What is COSIMO?

COSIMO is a browser-based screening tool for social cognition. It takes only five minutes, is demographically diverse, ecologically valid, and available free of charge for clinical use. ll participant data is treated anonymously. Effect sizes in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) compared to neurotypical participants are comparable to those in the research literature. COSIMO is being developed at the Swiss Epilepsy Centre in collaboration with the Psychology Institute of the University of Zurich. Find out more about the research team here.


Clinicians can use the contact form to apply for an account to test their patients anonymously. For questions about using COSIMO in research and commercial applications, please contact us via the contact form.

Clinicians will receive a breakdown of the answers, a percentile rank and a z-score, which places the participant's results in relation to the current norm group. Online volunteers only see the total number of correct answers.

Social cognition is an important topic in neuropsychology, neurology and psychiatry today, as it is affected by a variety of neurological diseases and psychiatric disorders. Impaired social cognitive abilities can lead to isolation, stigmatisation and reduced quality of life. It is therefore important to recognise these deficits and include them in treatment.

When patients report difficulty coping at work, maintaining relationships, or when socially salient behaviour is observed, COSIMO can be used to check for impaired perception of social cues. People with epilepsy, traumatic brain injury, autism, schizophrenia, eating disorders, anxiety disorders and affective disorders may suffer from impairments in social cognition, according to research literature. Social cognition is one of the six basic functions used to describe neurocognitive disorders according to DSM-V.

Participants watch 25 short, muted video clips of dyadic interactions and are asked to choose the most appropriate emotional attribute for one of the two people presented based on three options. Participants can complete the test independently on a touch screen or with a mouse on a computer.

We continuously collect data that is included in the norm group. Participants complete a short demographic questionnaire and two control questions before taking one of the two test versions. Afterwards, they can choose to take the second version of the test as well. A participant is excluded from the norm group if they score two standard deviations below the mean, took more than 20 minutes to complete the test or answered No to the question Do you currently feel mentally fit?.

Since COSIMO is a screening tool, we recommend that more detailed tests be conducted to further differentiate social-cognitive deficits.

No, COSIMO is a psychometric test. Read more here (DE only).

The norms of previously performed tests are also continuously recalculated using the latest norms, so that a comparison can be made using the latest norms for both test performances.

Please contact us before you start your project and we will make an agreement on how you can use COSIMO in your study.

Yes, we have two test versions, with random assignment on the first run. We recommend that you keep your patients' codes and perform the follow-up with the same case code. This will automatically select the parallel test version for the second run.

No, the data is anonymous and we cannot trace the results back to a specific person. The only information you get is the feedback you receive after taking the test.


Our most heartfelt thanks go out to the organisations and individuals that make this project financially possible:

  • Swiss Epilepsy Foundation
  • Swiss Epilepsy Centre
  • Private charitable foundations
  • Other individual contributors
  • If you would also like to support the project, you can support us through the tax detuctable donation fund of the Swiss Epilepsy Foundation:
    Note: Cosimo Research
    IBAN CH66 0900 0000 8771 3581 4
    Thank you!

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