Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children

Purpose: Designed for assessing cognitive development in children.

Population: Children, ages 2.5-12.5.

Score: 16 subtests.

Time: (40-85) minutes.

Author(s): Alan Kaufman and Nadeen Kaufman.

Publisher: American Guidance Service.

Description: The Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children (K-ABC) is a clinical instrument for assessing cognitive development. Its construction incorporates several recent developments in both psychological theory and statistical methodology. The K-ABC also gives special attention to certain emerging testing needs, such as use with handicapped groups, application to problems of learning disabilities, and appropriateness for cultural and linguistic minorities. The authors rightly caution, however, that success in meeting these special needs must be judged through practical use over time. They also point out that the K-ABC should not be regarded as "the complete test battery"; like any other test, it should be supplemented and corroborated by other instruments to meet individual needs, such as the Stanford-Binet, Wechsler scales, McCarthy scales, or neuropsychological tests.

Scoring: The 16 subtests are grouped into a mental processing set and achievement set, which yield separate global scores. The mental processing set is then grouped into those requiring primarily sequential processing of information and those requiring simultaneous processing, with separate global scores for each.

Validity and Reliability: Odd-even reliabilities within one-year age groups averaged in the .70s and .80s for subtests; for global scores, the averages were in the high .80s and .90s. Test-retest reliabilities were computed within age groups spanning 3 or 4 years, retested after intervals of 2 to 4 weeks. For subtests, these reliabilities ranged from .59 to .98, clustering in the .70s and .80s; for global scores, they ranged from .77 to .97. In general, reliabilities were higher for the achievement than for the mental processing tests. Concurrent and predictive validity (6- to 12 interval) against standardized achievement tests, were investigated in several small groups of both normal and exceptional children. The correlations vary widely, but most appear promising, and the patterns of correlations with subtests tend to fit theoretical expectations. Analyses by ethnic groups yielded closely similar validities for Blacks, Hispanics, and Whites.

Norms: Norms for the battery are based on administration of the tests to representative samples of 100 children at each 6-moth age interval from 2.5 to 12.5, a total of 2000 individuals. A variety of supplementary norms are provided, some requiring the testing of additional subjects. Sociocultural norms are provided based on a cross-tabulation by race (black-white) and by parental education (less than high school education, high school graduate, and one or more years of college or technical school).

Suggested Uses: Recommended uses of the K-ABC include integration as a component of a cognitive assessment battery in clinical situations.