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The Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices in Healthy Children: A Qualitative Approach


Studies on the structure of intelligence refer to two main theoretical models: the first one considers intelligence as a unitary construct, the second one assumes the involvement of a plurality of factors. Studies using Raven’s Coloured Progressive Matrices (RCPM) tasks have often highlighted the involvement of dierent cognitive abilities and brain structures, but in the clinical setting, RCPM measurement continues to be used as a single score. The current study aimed to analyse the RCPM performance following qualitative clustering, in order to provide an interpretation of the intelligence assessment through a factorial criterion. The RCPM have been administered to a large group of typically developing children between 6 and 11 years of age. The sample was divided into twelve age groups, and the performance of each age group was shown. Three qualitative item clusters were identified through a factorial criterion. Data showed that performance on RCPM may arise from dierent cognitive abilities, starting from basic attentional skills up to the more complex ones that require perceptual or analogical reasoning. The qualitative parameters could provide more eective diagnostic and treatment suggestions than a single total score in the clinical setting, and may be crucial for focusing on strength and weakness in the intellectual functionality evaluation of children.