Cognitive assessment of average and superior children: The Kaufman assessment battery for children versus the Das research battery
Hoke, William Eugene
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The Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (K-ABC) is a relatively new measure of cognitive/intellectual abilities. Results from the experimental literature have challenged the validity of the K-ABC Sequential Scale with gifted children and the use of optional verbal and manual coaching of test procedures. These subjects were the foci of the present study. The K-ABC was administered to 100 children equally divided into gifted and average-intelligence groups. The Das-Naglieri Cognitive Assessment Battery was also administered to validate the K-ABC Sequential Scale. As well, subjects were administered measures of receptive language and reading comprehension. Finally, the frequency and patterns of use of "teaching the task" were evaluated. Results of principal component and factor analysis indicated a very strong primary factor in both batteries. Secondary factors were non-significant in factor analysis and minimally significant in principal component analysis. Measures of short-term auditory and visual memory contributed the most variance to the primary factors. Varimax rotation failed to significantly match the a_ priori distribution of subtests along the sequential-simultaneous axes. Findings regarding "teaching the task" revealed that only 8 of the 100 subjects required additional assistance. Overall, results clearly showed that the two-factor model of the K-ABC was not supported with this sample. Results also indicated that the definition and assessment of sequential processing need significant refinement. As a result, the paradigm underlying the K-ABC seems to be tenuous. Future research should concentrate on refining the underlying construct of the K-ABC.