Intelligence and aging

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Published on 9 Jan 2011
School
UTM
Department
Psychology
Course
PSY313H5
-Most debated and researched area because of the different methods through which
research can be conducted and data is collected
-When testing the validity of tests, some critics believe that we dont have the right
instruments to test intelligence: construct validity isnt appropriate
-Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale is a psychometric test- uses objective and
standardized procedures it is more frequently used to test general intellectual
abilites
-WAIS: contains 2 parts: a verbal part: requires verbal responses the subtests
measure specific abilities- items range from easy to difficult- this component
measures broad intellectual abilities: ones storage of world knowledge and how they
can apply it
-The second part is a performance part: asked to manipulate blocks to reproduce
given images- measuring analytical skills on the spot- how one can approach and
solve unfamiliar tasks
-The performance part is different from the verbal part because the performance
part: 1) it doesnt depend on whether you know information about the world because
individuals see the problem for the first time
2) Speed is important in determining a score: test has a time component: results look at
whether the individual chose the correct answers and how long it took them to do so.
Whereas in a verbal component, time is not measured
Results are obtained by adding the raw scores of subscales to get the final score (overall) for
each category.
Does the score translate into IQ? No- IQ score is not derived by adding up the scores from
each category- IQ is also based on how a person scores relative to others in the same age
group (same choronological age)
Ex. 20-24 year old- gets a raw score of 50 = average of the age group, which has an IQ of
100.
Ex. People in their 40s = raw score of 40 =the average of their age group therefore IQ= 100
-Different raw scores may produce same IQ for different age groups. (if the raw scores
add up to the average for an age group, then multiple age groups can have IQs of
100)
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- IQ is arranged on a normal distribution curve- therefore not only is a persons
performance analyzed, but it is also compared to others in the same age group
Raw score of 60= IQ of 112 = Average intelligence for this aged group (20-24 yrs)
Its seen that as age increases, the scores also increase this suggests that as we get older,
IQ gets lower. (this is data for the performance subscale)
Because the raw score correlates to a higher IQ, later in life when were older, whereas
when were younger, its a lower IQ because more is expected
This data is collected by cross-sectional research: which overestimates the truth due to the
cohort effect
-More recent data shows that differences among different age groups has reduced
(not a lot of difference exists)
-Y axis= raw scores X axis= age initially the test was only given to individuals of
age 65-
-In the performance scale: peak occurs in 20s, then there is a steep decline/slope=
rapid decline. This shows that there are major differences that exist among different
age groups.
-In the verbal scale: decline is less marked/obvious. Verbal skills peak 10 years after
performance skills, slope= mild decline, which shows there are no significant
changes in this ability among ages
-Classic aging pattern: little/no decline in verbal measures, however there is
significant decline on the performance scale- this pattern is repeatedly seen- same
results exist today
- if a longitudinal study were doing this research, it would show a positive image- in
otherwords, people would improve on the verbal component and in the performance
section- differences may exist among ages but they would not be signifiant- there is a
risk that this type of study would underestimate the actual results because of
SELECTIVE ATTRITION: end up with a smaller sample in the end in comparison to
the size that one started off with, because people may drop out or die- generally, the
people who drop out are less educated/healthy, therefore the research group ends up
containing only elite individuals- this does not represent the general population and
therefore would show a milder decline.
-Towards ones terminal years, a steep drop is seen in verbal abilities and in
performance abilities
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Document Summary

Most debated and researched area because of the different methods through which research can be conducted and data is collected. When testing the validity of tests, some critics believe that we don"t have the right instruments to test intelligence: construct validity isn"t appropriate. Wechsler adult intelligence scale is a psychometric test- uses objective and standardized procedures it is more frequently used to test general intellectual abilites. The second part is a performance part: asked to manipulate blocks to reproduce given images- measuring analytical skills on the spot- how one can approach and solve unfamiliar tasks. Whereas in a verbal component, time is not measured. Results are obtained by adding the raw scores of subscales to get the final score (overall) for each category. No- iq score is not derived by adding up the scores from each category- iq is also based on how a person scores relative to others in the same age group (same choronological age)