D-KEFS Design Fluency Forms


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Comprehensively assess the key components of executive functions believed to be mediated primarily by the frontal lobe. The Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System (D-KEFS) is the first standardized set of tests to evaluate higher-level cognitive functions in both children and adults.

The tests assess vital executive functions such as flexibility of thinking, inhibition, problem solving, planning, impulse control, concept formation, abstract thinking, and creativity in both verbal and spatial modalities.

This unique instrument incorporates principles from cognitive science to evaluate the component processes of tasks thought to be especially sensitive to frontal-lobe dysfunction. Using a process-analysis approach, many of the D-KEFS tests are broken down to each task’s sub-components. This allows for a more accurate representation of an individual’s task-specific strengths and weaknesses.

Engaging Materials

The D-KEFS is individually administered and its game-like format is designed to be interesting and engaging for examinees, encouraging optimal performance without providing “right/wrong” feedback that can create frustration in some children and adults.

Multiple Uses

  • Assess the integrity of the frontal system of the brain
  • Determine how deficits in abstract, creative thinking may impact daily life
  • Plan coping strategies and rehabilitation programs tailored to each patient’s profile of executive-function strengths and weaknesses
  • You can also use the D-KEFS in conjunction with the D-REF assessment tool to gather real-world observational information regarding executive functioning impairment in youth 5-18 years of age.

Two Forms

The D-KEFS offers two forms: Standard Record Forms are included in all nine D-KEFS tests while Alternate Record Forms are included in the alternate versions of D-KEFS Sorting, Verbal Fluency, and 20 Questions Tests. An alternate set of Sorting Cards is also available.

D-KEFS Tests Key Executive Functions Assessed
Sorting Test* Problem-solving, verbal and spatial concept formation, flexibility of thinking on a conceptual task
Trail Making Test Flexibility of thinking on a visual-motor task
Verbal Fluency Test Fluent productivity in the verbal domain
Design Fluency Test Fluent productivity in the spatial domain
Colour-Word Interference Test Verbal inhibition
Tower Test Planning and reasoning in the spatial modality, impulsivity
20 Questions Test Hypothesis testing, verbal and spatial abstract thinking, impulsivity
Word Context Test Deductive reasoning, verbal abstract thinking
Proverb Test Metaphorical thinking, generating versus comprehending abstract thought
*Previously called the California Sorting Test

Correlations with Other Tests

The D-KEFS assessment tool is correlated with the Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence™ (WASI™) and the California Verbal Learning Test®—Second Edition (CVLT®–II), providing information regarding the role of intellectual ability and memory on D-KEFS performance.