Empirically Supported Interpretation of the WISC-IV: A Commonality Analysis Approach

Empirically Supported Interpretation of the WISC-IV: A Commonality Analysis Approach

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This research was completed in order to develop empirically supported recommendations for interpreting the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-Fourth Edition (WISC-IV). Currently there is a discrepancy between researchers and practitioners with regards to interpretation of the WISC-IV. While some research has suggested that interpreting the WISC-IV Full Scale IQ (FSIQ) is the most parsimonious and valid explanation of an individual's cognitive abilities, other research has demonstrated that interpreting FSIQ may not be valid for specific groups. This archival research study used the nationally represented standardization sample for the WISC-IV. This research divided the WISC-IV standardization sample into groups of high, medium, and low Index score variability. Regression commonality analysis was completed on the three groups to determine the proportion of unique and shared factor variance of WISC-IV Index scores on FSIQ. The results found that for flat and low variability profiles, shared factor variance contributed more to FSIQ than unique factor variance. For highly variable profiles, FSIQ was composed primarily of unique factor variance. These findings establish that for highly variable WISC-IV profiles, interpretation of FSIQ should be abandoned for interpretation of Index scores. These findings have the potential to directly impact students who are referred for special education services. A shift in focus from general cognitive abilities to an analysis of cognitive strengths and weaknesses has the potential to improve educational outcomes by connecting evidenced-based assessment to interventions.Missing from the WISC- IV manual are explicit details of the exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis procedures as well as the factor loads or factor correlations of other factor models (Keith, Fine, Taub, Reynolds, aamp; Kranzler, 2006 ).

Title:Empirically Supported Interpretation of the WISC-IV: A Commonality Analysis Approach
Author:Jennifer E. Underwood
Publisher:ProQuest - 2007


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