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Keynote Session

August 11th 11:00-12:30 CST

The Report of Cognitive Ability Testing’s Death in Education is Premature: The Application of Network Theories and Models to Better Understand Intelligence and the WJ IV

9:00 PST / 11:00 CST / 12:00 EST

Copy of Copy of Evalu8 Promo Video (7)
Kevin S. McGrew, Ph.D.

Some in school psychology are calling for the de-implementation (DI) of certain cognitive test interpretation practices in favor of an almost singular focus on psychometric g (the full scale IQ score). New research, methods, and theories suggest the announcement of the death (DI) of CHC broad composite score interpretation is premature. Recent non-g (emergent property) network science-based cognitive theories (e.g., process overlap theory; dynamic mutualism) have emerged as promising models for understanding cognitive test data and human intelligence. The results of recent psychometric network analysis (PNA) of the WJ IV will be featured. Implications for interpretation of the WJ IV cognitive measures will be discussed. This research suggests that the working memory-attentional control complex (Gwm-AC) may be central to intellectual performance and academic learning. This CHC-grounded WJ IV research will be augmented with recent PNA of CHC cognitive-achievement data that demonstrates the potential benefits of using network theories and methods to improve the link between cognitive testing research and academic interventions. Collectively this research suggests a paradigm shift away from grouping CHC abilities into tidy hierarchical structures (with psychometric g at the apex) to complex network models of interacting CHC abilities—models that will require assessment professionals to embrace non-g approaches to the interpretation of cognitive test data. Participants are expected to be familiar with CHC theory and the WJ IV. 

Learning Objectives:


  • The participant will be able to explain the primary basis for the “just say no” to the interpretation of CHC broad index scores in cognitive ability testing.

  • The participant will be able to explain what an IQ score represents according to network-based emergent property theories of intelligence.

  • The participant will be able to explain which WJ IV clusters are the best proxies for the primary CHC broad abilities of Gf, Gc, Gv, Ga, Gl, Gr, Gwm and Gs.

  • The participant will be able to explain why the working memory-attentional control complex (Gwm-AC) may be the most important target system for improving intellectual functioning and achievement.

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