The two peg test was developed by Kenneth Heilman, MD (1926- ), as part of his research on attention deficit disorder (ADD) and dyslexia. The test requires the subject to place pegs into holes that are spaced apart in an irregular pattern across a board. The goal is for the subject to place both pegs into their respective holes without using his or her hands for guidance. The examiner then moves the pegs closer together until they are placed into the holes by the child without any difficulty. This distance between both pegs is called critical distance (CD).
The two peg test requires the ability to accurately perceive the position of two pegs in space and to coordinate one’s movements to accurately place a peg in each hole. It is a good measure of visuospatial perception and visuomotor coordination.
This test is used to assess the ability to integrate visual input with motor output in a serial manner, requiring both concentration and memory, which could be due to cognitive decline or decreased attention span.
The test is not only used to assess visuomotor skills, but also to evaluate executive function (planning), attention and concentration, perceptual organization, basic visual-motor integration skills and visual memory.
It can be administered by any health professional with minimal training, but it’s best administered by someone who has been trained in administering it correctly.