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Chapter 9

PSYCH101 Chapter 9: Intelligence Textbook

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Intelligence Textbook
9.1 - Measuring Intelligence
Intelligence and Perception: Galton's Anthropometric Approach
The systematic attempt to measure intelligence in the modern era began with Sir Francis Galton
Galton believed that because people learn about the world through their senses, those
with superior sensory abilities would be more sensitively attuned to the world and able
to learn more about it
Therefore sensory abilities should be an indicator of a person's intelligence
Galton created 17 sensory tests such as the highest and lowest sounds people could
hear or their ability to tell the difference between objects of slightly different weights
and began testing people's abilities in his anthropometric laboratory
Anthropometrics (literally the measurements of people): referred to methods of
measuring physical and mental variation in humans
Approach was abandoned
Intelligence and Thinking: The Stanford-binet Test
Intelligence: as the ability to think, reason, and adapt to or overcome obstacles
The test made by Thoedore Simon was used to place children into the grades which
their metal age suggest when schools opened to all children
This also allows for the government to determine who was retarded and in need from
specialized education
E.g. repeating sentences, defining words, constructing sentences
Mental Age: the average intellectual ability score for children of a specific age
A child with a mental age lower than their chronological age would be expected
to struggle in school and to require special education
Standford-Binet test: Terman described as a test intended to measure innate levels of
Differed from Binet, who viewed test as a measure of child’s current abilities, not innate
To better reflect people's presumably innate and fixed levels of intelligence, Terman
adopted William Stern's concept of the intelligence quotient
IQ is calculated by taking a person's mental age, dividing it by their chronological
age, and then multiplying by 100
Used deviation IQ to adjust for calculating the IQ of adults by comparing test score with
average for people of same age (or else IQ declines with age)
The Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale
David Wechsler developed an IQ test that was specialized for adult populations
Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) remains the most common intelligence test in use today
Full scale IQ branches off into general ability index and cognitive proficiency index
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Intelligence Textbook
Raven's Progressive Matrices
An intelligence test that is based on pictures, not words, thus making it relatively unaffected by
language or cultural background
IQ Testing and the Eugenics Movement
Galton created the term “eugenics”
and studied heritability of intelligence
IQ testing increased during WW1 to recruit soldiers
The theory that good breeding is caused between two intelligent people both with high IQ's
Led by the “social Darwinism” belief
People that have a lowered IQ should not be having kids and forced sterilization
The Race and IQ Controversy
Terman had the theory that those who spoke English had the higher IQ score and therefore
smarter than those who didn't speak English
He also stated that white people are smarter than blacks and mexicans
This conclusion came from administering an ENGLISH IQ testing to foreigners and the low scores
of the only 1 black and 1 mexican who took the test
Progressive matrices show no difference in IQ between races
Believed healthy society would be a meritocracy - people with the most ability and worked the
hardest should receive the most wealth and power and lower class should not be helped
Stereotype threat - occurs when negative stereotypes about a group cause group members to
underperform on ability tests
Beliefs about Intelligence
Entity theory: the belief that intelligence is a fixed characteristic and relatively difficult (or
impossible) to change
Students more likely to give up in the face of challenging questions
Incremental theory: belief that intelligence can be shaped by experiences, practice, and effort
Students were more resilient and marks improved
Intelligence can be trained and improved
9.2 - Understanding Intelligence
Blind Tom could only speak fewer than 100 words, but could play more than 7000 piano pieces
and reproduce conversations in other languages without understanding the meaning
Considered the “8th wonder of the world”
Savant - an individual with low mental capacity in most domains but extraordinary abilities in
other specific areas such as music, mathematics, or art
Spearman's General Intelligence
Factor analysis: a statistical technique that examines correlations between variables to find
clusters of related variables or factors
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