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Chapter 9

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Steve Joordens

Chapter 9 : Intelligence, Aptitude and Cognitive Abilities 9.1 - Measuring Apititude and Intelligence  Intelligent people are descirbed as “brainy”, “wise”, or “sharp”, while “dim,” “slow,” and dense” are less flattering descriptors meant to indicate less intelligence.  Intelligence is the ability to think, understand, reason, and cognitively adapt to and overcome obstacle Achievement and Aptitude  Achievement tests measure knowledge and thinking skills that an individual has acquired. (ie. Quizzes and test you take in your college courses are achievement tests)  Aptitude tests are designed to measure an individual’s potential to perform well on a specific range of tasks  Other aptitude tests are designed to test for specific job.  The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (AVSAB) measures aptitude for the entire range of military jobs, from languages and communications to tank and helicopter mechanics.  Achievement tests measure current abilies and aptitude tests predict future performance.  Psychometrics, the measurement of psychological traits and abilites - including personalitty, attitudes and intelligence  Two important concepts in psychometrics and research methods in general, are reliability and validity.  Validity, is the degree to which a test actually measures the trait or ability it is intended to measure. (ie. How do we know that the SAT is really measuring the ability to succeed in college?)  Predictive validity - the degree to which a test predicts future performance.  Relability as the measurement of the degree to which the test produces consitent results.  One method of evaluting reliability is through a construct known as test-retest reliability.  A standardization test is a test that has a set of questions or problems that are administered and scored in a uniform way across large numbers of individual  Norms: statistic that allow individuals to be evaluated relative to a typical or standard score.  Another statistic called the standard deviation measures variability around a mean.  Percentile rank the percentage of scores below a certain point. (ie. A score of 100 has a percentile rank of 0.50, meaning that 50% of the population scores below this level)  A norm is estabilished by giving the test to hundreds of people and then calculating the mean and the standard deviation. Approaches to intelligence testing  Binet and Theodore simon developed a method of assessing children’s academic achievement at school.  The problem wa easy to see: a new law required all children to attend school, and many of the students who showed up were woefully unprepared.  Mental age: the average or typical test score for a specific chronological age, rather than intelligence. (ie. A7year old child with a mental age of 7 would be considered average because her mental age matches her chronological age. In contrast, a 10 year old student who was behind at school might have a mental age of 8 year old child’s score)  Stanford-Binet Test as a test intended to measure innate (genetic) intelligence.  Intelligence quotient (IQ) a measurement in which the mental age of an individual is divided by the person’s chronological age and then multipled by 100. (ie. A10 year old child with a mental age of 7 would have an IQ 7/10 x 100 = 70)  WechslerAdult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) is the most commonly used intelligence test used on adolescents and aults.  The WAIS provies a single IQ socre for each test taker - the full scale IQ - but also breaks intelligence into a General Ability Index (GAI) and Cognitive Proficiency Index (CPI)  The GAI is computed from scores on the verbal comprehension and perceptual reasoning indices.  These measures tap into an individuals intellectual abilities without placing so much emphasis on how fast he can solve problems and make decisions.  The CPI, in contrast based on the working memory and processing speend subtests.  Many psychologists reasoned that intelligence is a universal human quality, independent of culture and language.  If a test could find some way to circumvent culture and language, then psychologists would have a fairer, more valid, “culture-free” test.  Raven’s Progressive Matrices, an intelligence test that emphasizes problems that are intended not to be bound to a particular language or culture.  According to Raven, two abilities are key to intelligent behaviour: identifying and extracting important information (deductive reasoning) and then applying it to new situations (reproducing reasoning).  Anthropometrics (literally, “the measurement of people”), a historical term refering to the method of measuring physical and mental variation in humans.  Researchers have found high correlations between working memory capacity and standardized reasoning tests working memory tests measure how well one can hold instructions an dinformation in memory while completing problem-solving tasks.  Working memory capacity is an expression of intelligence because it allows complex reasoning strategies to be used in short term storage.  Working memory processes helps us ignore irrevalent and distracting information. 9.2 - Understanding Intelligence  Intelligence incorporates the ability to think, understand, reason and cognitively adapt to and overcome obstacle. Intelligence as a Single, General Ability.  Spearman began by developing techiques to calculate correlations among multiple measures of mental abilities.  Factor analysis, is a statistical techniques that reveals similarities among a wide variety of items.  For example, different measures such as vocabulary, reasing comprehension, and verbal reasoning might overlap enough to form a “language ability” factor.  General intelligence (abbreviated as “g”) - a concept that intelligence is a basic cognitive trait comprising the ability to learn, reason, and solve problems regardless of their nature.  G is related to a number of outcomes that people seek. Intelligence as multiple, specific abilities  Individual components in an engine or a computire, has one specific function that may be unrelated to another ability’s function  Primary mental abilities, including familiar topics such as reading comprehension, spatial reasoning, numerical ability and memory span.  An individual may experience a head injury or stroke and lose one ability without any lo
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