The Folstein Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) is a brief
test of cognitive status that typically takes between 5 and 10
minutes to administer. Areas measured on the MMSE are:
orientation to time and place, immediate and delayed verbal
recall memory, attention, concentration, naming, repetition,
following a 3-step command, following a written command,
sentence writing, and visual-motor copying. Scores on the
MMSE range from 0-30, with scores of 23 or lower
considered impaired by many clinicians.
It is important to note that many other clinicians prefer to
adjust for a person's age and education level when
determining if an MMSE score reflects cognitive impairment.
When adjusting for age and education, for example, a score that is impaired for someone
with 18 years of education may not be impaired for someone with 3 years of education.
The MMSE is now published by Psychological Assessment Resources (PAR).
If you do not want to purchase the original MMSE, you can track down the original article
(which has a copy of the original test) at the following source: Folstein, M. F., Folstein, S.
E., & McHugh, P. R. (1975). Mini-mental state: A practical method for grading the
cognitive state of patients for the clinician. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 12, 189-198.
The original test is almost identical to the version published by PAR and takes about 5
minutes to administer.
The test has been published in a second edition (MMSE-2) in three
different formats. The first is a standard form which is statistically
equivalent to the original but has an alternate form for retesting
purposes. Administration time is about 10-15 minutes. There is also
an MMSE-2 Brief Version (MMSE-2 BV) designed for even more
rapid assessment (about 5 minutes) of cognitive functioning. There
is also the MMSE-2 Expanded version, which is slightly longer (20
minute administration time) than the standard version but has more
difficult items, making it more sensitive to detecting cognitive
impairments. The norms for the MMSE-2 versions are from ages 18
to 100. Scoring takes 5 minutes or less.