Abstract

Objective: To establish indicators of “sandbagging” on a new iPad version of ImPACT Method: Fifty-five undergraduate volunteers were randomly assigned to independent groups: 1) Naïve malingerers, instructed to attempt to “sandbag” a baseline ImPACT test (n = 17), 2) Coached malingerers, instructed to attempt to “sandbag” but to avoid detection on built-in measures (n = 19), and 3) Individuals instructed to provide maximal effort (n = 19). Varsity athletes, individuals with prior exposure to the ImPACT test, and individuals who experienced a concussion within the past year were excluded. All individuals completed a beta-version of the ImPACT test, presented on an iPad; software and iPads were provided by ImPACT Applications, Inc. Invalid performance was identified on the basis of any of the following: 1) Word Memory Learning Percentage < 69%, 2) Design Memory Learning Percentage < 50%, 3) X's and O's Total Incorrect >0, Four Letters, Total Letters Correct < 10. Results: Overall, 100% of naïve and 100% of coached malingerers were identified by the above-listed indicators, and 0% of individuals in the Best Effort group. Specifically, Word Memory Learning Percentage < 69% identified 100% of naïve and 84% of coached malingerers, Design Memory Learning Percentage < 50% identified 88% and 42%, X's and O's Total Incorrect >0 identified 94% and 74%, and Four Letters, Total Letters Correct < 10 identified 100% and 95%, respectively. Chi-squared analyses were significant (p <.001) for all indicators. Conclusion(s): Preliminary analysis of invalidity indicators from a beta iPad version of ImPACT reveal significant utility in identifying intentional poor performance (i.e., “sandbagging”). Coached malingerers were no better able to avoid detection than were naïve malingerers.