Re: iq tests

From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Mon May 22 2000 - 00:38:58 MDT

[Non-member submission]

On Wednesday, May 17, 2000 10:16 PM Emlyn wrote:
> > I 'spect you-all have seen this before, but if not:
> >
> >
> >
> > as an example of what IMHO is a culturally neutral IQ test.
> >
> > MB
> >
> Funny thing about these "culturally neutral" tests, is that you get better
> at them the more of them you do. It gets easier to spot patterns in the
> the questions are formulated.
> Also, powers of 2, pascal and fibbonacci sequences, come on. That's got to
> be heavily culturally biased. Or maybe people who don't know the powers of
> by sight are thickies?

Emlyn and the Rocket Plumber are right here, of course. This has been the
vexing problem of IQ tests: how to measure raw intelligence versus
achievement. The latter is, obviously, a mix of raw intelligence and
experience. Someone who has gone to the best schools, had good parenting,
etc. might score much higher than someone who did not go to the best
schools, etc. regardless of intelligence.

But within those limits, I think we can make measures -- even if the
measures are rough. If one asks for absolute certainly -- or, here,
absolute separate between factors, I think one is, for now, raising the bar
too high.

But, again, the problem is people link IQ test results too closely with
self-esteem and think an average score means they are doomed to a less
satisfactory life. Perhaps if people linked self-esteem more with what
limitations they could overcome than with perceived limits, then things
would be different. ("Perceived" here because tests can be wrong for a
number of reasons, including mundane things like a bad night's sleep before
the test.)

Merry Monday to all and to all a good day!

Daniel Ust

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