General Psychology PSY 2012
University of Central Florida
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Nicklaus Lind on Thursday October 22, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PSY 2012 at University of Central Florida taught by Cyrus Azimi in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 17 views. For similar materials see /class/227606/psy-2012-university-of-central-florida in Psychlogy at University of Central Florida.
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Date Created: 10/22/15
Intelligence mental abilities and their measurement 1 Functions of Psychological Tests Psychological tests are used by psychologists for various purposes among them are prediction control explanation and description of behavior They are also used for diagnosis treatment of emotional problems and for personality assessment and career evaluations II Classification of Psychological Tests Psychological tests can be classified in five groups depending on the purpose they are used for 1 Aptitude and Achievement Tests Aptitude refers to a person s abilities which are usually inherited Achievement refers to how much a person has learned in a specific subject or task For example the test given in a course for midterm or final is an achievement test measuring how much a student has learned in the course 2 Intelligent Tests Intelligent tests are administered to a person to determine hisher intellectual abilities They usually yield an Qscore intelligence quotient which as we shall see later in this chapter is the numerical value of intelligence Most intelligent tests are administered individually although there are some group tests available 3 Interest Vocational and Attitude Tests These tests demonstrate a person s interest in a specific area They help in guiding a person to choose a vocation or career They also measure general or individual attitudes and opinions Our likes and dislikes are shown by interest tests 4 Clinical Tests These tests are sensitive in detection of clinical problems including brain damage or behavioral problems such as ADHD Persons suspected of brain damage are usually given clinical tests and then referred to a neurologist a medical doctor for further evaluations 5 Personality Tests Personality tests are the most popular and frequently used psychological tests They usually evaluate both normal and abnormal personality patterns We shall discuss them in a later chapter in detail 111 Requirements of Psychological Tests Psychological test require three major requirements which are reliability validity and standardization Without these requirements we cannot depend on the outcome of a psychological test 1 Reliability Reliability refers to consistency of a test to give the same or nearly the same score if it is used more than once If a person for example receives the same score on the second administration of a test the test is said to have 100 reliability When a test is administered twice the correlation between the two scores shows testretest reliability Although it is ideal to obtain a correlation of 100 this is not always possible Thus correlations above 90 may be considered reliable When two similar forms of the same test are used the technique is called use of parallel forms In this case the correlation between two scores is considered the degree of the reliability of the test Some psychological tests or educational tests have more than two forms They show high reliability when they are used on the same person at different times 2 Validity Validity refers to how well or how accurately a test measures what it is supposed to measure For example a cook book has no validity in teaching us about psychological tests Validity of a test also refers to the power of the prediction of the test ie how accurately a test can demonstrate future behavior There are several types of validity Here we shall refer to only two types face validity and content validity a Face Validity this type of validity refers to a test that simply lllooks good b Content Validity this type of validity indicates that the items of the test must show what they want to test 3 Standardization Psychological tests are based on cultural values They must be administered in the environment and society they have been constructed For example one cannot administer an English version of an Q test to persons in another society who do not speak English This problem was an important one regarding intelligent tests for minorities in the United States Therefore a test has to be prepared for the population we want to test We need to obtain reference norms for this population in order to judge a person s scores on a test IV Tests of Intellectual Ability 1 The Concth of Intelligence Intelligence has been defined in many ways From early times it was correlated with wisdom ie wise people were thought to be intelligent It has been defined by how smart a person is how fast heshe learns how well the individual thinks and adapts to hisher environment Some simply state that intelligence is measured by intelligent tests Nevertheless today we have evidence that both heredity and environment both play equally important roles in intellectual development a The Physiological Definition of Intelligence the center of intelligence in the human brain is located in the cerebral cortex which is the gray matter covering the cerebrum The cells of the cerebral cortex produce a type of thinking or behavior which we call intelligence The functions of the cells of cortex depend on heredity The role of heredity is evidenced by the fact that identical twins resemble each other more than fraternal twins on intelligent tests They have similar Q Scores b m 57 n The Psychological Definition of Intelligence we have already referred to some psychological definitions of intelligence such as how smart a person is or how wise heshe acts etc perhaps the best psychological definition of intelligence is given by Davis Wechsler the famous psychologist who also devised Q tests According to Wechsler intelligence is defined as logical thinking rational behavior and effective action 2 Histom of Intelligent Tests The BinetSimon Test in early 20 h century the French government commissioned Alfred Binet a psychologist and Simon a psychiatrist to identify slowlearner children in French schools In 1905 Binet devised a test which later became known as the Binet Intelligence Scale based on which he distinguished slow learners from normal children His test was based on age guestions for different ages of children tested Adding all the age questions a child passed provided the Mental Age The famous Binet formula provided the IQ intelligence quotient for each child as follows Q Intelligence Quotient Mental Age MAChronological Age CA X 100 Thus a child who is give years of age and has a mental age of five years has an IQ score of 100 This figure is now considered the average Q A child whose Mental Age was four and his Chronological Age was six had an IQ of 66 which is in the mentally retarded range Q of 100 is now considered as the average normal IQ on all psychological tests worldwide Modern Q tests provide tables which adjust the basic Q formula so that Q for each age level average is 100 Q scores show normal distribution ranging from zero to 200 with average Lg of 100 Mental retardation Q scores fall below the Q of 70 Gifted children have IQ scores of 130 Mental retardation has been divided into three levels according to Binet They include idiot profound retardation imbecile moderate retardation and moron mild retardation Later Binet Intelligence Scale was revised many times in the United States The last revision at Stanford University renamed the test as StanfordBinet Intelligence Test This test is mostly used for children between the ages of two to thirteen since it employed the concept of mental age Today a new revision of this test is also used for adults because it no longer uses the concept of mental age The David WechslerTests David Wechsler tests both for children from age six to seventeen and adults age seventeen and above are based on deviation Q rather than mental age He believed Q scores were distributed according to a normal curve with the mean of 100 and the standard deviation of 15 His Q Tests are divided to two parts verbal scale measuring verbal skills and performance scale measuring performance skills Thus his tests give three different Q scores which are Verbal Q Performance Q and FullScale Lg because he has prepared various tables for different age groups each person s Q is compares with people of hisher age group For this reason a person s Q remains almost the same because hisher performance is compared with the people of hisher own age group Group Q Tests Most IQ tests are individually administered and take between 15 to 2 hours They provide an accurate estimate of a person s intellectual potentials However in testing a large group of persons mainly for screening purposes group Q tests can be administered which take a shorter time and can be done with various group sizes However such tests are used to classify people and are for screening purposes 0 Practical Use of Q Scores Q scores had more practical and importance in the past Many professional schools such as medical and law schools only accepted persons with Q scores about 130 the gifted range However in recent years less importance is placed on Q scores and the role of motivation is considered to be equally important as ones intellectual abilities Nevertheless intelli ence test scores are most useful for predicting school grades e Cultural Considerations as stated before intelligent tests have been criticized in recent years for discriminating against minority groups in the United States They are said to be in favor of middle and upper class European Americans since they are more comfortable in responding to intelligent tests To take care of such shortcomings the new revisions of Q tests include various minority groups as well More tables of norms include minorities and more test items reflect their subcultural values Similar Q tests have been created for minority groups Nearly all countries throughout the world that employ intelligent tests have their own versions of tests in their own languages and norms Despite all the shortcomings intelligent tests are still very popular and useful for many different reasons and purposes V Contemporary Theories of Intelligence 1 Gardner s Theom ofMultiple Intelligence Howard Gardner 1993 developed his theory of multiple intelligences as an alternative to what he calls the llclassical view of intelligence His observations in various cultures made him to come to the conclusion that there is not just one underlying mental capacity but a variety of intelligences that work in combination According to his theory there are seven distinct kinds of intelligence that are independent of one another each operating as a separate system in the brain according to its rules These are Linguistic Musical Logicalmathematic Spatial Bodilykinesthetic lntrapersonal Interpersonal 2 Sternberg s Theory ofPractical Intelligence Robert Sternberg proposes another aspect of intelligence which he calls practical intelligence He believes people use their abilities to deal with various jobs or situations A waiter for example has specific practical intelligence that a typist might not Based on this idea he has created various tests which measure the strength of these practical aspects of intelligence He cautions that the Q obtained on his tests is not the same as the Q obtained on intelligent tests 3 Emotional Intelligence Recently the idea of emotional intelligence has also gained attention Emotional intelligence reflects the level of emotional maturity of a person It is believed that a 21year old person should have age appropriate emotional maturity and should heshe act similar to a 15 or 16 year old person heshe demonstrates emotional immaturity To obtain emotional intelligence some tests have been created Obviously emotional intelligence is not the same as Q scores obtained from various intelligent tests
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