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Commenting on the “Great Debate”: General Abilities, Specific Abilities, and the Tools of the Trade

1
Department of Psychological Sciences, Rice University, Houston, TX 77005, USA
2
Academic to Career Research Center, Research & Development, Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ 08541, USA
3
Department of Personnel Management, Work, and Organizational Psychology, Ghent University, Henri Dunantlaan 2, 9000 Ghent, Belgium
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 23 January 2019 / Accepted: 11 February 2019 / Published: 18 February 2019
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Abstract

We review papers in the special issue regarding the great debate on general and specific abilities. Papers in the special issue either provided an empirical examination of the debate using a uniform dataset or they provided a debate commentary. Themes that run through the papers and that are discussed further here are that: (1) the importance of general and specific ability predictors will largely depend on the outcome to be predicted, (2) the effectiveness of both general and specific predictors will largely depend on the quality and breadth of how the manifest indicators are measured, and (3) research on general and specific ability predictors is alive and well and more research is warranted. We conclude by providing a review of potentially fruitful areas of future research. View Full-Text
Keywords: cognitive abilities; specific abilities; general abilities; general mental ability; relative importance; narrow abilities; subscores; intelligence; cognitive tests cognitive abilities; specific abilities; general abilities; general mental ability; relative importance; narrow abilities; subscores; intelligence; cognitive tests
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Beier, M.E.; Kell, H.J.; Lang, J.W.B. Commenting on the “Great Debate”: General Abilities, Specific Abilities, and the Tools of the Trade. J. Intell. 2019, 7, 5.

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