Friday, March 18, 2005

Carroll CHC analyses of 50 tests - Rnd 1

Ok. Time for the blogmaster to buck up and comment on the first-order factor analyses results described and posted in the “Carroll” Analysis of 50 CHC-defined tests. If you haven’t viewed (and printed) the results posted online (click here to view and print), this post will make no sense at all---skip it.

I’m not going to comment on everything, but just a few things for now.

The obvious
  • Although not in need of additional validation, the results presented continue to provide structural validity evidence for the narrow CHC ability factors of Memory Span (MS), Naming Facility (NA), Associative Memory (MA), Math Achievement (KM), and Quantitative Reasoning (QR). Support is also found for the broad cognitive abilities of Fluid Reasoning (Gf), Visual-Spatial Abilities (Gv), Auditory Processing (Ga), and Crystallized or Comprehension-Knowledge (Gc) abilities. Lets here a big round of applause for these abilities.
The particularly informative or interesting
  • The presence of distinct KM and RQ factors is nice to see and clarifies the fact that the store of acquired mathematical knowledge (KM) is distinct from quantitative reasoning (RQ). I know that in earlier writings there was often confusion over the so called Gq factor. As per the CHC framework I advocate (click here), the KM narrow ability would fall under Gq, while the RQ narrow factor would fall under Gf.
  • The NA factor has been one of the most robust post-WJ III findings I have seen. The WJ III Retrieval Fluency and Rapid Picture Naming tests “hang together” across structural methodologies (EFA, CFA, cluster analyses, MDS). I believe the historical term “naming facility” does not do this narrow factor justice. The underlying common denominator (in my opinion) seems to be the fluency/automaticity of retrieval of vocabulary/words. I would hypothesize that this factor may be analogous to the current rage term “rapid automatic naming (RAN)” and/or Perfetti’s “speed of lexical access.” Maybe this factor needs a makeover in terms of name and definition to emphasize the critical features---namely, speed of lexical/semantic access/ processing.
To be continued—is anybody out there?
Some of the most intriguing findings, IMHO, which will be discussed in future posts, are:
  • The composition of the Fluid Reasoning (Gf) factor. Why do the Understanding Directions and Sound Awareness tests load together with more classic Gf measures of Induction (I—Concept Formation) and Deduction (RG-General Sequential Reasoning—Analysis-Synthesis)? I have some interesting hypotheses. Does anyone want to speculate? Hints---think of some of the research of Kyllonen and Engle and associates (for those who have their new copies of the CIA2 book, read the section in Horn & Blankson’s chapter on vulnerable abilities). This is so exciting…isn’t it?
  • Two different Gs abilities (Gsa and Gsc)? Why? Do they make sense? What are some interpretations and definitions?
  • Two separate factors (PG and WA/V) in the Grw domain. How should they best be defined and why is it difficult to use Carroll’s seminal treatise to classify these Grw factors?

That’s it for now. Comments, hypotheses, ideas, etc. are all welcome. Due to travel plans, it may be a number of days before I revisit this topic.

1 comment:

Andrew Livanis said...

Kevin -

Two different Gs abilities (Gsa and Gsc)? Why? Do they make sense? What are some interpretations and definitions?

This is something that I mulled about many times privately and during group and peer supervision. My clinical experience, as a practicing professional, is that Gsa and Gsc usually don't hang together.

I've been reading a lot of neuropsychology articles and journals due to a re-sepcialization program that I am involved with currently. Goldman's articles on lateralization are particularly interesting (popularized by his book, but the journal articles are much more interesting...). Perhaps the reason that they represent different abilities is because they represent different levels of routine; if this is so, then Gsa abilities would represent less routine, less overlearned abilities than Gsc.

I would be interested to know if Gsc predicts Gsa abilities. Based on certain assumptions derived from other studies, my educated guess is "yes". Clinically, this is what I see oftentimes, although I can't necessarily state that fact definitively as it has not been looked at systematically.