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Michalczyk, Kurt; Malstädt, Nadine; Worgt, Maria; Könen, Tanja; Hasselhorn, Marcus:

Age differences and measurement
Invariance of working memory in 5- to 12-year-old children

In: European Journal of Psychological Assessment, 29 (2013) 3 , 220-229

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Document type
3a. Beiträge in begutachteten Zeitschriften; Aufsatz (keine besondere Kategorie)

Arbeitsgedächtnis, Grundschulalter, Kind, Kognitive Entwicklung, Kognitive Prozesse, Messung, Messverfahren, Phonologie, Raumvorstellung, Sekundarstufe I, Strukturgleichungsmodell, Test, Vorschulalter

In this study, we investigated working memory structure and measurement invariance of working memory in children between 5 and 12 years. In a sample of 1,669 children, we administered a battery of 12 computer-based working memory subtests. We found the same tripartite structure of working memory with a phonological loop, a visual-spatial sketchpad, and a central executive in the age groups 5-6 years, 7-9 years, and 10-12 years; interrelations of the latent factors were invariant across the age groups. Only the relationships between the phonological loop and the central executive were weaker in the 5- to 6-year-olds than in the older age groups. The results corroborate the tripartite working memory model developed by Baddeley (1986) and show that the functional relationships between working memory components are mostly invariant through childhood. In addition, the findings indicate that future research should focus on extending the model by a fourth factor representing inhibition.

Education and Human Development