Unit 7 Intellectual Evaluation
Measures designed to assess the level of general cognitive functioning have been called intelligence tests in the psychological literature or IQ tests in popular discussions. However, in recent years, there has been a trend to play down the term “intelligence” and instead to speak of “general mental ability” or simply “general ability.” Other terms that have been used include “mental development,” “general cognitive ability,” or “scholastic aptitude.” Whatever the designation, abundant evidence indicates that this ability influences performance on a wide range of tasks and has implications for functioning in school and in broader tasks of life. Measures of general mental ability have, therefore, been used for a variety of purposes: to predict short-term scholastic performance, to assess an individual’s relative strengths and weaknesses, to predict occupational achievement, and to trace possible changes in an individual or population. However, these assets are helpful only if the limitations of the measures are adequately understood and taken into appropriate consideration.
TOGGLE DRAWERHIDE FULL INTRODUCTION
Critics argue that measures of general ability are limited in predicting certain aspects of occupational success and nonacademic skills. They do not measure creativity, motivational level, social acumen, warmth, and interpersonal sensitivity. Furthermore, the general ability is not fixed, even though performance rankings are fairly consistent from one year to the next. Indeed, a vital question for psychologists is how growth in abilities comes about—why some individuals forge ahead of others and also why decline sets in—at different ages for different persons on different tasks.
In this unit you will begin by reviewing theories of intelligence, and then focus on its definition and measurement, how this construct has evolved over time, what measures are currently available for different age groups, what their emphases and blind spots are, for what purpose they are generally used, what their assets and limitations are, and what some controversies are regarding their use for varied purposes.
As you read the assigned materials, note that Binet’s and Spearman’s definitions of intelligence are especially important, because many of the current measures build upon their ideas. In reviewing different measures, please focus on the nature of test times used, the age groups for which they were designed, the type of scores they provide, and what these scores tell you and do not tell you. You will need this knowledge to follow reports on test findings for individuals as well as for groups. As implied above, tests of general ability are not interchangeable; each has its own distinctive features. Some tests need to be administered on an individual basis only by psychologists who have the training, professional credentials, and experience necessary to handle the responsibility. Others can be administered in a group setting by those with limited training and experience. Some tests require command of school-taught tasks, in other measures the tasks are remote from schooling. In short, the readings for this unit will stress both the variation and consistency among measures of general mental ability.
To successfully complete this learning unit, you will be expected to:
Discuss the psychometric properties of the various Wechsler Intelligence scales.
Evaluate the different approaches used to assess learning disabilities.
Describe the distinctive features of individual ability tests used to evaluate ability in handicapped and specific populations.
Read the following in your Psychological Testing: Principles, Applications, and Issues text:
Chapter 9, “Theories of Intelligence and Binet Scales,” pages 233–253.
Chapter 10, “The Wechsler Intelligence Scale,” pages 255–277.
Chapter 11, “Other Individual Tests of Ability,” pages 279–310.
The purpose of the Project Outline is to provide an overview of your course project and to help you organize the content. Your outline allows you to better evaluate your current progress toward meeting the course project criteria. Your instructor will have the opportunity to provide feedback and direction on the final paper before it is due. Feedback is given to provide direction for areas that may need improvement, clarification, or additional support. It is corrective and directive in nature.
Your outline must contain sufficient detail that includes examples of where you will use sources from your annotated bibliography to support each point. Your assignment must be written mainly in outline form. Each point below must be used as a heading in your paper.
Each of the following must be used as a heading in your outline. (Remember, this assignment must be written in outline form.)
Briefly identify and describe your test.
Briefly describe any population or topic you are discussing (if any).
Describe how the test is administered in terms of fairness and integration with ethical and legal considerations.
Thesis statement, or research question.
Main and supporting points.
List and describe each major point (what it means). Briefly state how each major point directly relates to your thesis statement or research question and test (topic of your paper).
Provide a citation (not a reference) for each major point. This will help show where in your paper you will integrate each of your references.
List each supporting point and describe how it will be developed in the paper (what it means).
Briefly state how each supporting point directly relates to the major point, your thesis statement or research question, and the topic of your paper.
Provide a citation (not a reference) for each supporting point. This will help show where in your paper you will integrate each of your references.
Each source that is cited to support your points must be listed.
Guidelines and Requirements
Textbooks (including your course texts) cannot be used as primary sources, and cannot be listed as part of the reference requirement for the final paper.
Submission: Submit your Project Outline as a Microsoft Word attachment.
APA formatting: Resources and citations should be formatted according to APA (6th ed.) style.
Review the Project Outline Scoring Guide to ensure that you meet the grading criteria for this assignment.
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