Sunday, May 15, 2022

J. Intell. | Free Full-Text | Bridging Brain and Cognition: A Multilayer Network Analysis of Brain Structural Covariance and General Intelligence in a Developmental Sample of Struggling Learners

 J. Intell. | Free Full-Text | Bridging Brain and Cognition: A Multilayer Network Analysis of Brain Structural Covariance and General Intelligence in a Developmental Sample of Struggling Learners 
https://www.mdpi.com/2079-3200/9/2/32

Abstract: Network analytic methods that are ubiquitous in other areas, such as systems neuroscience,

have recently been used to test network theories in psychology, including intelligence research.

The network or mutualism theory of intelligence proposes that the statistical associations among

cognitive abilities (e.g., specific abilities such as vocabulary or memory) stem from causal relations

among them throughout development. In this study, we used network models (specifically LASSO)

of cognitive abilities and brain structural covariance (grey and white matter) to simultaneously model

brain–behavior relationships essential for general intelligence in a large (behavioral, N = 805; cortical

volume, N = 246; fractional anisotropy, N = 165) developmental (ages 5–18) cohort of struggling

learners (CALM). We found that mostly positive, small partial correlations pervade our cognitive,

neural, and multilayer networks. Moreover, using community detection (Walktrap algorithm) and

calculating node centrality (absolute strength and bridge strength), we found convergent evidence

that subsets of both cognitive and neural nodes play an intermediary role 'between' brain and

behavior. We discuss implications and possible avenues for future studies.

Keywords: general intelligence; cortical volume; fractional anisotropy; brain structural covariance;

cognitive network neuroscience; multilayer network analysis

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Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
******************************************

Sunday, May 01, 2022

The sexes do not differ in general intelligence, but they do in some specifics - ScienceDirect

 The sexes do not differ in general intelligence, but they do in some specifics - ScienceDirect 
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0160289622000320?via%3Dihub

Abstract
Reliable and meaningful sex differences exist in specific cognitive abilities despite no reliable or meaningful sex difference in general intelligence. Here we use Cattell-Horn-Carroll (CHC) theory to highlight research findings related to sex differences in intelligence, with a focus on studies of test scores from comprehensive intelligence measures that were obtained from large and representative samples of children and adolescents. Female advantages in latent processing speed and male advantages in latent visual processing are the most meaningful and consistently reported sex differences regarding CHC broad cognitive abilities. Differences have been reported in narrow and specific ability constructs such as mental rotation and object memory location. In academic achievement, the largest and most consistent findings are female advantages in writing, whereas male advantages at higher math ability levels are also found. Empirical descriptions of sex differences should consider the breadth of the construct under study and incorporate analysis beyond simple mean differences. Score analysis methods that utilize multiple-group confirmatory factor models and multiple-indicator multiple cause models are useful to address the former, and analysis methods such as quantile regression and male-female ratio calculations along score distributions are useful to address the latter. An understanding of why specific ability differences exist in combination and in the presence of similarities will improve researchers' understanding of human cognition and educational achievements.

******************************************
Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
******************************************

Thursday, April 28, 2022

The Unique Role of Spatial Working Memory for Mathematics Performance| Journal of Numerical Cognition

 The Unique Role of Spatial Working Memory for Mathematics Performance| Journal of Numerical Cognition 
https://jnc.psychopen.eu/index.php/jnc/article/view/7159
Abstract
We explored the multi-dimensionality of mathematics and working memory (WM) by examining the differential relationships between different areas of mathematics with visual, spatial, and verbal WM. Previous research proposed that visuospatial WM is a unique predictor of mathematics, but neuroimaging and cognitive research suggest divisions within visuospatial WM. We created a new WM task to isolate visuospatial WM's visual and spatial components and maintained consistent design across tasks and found that spatial WM predicted mathematics and visual WM did not. We also found that verbal WM predicted all mathematics areas included, while spatial WM was a unique predictor of numerical understanding and geometry, not arithmetic and estimation. These findings integrate previous neuroimaging, cognitive and educational psychology research and further our understanding of the relationship between WM and mathematics.


******************************************
Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
******************************************

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

The sexes do not differ in general intelligence, but they do in some specifics - ScienceDirect

 The sexes do not differ in general intelligence, but they do in some specifics - ScienceDirect 
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0160289622000320

Abstract
Reliable and meaningful sex differences exist in specific cognitive abilities despite no reliable or meaningful sex difference in general intelligence. Here we use Cattell-Horn-Carroll (CHC) theory to highlight research findings related to sex differences in intelligence, with a focus on studies of test scores from comprehensive intelligence measures that were obtained from large and representative samples of children and adolescents. Female advantages in latent processing speed and male advantages in latent visual processing are the most meaningful and consistently reported sex differences regarding CHC broad cognitive abilities. Differences have been reported in narrow and specific ability constructs such as mental rotation and object memory location. In academic achievement, the largest and most consistent findings are female advantages in writing, whereas male advantages at higher math ability levels are also found. Empirical descriptions of sex differences should consider the breadth of the construct under study and incorporate analysis beyond simple mean differences. Score analysis methods that utilize multiple-group confirmatory factor models and multiple-indicator multiple cause models are useful to address the former, and analysis methods such as quantile regression and male-female ratio calculations along score distributions are useful to address the latter. An understanding of why specific ability differences exist in combination and in the presence of similarities will improve researchers' understanding of human cognition and educational achievements.

******************************************
Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
******************************************

Monday, April 11, 2022

Moving Beyond the Ableist Roots of Educational Psychology: Audit of the Field and a Path Forward | SpringerLink

 Moving Beyond the Ableist Roots of Educational Psychology: Audit of the Field and a Path Forward | SpringerLink 
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10648-022-09673-6

In the current literature review, we studied the articles published between 2010 and July 2020 in six prominent educational psychology journals to determine the extent to which students with disabilities (SWD) have recently been included in the field's most visible literature, and the nature of that inclusion when it occurred. Although scholars routinely cite articles from special education journals, findings indicated that SWD were specifically included in only 11.4% of the studies that were published. Most of these studied detailed interventions to support students' math and reading skills, with far fewer articles addressing the remaining breadth of topics across the field of educational psychology. After demonstrating the extent to which SWD have been underrepresented in the field's top journals over the previous decade, we draw on DisCrit theory to describe how constructs such as ableism and multiple models of disability can help scholars resist deficit mindsets about SWD in their classroom-based research samples. We argue for a proliferation of epistemologies (and subsequently methodologies), enabling educational psychologists not only to account for the experiences of SWD in ways that uphold our field's commitment to rigorous and ecologically valid research, but also to better ensure that educational psychology theories account for the full breadth of human diversity.

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Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
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Friday, March 25, 2022

Connections between mathematics and reading development: Numerical cognition mediates relations between foundational competencies and later academic outcomes. - PsycNET

Spencer, M., Fuchs, L. S., Geary, D. C., & Fuchs, D. (2022). Connections between mathematics and reading development: Numerical cognition mediates relations between foundational competencies and later academic outcomes. Journal of Educational Psychology, 114(2), 273–288. https://doi.org/10.1037/edu0000670
We examined longitudinal relations between 1st-grade cognitive predictors (early nonverbal reasoning, processing speed, listening comprehension, working memory, calculation skill, word-problem solving, word-reading fluency, attentive behavior, and numerical cognition) and 2nd-grade academic outcomes (calculations, word-problem solving, and word reading) in 370 children (Mage = 6.55 years, SDage = 0.33 years at the start of the study) who were identified as at-risk or not-at-risk for mathematics disability. Path analysis mediation models revealed that numerical cognition, assessed at an intermediary timepoint, mediated the effects of processing speed, working memory, calculation skill, word-problem solving, and attentive behavior on all 3 outcomes. Findings indicate that multiple early domain-general cognitive abilities are related to later mathematics and reading outcomes and that numerical cognition processes, which may track ease of forming symbol-concept associations, predict later performance across both academic domains. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved)
Impact Statement
Educational Impact and Implications Statement—Given the frequent co-occurrence of difficulties in learning mathematics and reading, identifying the processes and skills that support success in both domains is important. The study showed that several domain-general abilities, such as working memory and attentive behavior, contributed to earlier and later calculation skill, word-problem solving, and word-reading fluency. More critically, the study showed that one bridge between the codevelopment of reading and mathematics achievement is the fluency of processing basic numerical relationships. The numerical measure in turn likely indexes the ease with which students form symbol-concept associations, and this cognitive system might be contributing to the co-occurrence of difficulties in mathematics and reading. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved)


 Connections between mathematics and reading development: Numerical cognition mediates relations between foundational competencies and later academic outcomes. - PsycNET 
https://doi.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fedu0000670

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Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
******************************************

Monday, March 07, 2022

Working memory development: A 50-year assessment of research and underlying theories - ScienceDirect

 Working memory development: A 50-year assessment of research and underlying theories - ScienceDirect 
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0010027722000634

Working memory development: A 50-year assessment of research and underlying theories
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NelsonCowan
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https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cognition.2022.105075
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Abstract
The author has thought about working memory, not always by that name, since 1969 and has conducted research on its infant and child development since the same year that the seminal work of Baddeley and Hitch (1974) was published. The present article assesses how the field of working memory development has been influenced since those years by major theoretical perspectives: empiricism (along with behaviorism), nativism (along with modularity), cognitivism (along with constructivism), and dynamic systems theory. The field has not fully discussed the point that these theoretical perspectives have helped to shape different kinds of proposed working memory systems, which in turn have deeply influenced what is researched and how it is researched. Here I discuss that mapping of theoretical viewpoints onto assumptions about working memory and trace the influence of this mapping on the field of working memory development. I illustrate where these influences have led in my own developmental research program over the years.

******************************************
Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
******************************************

Thursday, March 03, 2022

Cognitive Ability and Job Performance: Meta-analytic Evidence for the Validity of Narrow Cognitive Abilities | SpringerLink

 Cognitive Ability and Job Performance: Meta-analytic Evidence for the Validity of Narrow Cognitive Abilities | SpringerLink 
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10869-022-09796-1

Cognitive Ability and Job Performance: Meta-analytic Evidence for the Validity of Narrow Cognitive Abilities
Abstract
Cognitive ability is one of the best predictors of performance on the job and past research has seemingly converged on the idea that narrow cognitive abilities do not add incremental validity over general mental ability (GMA) for predicting job performance. In the present study, we propose that the reason for the lack of incremental validity in previous research is that the narrow cognitive abilities that have been assessed most frequently are also the abilities that are most highly correlated with GMA. Therefore, we expect that examining a broader range of narrow cognitive abilities that are less highly correlated with GMA will demonstrate incremental validity for narrow abilities. To examine this prediction, we conducted an updated meta-analysis of the relationship between cognitive ability and a multidimensional conceptualization of job performance (task performance, training performance, organizational citizenship behavior, counterproductive work behavior, withdrawal). Using several different methods of analyzing the data, results indicated that the narrow cognitive abilities that are the least highly correlated with GMA added substantial incremental validity for predicting task performance, training performance, and organizational citizenship behavior. These results have important implications for the assessment of cognitive ability and the employee selection process.

******************************************
Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
******************************************

Tuesday, March 01, 2022

Graphs do not lead people to infer causation from correlation. - PsycNET

https://psycnet.apa.org/record/2022-36700-001

Fansher, M., Adkins, T. J., & Shah, P. (2022). Graphs do not lead people to infer causation from correlation. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1037/xap0000393

Abstract
Media articles often communicate the latest scientific findings, and readers must evaluate the evidence and consider its potential implications. Prior work has found that the inclusion of graphs makes messages about scientific data more persuasive (Tal & Wansink, 2016). One explanation for this finding is that such visualizations evoke the notion of "science"; however, results are mixed. In the current investigation we extend this work by examining whether graphs lead people to erroneously infer causation from correlational data. In two experiments we gave participants realistic online news articles in which they were asked to evaluate the research and apply the work's findings to a real-life hypothetical scenario. Participants were assigned to read the text of the article alone or with an accompanying line or bar graph. We found no evidence that the presence of graphs affected participants' evaluations of correlational data as causal. Given that these findings were unexpected, we attempted to directly replicate a well-cited article making the claim that graphs are persuasive (Tal & Wansink, 2016), but we were unsuccessful. Overall, our results suggest that the mere presence of graphs does not necessarily increase the likelihood that one infers incorrect causal claims. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved)

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Kevin S. McGrew,  PhD
Educational Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
www.themindhub.com
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Friday, February 25, 2022

From MDPI: "The Transition to Noncommunicable Disease: How to Reduce Its Unsustainable Global Burden by Increasing Cognitive Access to Health Self-Management"

https://www.mdpi.com/1396952:

The Transition to Noncommunicable Disease: How to Reduce Its Unsustainable Global Burden by Increasing Cognitive Access to Health Self-Management

Abstract: The global epidemic of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes, is creating unsustainable burdens on health systems worldwide. NCDs are treatable but not curable. They are less amenable to top-down prevention and control than are the infectious diseases now in retreat. NCDs are mostly preventable, but only individuals themselves have the power to prevent and manage the diseases to which the enticements of modernity and rising prosperity have made them so susceptible (e.g., tobacco, fat-salt-carbohydrate laden food products). Rates of nonadherence to healthcare regimens for controlling NCDs are high, despite the predictable long-term ravages of not self-managing an NCD effectively. I use international data on adult functional literacy to show why the cognitive demands of today’s NCD self-management (NCD-SM) regimens invite nonadherence, especially among individuals of below-average or declining cognitive capacity. I then describe ways to improve the cognitive accessibility of NCD-SM regimens, where required, so that more patients are better able and motivated to[...]


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