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Perceptual Speed (Identical Forms) is one test in a battery designed to establish a profile of scores on a selection of well-known primary mental abilities. One of the primary mental abilities in visual thinking that has been identified repeatedly is perceptual speed. It is the ability to rapidly compare visual configurations and identify two figures as similar or identical or to identify some particular detail that is buries in distracting material.
Thurstone notes that given the task to find a particular word in a page of print, some people seem to be able to locate it by a dispersed attention to the page as a whole, while others require systematic search through each successive line of print (Thurstone, 1938). The Perceptual Speed test has been used in at least 16 different factorial studies and is an excellent test of the ability of perceptual speed.
The test booklet contains one page of instructions and practice exercises, and seven pages of test items. There are 140 items in the test. Each item presents a figure at the left which is repeated at the right as on of five similar figures. The subject marks the number of the figure at the right which is identical with the figure at the left. The test is timed and is a measure of the speed with which the subject can perceive identities in sets of similar-appearing figures. The test is a paper and pencil test and can be administered individually or to groups. It can be used with a wide variety of subject of all ages and can be appropriately administered in schools whenever a test of perpetual speed is desired. However, present usage is predominantly in industry and governmental organizations and norms are provided for these personnel.
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