chapter 9 page 1

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18 Dec 2011
Psychometric Views of Intelligence
·Psychometric approach: a theoretical perspective that portrays intelligence as a trait (or set of
traits) on which individuals differ; psychometric theorists are responsible for the development of
standardized intelligence tests
·Alfred Binet’s Singular Competent Approach
oTests measured attention, perception, memory, numerical reasoning, verbal
comprehension, etc. identified “dull” or slow children
oIn 1908 age graded, allowed for a more precise assessment of a child’s level of
intellectual functioning
oMental age: a measure of intellectual development that reflects the level of age-graded
problems a child is able to solve
·Factor Analysis and the Multicomponent View of Intelligence
oChallenged the notion that a single score can adequately represent a persons
intelligence different subtests that measure a number of distinct mental abilities rather
than a single, overarching ability
oFactor analysis: a statistical procedure for identifying clusters of tests or test items
(called factors) that are highly correlated with one another and unrelated to other test
·Early Multicomponent theories of intelligence
oSpearman Intellectual performance has 2 aspects
G (general mental factor): abbreviation for neogenesis, which, roughly
translated, means one’s ability to understand relations (general mental ability)
S: mental abilities that are specific to particular tests
oThurstone also took factor analysis approach
Primary mental abilities: 7 mental abilities that he believed to represent the
structure of intelligence (spatial ability, perceptual speed, numerical reasoning,
verbal meaning, word fluency, memory and inductive reasoning) then
concluded that these 7 distinct mental abilities make up Spearman’s idea or g
·Later multicomponent theories of intelligence
oGuliford may be as many as 180 basic mental abilities that make up “intelligence”
Got this number first by classifying cognitive tasks into 3 major dimensions:
·1. Content (what the person must think about)
·2. Operations (what kind of thinking is the person asked to perform)
·3. Products (what kind of answer is required)
Then he said there are 5 kinds of intellectual contents, 6 mental operations and 6
intellectual products (5 x 6 x 6= 180) structure of intellect model
He then set out to make tests to measure each of these 180 mental abilities
over 100 have been made (but they are much more correlated than he assumed)
oCatell and Horn Spearman’s g and Thurstone’s primary mental abilities can be
reduced to 2 major dimensions of intellect:
Fluid intelligence: the ability to perceive relationships and solve relational
problems of the type that are not taught and are relatively free of cultural
Crystallized intelligence: the ability to understand relations or solve problems
that depend on knowledge acquired from schooling and other cultural influences
oA more recent hierarchical model
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