Further Validation of the Test of Memory Malingering (TOMM) Trial 1 Performance Validity Index: Examination of False Positives and Convergent Validity

Troy A. Webber, K. Chase Bailey, W. Alexander Alverson, Edan A. Critchfield, Kathleen M. Bain, Johanna M. Messerly, Justin J.F. O’Rourke, Joshua W. Kirton, Chrystal Fullen, Janice C. Marceaux, Jason R. Soble

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Assessment of performance validity is an essential part of a neuropsychological evaluation, with the inclusion of two or more performance validity tests (PVTs) becoming routine practice. Considering the time to administer multiple tests, there has been some support for use of the Test of Memory Malingering (TOMM) Trial 1 (T1) as an independent, “one and done” PVT. Notably, cutoffs for TOMM T1 need further validation, with an emphasis on minimizing false-positive classifications among those with bona fide cognitive impairment. In a clinically referred sample of 127 veterans, this study examined the role of cognitive impairment in TOMM performance and the utility of a TOMM T1 as an independent PVT. Examinees were administered the TOMM and three additional PVTs as part of a comprehensive neuropsychological battery. Sixty-eight percent of examinees were classified valid (35% of valid examinees were cognitively impaired). TOMM T1 ≤ 40 had excellent observed sensitivity (83%) and specificity (93%) overall, with minimal false-positive classification. TOMM T1 was also significantly correlated and concordant with other memory-based PVTs. Given score ranges and failure rates for TOMM T1 ≤ 40 among those with neurological/neurocognitive conditions, scores in the 37–40 range may merit administration of additional TOMM trials to maximize accuracy in identifying valid-cognitively impaired versus noncredible performance. Otherwise, an abbreviated TOMM administration (i.e., only T1) using a cutoff of ≤ 40—in conjunction with one or more additional PVTs—may be sufficient for detecting noncredible/invalid test performance in the absence of known or suspected neurological/neurocognitive disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)325-335
Number of pages11
JournalPsychological Injury and Law
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018


  • Assessment
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Malingering
  • Neuropsychology
  • Performance validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Law


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