Validation of mental agility test and personal qualities assessment tools for selecting medical students in Nepal
Mental agility and personal qualities tests
Keywords:Cognitive, mental agility test- MAT, Nepal, Non-cognitive, Patan Academy of Health Sciences- PAHS, personal qualities assessment- PQA
Introduction: Patan Academy of Health Sciences (PAHS) decided to test mental agility and personal qualities to select undergraduate medical students, different than the conventional approaches used to test for physics, chemistry, and biology contents in other universities in Nepal.
Method: Personal Qualities Assessment (PQA) test batteries used to select medical students in twelve different countries were pilot tested with 10+2 non-sciences, 10+2 science, and 10+3 health science students. The PQA tools were forward translated into Nepali and back-translated in English by bilingual experts independently. The face and content validity of these tools in the Nepali language was established through discussions and consensus with the PAHS admission team and PQA team in Australia.
Result: The PQA tools assessing non-cognitive qualities in the Nepali language were found to be internally consistent in the first pre-test with science and non-science students. PQA tool assessing mental agility in the English language showed acceptable internal consistency in the second pre-test with science and health science students.
Conclusion: Mental agility test in the English language was found to be a suitable cognitive test for selecting medical students. Non-cognitive tests in the Nepali language were found to be reliable and valid to identify applicants with unusual personal traits, leading to deselection. These tests can be considered for selecting undergraduate medical students.
Keywords: Cognitive, mental agility test- MAT, Nepal, Non-cognitive, Patan Academy of Health Sciences- PAHS, personal qualities assessment- PQA