Academic journal article Psychology in Russia

Self-Assessed Intelligence, Personality, and Psychometric Intelligence: Preliminary Validation of a Model with a Selected Student Population

Academic journal article Psychology in Russia

Self-Assessed Intelligence, Personality, and Psychometric Intelligence: Preliminary Validation of a Model with a Selected Student Population

Article excerpt

The concept of self-assessed intelligence (SAI) appeared at the intersection of three major fi elds of research: studies of self-evaluations and self-esteem, studies of lay (or implicit) theories of intelligence, and studies of intelligence as a general cognitive ability. People's beliefs about the nature of intelligence have an impact on SAI: to be able to estimate one's own or someone else's intelligence one should defi ne what intelligence is and what forms of behavior are intelligent.

Individual diff erences in IQ have become a prominent topic in the popular science literature; various brochures and on-line programs that off er "fast and accurate" measurement of one's IQ are easily available. It is thus safe to assume that modern laypeople have a relatively formed idea of what intelligence is and how "smart" and intelligent they themselves are.

Th e fi rst systematic study of lay theories of intelligence was conducted by Flugel in 1947. Th e distinction between "explicit" and "implicit" theories of intelligence was introduced by Sternberg in the 1980s. According to him, explicit theories represent scientifi c knowledge (they are components of scientifi c theories developed by certain schools of thought) (Sternberg, 1990). In their study of implicit theories of intelligence in Americans, Sternberg and his colleagues revealed three major factors: verbal intelligence, problem-solving ability, and practical intelligence (Sternberg, Conway, Ketron, & Bernstein, 1981); the presence of these factors suggests that intelligence is not limited to pure analytical ability.

Analysis of contemporary Russian studies of cognitive ability shows that the concept of SAI is not widely discussed or accepted. A study of the stability of SAI was conducted by Sokolova (1976). Th e stability/ fl uidity of people's conceptions of intelligence was reviewed in a study by Molchanova (2006). Borozdina and Kubantseva (2006) demonstrated the link between SAI and the divergence between self-esteem and level of aspiration. Th e traditional distinction among cognitive, aff ective, and behavioral components in studies of self-consciousness (Burns, 1982; Chesnokova, 1977) has not been made in the development of the SAI concept in Russian psychology. However, Western psychology has made the question of whether SAI represents more of a cognitive ability or a personality trait (or traits) central in several research programs.

Th us, according to Chamorro-Premuzic and Furnham, SAI is a subjective perception of intelligence that can account for a signifi cant portion of success in various areas (2006a, 2006b). Th ese authors defi ne SAI as people's insight into the concept of intelligence and their own (and others') level of intelligence; these insights can be revealed through procedures that require people to estimate their own or other people's intelligence.

Th e correlations between SAI and IQ, personality and gender factors, and academic performance have been the focus of Western psychologists since the turn of the century (Chamorro-Premuzic & Furnham, 2006a, 2006b; Furnham, 2001; Furnham, Moutafi , & Chamorro-Premuzic, 2005). Furnham (2001) pointed out that most of the results regarding the correlation of SAI and IQ scores are quite consistent and that the estimates of this correlation usually do not exceed 0.30. Furnham and his colleagues based a study on the ideas of Cattell (1963), according to whom the development of crystallized intelligence is dependent on social-cultural surroundings and education, while fl uid intelligence is determined by individual diff erences (presumably of an innate character) in the functioning of the central nervous system (Furnham et al., 2005). Th e authors measured crystallized intelligence with the Wonderlic Personnel Test (WPT) and fl uid intelligence with the Baddeley Reasoning Test (BRT). Th e participants in their study estimated their intellectual ability on the IQ scale, which is based on the bell curve of normal distribution with a mean of 100 and a standard deviation of 15. …

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