Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Cognitive Abilities (WJ
III®) Richard W. Woodcock, Kevin S. McGrew &
Nancy Mather, Riverside Publishing, 2001
Unlike many individual ability tests, the WJ III® Tests of Cognitive
explicitly designed to assess a student’s abilities on many specific McGrew,
Flanagan, and Ortiz Integrated Cattell-Horn-Carroll Gf-Gc (CHC) "cognitive
factors," not just a total score or a few factors. Each of seven tests in
the Standard Battery is designed to measure one factor. The Extended Battery
offers 7 more tests to make two for each factor. There are 3 Standard and 3
Extended tests that contribute to additional Clinical Clusters. Tests can also
be combined into a General Intellectual Ability (GIA Std) score of 7 or 14 tests
(GIA Ext) and into several Cognitive Categories. Examiners are permitted to
select the tests they need to assess abilities in which they are interested for
a particular student. The WJ III® was normed on 8,818 children and adults (4,783
in grades kindergarten through 12) in a well-designed, national sample. The same
persons also provided norms for the WJ III® tests of academic achievement, so the
ability and achievement tests can be compared directly, and cognitive and
achievement tests can be combined to measure CHC factors.
The description below are not the
"official" descriptions provided by the WJ III® manual.
1. Verbal Comprehension. Naming pictures, giving ant--
or synonyms for spoken words, and completing oral analogies.
11. General Information. Answering "where" and
"what" factual questions.
Long-Term Retrieval (Glr) [note - "long-term" can be as short
as several minutes]
2. Visual-Auditory Learning. The student is taught rebus
symbols for words and tries to "read" sentences written with the
12. Retrieval Fluency. The student tries to name as many things as
possible in one minute in each of three specified categories, e.g., fruits.
Visual Processing (Gv)
3. Spatial Relations. The student tries to select by sight
alone, from many choices, the fragments that could be assembled into a given
13. Picture Recognition. The student is shown one or more pictures and
then tries to identify it or them on another page that includes several
Auditory Processing (Ga)
4. Sound Blending. The student
tries to identify words dictated broken into separate sounds.
14. Auditory Attention. The student tries to recognize words dictated
against increasingly loud background noise..
Fluid Reasoning (Gf)
5. Concept Formation. For each item, the student tries to figure
out the rule that divides a set of symbols into two groups.
15. Analysis-Synthesis. The student tries to solve logical puzzles
involving color codes similar to mathematical and scientific symbolic rules.
Processing Speed (Gs)
6. Visual Matching. As quickly as possible for three minutes,
the student circles two identical numbers in each row of six numbers.
16. Decision Speed. As quickly as possible for three minutes, the
student tries to find the two pictures in each row that are most similar
conceptually (e.g., sundial and stopwatch).
Short-Term Memory (Gsm)
7. Numbers Reversed. Repeating increasingly long
series of dictated digits in reversed order.
17. Memory for Words. The student tries to repeat dictated random
series of words in order.
8. Incomplete Words. The student attempts to recognize words
dictated with some sounds omitted. Ga.
9. Auditory Working Memory. The student tries to repeat
randomly dictated words and numbers (e.g., cow 9 up 3 5) with the words
first and then the numbers in the order they were dictated. This test also
measures Gsm or working memory or division of attention.
10. Visual-Auditory Learning – Delayed. The student tries again to
"read" sentences written with the rebuses learned in
Visual-Auditory Learning. There are norms from one half-hour to 8 days. This
is an additional measure of Glr.
18. Rapid Picture Naming. The student tries to name simple
pictures as quickly as possible for 2 minutes. This test measures Gs
and naming facility or Rapid Automatized Naming RAN)
19. Planning. The student tries to trace a complex, overlapping path
without lifting the pencil, retracing any part of the path, or skipping any
part. Gf and Gv are involved in this test.
20. Pair Cancellation. The student tries scans rows of pictures and
tries, as quickly as possible for 3 minutes to circle each instance in which
a certain picture is followed by a certain other picture (e.g., each cat
followed by a tree). This test also measures Gs.