Class Notes - Exam 2 Notes Language Problem Solving and...

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Exam 2 Notes Language, Problem Solving and Intelligence ° Introduction Higher order cognition includes o Language o Problem solving o Intelligence o Executive functions (high clinical relevance) Executive functions include o Selective attention, working memory o Ability to plan, avoid distractions Language o A multidimensional construct o Some aspects are preserved, others decline Intelligence: o Psychometric measures o Wisdom, social competence ° ° Language Preserved language skills A glimpse of language and co-operative cognition o http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUma-9YC32Y
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“Language behaviors” that do not decline with age o Verbal abilities o Organization of semantic memory o Spread of activation “Language behaviors” that do decline with age: o Lexical skills show declines Naming skills Definitional skills o Discourse production shows declines o Comprehension of spoken language shows declines o Other Drawing inferences in written discourse Verbal fluency Verbal analogies ° ° Intelligence Definitions of intelligence o Intuitive sense of what intelligence is o Little agreement in singular definitions of intelligence o Popular definitions Ability to learn
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Ability to organize experience and recognize relationships Effective utilization of stored information Capability of modifying the environment Measuring intelligence o Psychometric measures o Picture of intellectual competence in adulthood Traditional conceptualizations of intelligence o Historical antecedents Early intelligence tests James Cattell – “mental test” Alfred Binet Army Alpha First used during WWI to classify men for various assignments in the military First large-scale application of an intelligence test for adults Results from this testing and other studies similar to this during that time What might be wrong with concluding that intelligence declines with age based on these data? Speeded tests Failure to control for age-related differences in educational background ° ° Differences Based on Methodologies Cross-sectional
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o Found a decline in intelligence with age Longitudinal o Found a slight increase in intelligence with age Methodological concerns o Cross-sectional compared people from different eras and educational backgrounds o Longitudinal cannot account for whether more intelligent people lived longer (and thus remained in the study over time Alternative explanation: What were they measuring? o Designed to tap unitary intelligence component o Intelligence is not unitary Major division of intelligence o Fluid intelligence One’s ability to adaptively manipulate information and solve problems Declines with age o Crystallized intelligence One’s ability to recall facts and other concrete information Increases with age ° ° Psychometric Measures of Intelligence Overview o Composite indices of intelligence and aging Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-IV)
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