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The WISC IV Interpretation

By Inderbir Kaur Sandhu, Ph.D

Q: Recently my son was given the WISC IV test at school for a psyhcoeducational evaluation that his doctor had requested. Below are my questions:

  1. In regards to the VCI, how many areas are covered? Is it true the five areas are similarities, vocabulary, comprehension, information, and word reasoning?

  2. Can PRI score be accurate when the area of Picture Completion was not completed?

  3. Can a full scale IQ be determined when information of Q2 is missing?

A: For your first question, yes, 5 areas are covered in the Verbal Comprehension Index (VCI). However, the information and word reasoning subtests are not included in the index total score.

For question 2, on PRI (Perceptual Reasoning Index), again Picture Completion subtest is not included in the index total score. This is because Picture Completion and other more traditional measures of perceptual ability, measure visual discrimination and attention to visual detail, which is considered a lower order cognitive ability than fluid reasoning. So, yes, PRI score in this case may be accurate.

And yes again for question 3. Hope this has been helpful. It would be better if you see the administrator who conducted the test or a psychologist who is able to explain the results for a better understanding of the individual scores.

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Essentials of WISC-IV Assessment
Dawn P. Flanagan Ph.D, Alan S. Kaufman Ph.D

The WISC-IV is the top intelligence assessment instrument for children in the US, providing essential information into a child's cognitive functioning. This book applies a new, expanded theory-based approach to interpreting the latest edition of the WISCŪ and provides beginning and seasoned clinicians with comprehensive step-by-step guidelines to administering, scoring, and interpreting this latest revision of the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children.

This book provides students and practitioners with an unparalleled resource for learning and application, including expert assessment of the test's relative strengths and weaknesses, valuable advice on its clinical applications, and illuminating case reports.

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