Friday, April 11, 2008

Perceptual speed (Gs-P): Time to revisit CHC test classifications?

I recently read an article by Ackerman and Beier (2007) that reminded me of something I wrote in my Cattell-Horn-Caroll CHC (Gf-Gc) Theory: Past, Present and Future CIA book chapter (click here for on-line earlier version of the chapter; click here for specific section of the chapter I'm referencing).

The literature I reviewed in 2004/2005 suggested that those of us involved in the development and interpretation of intelligence tests should recognize an updated taxonomy of human speed abilities. A tentative taxonomy was presented, based on the work of others (I was just the synthesizer), that included Broad Cognitive Speed (Gs), Broad Decision Speed (Gt), and Broad Psychomotor Speed (Gps). Of particular interest to me was the suggestion that Perceptual Speed (P) may better be conceptualized as an intermediate speed ability between the broad (stratum II) and narrow (stratum I) speed abilities.

The research of Ackerman et al. suggested that the domain of Perceptual Speed might be best broken down into the sub-abilities of Perceptual Speed:Pattern Recognition (Rpr), Perceptual Speed: Scanning (Ps), Perceptual Speed: Memory (Pm), and Perceptual Speed: Complex (Pc). Definitions of these four narrow P abilities can be found at the 2004 link above, as well by visiting one of the original Ackerman et al. (2000) articles where this structure was first articulated.

In 2005, in an updated/revised CHC classification of the WJ III tests, I classified the WJ III Visual Matching and Cross Out tests as possible Ps measures. I further suggested that Pair Cancellation may be primarily a Pc test.

I would like to lay down a challenge to my fellow CHC intelligence users - how about people attempt to reclassify all P tests across the major intelligence batteries (as listed in the extensive CHC Cross-Battery publications of Flanagan et al.) as per the Ackerman four sub-P abilities? Maybe the results might help us better understand why performance on P tests often vary within test profiles and research studies. If nothing else, I'd like some feedback, challenges, revisions, suggestions, etc. to my reclassification of the three WJ III tests listed above.

Just a "Friday-afternoon-stuck-in-my-home-office-due-to-a-late-winter-storm-in-MN" idea.

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