Intelligence and Intelligence Testing

Intelligence and Intelligence Testing

Intelligence and Intelligence Testing

Intelligence and Intelligence Testing


Have you ever wondered what IQ is and how it is measured? Why is there such a premium placed on high IQ? What do we mean by intelligence? What does your IQ score mean?

There can be no denying the enduring appeal of IQ over the last century. It is probably one of the most misunderstood yet highly researched psychological constructs ever. Such has been the controversy surrounding this topic that it is difficult to distinguish fact from fiction. Intelligence and Intelligence Testing is a text that aims to address that.

This book examines the controversial psychological construct that is IQ, discussing and reviewing the history and current status of the research on intelligence and providing an overview of its development, measurement and use. From Galton, Spearman and Binet to the relatively recent controversy caused by the research of Herrnstein and Murray, this important book makes a major claim about the importance today of 'problem solving on demand' as one of the key components of today's notions of intelligence.

Chapters include coverage of:

  • Intelligence and schooling;
  • Cultural differences in views of intelligence;
  • The history of IQ testing and its emergence into public consciousness;
  • IQ as predictor of educational and occupational outcomes;
  • Psychometrics and measurement of intelligence;
  • The future of intelligence research.

Written by Richard B. Fletcher and John Hattie, the author of the highly-regarded Visible Learning, this textbook will be invaluable for all undergraduate and Masters level students studying the theory of intelligence and the impact of testing on educational. Detailed and annotated further reading lists and a glossary of terms are also included.


In 2003 and 2004, we were asked to be part of the two New Zealand versions of Test the Nation – a television programme that has been broadcast in many countries, it allows viewers to test their intelligence while watching a studio audience doing the same. Our involvement with these New Zealand versions involved us writing and reviewing many questions and tests to measure intelligence. One of the agreements we had with the television studio was that we could use our involvement to promote our discipline of educational psychology, and share in the use of the data generated in the programmes – the result of which is this book. Using a programme such as Test the Nation to unravel the mystique of IQ has been a fun and enlightening experience, and we hope our book will provide readers with a greater understanding of this complex concept. As well as describing how we approached the task of devising credible tests for a television programme that had to fulfill the dual criteria of education and entertainment, we also introduce the debates about what intelligence is; how, when and whether we should measure it; the controversies surrounding intelligence and many other interesting snippets about intelligence. We hope you enjoy this book.

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