Autism and Asperger's disorder Cornerstone Educational Solutions
Did you know? Interesting Facts about Autism and Asperger's Disorder

The Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children - Fourth Edition (WISC-IV) is an individually administered measure of general intellectual functioning. It is considered to be the GOLD STANDARD in IQ (ability) testing and is the most widely accepted IQ assessment tool used by Psychologists in the field. Administration of the WISC-IV will provide understanding of the students potential with an understanding of the the students overall ability profile with strengths and weaknesses noted. Knowing a students overall potential (IQ) is imperative in college and career planning and will provide a basis for future educational goals.

The following is a detailed description of the WISC- IV including descriptions of all sub tests

The WISC- IV provides a global quotient, it also provides four index scores based on theory and supported by clinical research and factor-analytic results, The four index scores are Verbal Comprehension, Perceptual Reasoning, Working Memory and Processing Speed. The Verbal Comprehension Index measures verbal reasoning, comprehension, and conceptualization. The Perceptual Reasoning Index measures perceptual reasoning and organization. The Working Memory Index measures attention, concentration, and working memory. Finally, the Processing Speed Index measures speed of mental and fine-motor processing.

The Verbal Comprehension index on the WISC IV is a measure of verbal concept formation, verbal reasoning and knowledge acquired from one’s environment.

According to the publisher, the Similarities sub test measures verbal concept formation – the ability to place objects and events together in a meaningful group. To do this, the child may need to find relationships that are not at first obvious, a process of abstraction. Although concept formation can be a voluntary, effortful process, it also can reflect well-automatized verbal conventions. Performance on the sub test may be related to cultural opportunities and interest patterns. Memory is also involved. Success initially depends on the child’s ability to comprehend the meaning of the task – that is, to find the common element of the paired items even though some of the paired items may be opposites.

According to the publisher, the Vocabulary sub test , a test of word knowledge, assesses several cognitive factors – such as the child’s learning ability, fund of information, richness of ideas, memory, concept formation, and language development – that may be closely related to the child’s home environment and, to some extent, educational experiences. Since a well-developed vocabulary is a reflection of the child’s ability to learn and to accumulate information, the sub test provides an excellent estimate of intellectual ability. Performance on the sub test is stable over time and relatively resistant to neurological deficit and psychological disturbance. Scores on the Vocabulary sub test provide a useful index of the child’s general mental ability.

According to the publisher, the Comprehension sub test, the child must understand given situations and provide answers to specific problems. Success depends on the child’s possession of practical information, plus an ability to make use of previous experiences. Responses may reflect the child’s knowledge of conventional societal customs and behaviors and the extensiveness of cultural opportunities, particularly exposure to middle-class mores and customs. Success suggests that the child has common sense, social judgment, and a grasp of social conventionality. These characteristics imply an ability to use facts in a pertinent, meaningful, and emotionally appropriate manner. Success is also based on the child’s ability to verbalize acceptable reasons for why certain things are done in our culture.

The Perceptual Reasoning index is a measure of perceptual and fluid reasoning, spatial processing, and visual-motor integration.

According to the publisher, the Block Design sub test requires that the child perceive and analyze forms by breaking down a whole (the design) into its parts and then assembling the components into a design identical to the one shown in the model or the picture. This process is called analysis and synthesis. To succeed, the child must use visual organization and visual-motor coordination. Success also involves the application of logic and reasoning to spatial relationship problems. Consequently, you can consider Block Design to be a nonverbal concept-formation task requiring perceptual organization, spatial visualization, and abstract conceptualization. It also can be viewed as a constructional task involving spatial relations and figure-ground separation.

According to the publisher, the Picture Concepts sub test measures abstract categorical reasoning based on perceptual recognition processes. The task is to scan an array of pictures and determine which pictures have a common characteristic. The child first must recognize or identify each picture and then determine a quality that a picture in one row shares with a picture in another row. The quality might represent a category (e.g., animals), an appearance (e.g., round), a function (e.g., bounce), or a use (e.g., for eating).

According to the publisher, Matrix Reasoning measures perceptual reasoning ability without a speed component. Perceptual matching, attention to detail, concentration, classification, analogic reasoning, and serial reasoning are required for successful performance; spatial ability also may be involved for some children.

The Working Memory Index from the WISC-IV is a measure of a child’s working memory abilities. These tasks require the ability to temporarily retain information in memory, perform some operation or manipulation with it, and produce a result.

According to the publisher, the Digit Span subtest is a measure of the child’s short-term auditory memory and attention. Because the child must recall auditory information and repeat the information aloud in proper sequence, the task also involves sequencing.

According to the publisher, the Letter-Number Sequencing subtest is a measure of the child’s working memory – the ability to maintain information actively in conscious awareness, perform some operation or manipulation with it, and produce a result.

The Processing Speed index on the WISC-IV measures the child’s ability to quickly and correctly scan, sequence, or discriminate simple visual information. It also involves the ability to perform relatively simple cognitive tasks automatically, particularly when under pressure to maintain focused attention.

According to the publisher, the Coding subtest is a measure of the child’s ability to learn an unfamiliar task. The subtest involves the speed and accuracy of visual-motor coordination (or processing speed), attention skills, visual acuity, visual scanning, and tracking (repeated visual scanning between the code key and answer spaces), short-term memory for new learning (paired-associate learning of an unfamiliar code), cognitive flexibility (in shifting rapidly from one pair to another), handwriting speed, and, possibly motivation. The subtest is sensitive to visual sensory difficulties.

According to the publisher, the Symbol Search subtest is a measure of the child’s perceptual discrimination, speed and accuracy, visual scanning, attention and concentration, short-term memory, and cognitive flexibility (in shifting rapidly from one array to the next).



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