Showing posts with label Jack Carroll. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jack Carroll. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Clarification of Intellectual Ability Construct Terminology


      The terms ability, cognitive ability, achievement, aptitude, aptitude-achievement are tossed around in contemporary psychological and educational assessment circles, often without a clear understanding of the similarities and differences between and among the terms.  For example, what does an “aptitude-achievement” discrepancy, in the context of contemporary models of SLD identification (see Flanagan & Fiorrello, 2010), mean?  Where are the aptitudes in the CHC  model?  It is argued here that it is critical that intelligence assessment professionals and researchers begin to use agreed upon terms to avoid confusion and to enhance collaboration and to facilitate research synthesis.  In this spirit, the figure below illustrates the conceptual distinction between abilities, cognitive abilities, achievement abilities and aptitudes.  These conceptual distinctions are drawn primarily from Carroll (1993)and the work of Snow and colleagues (Corono et al., 2001).    [Click on image to enlarge]

            As reflected in the figure, all constructs in the CHC model are abilities.  As per Carroll (1991), “as used to describe an attribute of individuals, ability refers to the possible variations over individuals in the liminal levels of task difficulty (or in derived measurements based on such luminal levels) at which, on any given occasion in which all conditions appear favorable, individuals perform successfully on a defined class of tasks” (p. 8, italics in original).[1]  In more simple language,“every ability is defined in terms of some kind of performance, or potential for performance (p. 4).”  The overarching domain of abilities includes cognitive and achievement abilities as well as aptitudes (see figure).  Cognitive abilities are abilities on tasks “in which correct or appropriate processing of mental information is critical to successful performance” (p. 10; italics in original).  The key component to the operational definition of cognitive abilities is the processing of mental information (Carroll, 1993).  Achievement abilities “refers to the degree of learning in some procedure intended to produce learning, such as an informal or informal course of instruction, or a period of self study of a topic, or practice of a skill” (p. 17).  As reflected in the above figure, the CHC domains of Grw and Gq are consistent with this definition and Carroll’s indication that these abilities are typically measured with achievement tests.  Most assessment professionals use the terms cognitive and achievement abilities in accordance with these definitions.  However, the term aptitude is often misunderstood.
            Carroll (1993) uses a narrow definition of aptitude—“to refer to a cognitive ability that is possibly predictive of certain kinds of future learning success” (p. 16; emphasis added).  The functional emphasis on prediction is the key to this narrow definition of aptitude and is so indicated by the two horizontal arrows in the figure.  These arrows, which connect the shaded CHC narrow abilities that are combined to predict an achievement ability outcome domain, are the definition of aptitude used in this paper.
 This definition of aptitude is much narrower than the broader notion of aptitude as reflected in the work of Richard Snow.   Snow’s notion of aptitude includes both cognitive and non-cognitive (conative) characteristics of individuals (Corno et al., 2002; Snow et al., 1996).  This broader definition of aptitude focuses on human aptitudes which represent “the characteristics of human beings that make for success or failure in life's important pursuits. Individual differences in aptitudes are displayed every time performance in challenging activities is assessed” (Corno et al., 2002, p. xxiii). Contrary to many current assumptions, aptitude is not the same as ability.  According to Corno et al. (2002), ability is the power to carry out some type of specific task and comes in many forms—reading comprehension, mathematical reasoning, spatial ability, perceptual speed, domain-specific knowledge (e.g., humanities), physical coordination, etc.  This is consistent with Carroll’s definition of ability.  According to Snow and colleagues, aptitude is more aligned with the concepts of readiness, suitability, susceptibility, and proneness, all which suggest a “predisposition to respond in a way that fits, or does not fit, a particular situation or class of situations. The common thread is potentiality—a latent quality that enables the development or production, given specified conditions, of some more advanced performance” (Corno et al., 2002, p. 3; see Scheffler, 1985).  This broader definition includes non-cognitive characteristics such achievement motivation, freedom from anxiety, self-concept, control of impulses, and other (see Beyond IQ project). 
As reflected in the model in the above figure, cognitive and achievement abilities differ primarily in the degree of emphasis on degree of mental information processing (cognitive) and the degree which the ability is an outcome acquired more from informal and formal instruction (achievement).  Here, aptitude is defined as the combination, amalgam or complex of specific cognitive abilities that when combined best predict a specific achievement domain.  Cognitive abilities are always cognitive abilities.  Some cognitive abilities contribute to academic or scholastic aptitudes, which are pragmatic functional measurement entities—not trait-like cognitive abilities.  Different academic or scholastic aptitudes, depending on the achievement domain of interest, likely share certain common cognitive abilities (domain-general) and also include cognitive abilities specific to certain achievement domains (domain-specific).  A simple and useful distinction is that cognitive abilities and achievements are more like unique abilities in a table of human cognitive elements while different aptitudes represent combinations of different cognitive elements to serve a pragmatic predictive function.  For the quantoid readers, the distinction between factor-analysis based latent traits (cognitive abilities) and multiple regression based functional predictors of achievement outcomes (cognitive aptitude) may help clarify the sometimes murky discussion of cognitive and achievement abilities and aptitudes.



[1] As noted by Carroll (1993), luminal refers to specifying threshold values used “in order to take advantage o the fact that the most accurate measurements are obtained at those levels” (p. 8).

Thursday, December 29, 2011

WMF Human Cognitive Abilities Archive Project: Major update 12-29-11


Here is an early New Years present to those interested in the structure of human cognitive abilities and the seminal work of Dr. John Carroll.

The free on-line WMF Human Cognitive Abilities (HCA) archive project had a MAJOR update today. An overview of the project, with a direct link to the archive, can be found at the Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation web page (click on "Current Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation Human Cognitive Abilities Archive") . Also, an on-line PPT copy of a poster presentation I made at the 2008 (Dec) ISIR conference re: this project can be found by clicking here.

Today's update added the following 38 new data sets from John "Jack" Carroll's original collection.  We now have approximately 50% of Jack Carroll's original datasets archived on-line.  Of particular interest is the addtion of one of Carroll's data sets, three by John Horn, and 17 by Guilford et al.  Big names...and some correlation matrices with big numbers of variables.  Data parasites (er....secondary data analysits) should be happy.


  • CARR01.  Carroll, J.B. (1941).  A factor analysis of verbal abilities.  Psychometrika, 6, 279-307.
  • FAIR02.  Fairbank, B.A. Jr., Tirre, W., Anderson, N.S. (1991).  Measures of thirty cognitive tasks:  Intercorrelations and correlations with aptitude battery scores. In P.L. Dann, S. M. Irvine, & J. Collis (Eds.), Advances in computer-based human assessment (pp. 51-101).  Dordrecht & Boston: Kluwer Academic.
  • FLAN01.  Flanagan, J.C., Davis, F.B., Dailey, J.T., Shaycoft, M.F., Orr, D.B., Goldberg, I., Neyman, C.A. Jr., (1964).  The Amercian high school student (Cooperative Research Project No. 635).  Pittsburgh:  University of Pittsburgh.
  • FULG21.  Fulgosi, A., Guilford, J. P. (1966).  Fluctuation of ambiguous figures and intellectual flexibility.  American Journal of Psychology, 79, 602-607.
  • GUIL11.  Guilford, J.P., Berger R.M., Christensen, P.R. (1955).  A factor-analytic stydy of planning:  II. Administration of tests and analysis of results.  Los Angeles:  Reports from the Psychological Laboratory, University of Southern California, No. 12.
  • GUIL31 to GUIL46 (17).  Guilford, J.P., Lacey, J.I. (Eds.) (1947).  Printed classification tests.  Army Air Force Aviation Psychology Program Research Reports, No. 5.  Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. [discussed or re-analyzed by Lohman (1979)]
  • HARG12.  Hargreaves, H.L. (1927).  The 'faculty' of imagination:  An enquiry concerning the existence of a general 'faculty,' or group factor, of imagination.  British Journal of Psychology Monograph Supplement, 3, No. 10.
  • HECK01.  Heckman, R.W. (1967).  Aptitude-treatment interactions in learning from printed-instruction: A correlational study.  Unpublished Ph.D. thesis, Purdue University.  (University Microfilm 67-10202)
  • HEND01.  Hendricks, M., Guilford, J. P., Hoepfner, R. (1969). Measuring creative social abilities. Los Angeles: Reports from the Psychological Laboratory, University of Southern California, No. 42.
  • HEND11A.  Hendrickson, D.E. (1981). The biological basis of intelligence. Part II: Measurement. In H.J. Eysenck (Ed.), A model for intelligence (pp. 197-228). Berlin: Springer.
  • HHIG01.  iggins, L. C. (1978) A factor analytic study of children's picture interpretation behavior. Educational Communication & Technology, 26, 215-232
  • HISK03/04.  Hiskey, M. (1966). Manual for the Hiskey-Nebraska Test of Learning Aptitude. Lincoln, NE: Union College Press.
  • HORN25/26.  Horn, J. L., & Bramble, W. J. (1967). Second-order ability structure revealed in rights and wrongs scores. Journal of Educational Psychology, 58, 115-122.
  • HORN31.  Horn, J. L., & Stankov, L. (1982) Auditory and visual factors of intelligence. Intelligence, 6, 165-185.
  • KEIT21.  Keith, T. Z., & Novok, C. G. (1987). What is the g that the K-ABC measures? Paper presented at the meeting of the National Association of School Psychologists, New Orleans, L.A.
  • KRAN01/KRAN01A.  Kranzler, J. H. (1990). The nature of intelligence: A unitary process or a number of independent processes? Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of California at Berkeley.
  • LANS31.  Lansman, M., Donaldson, G., Hunt, E., & Yantis, S. (1982). Ability factors and cognitive processes. Intelligence, 6, 347-386.
  • LORD01.  Lord, F. M. (1956). A study of speed factors in tests and academic grades. Psychometrika, 21, 31-50.
  • LUN21.  Lunneborg, C. E. (1977). Choice reaction time: What role in ability measurement? Applied Psychological Measurement, 1, 309-330.
  • WOTH01.  Wothke, W., Bock, R.D., Curran, L.T., Fairbank, B.A., Augustin, J.W., Gillet, A.H., Guerrero, C., Jr. (1991).  Factor analytic examination of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) and the kit of factor-referenced tests.  Brooks Air Force Base, TX: Air Force Human Resources Laboratory Report AFHRL-TR-90-67.
Request for assistance: The HCA project needs help tracking down copies of old journal articles, dissertations, etc. for a number of datasets being archived. We have yet to locate copies of the original manuscripts for a significant number of datasets that have been posted to the archive. Help in locating copies of these MIA manuscripts would be appreciated.  Please visit the special "Requests for Assistance" section of this archive to view a more complete list of manuscripts that we are currently having trouble locating. If you have access to either a paper or e-copy of any of the designated "fugitive" documents, and would be willing to provide them to WMF to copy/scan (we would cover the costs), please contact Dr. Kevin McGrew at the email address listed at the site.  A copy of the complete list or datasets with missing mannuscripts (in red font) can also be downloaded directlly from here.

Please join the WMF HCA listserv to receive routine email updates regarding the WMF HCA project.

All posts regarding this project can be found here.


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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

WMF Human Cognitive Abilities Archive Project: Major update 7-13-11


The free on-line WMF Human Cognitive Abilities (HCA) archive project had a MAJOR update today. An overview of the project, with a direct link to the archive, can be found at the Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation web page (click on "Current Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation Human Cognitive Abilities Archive") . Also, an on-line PPT copy of a poster presentation I made at the 2008 (Dec) ISIR conference re: this project can be found by clicking here.


Today's update added the following 29 new data sets from John "Jack" Carroll's original collection.  We now have approximately 40% of Jack Carroll's original datasets archived on-line.

  • PIMS01/PIMS02  Pimsleur, P., Stockwell, R. P., 7 Comrey, A. L. (1962). Foreign language learning ability. Journal of Educational Psychology, 53, 15-26.
  • PEDU01   Pedulla, J. J., Airasian, P. W., & Madaus, G. F. (1980). Do teacher ratings and standardized test result of students yield the same information? American Educational Research Journal, 17, 303-307.
  • PEMB01  Pemberton, C. (1952). The closure factors related to other cognitive processes. Psychometrika, 17, 267-288.
  • PENF01  Penfold, D. M., & Abou-Hatab, F. A. H. (1967). The factorial dimensions of verbal critical thinking. Journal of Experimental Education. 36(2), 1-12.
  • PETR01  Petrove, Y. I. (1970). [Memory structure as a psychic function] (Russian). Voprosy Psikhologii, 16(3), 132-136.
  • PETE01  Petersen, H., Guilford, J. P., Hoepfner, R., & Merrifield, P. R. (1963). Determination of "Structure-of-Intellect" abilities involved in ninth-grade algebra and general mathematics. Los Angeles: reports from the Psychological Laboratory, University of Southern California, No. 31.
  • PARA01/PARA04  Paraskevopoulos, J. N., & Kirk, S. A. (1969) The development and psychometric characteristics of the revised Illinois Test of Psycholinguistic Abilities. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press.
  • OLSO51  Olson, J. R. (1966). A factor analytic study of the relation between the speed of visual perception and the language abilities of deaf adolescents. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Ohio State University. (University Microfilms 67-2507)
  • PATE01  Paterson, D. G., Elliott, R. M., Anderson, L. D., Toops, H. A., & Heidbreder, E. (1930). Minnesota Mechanical Ability Tests. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.
  • MOUR01  Moursy, E. M. (1952). The hierarchical organization of cognitive levels. British Journal of Statistical Psychology, 5, 151-180.
  • MOON01  Mooney, C. M. (1954). A factorial study of closure. Canadian Journal of Psychology, 8, 51-60.
  • MULL01  Mulla, M. A. (1979). Aptitude, attitude, motivation, anxiety, intolerance of ambiguity, and other biographical variables as predictors of achievement in English as a Foreign Language by high school science majors in Saudi Arabia. Unpublished Ph. D. Dissertation, University of Michigan.
  • MEEK01  Meeker, M., & Meyers, C. E. (1971). Memory factors and school success of average and special groups of ninth-grade boys. Genetic Psychology Monographs, 83, 275-308. 
  • MICH51  Michael, W. B., Zimmerman, W. S., & Guilford, J. P. (1950). An investigation of two hypotheses regarding the nature of the spatial-relations and visualization factors. Educational & Psychological Measurement, 10, 187-213.
  • MICH61/MICH62  Michael, W. B., Zimmerman, W. S., & Guilford, J. P. (1951). An investigation of the nature of the spatial-relations and visualization factors in two high school samples. Educational & Psychological Measurement, 11, 561-577. 
  • MASN01  Many, D. (1983) Cognitive and linguistic correlates of second language grammaticality judgments. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Montreal.

Request for assistance: The HCA project needs help tracking down copies of old journal articles, dissertations, etc. for a number of datasets being archived. We have yet to locate copies of the original manuscripts for a significant number of datasets that have been posted to the archive. Help in locating copies of these MIA manuscripts would be appreciated.  Please visit the special "Requests for Assistance" section of this archive to view a more complete list of manuscripts that we are currently having trouble locating. If you have access to either a paper or e-copy of any of the designated "fugitive" documents, and would be willing to provide them to WMF to copy/scan (we would cover the costs), please contact Dr. Kevin McGrew at the email address listed at the site.  A copy of the complete list or datasets with missing mannuscripts (in red font) can also be downloaded directlly from here.

Please join the WMF HCA listserv to receive routine email updates regarding the WMF HCA project.

All posts regarding this project can be found here.


Finally, it was exciting to learn that an article "in press" in the journal Intelligence utilized one of the WMF HCA archived datasets.  Information regarding that article is contained in the two images below.







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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

WMF Human Cognitive Abilities Project Update 4-20-10: 22 new Carroll data sets


The free on-line WMF Human Cognitive Abilities (HCA) archive project was updated today. An overview of the project, with a direct link to the archive, can be found at the Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation web page (click on "Current Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation Human Cognitive Abilities Archive") . Also, an on-line PPT copy of a poster presentation I made at the 2008 (Dec) ISIR conference re: this project can be found by clicking here.


Today's update added the following 22 new data sets from John "Jack" Carroll's original collection.

  • **GUIL31, GUIL32A, GUIL41:     Guilford, J.P., Lacey, J.I. (Eds.) (1947).  Printed classification tests.  Army Air Force Aviation Psychology Program Research Reports, No. 5.  Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. [discussed or re-analyzed by Lohman (1979)]
  • HEMP21:     Hemphill, J.K., Griffiths, E., Frederiksen, N., Stice, G., Iannaccone, L., Coffield, W., & Carlton, S. (1961). Dimensions of administrative performance. New York and Princeton: Teachers College, Columbia University, & Educational Testing Service.
  • PICK01:     Pickens, J. D., Pollio, H. R. (1979). Patterns of figurative language competence in adult speakers. Psychological Research, 40, 299-313. 
  • PORT01:     Porter, E. L. H. (1938). Factors in the fluctuation of fifteen ambiguous phenomena. Psychological Record, 2, 231-253. 
  • **PRIC01:     Price, E. J. J. (1940). The nature of the practical factor (f). British Journal of Psychology, 30, 341-351. 
  • RICH01, RICH02:     Richards, T. W., & Nelson, V. L. (1939). Abilities of infants during the first eighteen months. Journal of Genetic Psychology, 55, 299-318. 
  • ** RIEB01, REIB02:     Rieben, l., & Mengal, P. (1977). Intelligence globale, creativite et operativite chez l'enfant: Analyse factorielle et analyse discriminante. [Global intelligence, creativity, and operativity in the child: Factorial and discriminant analysis.] Psychologie - Schweizerische Zeitschrift fur Psychologie und ihre Anwendungen, 36, 100-108. 
  • RIMO11:     Rimoldi, H. J. A. (1948). Study of some factors related to intelligence. Psychometrika, 13, 27-46. 
  • **ROBE11:     Robertson-Tchabo, e., & Arenberg, D. (1976). Age differences in cognition in healthy educated men: A factor analysis of experimental measures. Experimental Aging Research, 2, 75-89. 
  • ROND01, ROND02:     Rondal, J. A. (1978). Patterns of correlations for various language measures in mother-child interactions for normal and Down's syndrome children. Language & Speech, 21, 242-252.  
  • **ROSE01:     Rose, A. M. (1974). Human information processing: An assessment and research battery. Ann Arbor: Human Performance Center, Department of Psychology, University of Michigan. (Technical Report No. 46)
  • **ROSE11:      Rose, A. M. & Fernandes, K. (1977). An information processing approach to performance assessment: I. Experimental investigation of an information processing performance battery. Washington: American Institutes for Research, Technical Report No. 1. 
  • STAN01:     Stankov, L. (1978).  Fluid and crystalized intelligence and broad perceptual factors among 11 to 12 year olds.  Journal of Educational Psychology, 70, 324-334.
  • STAN21:     Stankov, L. (1983). Attention and intelligence. Journal of Educational Psychology, 75, 471-490.
  • STAN41:     Stankov, L., Horn, J. L., & Roy, T. (1980). On the relationship between Gf/Cg theory and Jensen's Level I/Level II theory. Journal of Educational Psychology, 72, 796-809. 
  • STAN51:    Stanovich, K. E. (1981). Relationships between word decoding speed, general name-retrieval ability, and reading progress in first-grade children. Journal of Educational Psychology, 73, 809-815. 
  • STAN61:    Stanovich, K. E., Cunningham, A. E., & Freman, D. J. (1984). Intelligence, cognitive skills, and early reading progress. Reading Research Quarterly, 29, 278-303.

Request for assistance: The HCA project needs help tracking down copies of old journal articles, dissertations, etc. for a number of datasets being archived. We have yet to locate copies of the original manuscripts for the data sets listed above that are designated with **. Help in locating copies of these MIA manuscripts would be appreciated.

Also,
  please visit the special "Requests for Assistance" section of this archive to view a more complete list of manuscripts that we are currently having trouble locating. If you have access to either a paper or e-copy of any of the designated "fugitive" documents, and would be willing to provide them to WMF to copy/scan (we would cover the costs), please contact Dr. Kevin McGrew at the email address listed at the site.


Please join the WMF HCA listserv to receive routine email updates regarding the WMF HCA project.

All posts regarding this project can be found here.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

CHC intelligence theory and testing: Quotes to note from intelligence giants


Regular readers of this blog know that I  frequently reference the need for the Cattell-Horn-Carroll (CHC) theory of cognitive abilities to be used as the organizational framework for intelligence testing.  I typically provide links to two sources (one a pre-pub version of a book chapter that was eventually published; the other an invited 2009 editorial in the journal Intelligence). 

If readers take time to read these sources, they will learn that CHC theory is the combination of Cattell-Horn Gf-Gc theory and Carroll's three-stratum Gf-Gc theory [Carroll, J. B. (1993). Human cognitive abilities:  A survey of factor analytic studies. New York: Cambridge University Press].  I cannot stress enough the importance of the development of CHC theory for evidence-based intelligence theories and test development and interpretation.

To add external credibility to my professional opinion, I suggest skeptical readers read the words of major intelligence scholars as they rendered judgment on the Carroll portion of the CHC model.  Below are a few select quotes.  The conclusion should be obvious. Top notch intelligence scholars recognize the seminal work of Carroll, which is a major cornerstone of CHC theory.  I'll let the words of these giants speak for themselves.

Richard Snow (1993; back cover jacket of Carroll's, 1993 book):
 “John Carroll has done a magnificent thing. He has reviewed and reanalyzed the world’s literature on individual differences in cognitive abilities…no one else could have done it… it defines the taxonomy of cognitive differential psychology for many years to come.”

Burns, R. B. (1994). Surveying the cognitive terrain. Educational Researcher, 35-37.
Carroll’s book “is simply the finest work of research and scholarship I have read and is destined to be the classic study and reference work on human abilities for decades to come” (p. 35).

Horn, J. (1998). A basis for research on age differences in cognitive abilities. In J.J. McArdle, & R.W. Woodcock (Eds.), Human Cognitive Abilities in Theory and Practice (pp. 57-92). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
A “tour de force summary and integration” that is the “definitive foundation for current theory” (p. 58).  Horn compared Carroll’s summary to “Mendelyev’s first presentation of a periodic table of elements in chemistry” (p. 58). 
Jensen, A. R. (2004). Obituary - John Bissell Carroll. Intelligence, 32(1), 1-5.
…on my first reading this tome, in 1993, I was reminded of the conductor Hans von Bülow’s exclamation on first reading the full orchestral score of Wagner’s Die Meistersinger, ‘‘It’s impossible, but there it is!’’

“Carroll’s magnum opus thus distills and synthesizes the results of a century of factor analyses of mental tests. It is virtually the grand finale of the era of psychometric description and taxonomy of human cognitive abilities. It is unlikely that his monumental feat will ever be attempted again by anyone, or that it could be much improved on. It will long be the key reference point and a solid foundation for the explanatory era of differential psychology that we now see burgeoning in genetics and the brain sciences” (p. 5).


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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

CHC Intelligence Theory Timeline Project Update: Carroll (1985) paper found + clickable map to come

In a prior post I described the CHC Intelligence Theory Timeline Project.  I will continue to work on this project as time permits.

At this time I've got a two announcements.  First, I've been in contact with the maker of the software I'm using (Timeline Maker) about the Mozilla browser bug (see prior post) and the need I have for the program to export web-based material with all the active file, image, and URL links I have on my desktop program.  As a result, I've been placed on their list of "beta" testers for their next version which should include this feature (apparently many others have asked for the same feature).  So..hang tight.  We may have an on-line CHC Timeline on the web with clickable resources sometime soon.

The second announcement is made possible by Dr. Jack Carroll's daughter (Mimi Chapin) and her husband.  I recently sent out a listserv request in hopes of finding a copy of Carroll's unpublished 1985 paper--Domains of Cognitive Ability, which was presented at an Assocition for the Advancment of Science.  Mimi and her husband dug through Jack's files and found and sent me a copy.  I'm now making it available for others to view/download (click here).  It is an interesting read.  As early as 1985 the basic building blocks (broad stratum II abilities) of Carroll's eventual tri-stratum model can be seen.  Near the end of the paper is Table 1, which lists the broad domains (as well as the higher order g-factor) of Gf, Gc, Gv, Ga, Gs, Gi (now these abilities are typically listed under Glr in the CHC taxonomy), and Gm (which later Carroll labeled Gy...and which is now divided between Gsm and Glr in the CHC model.

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Cattell-Horn-Cattell (CHC) Intelligence Theory Timeline Project

I've been busy taking information from my Cattell-Horn-Carroll CHC (Gf-Gc) Theory:  Past, Present & Future book chapter (in Flanagan & Harrison, 2005 CIA book) and putting it together in a piece of professional timeline software (Timeline Maker).  The software is "way cool" as it allows me to embed hyperlinks to files, images, web pages, etc.  Then, I can use the software, when making presentations, and bring events in one-at-a-time.  AND, at each event there are icons that serve as menus to files, images, etc. that I can "bring up" for viewing and discussion.  I've been embedding the timeline with all kinds of historical images, original classic articles (e.g., Spearman, Thurstone, Cattell, etc.) as well as more recent CHC-related articles.  The idea is for a timeline-based working and breathing educational tool....a timeline-based book chapter if you please.

At this point in time the software allows me to output a web page....but the icon-based hyperlinks don't work (darn).  There is a possible "work around" I'm exploring (which would require a person to download a huge zip file and use the free Timeline Maker Preview program), which would allow people to have all the material on their HD for viewing--but I'm not ready to make that available just yet.

So....for now....you can view the completed Evolution of CHC Intelligence Theory and Assessment web page (sorry..it only is viewable when using Internet Explorer.  I use Mozilla as my browsser and it won't view.....%%$$#$$##).  You will see the various icons that are not active.

Also, I've exported the timeline and put it together with the "notes" from each event...a combined web image/table document.  This is a PDF file that can be downloaded by clicking here.  I added a small number of the embedded images that are available from the working clickable version to the end of the document....just the basics.

Feedback would be appreciated.  The long-term goal is to find a way to make this accessible on-line to others (free) for education and training purposes.  My intent is to add new material and update it on a regular basis.

Stay tuned to this blog for updates...or, subscribe to the CHC listserv for upates re: the projet.

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Saturday, June 06, 2009

WMF Human Cognitive Abilities Project critical update: Carroll's EFA final solutions now being posted


The WMF Human Cognitive Abilities (HCA) project is pleased to announce the addition, to the WMF HCA Archive, the final hierarchical factor matrix solutions (produced by Jack Carroll) for each exploratory factor analysis included in his seminal 1993 Human Cognitive Abilities book.

When Carroll's (1993) book was first published, individuals could purchase (from Cambridge University Press), a set of two 5.25 disks. Many researchers were very excited when they heard this news and many purchased the disks. Much of our initial excitement was dampened when the disks arrived--- as they did not include the original correlation matrix input files. However, they did contain the hierarchical factor matrix final solution Carroll produced for each dataset he had analyzed.

Since Feb 2008 these disks can no longer be purchased from the publisher. Thus, researchers are now unable to examine the final output solutions from Carroll's methods (described in detail in Chapter 3, p. 73 - 114).

Also, if you happened to purchase the disks, the output could only be printed on old dot-matrix type printers (and not all such printers). Each file, when viewed in a text editor, is filled with all kinds of strange printer codes and characteristics that result in the output, when printed on today's printers, being a mess. Fortunately, when the HCA project was first started, I (Kevin McGrew) had someone write a small computer utility that cleaned the files of the strange code--thus making it possible to print the solutions. At that time we printed all the solutions and assembled them in three ring binders. The printed output was not perfectly formatted, but it was readable.

The WMF HCA project is pleased to announce that we have scanned all these printed copies to PDF files. We are adding these PDF files to each dataset when they are posted to the WMF HCA archive. Unfortunately, some of the printed output files have been lost or were not originally printed. And, we can no longer find the software utility used to clean the files for printing on contemporary printers. Thus, we do not have all the Carroll EFA hierarchical matrix output solutions available at this time. We will attempt to have a similar file cleaning/printing utility developed to extract these final output files.

Why is this important?

In cases where we have archived the original correlation matrix, original publication, and Carroll's hierarchical output solution, it is now possible for independent researchers to conduct their own secondary analysis of the original matrix and compare it to Carroll's solution. More importantly, and following the recommendation of Carroll, these "final" EFA solutions can serve as input into contemporary CFA/SEM software to refine the solution. Many researchers were not aware that this was the procedure Jack Carroll was using near the end of his career. He was using his custom written EFA software (as explained in Chapter 3 of his book) to secure an initial factor structure for a dataset which he then used as the starting point for model generation, exploration and evaluation via CFA/SEM methods. An example of this can be seen in the last chapter Carroll published (click here to see a pre-pub version of this chapter)

We hope that the inclusion of the final Carroll hierarchical matrix output files will encourage researchers to revisit Carroll's analyses with an eye towards a fine-tuning of his work--something he encouraged in his 1993 book and subsequent writings. Individuals will need to read Chapter 3 in Carroll (1993) to understand and interpret the EFA hierarchical output files.

Finally, the availability of the EFA hierarchical matrix PDF output files is designated with a large red check mark on each datasets heading (or mindmap branch if you are viewing the archive in the visual-graphic map mode).

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Friday, May 15, 2009

CHC theory: Emergence, test instruments and school-related research brief

Contemporary Cattell-Horn-Carroll (CHC) intelligence test development, interpretation and applied research can be traced to a fortuitous meeting of Richard Woodcock, John Horn, and John “Jack” Carroll in the fall of 1985, a meeting also attended by the first author of this web-resource ( McGrew, 2005). This meeting resulted in the 1989 publication of the first individually-administered, nationally standardized CHC-based intelligence battery, the Woodcock- Johnson- Revised (Woodcock, McGrew, & Mather, 1989). This landmark event, which occurred 20 years ago, provided the impetus for the major CHC- driven evolution of school- based intelligence testing practice.
Subsequent important CHC events followed during this 20 year period, and included: (a) the first set of CHC- organized joint test battery factor analysis studies (Woodcock, 1990) which planted the seeds for the concept of CHC cross-battery (CB) assessment, (b) the first attempt to use the WJ-R, via a Kaufman-like supplemental testing strategy (Kaufman, 1979), to implement the yet to be named and operationalized CHC CB approach to testing ( McGrew, 1993), (c) the articulation of the first integrated Cattell-Horn-Carroll model and classification of the major intelligence batteries as per the CHC framework (McGrew, 1997), (d) the first description of the assumptions, foundations, and operational principles for CHC CB assessment and interpretation (Flanagan & McGrew, 1997; McGrew & Flanagan, 1998), (e) the publication of the first intelligence theory and assessment book to prominently feature CHC theory and assessment methods (Contemporary Intellectual Assessment: Theories, Tests, and Issues; Flanagan, Genshaft & Harrison, 1997; click here for link to 2nd edition), (f) the publication of the CHC CB assessment series ( Flanagan, McGrew & Ortiz, 2000; Flanagan, Ortiz, Alfonso & Mascolo, 2006; Flanagan, Ortiz & Mascolo, 2001, 2007; McGrew & Flanagan, 1998), (g) the completion of a series of CHC-organized studies that investigated the relations between CHC cognitive abilities and reading, math, and writing achievement (what you are reading now), (h) the articulation of CHC-grounded SLD assessment and eligibility frameworks (see Flanagan & Fiorello, manuscript in preparation) and (h) the subsequent CHC- grounded revisions or interpretations of a number of comprehensive individually administered intelligence test batteries ( Differential Abilities Scales—II, DAS-II;Stanford- Binet—5thEdition, SB5;Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children—2ndEdition, KABC- II). Although not overtly stated, the impact of CHC theory can be seen in the recent revisions of the venerable Wechsler trilogy ( WPPSI-III; WISC- IV; WAIS- IV) as well as the presentation of CHC CB procedures for interpreting the three Wechsler batteries ( Flanagan et al., 2000).

Click here for other posts in this series.

Cattell-Horn-Carroll (CHC) theory of intelligence: Brief overview with links


[Double click on image to enlarge]

The Cattell-Horn-Carroll theory of cognitive abilities (CHC; Carroll, 1993; Cattell & Horn) is a hierarchical model of intelligence that combines the Cattell- Horn Gf-Gc (1987) and the Carroll tri-stratum models (1993) of human cognitive abilities (see McGrew, 2005, 2009 ). Carroll expanded on the Cattell- Horn Gf- Gc theory and proposed a three-stratum model that contains over 70 narrow or specific abilities at stratum one, eight primary second-order abilities at stratum two, and an overall g ability (general intelligence)at stratum three. The primary broad CHC abilities that relate to the content of contemporary intelligence batteries include fluid reasoning or intelligence (Gf), comprehension-knowledge or crystallized intelligence (Gc), visual- spatial ability (Gv), long-term storage and retrieval (Glr), auditory processing (Ga), cognitive processing speed (Gs), short-term memory (Gsm), and quantitative reasoning (Gq). Definitions of these broad CHC abilities, the narrow abilities subsumed under each domain, as well as additional abilities (e.g., tactile abilities—Gh) now being considered part of a more comprehensive CHC human ability model, are available here . An visual-graphic overview of the evolution of the CHC model, and its current status, is presented at the top of this post (from McGrew, 2009)

Click here for other posts in this series.






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Friday, November 07, 2008


The free on-line WMF Human Cognitive Abilities (HCA) archive project was updated today. An overview of the project, with a direct link to the archive, can be found at the Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation web page (click on "Current Woodcock-Muñoz Foundation Human Cognitive Abilities Archive") .


Request for assistance: The HCA project needs help tracking down copies of old journal articles, dissertations, etc. for a number of datasets being archive. Please visit the "master bibliography/inventory" section of this archive and visit the on-line dataset/reference file. When viewing the on-line working inventory, manuscripts/references featured in the color red are those we are currently having trouble locating. If you have access to either a paper or e-copy of any of the designated "fugitive" documents, and would be willing to provide them to WMF to copy/scan (we would cover the costs), please contact Dr. Kevin McGrew at the email address listed at the site.

Please join the WMF HCA listserv to receive routine email updates regarding the WMF HCA project.

All posts regarding this project can be found here.

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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Gf=g revisted: Maybe not

Does Gf=g?

The possibility that Gf is isomorphic with general intelligence (g - if you believe g exists) has been discussed/debated in many research articles during the past few decades.  Kvist and Gustafsson (2008) recently took a new approach to investigating the viability of the Gf=g hypothesis [The reference and the journal abstract are included at the bottom of this post.]  These researchers use Cattell's investment theory to test the hypothesis. They argue, as per an extension of Catell's Investment hypothesis, that in populations with homogeneous learning experiences the Gf=g relationship would hold, while in more heterogenous populations the relationship between Gf and g would not approach unity.  As noted in their abstract and article, their research confirmed their hypothesis. 

They then attempt to explalin the lack of the Gf=g relation in other studies as per population/sample differences (viz., the failure to find this relation is possibly due to samples that are heterogeneous with regard to differential opportunities to develop knowledge and skills).  They attempt to explain Carroll's (2003) failure to find Gf=g in an analysis of the WJ-R norm data.  According to Kvist and Gustafsoon:
  •  "in the study by Carroll (2003) previously referred to, which failed to find the perfect relation between Gf and g, the matrices analyzed were pooled across the ages from kindergarten to adulthood, and this may have caused a population heterogeneity which prevented the perfect relation to appear.  These data could be reanalyzed with the data organized into homogeneous age groups to test this hypothesis." (p. 433).
As coauthor of the more current Woodcock-Johnson III (where the broad CHC constructs [Gf, Gc, Glr, etc.] have even better construct validity than the WJ-R), I thought I'd take a peak at the Gf-->g loadings in the age-differentiated analyses reported in the WJ III Technical Manual (McGrew & Woodcock, 2001).  Below are the Gf loadings on g (by five age-differentiated groups), as well as other broad factor loadings that were of similar magnitude or higher in each respective group (click here for more complete summary tables).

  • 6 to 8 years --   Gf (.96), Ga (.98)
  • 9 to 13 years -- Gf (.89), Gsm (.91)
  • 14-19 years  --  Gf (.92), .Gc (.90)
  • 20-39 years --   Gf (.92), Ga (.96), Glr (.95)
  • 40 and above -- Gf (.94), Ga (.97)
What to conclude? First, if I can find the time, I could re-run these models and constrain the Gf-->g loading to 1.0 and do a chi-square difference test (alas...so much data...so little time).  However, it is my experience that latent factor loadings in the high .80's and low .90's typically fail this test.  More importantly, notice the fact that other broad CHC abilities show latent factor g loadings equal to (and sometimes a bit higher) than Gf.  The above results, which follow Kvist and Gustafsson's recommendation to analyze the data by different age levels (and not pool into a single grand wide-age span sample), in my judgement, failsto support their hypotheses for the failure to find the Gf=g relation.  So....the Kvist and Gustafsson findings need to be tempered with the possible alternative hypothesis that studies may or may not replicate the Gf=g relation due to study differences in the type and breadth of markers used to operationalize ability constructs (that are then modeled to load on g).


Kvist, A. & Gustafsson, J-E. (2008) The relation between fluid intelligence and the general factor as a function of cultural background: A test of Cattell's Investment theory.  Intelligence, 36, 422-436
(click to view)

  • Abstract:  According to Cattell's [Cattell, R.B. (1987). Intelligence: Its structure, growth and action. New York: North-Holland.]Investment theory individual differences in acquisition of knowledge and skills are partly the result of investment of FluidIntelligence (Gf) in learning situations demanding insights in complex relations. If this theory holds true Gf will be a factor of General Intelligence (g) because it is involved in all domains of learning. The purpose of the current study was to test the Investment theory, through investigating the effects on the relation between Gf and g of differential learning opportunities for different subsets of a population. A second-order model was fitted with confirmatory factor analysis to a battery of 17 tests hypothesized to measure four broad cognitive abilities The model was estimated for three groups with different learning opportunities (N=2358 Swedes, N=620 European immigrants, N=591 non-European immigrants), as well as for the total group. For this group the g–Gf relationship was .83, while it was close to unity within each of the three subgroups. These results support the Investment theory.

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Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Does working memory belong in the CHC taxonomy?

Working memory---does it belong in the CHC taxonomy?

Recently, on either the CHC or NASP listservs (I can't recall which...poor Glr this morning), there was a brief thread re: the CHC classification of a test (I believe it was a Wechsler subtest) as measuring working memory (or not). I chimed in to remind people that working memory (Gsm-MW) is NOT like most other narrow abilities in the individual differences trait-type CHC taxonomy. At this time, I'd like to again reinforce this point with reference to more exteneded comments I made in McGrew (2005). Also, last evening I reread a very good article where similar comments where articulated by a leading group of working memory researchers (this information is presented below).

First, immediately below is how working memory was defined in my last web-based listing of the CHC broad and narrow abilities (and in my 2005 CHC: Past, Present, Future chapter in Flanagan and Harrison's CIA2 book). I've added italics/bold to reinforce the point I'm trying to articulate in the current post.

  • Working Memory (MW): Ability to temporarily store and perform a set of cognitive operations on information that requires divided attention and the management of the limited capacity resources of short-term memory. Is largely recognized to be the mind's "scratchpad" and consists of up to four subcomponents. The phonological or articulatory loop processes auditory-linguistic information while the visuo-spatial sketch/scratchpad is the temporary buffer for visually processed information. The central executive mechanism coordinates and manages the activities and processes in working memory. The most recent component added to the model is the episodic buffer. Recent research (see chapter text) suggests that MW is not of the same nature as the other 60+ narrow factor-based trait-like individual difference constructs included in this table. MW is a theoretically developed construct (proposed to explain memory findings from experimental research) and not a label for an individual-differences type factor. MW is retained in the current CHC taxonomy table as a reminder of the importance of this construct in understanding new learning and performance of complex cognitive tasks (see chapter text).
In the body of the McGrew (2005) chapter I explained this point further (again--I've added italic and bold to emphasize my current points)

  • "Although Flanagan and I (McGrew & Flanagan, 1998; Flanagan et al. 2000) previously argued for MW’s preliminary “membership” status in the CHC taxonomy, this recommendation was based primarily on logical and rational considerations. Our recommendation was tempered by Carroll’s (1993) skepticism toward the working memory construct. Carroll (1993) stated that 'although some evidence supports such a speculation, one must be cautious in accepting it because as yet there has not been sufficient work on measuring working memory, and the validity and generality of the concept have not yet been well established in the individual differences research' (p. 647)."
  • "Although MW is undeniably a valid and important psychological construct, this does not necessarily mean MW is a factor analytic, latent trait, individual differences type construct similar to the 60+ narrow cognitive abilities that are the cornerstone of the CHC taxonomy (see Table 3). According to Carroll (1993), 'evidence for the existence of a latent trait derives from a demonstration that a number of similar task sets are highly correlated, or in factor- analytic terms, have weights on the same factor. A factor, if it is well established in a number of empirical investigations, is in essence a latent trait reflecting differences over individuals in ability characteristics or potentials' (p. 22). According to Carroll’s definition, the trait-factor evidence for MW is still questionable."
In the following article, which was in response to a meta-analytic article by Ackerman et al. (2005), Oberauer et al. (2005) make the point much better than I do. I very much like the main essence of their comments--namely, working memory is an explantory theoretical construct that is attempting to explain intelligence. Again, italics/bold in the text below are added by the blogmaster (IQ McGrew)


Oberauer, K., Schulze, R., Wilhelm, O. & Suß, H-B. (2005). Working Memory and Intelligence—Their Correlation and Their Relation: Comment on Ackerman, Beier, and Boyle. Psychological Bulletin, 131(1), 61-65. (click to view/download)

  • Abstract: On the basis of a meta-analysis of pairwise correlations between working memory tasks and cognitive ability measures, P. L. Ackerman, M. E. Beier, and M. O. Boyle (2005) claimed that working memory capacity (WMC) shares less than 25% of its variance with general intelligence (g) and with reasoning ability. In this comment, the authors argue that this is an underestimation because of several methodological shortcomings and biases. A reanalysis of the data reported in Ackerman et al. using the correct statistical procedures demonstrates that g and WMC are very highly correlated. On a conceptual level, the authors point out that WMC should be regarded as an explanatory construct for intellectual abilities. Theories of working memory do not claim that WMC is isomorphic with intelligence factors but that it is a very strong predictor of reasoning ability and also predicts general fluid intelligence and g.
  • "Ackerman et al. (2005) treated WMC as one more beast in the zoo of ability constructs. They were content with giving it its place in the three-stratum theory of Carroll—with an inclination toward relegating it into the rank and file, together with lower level constructs such as psychometric speed. We think that this reflects a misunderstanding of why most researchers are interested in the correlation between WMC and intelligence. The aim of that research is to validate WMC as an explanatory construct for intellectual abilities. The psychometric ability constructs have been derived largely inductively, reflecting the common variance among tests that have been constructed as diagnostic tools for aspects of mental abilities as described in everyday language. In contrast, WMC is a construct that derives deductively from theories of the cognitive architecture in which a limited-capacity WM plays a central role, although not always under the same name, (Anderson & Lebiere, 1998; Atkinson & Shiffrin, 1968, to cite just the most prominent ones). These theories assign short-term memory or WM a crucial role for complex tasks such as reasoning and text comprehension."
  • "By treating WMC as another primary factor in the ability hierarchy, Ackerman et al. (2005) ignore its theoretical background. WMC is a construct that bridges the gap between research on individual differences in abilities and cognitive science, including experimental cognitive psychology and formal modeling of cognitive processes. The tasks used to measure WMC have been constructed to operationalize processes postulated in theories of WM, and although these theories are admittedly still in their infancy, they provide some guidance as to what features a good WM task should have."
  • "Among the theoretical constructs within current theories of information processing, WMC is the one parameter that correlates best with measures of reasoning ability, and even with gf and g. Therefore, investigating WMC, and its relationship with intelligence, is psychology’s best hope to date to understand intelligence. Stopping short at searching for the place of WMC among the factor hierarchy of ability constructs is like being satisfied with a Linne´an taxonomy of creatures and refusing to proceed toward explaining the origin of species."
Kudos to Obereaur et al. Well stated.

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Wednesday, October 01, 2008

CHC Intelligence article now "in press"

Shameless plug update of prior post. My article (McGrew, K. --- Editorial: CHC theory and the human cognitive abilities project: Standing on the shoulders of the giants of psychometric intelligence research" is now officially "in press" in Intelligence. A copy can be viewed at the following link. Until it is published, the formal citation should be:

  • McGrew, K. S., CHC theory and the human cognitive abilities project: Standing on the shoulders of the giants of psychometric intelligence research, Intelligence (2008), doi:10.1016/j.intell.2008.08.004
Enjoy

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Thursday, August 14, 2008

In press CHC theory overview and HCA project manuscript


I'm pleased to announce that the following manuscript re: CHC (Cattell-Horn-Carroll ) theory and the Human Cognitive Abilities (HCA) project is now "in press" in the journal Intelligence. Readers may be particularly interested in the CHC Theory model figure (Figure 1) which represents the most comprehensive overview of contemporary CHC theory.


McGrew, K. S. (in press). CHC Theory and the Human Cognitive Abilities Project: Standing on the Shoulders of the Giants of Psychometric Intelligence Research. Intelligence.


As per the the Scholary Posting provision of the journals publication agreement, I've made a pre-publication copy of the submitted manuscript available at the HCA Archive web page (it can be found on the "HCA Project Communications and Announcements" branch).