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Memory Test for Older Adults

Anita M. Hubley, Ph.D.
Tom N. Tombaugh, Ph.D.


The MTOA assessment is specifically designed to assess verbal and visuospatial learning and memory in older adults ages 55 to 84 years. It can be used in mental health and primary care settings to assess a patient's degree and type of memory impairment (e.g. genuine memory loss vs. retrieval failure) for the purposes of diagnosis, placement, intervention planning, or as an indicator of change during treatment. Easy to administer and handscore, the MTOA assessment uses tasks that are well-established in the assessment of verbal and visuospatial learning and memory.

The MTOA uses word lists and geometric figures. The MTOA learning and retention tasks are specifically designed to identify impaired performance without producing floor effects and without unnecessarily fatiguing the respondent. There is a long version (MTOA:L) and short version (MTOA:S). Two levels of MTOA tasks are available.

Memory Test for Older Adults: Long (MTOA:L)
The long version was intended to serve as a diagnostic tool. It differentiates between cognitively intact and impaired individuals without creating a stressful situation for the individual being tested.

Memory Test for Older Adults: Short (MTOA:S)
The short version should be used with those who have already been diagnosed as suffering from some type of memory impairment. It is easier than the MTOA:L with a shorter word list and simpler geometric design. It is used to assess the degree of learning and/or memory impairment to determine a baseline of performance prior to a clinical trial or medical intervention, or to assist in planning interventions.
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Scales & Forms

  • Recall
  • Recognition
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Anita M. Hubley, Ph.D. &
Tom N. Tombaugh, Ph.D.

Age Range 55 to 84 years

Administration Time 30 to 45 minutes

Administration Type Individually-completed

Qualification Level C

  • Handscored