Investigating the Dimensional-Factorial Structure of Cognitive Abilities of the 9th Grade Students

Document Type : Research Article


1 Ph.D student in Educational Psychology, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz, Iran.

2 Professor in Educational Psychology, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz, Iran.

3 Assistant Professor in Educational Psychology, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz, Iran.

4 Associate Professor in Educational Psychology, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz, Iran.


Objective: Investigating the dimensional-factorial structure of cognitive abilities is an important issue for measuring, interfering and developing these abilities as evidence of its structure's validity from the aspects of content and cognitive processes. This research was conducted with the aim of investigating the dimensional-factorial structure of cognitive abilities and providing a model for this structure in comparison with the presented structures of cognitive abilities such as general intelligence theory (factor g).
Method: The research method was descriptive-analytic and modeling the relationship between items and responses. The sample size of the study consisted of 1105 ninth grade students (578 boys and 527 girls) selected by stratified random sampling from among 32 high schools in Ahwaz. Data analysis was performed using cluster analysis methods based on the conditional covariance proximity (HAC/CCPROX) and PolyDETECT, Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) and Monte Carlo simulation.
Results: The results of the analysis showed that the structure of cognitive abilities of students is two-dimensional. The first dimension was named non-social cognition and includes six factors namely retrospective memory, prospective memory, inhibitory control, decision-making, planning, and sustain attention. The second dimension was called social cognition, which included only social cognition factor. Also, the validity and reliability of the dimensions and the obtained factors were confirmed.
Discussion and Conclusion: The results of this study showed that the unidimensional theory of general intelligence (factor g) is not a complete theory for the structure of cognitive abilities and the factor g can not explain the variance of social cognition. Thus, the theory underlying the present study was called "Thetwo dimensionaltheory of social-nonsocialcognitive abilities". Also, the results of this study confirmed the findings of some studies that non-social cognition and social cognition form two different dimensions of cognitive abilities.


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