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Rehabilitation Measures

Spinal Cord Injury - Quality of Life Fine Motor Functioning [Spinal Cord Injury – Functional Index]

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The SCI-QOL Fine Motor Functioning [SCI-FI] instrument assess fine more function in individuals with spinal cord injury.

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Instrument Details

Acronym SCI-QOL Fine Motor Functioning [SCI-FI]

Area of Assessment

Upper Extremity Function

Assessment Type

Patient Reported Outcomes

Administration Mode




Cost Description

Paper copies of short forms are available. PDFs can be requested through emails to and

Electronic versions can be found in the NIH Toolbox or the PROMIS app. Either app is $500/yr, and covers up to 10 iPads on a single license. The SCI-QOL and TBI-QOL CATs can be administered directly through these apps. It is important to note that using the app requires you to be physically with the participant or read the questions aloud by interview over the phone - there is no way to send a link to have someone complete the measures at home.

Free electronic versions are available. If your institution has REDCap, the CATs and short forms can be accessed through the REDCap instrument library by searching for the specific measure you want and adding them to your REDCap project. For non-REDCap alternatives, the SCI-QOL and TBI-QOL short forms can be imported into an alternative electronic administration platform such as Qualtrics, SurveyMonkey, Google Forms, etc. Email or to request PDF versions.


  • Spinal Cord Injury


Key Descriptions

  • The SCI-QOL Fine Motor Function measure is an item response theory (IRT)-calibrated item bank with 35 items that is available for administration as a computer adaptive test (CAT; range 4-12 items) or 11 item short form (SF).

Number of Items

There are 35 items in the entire item bank. The short form has 11 items. The CAT can present 4-12 items, depending on time and accuracy preferences.

Equipment Required

  • The short form requires the form and a pencil.
  • A CAT administration requires a computer with internet connection. Free versions of the test are available through See 'Cost Description' for more information

Time to Administer

Less than 5 minutes

Required Training

Reading an Article/Manual

Age Ranges


18 - 64


Older Adults

65 +


Instrument Reviewers

Review completed by Kelsey Stipp, M.S. and Kristian Nitsch, M.S.

Body Part

Upper Extremity

ICF Domain

Body Function

Measurement Domain



Do you see an error or have a suggestion for this instrument summary? Please e-mail us!

Spinal Injuries

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Standard Error of Measurement (SEM)

  • Full Item Bank for Tetraplegia: SEM= 1.43
  • Full Item Bank for Paraplegia: SEM= 0.76

Minimal Detectable Change (MDC)

Calculated from SEM

  • Full Item Bank for Tetraplegia: SEM= 1.43
  • Full Item Bank for Paraplegia: SEM= 0.76

Cut-Off Scores

Sinha et al. (2015)

  • ≤32: No activities requiring hand function

  • 33-43: Some activities involving gross hand movement

  • 44-51: Some activities requiring dexterity and coordinated upper extremity movement

  • ≥52:  Most activities requiring dexterity and coordinated upper extremity movement

Normative Data

Traumatic SCI: The normative data are calibrated on adults with traumatic spinal cord injury. The mean score (T = 50) indicates a score that is normal for an adult with a traumatic SCI. (Jette et al., 2015; n = 460, mean age = 43.1 years (14.8); time post injury = 6.8 years (8.9); 46.5% paraplegia, 53.5% tetraplegia)

Test/Retest Reliability

Traumatic SCI: (Jette et al., 2015; n = 460

  • Excellent: (ICC = 0.98)

Criterion Validity (Predictive/Concurrent)

Traumatic SCI: (Sinha et al., 2015; n = 269; mean age = 43.8 years (15.5); time post injury = 6.8 (8.7); 46.5% paraplegia; 52.4% tetraplegia)

  • Adequate concurrent validity with other measures of basic mobility (Functional Index Measure (FIM)  ρ = 0.65).

Floor/Ceiling Effects

Traumatic SCI (Jette et al., 2015)


Jette, A. M., Slavin, M. D., Ni, P., Kisala, P. A., Tulsky, D. S., Heinemann, A. W., Charlifue, S., Tate, D. G., Fyffe, D., Morse, L., Marino, M., Smith, I., & Williams, S. (2015) Development and initial evaluation of the SCI-FI/AT. Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine, 38(3), 409-418. Find it on PubMed

Sinha, R., Slavin, M. D., Kisala, P. A., Ni, P., Tulsky, D. S., & Jette, A. M. (2015) Functional ability level development and validation: Providing clinical meaning for spinal cord injury functional index scores. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 96, 1448-57. Find it on PubMed