Date of Award


Degree Type

Creative Project

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Kinesiology and Health Science

Committee Chair(s)

Breanna Erin Studenka


Breanna Erin Studenka


Christopher Dakin


Tye Harrison


Context: Current concussion evaluation assessments rely largely on static measures that may not detect subtle changes in behavior. Dynamic evaluation, such as visual-motor tracking tasks, may reveal subtle and meaningful changes in motor behavior post-concussion. Objective: This study compared measurements of performance regularity over a time series (approximate entropy; ApEn), which was derived from a visual-motor tracking task performed before concussion, post concussion, and at one month, three months, and six months post concussion. ApEn values were compared for number of previous concussions and playing position groups. Design: ApEn values were collected from the visual-motor tracking task, and history of concussion and playing position were obtained from an intake questionnaire. Post-test ApEn values were collected from participants who sustained a concussion during the study along with control subjects (matched by age and date of pre-test). Setting: Testing occurred in an office in the athletic training room, which matches the typical setting for pre and post-concussion testing. Participants: Ninety-nine Division I football athletes were baseline tested. Six concussed subjects were pre and post-tested along with 11 control subjects. One of those six was post-tested at one, three, and six months, while two were post-tested at injury, one month, and three months along with one control subject. Task and Procedure: The subject was seated at arm’s length from a laptop, pressed the distal joint of his index finger against a force plate and traced a line presented on the computer screen. Visual feedback was not displayed on the screen for the no-vision condition. An algorithm calculated ApEn from the output. Results: Post-test ApEn values were not significantly lower when compared to pre-test values and values of control participants. There was a significant effect of position group on ApEn scores, but not RMSE. There was not a significant main effect of previous number of concussions on ApEn, but ApEn was significantly lower in those with two or more previous concussions compared to those with one.