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ADHD and WISC-V Score Interpretation

By Inderbir Kaur Sandhu, Ph.D


Q: Our seven year old son was recently diagnosed with ADHD at the end of first grade. I am still having trouble understanding his test scores and whether he falls into a gifted category. The following are his scores:

WISC-V:
Scale

IQ-Score**

Verbal Comprehension 133 (Superior)

Visual Spatial Skills 119 (High Average)

Fluid Reasoning 106 (Average)

Processing Speed 98 (Average)

Working Memory 88 (Low Average)


Full Scale IQ 111 (High Average)

General Ability Index (GAI) 120 (Superior)

VMI:
Scale
Standard Score**

Visual Motor Integration 101 (Average)

WJ-IV:
Scale
Standard Score**

Reading Composite 123 (Superior; 4th Grade Level)

Writing Composite 124 (Superior; 4th Grade Level)

Math Composite 104 (Average; 2nd Grade Level)

We love to get a better interpretation of these scores. Thank you.

A: Based on his scores, he may not typically qualify for the gifted education programme admission as his full scale IQ would need to be around 128 and above. However, he is surely verbally gifted and an advanced programme to further enhance his verbal skills would be beneficial and he could reach new heights.

Since he has been diagnosed with ADHD, he qualifies for some educational help. His GAI score is stated as Superior which is very high (however, a score of 120 is a borderline score between superior and high average). The GAI provides an estimate of general intellectual ability that is less reliant on working memory and processing speed, than the FSIQ. Children with ADHD generally tend to perform less well in these areas and if the gap is significant, a GAI score can be generated.

High GAI Scores (as in your son's case) indicate well-developed abstract, conceptual reasoning, visual-perceptual and spatial reasoning, and verbal problem solving. His scores clearly indicates that he has the ability to perform much better than what the scores are showing if he has some help in processing speed and working memory areas.

Do speak to the school authorities or a specialist now how best to help him use this strengths and work on his weaknesses. Wishing you all the best.


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