IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Improvements and future challenges for the research infrastructure in the field “Measuring cognitive ability”


  • Roland H. Grabner
  • Elsbeth Stern


The assessment of cognitive abilities is critical in large-scale survey studies that aim at elucidating the longitudinal interplay between the individual’s cognitive potential and socio-economic variables. The format of such studies calls for assessment methods which can not only be administered economically but also display a high (psychometric) measurement quality. In consideration of recent theoretical and empirical advances in intelligence research, we recommend the implementation of tests drawing on working memory in large-scale survey studies. Working memory is a limited-capacity system for temporary storage and processing of information and currently discussed to be the cognitive key system underlying intellectual abilities. Four types of working memory tests are exemplarily described and critically evaluated with regard to their psychometric quality and the need for further evaluation.

Suggested Citation

  • Roland H. Grabner & Elsbeth Stern, 2008. "Improvements and future challenges for the research infrastructure in the field “Measuring cognitive ability”," Working Paper Series of the German Council for Social and Economic Data 49, German Council for Social and Economic Data (RatSWD).
  • Handle: RePEc:rsw:rswwps:rswwps49

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    cognitive abilities; intelligence; knowledge; information processing; mental speed; working memory;

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:rsw:rswwps:rswwps49. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (RatSWD). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.