Friday, August 15, 2008

Intelligence Quotient, IQ

Intelligence quotient is also known as IQ.

Something made me wonder about the distribution of IQ scores so I did some Internet research.

Actually Internet research is pretty good and it is very fast. There's an old saying I remember that nearly everything involves quality, time, and cost. You can get good stuff cheaply but not quickly. You can get good stuff quickly but not cheaply. And so on. Probably applies to Internet research.

Maybe it was some advertising I saw on Yahoo or someplace that stated that George W. Bush's IQ was 125 and wanted you to click to get your own IQ. Or maybe it was that someone asked me what mine was and I said I didn't really know.

As far as I know I never took an IQ test that was labeled an IQ test or at least I do not recall the event. I do remember once some kid in grade school telling me that we had been tested and my IQ was really high. But why would a fellow grade school student know my IQ anyway?

I know for a fact that I was never as "smart" as I thought I was. For that matter I wasn't as smart as my teachers thought either. I know for another fact that I am not nearly as "smart" now as I once was, at leas in certain ways. On the other hand I think I am "smarter" now that I once was in other ways and I think those other ways are more important actually.

So Intelligence Quotient is a quotient as is made clear by the definition. Quotient is the result of dividing one number by another number. Intelligence Quotient is defined then as someone's mental age multiplied by 100 and divided by their chronological age.

I think this interesting. I know my chronological age which is 60. Well if my mental age is 60 then my IQ is 100. If my mental age is 81 then my IQ is 135. If my mental age is 87 then my IQ is 145. All of this is predicated on the idea that mental age older than chronological age is "smarter."

This might make sense with children. But does it make sense for someone my age? I am pretty doubtful I am going to learn a lot more testable stuff in the next 20 or 30 years.

Actually I think the whole IQ deal is nuts. I'm pretty certain I've said as much in my blogging somewhere because I feel pretty strongly about it.

One of the older results charts had this:

  • Over 140 - Genius or near genius
  • 120 - 140 - Very superior intelligence
  • 110 - 119 - Superior intelligence
  • 90 - 109 - Normal or average intelligence
  • 80 - 89 - Dullness
  • 70 - 79 - Borderline deficiency
  • Under 70 - Definite feeble-mindedness
I can say for certain that most people I know would rather be considered superior than deficient.

The smartest guy I found was a physicist named Kim Ung-yong who apparently has a verified IQ of 210. On that same list I noticed Sharon Stone's name appeared with an IQ of 154. Many of the really smart people of the past were estimated to have IQ's in the 130 to 190 range.

Several places I surfed tried to get me to take an IQ test but they all wanted too much information and I am way more paranoid than I used to be even if I am not brighter. But does knowing what river is the widest river in the world; or, what you get when you mix purple and blue together; or, who the 16th president of the United States; or, any number of other questions like that really mean you're smarter than someone else?

What about knowing how to plant a seed and make something grow or how to find water in that widest desert or how to really do a good job sweeping a parking lot? I know some folks who are well off the IQ scales that can't sweep anything very well.

I don't like labeling people and I especially dislike labeling children.

Stepping off the soap box.

1 comment:

Lori1955 said...

I agree with you. I happen to know what my IQ is and let me tell you, it hasn't helped me one bit getting through life. I think that what is in the heart is so much more important that what is in the head.