Intellectual assessments: Wechsler or Stanford-Binet?

By Karen King

In the process of learning about giftedness and gifted assessments, many parents come across one particular question: which tool is the best for assessing my child? While there is no definitive answer to this question, as each assessment tool offers different pros and cons, it can be difficult for parents to gain a sense of exactly what each tool offers.

Here, we provide an overview of three of the most commonly used IQ tests in Australia; the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children, Fifth Edition: Australian and New Zealand Standardised Edition (WISC-V A&NZ), the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence, Fourth Edition: Australian and New Zealand Standardised Edition (WPPSI-IV A&NZ), and the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scales Fifth Edition (SB5).

Wechsler Intelligence Scale for ChildrenWechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of IntelligenceStanford-Binet Intelligence Scales
The WISC-V is appropriate for children aged 6 to 16. It can be completed in approximately an hour and a half.The WPPSI-IV is for children aged 2 to 7 years. It can also be completed in an hour and a half.The SB5 can be used with adults and children over the age of 2. It takes about 90 minutes to administer.
Test Format
The WISC-V consists of five indexes measuring different abilities:
Verbal Comprehension – a measure of the child’s ability to reason with previously learned verbal concepts
Visual Spatial – the ability to work with visually presented information
Working Memory – being able to hold and manipulate verbal information in short term memory
Fluid Reasoning – the ability to problem solve and think flexibly
Processing Speed – the ability to work quickly and accurately with visual information
The WPPSI-IV consists of the same five indexes as the WISC-V:
Verbal Comprehension
Visual Spatial
Working Memory
Fluid Reasoning
Processing Speed
The SB5 contains five composites:
Knowledge – tests previously learned information, such as vocabulary
Quantitative Reasoning – a measure of the application of mathematical skills
Visual-spatial Processing – the ability to make sense of visually presented information
Working Memory
Fluid Reasoning
Along with scores for each of the above indexes, the WISC-V can provide a Full Scale IQ score (which is calculated using all indexes) and a General Ability Index score (which uses only the Verbal and Perceptual scores, and is useful for children experiencing difficulties with working memory or processing speed).Along with scores for each of the above indexes, the WPPSI-IV can provide a Full Scale IQVocabulary Acquisition Index (which offers an estimate of vocabulary acquisition), Non-Verbal Index (an estimate of expressive language ability), General Ability Index, and Cognitive Proficiency Index (an estimate of the efficiency with which cognitive information is processed).Along with scores for each of the above indexes, the SB5 also provides a Full Scale IQ score, a Verbal IQ score, and a Non-verbal IQ score.
Normative Data
Normative data refers to a reference population that an individual’s score can be compared to. For the WISC-V, this population consists of 528 children from Australia and New Zealand, aged between six and sixteen and eleven months.For the WPPSI-IV, the normative population consists of 428 children from Australia and New Zealand, aged from two years and six months to seven years and seven months.For the SB5, normative data was obtained from 4,800 participants in the United States of America, varying in age, sex, race/ethnicity, geographic region, and socioeconomic level.

At Early Start Australia Subiaco, we use the WISC-V on iPad.  This ensures the data we collect and analyse for each individual child accurately reflects their true intellectual profile.

More posts you might be interested in

Subscribe to our newsletter