Das-Naglieri Cognitive Assessment System Guide

CAS Test Summary
What: The Das-Naglieri CAS measures the cognitive abilities of the individual taking it, based on the PASS (Planning, Attention, Simultaneous, Successive) model of intelligence.
Who: The test is designed for children and adolescents aged 5-17. It has also been used to measure cognitive impairment in adults.
Where: In a controlled environment, most likely in a school.
When: At the discretion of administrators/psychologists interested in learning more about an individual's cognitive abilities.
How: Subjects are given a series of problems and tasks, both verbal and non-verbal, including pattern recognition, spatial relations, and simple memorization.
Type: Paper and pencil, with verbal components.
Why: Typically, to identify students who may have particular educational needs, either remedial or advanced.
Time: The standard battery takes 60 minutes. The basic battery may be administered in 40 minutes.
Language: Developed in English, but Dutch, Italian, Japanese, Korean and Spanish (Castillian) translations are commercially available and considered valid.
Preparation: None. The test is meant to measure basic cognitive ability, not previously-studied material.
Cost: Typically, no cost to person taking it. The test materials are available commercially, with complete kits costing close to $1000.

Developed as an alternative to the IQ test, the Das-Naglieri Cognitive Assessment System (CAS) measures the test taker's cognitive ability. The test was designed for children and adolescents between 5 and 17 years of age, but has also been used to measure cognitive impairment in adults. The test's makers and publishers claim it is free from cultural bias, a criticism often leveled against other intelligence measures. First published in 1997, the CAS is modeled on the PASS (Planning, Attention, Simultaneous, and Successive) theory of intelligence.

The CAS is used both for research and to identify children who may have particular educational needs. As it measures both cognitive strengths and weaknesses, it may be used to identify both children with potential learning disabilities and candidates for gifted programs.

The standard battery of tests takes roughly 60 minutes to administer, while the basic battery requires only 40. Both versions of the test are divided into four sections, with three subtests each for the standard battery and two for the basic. The four sections are:

  • Planning -- figure out the best strategy to solve a set of novel tasks.
  • Attention -- focus on one particular thing while other stimuli compete for attention.
  • Simultaneous -- integrate separate components into a single group.
  • Successive -- remember or complete information in a specific order.