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Calibrated Ideational Fluency Assessment

David J. Schretlen, PhD, ABPP, and Tracy D. Vannorsdall, PhD, ABPP

Assesses ideational fluency
Paper and pencil, E-Manual
Age range:
18 years to 90 years
10 minutes
Qualification level:
All qualifications for Level B plus an advanced professional degree that provides appropriate training in the administration and interpretation of psychological tests, or license or certification from an agency that requires appropriate training and experience in the ethical and competent use of psychological tests. Close

The CIFA, a test of ideational fluency, requires the examinee to generate verbal or visuoconstruction material as quickly as possible while adhering to specified rules (i.e., letter or category cues, designs consisting of certain elements). Success on these tasks requires speeded productivity as well as the skills of self-monitoring, working memory, strategy generation, and creative or divergent thinking. Comprising two subtests—Design Fluency and Verbal Fluency—the CIFA is helpful in the differential diagnosis of many neuropsychiatric and neurological disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, Alzheimer’s disease, subcortical dementias, Parkinson’s disease, and traumatic brain injury.

Features and benefits

  • The Design Fluency task asks the examinee to draw as many unique designs as possible in 4 minutes, with each design containing only four parts.
  • The Verbal Fluency task evaluates the spontaneous oral production of words under restricted conditions.
  • Provides an overall index of speeded generativity, the Ideational Fluency Composite score.
  • Conormed with the Calibrated Neuropsychological Normative System (CNNS).
  • Features strong interrater and test-retest reliability; diagnostic criterion validity was established for groups of adults with Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and probable/possible dementia and a mixed clinical group.