Inspection Time: Experimental Advances and Clinical Prospects

  • Ian J. Deary


Unlike many of the papers in this volume this chapter deals with neither a clinical syndrome nor an established set of neuropsychological tests. However, the relatively new technique of Inspection Time (IT) has features that indicate its potential clinical usefulness. Substantial reviews of the work on visual inspection time have been compiled by Brand and Deary (1982) and Nettelbeck (1987) and it is not my intention to replicate these efforts here. Instead, a brief resume of the theoretical basis for the measure and a summary of the main experimental findings will be offered by way of an introduction. The main body of the chapter is devoted to the development of an auditory inspection time test. The chapter ends with some suggestions for further development work on and some clinical applications for IT Tests.


General Intelligence Inspection Time Pitch Perception Pitch Discrimination Musical Ability 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Anderson, M. (1986). Inspection Time and IQ in young children. Personality and Individual Differences, 7, 677–686.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Anderson, M. (1988). Inspection time, information processing and the development of intelligence. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 6, 43–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bornstein, M. (1985). How infant and mother jointly contribute to developing cognitive competence in the child. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S.A., 82, 7470–7473.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Brand, C. (1981). General intelligence and mental speed: Their relationship and development. in: M.P. Friedman, J.P. Das and N. O’Connor (eds.). Intelligence and Learning. New York: Plenum.Google Scholar
  5. Brand, C.R. (1984). Intelligence and inspection time: an ontogenic relationship? in: C.J. Turner and H.B. Miles (ed.). The Biology of Human Intelligence: Proceedings of the twentieth annual symposium of the Eugenics Society, London, 1983. Nafferton, U.K.: Nafferton Books.Google Scholar
  6. Brand, C.R. and Deary, I.J. (1982). Intelligence and ‘inspection time’. in: H.J. Eysenck (ed.). A Model for Intelligence. Berlin and New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  7. Deary, I.J. (1980). How general is the mental speed factor in general intelligence? Unpublished thesis for the Honours Degree (B.Sc. Med. Sci.) in Psychology, University of Edinburgh.Google Scholar
  8. Deary, I.J. (1987a). Visual and auditory inspection time: Their interrelationship and correlation with IQ in high ability subjects. Paper presented at the third biennial meeting of the International Society for the Study of Individual Differences, Toronto, June 1987.Google Scholar
  9. Deary, I.J. (1987b). Intelligence, auditory inspection time and musical ability in schoolchildren. Paper presented to the British Psychological Society, Scottish Branch, Developments in Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, Rothesay, September 1987.Google Scholar
  10. Deary, I.J. (1988). Basic processes in human intelligence. in: H.J. Jerison and I. Jerison (eds.). Intelligence and Evolutionary Biology. Berlin and New York: Springer.Google Scholar
  11. Deary, I.J. (1988). The nature of intelligence: simplicity to complexity and back again. in: D. Forshaw and M. Shepherd (eds.). Maudsley Essay Series in the History of Psychiatry and Psychology. London: Vade Mecum, in press.Google Scholar
  12. Deary, I.J., Caryl, P.G., Egan, V. and Wight, D. (1989). Auditory and visual inspection time: Their interrelationship and correlation with intelligence in high ability subjects. Manuscript submitted for publication.Google Scholar
  13. Egan, V. (1986). Intelligence and inspection use cognitive strategies? Personality and 695–700.Google Scholar
  14. Irwin, R.J. (1984). Inspection time and its Intelligence, 8, 47–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Lally, M. and Nettelbeck, T. (1977). Intelligence, inspection time and response strategy. American Journal of Mental Deficiency, 84, 553–560.Google Scholar
  16. Longstreth, L.E., Walsh, D.A., Alcorn, M.B., Szeszulski, P.A. and Manis, F.R. (1986). Backward masking, IQ, SAT and reaction time: interrelationships and theory. Personality and Individual Differences, 7, 643–652.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Mackenzie, B. and Bingham, E. (1985). IQ, inspection time and response strategies in a university population. Australian Journal of Psychology, 37, 257–268.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Mackenzie, B. and Cumming, S. (1986). How fragile is the relationship between inspection time and intelligence: the effects of apparent motion cues and previous experience. Personality and Individual Differences, 7, 721–729.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Mackintosh, N.J. (1981). A new measure of intelligence? Nature, 289, 529–530.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Mackintosh, N.J. (1986). The biology of intelligence? British Journal of Psychology, 77, 1–18.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Nettelbeck, T. (1982). Inspection time: An index for intelligence? Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 34A, 299–312.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Nettelbeck, T. (1987). Inspection time and intelligence. in: P.A. Vernon (ed.). Speed of Information Processing and Intelligence. Norwood, N.J.. Ablex.Google Scholar
  23. Nettelbeck, T., Edwards, C. and Vreugdenhil, A. (1986). Inspection time and IQ: evidence for a mental speed-ability association. Personality and Individual Differences, 7, 633–641.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Nettelbeck, T. and Lally, M. (1976). Inspection time and measured intelligence. British Journal of Psychology, 67, 17–22.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Raz, N., Willerman, L. and Yama, M. (1987). On sense and senses: intelligence and auditory information processing. Personality and Individual Differences, 8, 201–10.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Taylor, M.M. and Creelman, C.D. (1967). PEST: efficient estimate on probability functions. Journal of the Accoustical Society of America, 4, 782–787.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Vernon, P.A. (1986). Inspection time: does it measure intelligence? Personality and Individual Differences, 7, 715–720.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Vickers, D., Nettelbeck, T. and Willson, R.J. (1972). Perceptual indices of performance: the measurement of ‘inspection time’ and ’noise’ in the visual system. Perception, 1, 263–295.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Vickers, D. and Smith, P.L. (1986). The rationale for the inspection time index. Personality and Individual Differences, 7, 609–624.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Young, R. (1987). Intelligence and inspection time in 6 year-old children. Unpublished thesis for the Honours Degree ( B.A.) in Psychology, University of Adelaide.Google Scholar
  31. Zhang, Y., Caryl, P.G. and Deary, I.J. (1989a). Evoked potential correlates of inspection time. Personality and Individual Differences in press.Google Scholar
  32. Zhang, Y., Caryl, P.G. and Deary, I.J. (1989b). Inspection time and P200: The relationship between two perceptual intake indices. Manuscript submitted for publication.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ian J. Deary

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations