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Durham University

School of Education

Staff Profile

Publication details for Prof Joe Elliott

Elliott, J. & Resing, W.C.M. (2015). Can Intelligence Testing Inform Educational Intervention for Children with Reading Disability? Journal of Intelligence 3(4): 137-157.

Author(s) from Durham


This paper examines the value of intelligence testing for the purpose of informing us how best to intervene with children with reading disability. While the original function of IQ testing was to ascertain whether a child was capable of profiting from schooling, there are many who now claim that cognitive assessment offers a range of diagnostic and prescriptive functions which can help teachers in delivering effective educational programs. This paper interrogates such assertions in relation to the assessment of IQ, cognitive strengths and weaknesses, executive functions, and the use of dynamic testing/assessment. The paper concludes that current evidence indicates that cognitive measures have limited relevance for instructional planning, and cognitive training programs have yet to show sufficient academic gains. For these reasons, it is recommended that our energies should be directed to the continuing development of powerful forms of academic skills-based instruction operating within a response to intervention framework.