IQ’s Corner: An Alternative Approach to Researching Cognitive and Performance Relationships: An Introduction to Quantile Regression General knowledge

An Alternative Approach to Researching Cognitive and Performance Relationships: An Introduction to the SpringerLink Quantile Regression

• • Daniel B. Hajovsky, Ethan F. Villeneuve, W. Joel Schneider & Jacqueline M. Caemmerer

• • Journal of Pediatric Neuropsychology (2020)Quote this article

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A large number of previous work shows that cognitive skills and basic academic skills explain individual differences in performance in reading, writing and mathematics. However, this research focuses exclusively on the average relationships between cognitive and performance scores, without considering whether the effects vary with different academic performance thresholds. To overcome this limitation, we used unconditional quantile regression to examine the impact of cognitive and basic and intermediate academic skills on advanced performance outcomes as a function of reading, writing, or math levels in a large, nationally representative sample of adolescents and adolescents (N.= 3891). Quantile regression is a methodical technique that can be used to investigate in a more differentiated manner whether there are different effects along the distribution of a result ability that often remains undetected when using more conventional regression methods that focus on medium effects. The results of this exploratory study generally showed that cognitive skills, as well as basic and intermediate academic skills, differed in patterns depending on the level of achievement, with stronger effects often being observed when performance in measuring academic outcomes was lower. This exploratory study provides a vivid example of the unconditional quantile regression and how it can be interpreted and applied in an area relevant to pediatric neuropsychology.


Kevin S. McGrew, PhD

Educational & School Psychologist


Institute for Applied Psychometry (IAP)


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