Wechsler Scales for Children

WISC-V is an individually administered intelligence test for children between the ages of 6 and 16 inclusive that can be completed without reading or writing.

Elucidate Wechsler Scales for children.

David Wechsler supported the definition of intelligence as a global entity. He developed the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC) which belongs to the category of tests not derived from theory. The Fifth Edition (WISC-V) is the most current version.


The subscales are clustered in four categories as listed below:

  1. Verbal Comprehension Index (VCI):
    1. Vocabulary - asked to define a provided word.
    2. Similarities - asked how two words are alike/similar.
    3. Comprehension - questions about social situations or common concepts.
    4. Information (supplemental) - general knowledge questions.
    5. Word reasoning (supplemental)- a task involving clues that lead to a specific word
  2. Perceptual Reasoning Index (PRI):
    1. Block Design — children put together red-and-white blocks in a pattern
    2. Picture Concepts — children asked to determine which pictures go together from a series of pictures
    3. Matrix Reasoning — children select picture that fits a missing picture in an array 
    4. Picture Completion (supplemental) - children identify missing part of an artwork/common object by pointing and/or naming.
  3. Working Memory Index (WMI):
    1. Digit Span - children asked to repeat orally given sequences of numbers, 
    2. Letter-Number Sequencing — children provide back to the examiner, in a predetermined order, a series of numbers and letters
    3. Arithmetic (supplemental) - orally administered arithmetic questions.
  4. Processing Speed Index (PSI):
    1. Coding — children under 8 mark rows of shapes with different lines according to a code, children over 8 transcribe a digit-symbol code. 
    2. Symbol Search — children asked to mark whether or not target symbols appear in given row of symbols.
    3. Cancellation (supplemental)- children mark specific target pictures in a random and structured arrangements of pictures


WISC-V is an individually administered intelligence test for children between the ages of 6 and 16 inclusive that can be completed without reading or writing. It takes 48–65 minutes to administer. Variation in testing procedures and goals can reduce time of assessment to 15-20 minutes for the assessment of a single primary index, or increase testing time to three or more hours for a complete assessment, including all primary, ancillary, and complementary indices. 

Purpose and Scoring

  • It generates a Full Scale IQ (formerly known as an intelligence quotient or IQ score) which represents a child's general intellectual ability. 
  • It also provides five primary index scores (i.e., Verbal Comprehension Index, Visual Spatial Index, Fluid Reasoning Index, Working Memory Index, and Processing Speed Index) that represent a child's abilities in more discrete cognitive domains. 
  • Five ancillary composite scores can be derived from various combinations of primary or primary and secondary subtests. 
  • Five complementary subtests yield three complementary composite scores to measure related cognitive abilities relevant to assessment and identification of specific learning disabilities, particularly dyslexia and dyscalculia. 

* * *

The WISC, is an individually administered intelligence test for children between the ages of 6 and 16. It generates a full scale IQ and scores across four dimensions – Verbal Comprehension Index, Perceptual Reasoning Index, Working Memory Index and Processing Speed Index.


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