A new tool for assessing human movement: the Kinematic Assessment Tool

Peter R. Culmer, Martin C. Levesley, Mark Mon-Williams, Justin H. G. Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

69 Citations (Scopus)


The study of human behaviour ultimately requires the documentation of human movement. In some instances movements can be recorded through a simple button press on a computer input device. In other situations responses can be captured through questionnaire surveys. Nevertheless, there is a need within many neuroscience settings to capture how complex movements unfold over time (human kinematics). Current methods of measuring human kinematics range from accurate but multifarious laboratory configurations to portable but simplistic and time-consuming paper and pen methods. We describe a new system for recording the end-point of human movement that has the power of laboratory measures but the advantages of pen-and-paper tests: the Kinematic Assessment Tool. KAT provides a highly portable system capable of measuring human movement in configurable visual-spatial tasks. The usefulness of the system is shown in a study where 12 participants undertook a tracing and copying task using their preferred and non-preferred hand. The results show that it is possible to capture behaviour within complex tasks and quantify performance using objective measures automatically generated by the KAT system. The utility of these measures was indexed by our ability to distinguish the performance of the preferred and non-preferred hand using a single variable. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)184-192
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience Methods
Issue number1
Early online date29 Jul 2009
Publication statusPublished - 30 Oct 2009


  • neurophysiology
  • psychophysics
  • software
  • instrumentation
  • kinematic assessment
  • psychophysics toolbox
  • behavioral-control
  • motion tracking
  • arm


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