The National Institutes of Health has developed the NIH Toolbox, a comprehensive set of neuro-behavioral measurements that quickly assess cognitive, emotional, sensory, and motor functions from the convenience of an iPad.

The toolbox is a collection of brief, validated assessment tools intended for researchers and clinicians in a wide range of settings. It contains two types of measures:

  • Performance-based tests of function (also known as "objective measures").
  • Self-report and proxy measures (primarily for emotion).

The toolbox assesses the domains of: 

  1. Cognition: The mental processes involved in gaining knowlege and comprehension, such as thinking, knowing, remembering, judging, and problem-solving. 
  2. Emotion: Any strong feelings, such as joy, sorrow, or fear. 
  3. Motor: The ability to use and control muscles and movements. 
  4. Sensation: The biochemical and neurologic process of detecting incoming nerve impulses as nervous system activity. 

The NIH Toolbox Cognition, Emotion, Motor, and Sensation measures were developed by a team of more than 300 scientists from nearly 100 academic institutions as part of the NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research.

To go to the NIH Toolbox, click here.
To read the NIH Toolbox brochure overview, click here.