Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Robert J. Filer

Second Advisor

Merton E. Carver

Third Advisor

William H. Leftwich


Twelve studies of psychometric prediction using cognitive ability tests with upper level managerial samples are summarized. Of these, only two yield essentially positive results. Meyer (1956) found·a correlation of .27 between Wonderlic scores and overall ratings of 142 supervisors. However, since the raters were free to examine predictor-scores while making their ratings, there is strong evidence that the criterion was contaminated. In an unpublished study, Laurent (1962) correlated ratings of managers with Miller Analogies Test and non-verbal abiliti test scores. With over 200 persons in each sample, he found correlations ranging from .18 to .29, all significant. The majority of the studies in this area, however, do not appear encouraging. While almost all of the correlations using cognitive ability tests are positive, only infrequently are they of sufficient magnitude to be statistically significant, much less practically significant. The conclusion one is forced to accept is that, insofar as the prediction of managerial performance is concerned; the present state of the art in the testing industry is not well developed. There would appear to be several possible explanations for the lack of consistently demonstrated validity encountered in the prediction of managerial performance.

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