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Task specificity of finger dexterity tests

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Author: Berger, M.A.M. · Krul, A. · Daanen, H.A.M.
Institution: TNO Defensie en Veiligheid
Source:Applied ergonomics, 40, 145-147
Identifier: 23736
Keywords: Health · Dexterity tests · Gloves · Dexterity tests · Dry and wet conditions · Gloves · In-line · Two types · Testing · adult · article · clinical assessment tool · cold exposure · female · finger · human · human experiment · male · normal human · O'Connor Finger Dexterity Test · performance · protective clothing · Purdue Pegboard test · statistical analysis · volunteer · Adult · Female · Fingers · Gloves, Protective · Health Status Indicators · Humans · Male · Motor Skills · Psychomotor Performance · Skin Temperature · Task Performance and Analysis · thermal physiology · cold · gloves · temperature


Finger dexterity tests are generally used to assess performance decrease due to gloves, cold and pathology. It is generally assumed that the O’Connor and Purdue Pegboard test yield similar results. In this experiment we compared these two tests for dry conditions without gloves, and for dry and wet conditions with two types of Nytril gloves. In line with previous observations, wearing gloves caused a decrease in performance of about 12% for the O’Connor test and 9% for the Purdue test. Wetting the gloves prior to the test had no effect on the Purdue score. However, wetting the gloves increased the O’Connor performance significantly by 11%. The results show that the O’Connor and Purdue tests do not yield similar results and should be used selectively for specific tasks.