Cognitive controls and mental retardation

David L. Wolitzky, Ricardo Hofer, Robert Shapiro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Devised a color-digit interference task and 2 sorting tasks as variants of the Stroop Color-Word Test and R. Gardner, et al. (see record 1961-02266-001) sorting tasks, respectively. These tasks proved applicable to a mentally retarded sample (n = 39) and provided reliable measures of 2 cognitive control dimensions (constricted-flexible control and equivalence range). As predicted, the main test scores were significantly more variable in retarded Ss than in normals (n = 32). Analyses of performance on the color-digit interference task indicated that retarded Ss were significantly slower than the normals on all parts of the task, particularly under conditions of distraction (whether inherent in the task or externally imposed). Low IQ retarded Ss were significantly slower than high IQ retarded Ss on all parts of the task. The extreme cognitive control test scores of the retarded Ss, the nature of the attentional deficit among these Ss, and the relevance of a cognitive control approach for the training of retarded persons are discussed. (16 ref.) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)296-302
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of abnormal psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1972


  • color-digit interference task & Stroop Color-Word Test & cognitive control dimensions, retardates vs. normals

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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