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The Harris Infant Neuromotor Test (HINT): Comparison of US and Canadian normative data and exam-ination of concurrent validity with the Ages and Stages Questionnaire


McCoy, S. W., Bowman, A., Smith-Blockley, J., Sanders, K., Megens, A. M., & Harris, S. R



Publication Info:

Physical Therapy, 89:173-180


BACKGROUND: The Harris Infant Neuromotor Test (HINT) was developed as a screening tool for potential motor and cognitive developmental disorders in infants. Scoring on the HINT has been shown to be reliable, and several studies have supported the validity of the HINT. Normative values for the tool have been developed using Canadian infants.
OBJECTIVE: The aims of this study were (1) to further evaluate the validity of the HINT by comparing data obtained on US infants who were developing typically with data previously acquired on Canadian infants and (2) to determine the concurrent validity of the HINT with the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ). Secondary analyses of HINT scores for US white and nonwhite infants and for US infants who had parents with lower levels of education and US infants who had parents with higher levels of education (as a proxy for socioeconomic status [SES]) were conducted.
DESIGN: Cross-sectional exploratory and quasi-experimental comparative research designs were used to evaluate the validity of the HINT.
METHODS: Sixty-seven infants from the United States who were developing typically and who were aged 2.5 to 12.5 months were recruited via convenience sampling. Sixty-four of these infants were compared with Canadian infants matched for age, sex, ethnicity or race, and parental education. The HINT was administered by raters who had been trained to attain acceptable levels of interrater reliability, and parents completed the ASQ. The HINT scores for US white versus nonwhite infants (n=46) and infants who had parents with lower SES versus a higher SES (n=52) were compared.
RESULTS: There were no significant differences between HINT total scores for US and Canadian infants or for US racial or ethnic groups and SES groups. There were high correlations (r=-.82 to -.84) between HINT and ASQ scores.
LIMITATIONS: The study used a small US sample with limited geographical diversity. Small sample numbers also did not allow for comparisons of specific racial or ethnic groups. The SES groups were created primarily using parental education as a proxy for SES.
CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest that HINT screening in the United States is supported on the basis of Canadian norms and the validity of the HINT in screening for motor and cognitive delays. Although there is preliminary support for the HINT as an appropriate screening tool for US infants who are nonwhite or who have parents with a lower SES, more research is warranted.

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