Early Literacy Research Library (ELRL) - Metric

Woodcock Johnson Tests (WJ)


Access: FREE/Open Access

evaluation focus

Cognitive Abilities

applicable ages

24+ months; 2+ years

available language(s)



Must be purchased


The Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Cognitive Abilities (WJ) is an intelligence test, also known as an IQ test, for young children through late adulthood. It was first developed by Woodcock and Johnson in 1977 and has since been revised several times. These tests may be useful for monitoring learning progress, identifying learning disabilities, and addressing them through education and interventional programs.


Domains Assessed:

    • general intellectual ability
    • academic achievement
    • scholastic aptitude
    • cognitive abilities
    • oral language

Separate Test Batteries:

    • WJ-III Tests of Achievement
    • WJ-III Tests of Cognitive Abilities


    • Comprehension-Knowledge
        • Verbal Comprehension
        • General Information
    • Long-Term Retrieval
        • Visual-Auditory Learning
        • Retrieval Fluency
    • Visual Processing
        • Spatial Relations
        • Picture Recognition
    • Auditory Processing
        • Sound Blending
        • Auditory Attention
    • Fluid Reasoning
        • Concept Formation
        • Analysis-Synthesis
    • Speed
        • Visual Matching
        • Decision Speed
    • Short-Term Memory
        • Numbers Reversed
        • Memory for Words
    • Incomplete Words
    • Auditory Working Memory
    • Visual-Auditory Learning – Delayed
    • Rapid Picture Naming
    • Planning
    • Pair Cancellation

Administration Format: paper/pencil test

Time: 13 tests, 5 minutes each | Cognitive: 35-45 minutes | Achievement: 55-65 minutes


Reliability (Shrank 2014):

    • Internal Consistency: split-half reliabilities were acceptable to excellent (0.84-0.94), reliabilities for tests with multiple point items using mean square error values were excellent (0.90-0.96).
    • Test-Retest: correlations after 1 day delay were acceptable to excellent (0.83-0.95).

Validity (Shrank 2014):

    • Concurrent Validity: adequate correlations demonstrated between WJ scores and scores on other metrics, including Kaufman Test of Educational Achievement–Second Edition (KTEA-II), Wechsler Individual Achievement Test–Third Edition (WIAT-III), and the Oral and Written Language Scales–Written Expression (OWLS-WE)
    • Clinical Validity: assessed in populations identified as having learning disabilities in reading, math, or writing. Evidence of validity suggested for the reading test (mean test scores consistently below 80 in this group) but not for math or language tests.

Available for Purchase: https://www.tests.com/Woodcock-Johnson-Testing

Source: https://www.tests.com/Woodcock-Johnson-Testing

supporting literature

Schrank, F.A., Mather, N., McGrew, K.S. (2015) Test Review: Woodcock-Johnson IV Tests of Achievement. Journal of Psychoeducational Assessment, 33(4), 391-398.
PDF: WJ – 1 – Schrank 2014
Link: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0734282915569447?journalCode=jpaa

Sanders, S., McIntosh, D.E., Dunham, M., Rothlisberg, B.A., Finch, H. (2007) Joint Confirmatory Factor Analysis of the Differential Ability Scales and the Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Cognitive Abilities. Psychology in the Schools, 44(2), 119-138.
PDF: WJ – 2 – Sanders 2007
Link: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/pits.20211

Strickland, T., Watkins, M.W., Caterino, L.C. (2015) Structure of the Woodcock–Johnson III Cognitive Tests in a Referral Sample of Elementary School Students. Psychological Assessment, 27(2), 689-697.
PDF: WJ – 3 – Watkins 2015
Link: https://psycnet.apa.org/record/2015-04304-001