The use of profile analysis of the WISC-III in processing deficit diagnosis among learning-disabled students
AuthorYuan, Xiujuan, 1964-
KeywordsEducation, Tests and Measurements.
Education, Educational Psychology.
AdvisorSabers, Darrell L.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe purpose of this study was to evaluate current practice of using profile analysis of the WISC-III in the diagnosis of processing deficit in earning disabled students. The types of processing deficit prescribed by school psychologists were examined. The validity of the profile analysis approach in processing deficit diagnosis was investigated. Statistical profile analysis, Cattel's r(p(k)) coefficient, and cluster analysis were used to determine whether the mean WISC-III subtest profiles differ among different processing deficit subgroups, and to determine whether individuals diagnosed with the same processing deficit have similar WISC-III profiles. This study was conducted on a sample of 134 non-Hispanic White students identified as learning disabled in a school district in the West Coast area. The results found numerous types of processing deficit, which were not limited to the eight types defined by the school district. About 50% of the individuals were identified with just one processing deficit, while the other half had two or more processing deficits in combination. In addition, the most frequently diagnosed processing deficits were deficits in auditory processing, visual processing and sensory-motor integration. The mean group profiles of the two largest groups with Auditory Processing Deficit (APD) and Visual Processing Deficit (VPD) were compared using the statistical profile analysis technique. The results showed that the mean profiles of the two groups are not parallel. Based on Cattel's r(p(k)) coefficient, both APD and VPD individuals resemble their own mean group profile more than the other group. However, only 52.5% of individuals matched the mean profile of the group in which they were diagnosed. A similar finding was found in cluster analysis. Only 50% of individuals could be correctly classified into their processing deficit groups based on profile similarities. These findings suggested that only half of the individuals diagnosed with the same processing deficit have similar WISC-III subtest profiles. Caution should be exercised in using the diagnostic information and the use of profile analysis technique in making processing deficit diagnosis. Future studies should be conducted to determine the validity of the various processing deficit diagnoses, and how they are related to the WISC-III subtests.
Degree ProgramGraduate College