What Is the TOVA Test?

The T.O.V.A., or Test of Variables of Attention, is a 21.6 minute continuous performance test administered to help physicians recognize attention disorders like Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Test Conditions

Test subjects must sit through two 11-minute tests of matching target shapes, with a small white square inside a larger black rectangle, and a series of similar shapes flashing on the screen. The task is designed to be tedious and boring, and subjects are measured on their response time and accuracy.


It is important to note that the T.O.V.A. cannot diagnose ADD/ADHD by itself, only an expert physician can make this assertion.

Cost Saving

The T.O.V.A. can be administered easily by a trained physician’s assistant, saving valuable professional time. T.O.V.A. can also aid physicians in prescribing lower levels of medication for milder attention disorders.


The T.O.V.A.-A., or Test of Variables of Attention-Auditory, uses two varying auditory tones to measure listening attentiveness and comprehension.


The T.O.V.A. has been used and endorsed in over 300 research studies on ADD/ADHD. However, it has not been officially endorsed by any federal or state health agencies such as the National Institutes of Health.

The T.O.V.A.