Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC V)

The WISC-V is the brand new gold standard assessment tool designed to measure a child's intellectual ability. It is the latest edition to replace the existing WISC-IV assessment tool. It has more interpretive power, is more efficient and more user-friendly version of the Wechsler test and has updated psychometric properties. 

The Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children Australian and New Zealand Standardised, Fifth Edition (WISC-VA&NZ) is an individually administered comprehensive clinical instrument for assessing the cognitive ability/intelligence of children aged 6 years 0 months through 16 years 11 months (6:0 - 16:11).

The WISC-V provides subtest and composite scores that represent intellectual functioning in specific cognitive domains, as well as a composite score that represents the general intellectual ability. The WISC-V is composed of 16 subtests; Subtests can be grouped into two general categories: primary or secondary.

Administration of the 10 primary subtests is recommended for a comprehensive description of intellectual ability. The 6 secondary subtests can be administered in addition to the primary subtests to provide a broader sampling of intellectual functioning and to yield more information for clinical decision making. The 10 primary subtests are used in certain combinations to derive the FSIQ, the five primary index scores and three of the five ancillary index scores. Seven of the ten primary subtests are used to derive the FSIQ.

This assessment provides the following scores:

  • A Composite Score that represents a child's overall intellectual ability (FSIQ)
  • Primary Index Scores that measure the following areas of cognitive functioning: Verbal Comprehension Index (VCI), Visual Spatial Index (VSI), Fluid Reasoning Index (FRI), Working Memory Index (WMI), and the Processing Speed Index (PSI).
  • Ancillary Index Scores are also provided: The Quantitative Reasoning Index (QRI) ; Auditory Working Memory Index (AWMI); Nonverbal Index (NVI); General Ability Index (GAI); and the Cognitive Proficiency Index (CPI).

Some other benefits of the WISC-V include:

  • Updated items and stimuli
  • Added interpretative information useful in assisting the diagnosis of reading disorders, language disorders, ADHD, nonverbal difficulties, visual vs auditory memory deficits, executive function difficulties and visual perception issues.

It is possible for intellectual abilities to change over the course of childhood. Additionally, a child's scores on the WISC-V can be influenced by motivation, attention, interests, and opportunities for learning. For these reasons, some scores might be slightly higher or lower if a child was tested again at another time. It is therefore important to view test scores as a snapshot of a child's current level of intellectual functioning. When these scores are used as part of a comprehensive evaluation, they contribute to an understanding of a child's current strengths and any needs that can be addressed.

Ability Classification of WISC-V

Standard ScoresQualitative DescriptionsPercent of Cases
130 and above Extremely High 2.2 %
120 - 129 Very High 6.7 %
110 - 119 High Average 16.1 %
90 - 109 Average 50 %
80 - 89 Low Average 16.1 %
70 - 79 Very Low 6.7 %
69 and below Extremely Low 2.2%