Ronald P Carver
Intelligence, October- December 1990
It has been hypothesized that the relationship between reading ability and intelligence—as measured by the Raven Progressive Matrices test—is small and insignificant. It has also been hypothesized that this relationship is higher in the upper grades of school as compared to the lower grades. These two hypotheses were investigated by administering the Raven Progressive Matrices test and the National Reading Standards test to 486 students in Grades 2–12 of a small-town, rural school district. The correlations between these two tests for each of Grades 2–12 varied from about .40 to .60 with an average of about .50. There was no trend indicating that the correlation increased with each grade in school. Criteria have been developed for judging the effect size of correlations, and this .50 correlation would be considered as large. These data can be interpreted as indicating that general intelligence, as measured by the Raven test, has a strong and consistent relationship to reading ability.
[If alphabetism is the ability to vocalize written words, there are not many analphabets in the Western world. If alphabetism is the ability to understand written material, every human population contains quite a few analphabets.]