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Chapter 9

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Psychology 2040A/B
Ian Mac Donald

CHAPTER 9Intelligence Measuring Mental PerformanceWHAT IS INTELLIGENCEPsychometric Views of IntelligencePsychometric Approach intelligence is an intellectual trait or a set of traits that differ among people and so characterizes some people to a greater extent than otherso Theorists goal is to identify precisely what those traits might be and to measure them Spawned the development of standardized intelligence tests Alfred Binets Singular Component ApproachBinetSimon 1904commissioned by French government to construct a test to identify dull children who might profit from remedial instructiono Devised a large battery of tasks measuring skills presumed to be necessary for classroom learning 1908test was revised and all items were agegradedo Allowed a more precise assessment of a childs level of intellectual functioningo Mental Age MA measure of intellectual development that reflects the level of agegraded problems a child is able to solve Thus BinetSimon created a test that enabled them to identify slow learners and to estimate all childrens levels of intellectual development School administrators began using mental age as a guideline for planning curricula Factor AnalysisThe MultiComponent View of IntelligenceOther psychometric theorists were quick to challenge the notion that a single score adequately represented human intellectual performance One way of determining whether intelligence is a single attribute or many different attributes is to ask participants to perform a large number of mental tasks and then analyze their performance using factor analysisidentifies clusters of test items factors that are highly correlated with each other and unrelated to other items on the testo Each factor represents a distinct mental ability Early MultiComponent Theories of IntelligenceSpearman 1927general mental factor g affects ones performance on most cognitive taskso Noticed that intellectual performance was often inconsistentso he proposed that intellectual performance has 2 aspects g or general ability and s or special abilities each of which is measured by a particular testThurstone 1938identified seven primary mental abilities that make up Spearmans idea of gspatial ability perceptual speed numerical reasoning verbal meaning word fluency and inductive reasoning Later MultiComponent Theories of IntelligenceGuilford 1967 1988proposed that there may be as many as 180 basic mental abilitieso Classified cognitive tasks into 3 major dimensions 1 content 2 operations and 3 productso Argued there are 5 kinds of intellectual contents 6 kinds of mental operations and 6 kinds of intellectual productso StructureofIntellect Model allows for as many as 180 primary mental abilities based on all the possible combinations of the various intellectual contents operations and productso Guilford then set out to construct tests to measure each of his 180 mental abilitiesScores people obtain on these presumably independent intellectual factors are often correlated suggesting that these abilities are not nearly as independent as Guilford has assumedCattellHornproposed fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence as the 2 major dimensions of intellecto Fluid Intelligence refers to ones ability to solve novel and abstract problems of the sort that are not taught and are relatively free of cultural influenceso Crystallized Intelligence is the ability to solve problems that depend on knowledge acquired as a result of schooling and other life experiences More recent Hierarchical models of intelligence in which intelligence is viewed as consisting of 1 a general ability factor at the top of the hierarchy which influences ones performance on many cognitive tasks and 2 a number of specialized ability factors that influence how well one performs in particular intellectual domainsCarroll 1993threestratum theory of intelligence o Represents intelligence as a pyramidg at the top and 8 broad intellectual ndabilities at the 2 levelHierarchical models depict intelligence as both an overarching general mental ability and a number of more specific abilities that each pertain to a particular intellectual domain A Modern InformationProcessing ViewpointSternberg 1985 1991Triarchic theory of intelligence o Emphasizes 3 components of intelligent behaviour 1 CONTEXT2 EXPERIENCE3 INFORMATIONPROCESSING SKILLS 1 ContextWhat qualifies as intelligent behaviour will depend in large part on the context in which it is displayed Intelligent people are those who can successfully adapt to their environment What is meant by intelligent behaviour may vary from one culture to another from one historical time to another and from one period of the life span to another
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