Abstract

Objective: This study examined the relationship between tests of executive functioning and a measure of attending on a driving simulator task in adult males and females. Method: The data was derived from an ongoing de-identified database of mixed normal and clinical patients at an outpatient mental health clinic in South Florida. The sample consisted of 195 adults (mean age = 29.35, SD = 12.63; mean education = 15.41, SD = 2.067; 60.7% female and 63.3% Caucasian). The following measures of executive functioning were examined: Category Test Number of errors, Stroop Color Word Test score, Trail Making Test B total time, and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test number of trials. Subjects' attending during a driving simulator test was assessed through the combination of incorrect responses and missed responses (total mistakes). Results: Results of an ANOVA test indicated significance when using the executive functioning measures as a model for predicting total mistakes, F(191) = 6.677, p < .01. A regression analysis indicated only two measures were significant individually. The Category Test Number of errors was significant as an individual predictor of total adverse events, t(191) = −2.774, p = .006. The Stroop Color Word Test score was also significant, t(191) = −2.054, p = .041. Conclusion(s): The results show a significant relationship between the tests of executive functioning and total mistakes. The Category Test and the Stroop Test were significant individual predictors of total mistakes. The complexity of the Category Test and the strength of the Stroop Test in measuring attentional abilities could have contributed to their individual significance.