Academic journal article Journal of Behavioural Sciences

Adaptation and Validation of the Verbal Comprehension Index (VCI) Subtests of WISC-IV UK in Pakistan

Academic journal article Journal of Behavioural Sciences

Adaptation and Validation of the Verbal Comprehension Index (VCI) Subtests of WISC-IV UK in Pakistan

Article excerpt

Intelligence testing with its strong history and ever growing scope can be regarded as "mother of psychometrics". Like many other developing countries, intelligence testing has gained much attention in Pakistan for educational, clinical, and research purposes. Many intelligence tests are in use in Pakistan by different organizations and testing services (Mahmood, 1991). Some efforts have been made to develop indigenous intelligence tests for use in Pakistan but due to limited resources, these efforts can not be considered as satisfactory. First, most of these tests are non-verbal in nature while in educational research measurement of verbal intellectual ability is of much importance (Gardaizi, 2001). Secondly, most of these tests are not standardized adequately, so due to limited normative data, they are not applicable or interpretable through out the country. Moreover, most of them are not following the recent intelligence testing trends as they are relying on the old dichotomy of verbal/non-verbal and verbal/performance intelligence for their interpretation (see for example Test of Intellectual Development for Pakistani pre-school children; Abbas & Israr, 1990, Group Verbal Intelligence Test; Hussain, 2001, & Indigenous Non-verbal Test of Intelligence; Gardaizi, 2001). In the presence of such difficulties like having limited resources and expertise, it is more practical to adapt already existing well-established tests against local criteria and context (Hambleton & Pastula, 1999).

Test adaptation involves balanced handling of psychological, psychometric, linguistic, cross-cultural, and cultural considerations in assessment (Van de Vijver & Poortinga, as cited in Hassan, 2006). Test adaptation is beneficial as it limits duplication of efforts in test construction; save test developmental cost; help in achieving fairness in assessment; and facilitates comparative studies across cultures (Hambleton & Pastula, 1999). Specially, in researches where cross-cultural comparison is required adaptation of test is almost essential. So many countries have adapted internationally known intelligence and cognitive tests for their countries (Glaub & Kamphus, 1991). Very few efforts have been made to adapt intelligence tests in Pakistan. Even the intelligence tests that have been adapted in this country can not be considered psychometrically sound due to limited adherence to the standard test adaptation guidelines (Aziz, 1997). Hence a need is felt for comprehensive intellectual assessment tool in Pakistan. Especially for children the importance for a comprehensive, well-standardized intelligence assessment tool is multifold. Intellectual ability needs to be assessed to predict child's learning potential and it is of great utility in clinical and research fields as well.

Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children - Fourth edition (WISC-IV; Wechsler, 2003) with its clinical utility, psychometric soundness, and comprehensive interpretative system is one of the most widely used tests for children in the world especially in English speaking countries. It is the language and the culturally loaded content that limit its use in non-English speaking countries. To compensate for that limitation WISC has been translated or adapted to many languages and norms have been established for a number of countries (e.g. WISC-IV Australian, 2003; WISC-IV Spanish, 2005). WISC-III is available to the practitioners in more than two dozen languages with norms available in more than 16 languages and countries. Various editions of WISC have also been adapted in many Asian countries like India, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan (as cited in Paniker, Hirisave, & Subbakrishna, 2006; Weiss el al., 2006). In Pakistan clinicians, researchers, and educationists cannot benefit effectively from WISC due to language, cultural, and ethnic differences. So its adaptation following all the adaptation guidelines would help in assessing intellectual ability of children effectively. …

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