Iq Testing And Grouping


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iq testing and grouping IQ

Why IQ tests don't test intelligence
The task of trying to quantify a persons intelligence has been a goal
of psychologists since before the beginning of this century.  The
Binet-Simon scales were first proposed in 1905 in Paris, France and
various sorts of tests have been evolving ever since.  One of the
important questions that always comes up regarding these tools is what
are the tests really  measuring?  Are they measuring a persons
intelligence?  Their ability to perform well on standardized tests?  Or
just some arbitrary quantity of the persons IQ?  When examining the
situations around which these tests are given and the content of the
tests themselves, it becomes apparent that however useful the tests may
be for standardizing a groups intellectual ability, they are not a good
To issue a truly standardized test, the testing environment should be
the same for everyone involved.  If anything has been learned from the
psychology of perception, it is clear that a persons environment has a
great deal to do with their cognitive abilities.  Is the light
flickering?  Is the paint on the walls an unsettling shade?  Is the
temperature too hot or too cold?  Is the chair uncomfortable?  Or in the
worst case, do they have an illness that day?  To test a persons mind,
it is necessary to utilize their body in the process.  If everyones
body is placed in different conditions during the testing, how is it
expected to get standardized results across all the subjects?  Because
of this assumption that everyone will perform equally independent of
their environment, intelligence test scores are skewed and cannot be
viewed as standardized, and definitely not as an example of a persons
It is obvious that a persons intelligence stems from a variety of
traits.  A few of these that are often tested are reading comprehension,
vocabulary, and spatial relations.  But this is not all that goes into
it.  What about physical intelligence, conversational intelligence,
social intelligence, survival intelligence, and the slew of others that
go into everyday life?  Why are these important traits not figured into
intelligence tests?  Granted, normal standardized tests certainly get
predictable results where academics are concerned, but they should not
be considered good indicators of general intelligence because of the
glaring omissions they make in the testing process.  To really gauge a
persons intelligence, it would be necessary to put them through a
rigorous set of real-life trials and document their performance.
Otherwise the standardized IQ tests of today are testing an extremely
limited quality of a persons character that can hardly be referred to
For the sake of brevity, I will quickly mention a few other common
criticisms of modern IQ tests.  They have no way to compensate for
cultural differences.  People use different methods to solve problems.
Peoples reading strategies differ.  Speed is not always the best way to
tackle a problem.  There is often too much emphasis placed on
vocabulary.  Each of these points warrants individual treatment, and for
more information refer to The Triarchic Mind by RJ Sternberg (Penguin
It is possible to classify all the reasons that IQ tests fail at their
task into two main groups.  The first grouping is where the tests assume
too much.  Examples of this flaw are the assumption that speed is always
good, vocabulary is a good indicator of intelligence, and that different
test taking environments wont affect the outcome.  The second grouping
comes because the tests gauge the wrong items.  Examples of this are
different culture groups being asked to take the same tests as everyone
else, and the fact that the tests ignore so many types of intelligence
(like physical, social, etc).  These two groupings illustrate where the
major failings of popular IQ tests occur and can be used as tools for
IQ tests are not good indicators for a persons overall intelligence,
but as their use has shown, they are extremely helpful in making
predictions about how a person will perform in an academic setting.
Perhaps the problem comes in the name intelligence tests  when it is
obvious this is not what they really are.  The modern IQ test definitely
has its applications in todays society but should be be used to
quantify ... more

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self




The self of every human being is a construct of numerous elements, both internal as well as external.  According to Baumeister Personal identity is a  crucial interface between the private organism and society.  The identity represents an important means by which the physical being takes its place in society so as to communicate and interact with other people (191).   Many things influence and shape someones identity and sense of self.  Those of us in transition from adolescence to adulthood are especially prone to these influences.  These include both social circumstances and a list of unique personal attributes.  Individuals in this age group (around the age of 16 to 24) usually experience a number of major changes which force them to make personal decisions with which they have never been faced.  
Most decision during this age range involve what plans to make for the future.  One of these timely decisions include whether to continue their education or not.  After graduating from high school there are many decisions to be made.  One important choice is whether to keep on going in school.  Now society strongly encourages a college education.  This is just something that has evolved over the generations.  Thirty years ago it was not as common for young men  and especially young women to go to college after graduation from high school.  The job market today has become so competitive that it is almost impossible to get a decent paying job without a college degree.  
The decision to attend college is just the beginning of ones concerns.  Once the choice to attend college has been made, there are many more steps ahead.    No longer is the individual able to soley depend on parents and caretakers to look out for their best interest.  Suddenly, they are completely and totally responsible for each of their own actions.  This includes the decision of which college to go to.  Should they leave home in order to do so or not.  It can be a completely different experience if you attend school close to home or far away.  Going farther from home causes one to adjust more to an individual life merely because of the distance between themselves and their parents or guardians.  Personally, I came to Miami from Rochester , New York.  Choosing to leave my home in upstate New York to go to another state was a test on my ability to make it on my own.  The distance has proven to be a challenge as well as a blessing.  It has allowed me to distance myself from my parents literally and figuratively.  I have become my own person and have become a lot more independent.  I have also believe that attending school away from home has expanded my horizons.  Being in a completely different city and state, I have experienced  that just small differences can be so noticeable.  
In addition, upon leaving home to pursue a college education, young men and women are usually handed a totally new set of responsibilities, as well as a dramatically increased amount of personal freedom.  This change in societal structure includes the challenges of balancing academics, social and leisure time, finances, and a host of other personal concerns that come along with becoming an independent college student.   By providing such an environment, colleges and universities offer young people an unmatched opportunity to make lasting discoveries and developments concerning their individual identities and self-perceptions.
It has been stated repeatedly in seminar that coming to college has given a number of students the chance to either finally be "themselves", or someone "new" and "different" from who they have been up to the present time.  This supports the idea that both men and women often look upon making changes in their surroundings as a time for also making changes in their inner selves.  Consequently, a number of social psychologists agree that "change is very likely to occur when one receives feedback that is inconsistent with his or her existing self-schema or when one moves from one community to another" (Baron and Byrne 168).   Baumeister's viewpoint, concerning the modern western individual, is that " the modern self is seen as having a license and obligation to create itself" (206).   He also states that ... more

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  • IQ Tests IQ Tests IQ Tests The task of trying to quantify a persons intelligence has been a goal of psychologists since before the beginning of this century. The Binet-Simon scales were first proposed in 1905 in Paris, France and various sorts of tests have been evolving ever since. One of the important questions that always comes up regarding these tools is what are the tests really measuring? Are they measuring a persons intelligence? Their ability to perform well on standardized tests? Or just some arbitrary...