ABILITIES PERTAINING TO CLASSES AND THE LEARNING OF CONCEPTS. STUDIES OF APTITUDES OF HIGH-LEVEL PERSONNEL
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA LOS ANGELES PSYCHOLOGICAL LAB
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The present study attempted to provide empirical foundations for the classes abilities and to investigate their relationships to performance on various concept-learning tasks. A factor analysis of 43 intellectual-aptitude tests, based upon 177 high-school students, identified 15 abilities hypothesized by the structure-of-intellect theory. Of the 15 factors, 11 pertained to classes, and these classes factors separated with regard to the type of content figural, symbolic, and semantic with respect to the operation cognition, memory, divergent production, and convergent production. Three concept-learning tasks, utilizing the same three types of content as the tests, were also administered. Vectors representing the number of correct responses for each learning stage, the number of correctly verbalized concepts at the completion of practice on each task, and a mastery score for each concept were extended into the space of the aptitude factors. The results indicate that particular abilities are relevant to certain learning tasks at different stages of practice. This investigation clearly indicates that any comprehensive theory of concept learning should take into account functions indicated by the intellectual aptitudes. The structure-of-intellect theory provides a rich and useful source of hypotheses concerning such aptitudes.