assessment. The NIHTB has age-based norms, which are useful for comparing a child’s performance to same-aged peers. This information can help determine eligibility for special education or gifted services. Schools often make these determinations based upon exceptionally high or low performance.

Special Education Services

For individuals receiving special education services, HealthMeasures may have additional applications. For example, schools are required to provide physical, occupational, and speech therapy to eligible children. The brief motor and language assessments within the NIHTB can be used for monitoring progress in therapy.

Screening for Sensory Function

School districts often require screening of sensory functioning: vision and audition in particular. The NIHTB Sensation Battery provides brief evaluations of these skills, which could be used to screen and refer individuals to more comprehensive evaluations if necessary.

Select the Appropriate Score

For the NIHTB measures, it is important to consider what type of score is most appropriate. We recommend the following guidelines.

NIHTB Score Purpose of Assessment
Unadjusted Longitudinal evaluation
Age-adjusted Comparison with same-aged peers
Fully-adjusted Comparison with individuals from similar socio-demographic backgrounds