Raven, J. (2005, October 1). Raven’s Progressive Matrices: The “Flynn Effect” Continues. WebPsychEmpiricist. Retrieved October 1, 2005, from http://wpe.info/papers_table.html

(i) Data collected with the Coloured Progressive Matrices test in Poland and Korea strongly suggest that the “Flynn Effect” (viz. the successive increase in scores with each new birth cohort) is continuing. (ii) So far as can be judged from the available data, the increase in scores affects people of all levels of ability (and is not confined to the “less able”), but severe methodological problems face those who wish to compare the relative size of the gains made by people of different levels of ability. (iii) This across-the-board effect confirms that the increase is not due to the remediation of obvious environmental defects. (iv) Further cross-cultural data added to the data pool in recent years confirm that most of the hypotheses commonly put forward to explain the increase are invalid. (v) Increases in life expectancy over the same period of time as data for the Progressive Matrices exist invalidate most of the inferences (e.g. that “the tests cannot save themselves”) which Flynn initially drew from his data. (vi) These same data also call into question the common inference that the single-dimensional properties of the Raven Progressive Matrices (demonstrated using Item Response Theory) suggest that a single psychological process (e.g. “speed of neural transmission”) un
derlies the variance in scores.

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