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AAMC P/S Section Bank Question 67.
#1 Posted : Monday, July 19, 2021 6:26:22 AM
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The independent question reads: "A researcher finds a +0.38 correlation between a test of verbal intelligence and a test of spatial intelligence. Speculating about a common factor, “g,” the researcher concludes that:"
A) Performance on both tests is partly determined by "g"
B) The two tests measure different things, which does not include a g component.
C) Both tests are excellent measures of g
D) g is a statistical artifact with no real-world validity.

The answer is A and I don't understand why. If the question says that there is a correlation between the two tests doesn't that mean it only looked at the relationship between the two tests and not any other factors? I was thinking that it meant that a scores on one test are correlated with scores on the other test (ex. you score high on verbal intelligence test you are likely to score high on spatial intelligence test as well.)

I understand that the question said there could be a common factor between them but I thought because the correlation analysis wasn't performed between the tests and the factor g specifically, I couldn't draw correlational relationships between the tests and factor g. I thought the answer was B.

An explanation would be greatly appreciated :)

Thanks in advance,
#2 Posted : Tuesday, July 20, 2021 4:50:22 PM
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Hi Lauren,

When answering this question, the first thing I asked myself was: "What is the g factor?".

The G factor states that intelligence exists as a single factor and this applies to ALL areas in our life. It was developed on a correlational basis: scoring high in one area predicted a high score in another.

In the question stem, they tell us that there is a positive relationship (a correlation) between scores on a verbal intelligence test and a spatial intelligence test.

If we are speculating that a g factor exists, this would mean that someone would score similarly on different intelligence tests because intelligence is ONE thing that gets applied to the other areas in our life.

The theory of the G factor was elaborated by looking at how high scores in one area predicted high scores in another. Correlations are just relationships. It doesn't tell us if there is a moderating or mediating variable that explains those relationships, it just tells us there is one. Here, the g factor is what would explain the relationship between the scores. That is why A is correct.

I hope this helps!

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