McClelland D. C. (1973). Testing for competence rather than for intelligence. American Psychologist, 28, 1-14.
Argues that while traditional intelligence tests have been validated almost entirely against school performance, the evidence that they measure abilities which are essential to performing well in various life outcomes is weak.
Most of the validity studies are correlational in nature and fail to control for the fact that social class might be a 3rd variable accounting for positive correlations between test scores and occupational success, and between level of schooling achieved and occupational success.
It is suggested that better measures of competence might be derived by analysis of successful life outcomes and the competencies involved in them, criterion sampling, and assessment of communication skills.
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