Examining rey complex figure test organization in healthy adults

Nikki Anne Wilson*, Jennifer Batchelor

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    5 Citations (Scopus)


    Introduction: The Rey Complex Figure Test (RCFT) is a popular measure of visuospatial and executive functioning. Clinical interpretations of RCFT performance are partly based on how an individual approaches the task with piecemeal organization often considered indicative of impairment. This is despite little previous research examining RCFT organizational variability in healthy adults and considerable individual differences previously shown in processing the global and local features of visual stimuli. Method: Fifty-seven undergraduate university students (44 females, 13 males), aged 18 to 34 years (M = 20.14, SD = 3.29) participated in the study. Participants completed the RCFT copy trial followed by a hierarchical shape task. RCFT organization was measured using the qualitative score (Q-score). Results: Extensive variation was demonstrated in the distribution of RCFT organization and global processing scores with largely nonsignificant deviation from a normal distribution (p ≤.05). Only 53% of participants commenced the RCFT copy by completing the base rectangle using four consecutively drawn lines. The diagonals were completed using two consecutive lines by 40% of participants with only 11% doing so immediately following completion of the base rectangle. Only 32% completed the bisectors as two consecutive lines, and only 18% did so immediately following completion of the base rectangle. Global processing scores significantly predicted RCFT organization (b = 0.63, p =.006) with individuals demonstrating higher global processing on average exhibiting more organized RCFT copies than those demonstrating lower global processing. Conclusions: A sample of healthy individuals demonstrated a wide range of RCFT organizational strategies with the variation partly explained by individual differences in global/local processing.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1052-1061
    Number of pages10
    JournalJournal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology
    Issue number10
    Publication statusPublished - 26 Nov 2015


    • Global/local processing
    • Individual differences
    • Visual perception
    • Visual spatial processing
    • Attention

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