Theories of Intelligence and Tests of intelligence
Dr Salman Kareem Chairperson - Miss Sherry A A ( Clinical Psychologist)
Binet (1916) defined it as the capacity to
judge well, to reason well, and to
Terman (1916) defined it as the capacity to
form concepts and grasp their significance.
Pintner (1921) defined
it as the ability of an individual to adapt
well to new situations in life
Thorndike (1921) defined
it as the power of good responses from the point of
view of truth or fact
Thurstone (1921) defined
it as the capacity to inhibit instinctive response,
imagine a different response, and realize the response
modification into behavior
Spearman (1923) defined it
as a general ability involving mainly the ability
to see relations and correlates
Piaget (1972) defined
it as referring to the superior forms of
organization or equilibrium of cognitive
structuring used for adaptation to the to the
physical and social environment
Sternberg (1985) defined it
as the mental capacity to automatize
information processing and to emit contextually
appropriate behavior in response to novelty
Gardner (1986) defined it as
the ability to solve problems or fashion products
valued within some setting
Wechlser (1939) defined
“it as the aggregate or global capacity of an
individual to act purposefully, think rationally,
and deal effectively with the environment”
Aggregate and Global implies it is revealed
by an individual behaviour as a whole.
Purposeful implies that intelligent behaviour
is goal directed which is based on drives and
•Charles Spearman’ Two factor theory
His hypothesis is all intellectual tasks must
entail the exercise of a factor known as
general intelligence(g factor)
In examining correlation of various subsets of
intelligence, he found that certain subsets
tend to correlate higher than others
Each individual type of item requiring
"specific factor" called "S" factor.
•Two Factor Theory
An individual has
overall supply of
mental energy and the
"S" factor is invoked
for specific purpose as
He thought that it can
be represented by a
He contributed that
Spearman’s g factor consists
of seven sub factors (
Primary mental abilities)
•Cattell & Horne
characterized by Biological factors
capacity to learn new ways of solving problems
and performing activities
Decreases with age
More characterized by environment
accumulated knowledge of the world we have
acquired throughout our lives
increases with age
Robert Sternberg's Triarchic Theory
Basic information processing skills
Ability to deal with novel versus routine
Ability to adapt to different contexts, and
to select and shape contexts
Theory of Multiple Intelligences
Thurstone’s idea that
intelligence comes in
Gardner noted that
brain damage may
diminish one type of
ability but not others
Theory of Multiple Intelligences
8 types of intelligence
speculates about a 9th –
“existential intelligence" = ability to think about the
question of life, death and existence.
Linguistic The ability to speak and write well
Logico-mathematical The ability to use logic and mathematical skills to solve
Spatial The ability to think and reason about objects in three
Musical The ability to perform and enjoy music
Kinesthetic (body The ability to move the body in sports, dance, or other
Interpersonal The ability to understand and interact effectively with others
Intrapersonal The ability to have insight into the self
Theory of Multiple Intelligences
Principles of Test Construction
For a psychological test to be acceptable it must fulfill
the following three criteria:
•The standardization of a test involves giving it to a large
number of people at different ages and computing the
average score on the test at each age level.
•important that intelligence tests be standardized on a
•FLYNN EFFECT - In the past 60 years, intelligence
scores have risen steadily by an average of 27
Standardized tests establish a normal distribution
of scores on a tested population in a bell-shaped
pattern called the normal curve.
A test is reliable when it yields consistent results. To
establish reliability researchers establish different
1. Split-half Reliability: Dividing the test into two equal halves and
assessing how consistent the scores are.
2. Test-Retest Reliability: Using the same test on two occasions to
•Validity of a test refers to what the test is supposed to
measure or predict
•that they actually measure intelligence rather than
History of Intelligence Testing
1. Head Circumference (Francis Galton
1880) – first attempts to measure
2. Binet-Simon (Alfred Binet 1909) – first
comissioned by French gov to separate
children into vocational vs academic
did not design test to measure ‘intelligence’
created concept of mental age (MA)
30 items of increasing difficulty - 1905
Revision 1908 – age specific versions
These were developed to identify children who
needed ‘special’ education -
Binet believed that IQ could be increased by
Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale
3. Lewis Terman (1916-72) first U.S.
Interested in gifted children
translated and modified Binet’s scale
Heavy reliance on vocabulary/language
incorporated old items from the Binet
scale, plus some new items
poorly standardized on 1000 children and
400 adults who were not selected with care
Developed Intelligence Quotient
IQ = (MA/CA)*100
MA= Mental Age; CA = Chronological Age
Sample Items for 12 yr olds
• FOR THE STARTED AN WE
COUNTRY EARLY AT HOUR
• TO ASKED PAPER MY
TEACHER CORRECT I MY
• A DEFENDS DOG GOOD
HIS BRAVELY MASTER
• Snake, cow, sparrow Memory
• Book, teacher, newspaper
• Wool, cotton, leather
Currently in its 5th edition
Assesses intelligence and cognitive abilities in
children and adults aged 2- 23 yrs
Total testing time 45-90 minutes
Hindi adaptation –Santhosh Kumar
Binet Kamath Intelligence Scale
Kamath undertook a revision of the Stanford Binet
Scales to suit Indian conditions.
The test has subtests from Age III to XXII.
For each item passed the child earns a credit of 2
months, 4 months or 6 months depending on the
IQ = Mental Age × 100
The IQ thus obtained is classified.
Weschler Intelligence Scale
(David Weschler, 1939-81) – designed to show
Less reliant on language/vocabulary skills
Contains Verbal and Performance subtests
Performance compared to same age peers –
raw score has different interpretation
depending on age
Designed widely used test for adults (WAIS),
children (WISC), and preschoolers (WPPSI)
Indian adaptation WAPIS – Prabha R
WAIS measures overall intelligence and 11 related
aspects to assess clinical and educational
Age 5+ to15+
It yields Verbal
IQ and Full
• Digit Span
• Block Design
Malin’s Intelligence Scale for
This IQ test was developed by Dr Arthur Malin.
It is an Indian adaptation of the WISC and
similar to the WISC subtests.
Covers only 10 years.
Picture Arrangement is excluded in this version.
Some items are adapted to suit Indian culture.
Verbal IQ, Performance IQ and Full Scale IQ are
obtained from this test.
Seguin Form Board
Aim: The individual has to
insert geometrical shaped
blocks into corresponding
recesses as quickly as
Used particularly for young
children and supplemented
with other tests.3-11 yrs
Spontaneous arousal in
Amenable & brief.
Measuring psychomotor and visuoperceptual
abnormalities for children aged between 4 and 20
Raven’s Progressive Matrices
It is a test of observation and clear thinking.
Measures ability to form perceptual relations,
reason by analogy independent of language and
It consists of 5 sets of 12 items each.
Each item contains a figure with a missing piece.
Norms are available for age 6 – 16.
Bhatias performance test of
C M Bhatia 1955
5 subtests –
block design test
Alexander Pass along test
Pattern drawing test
Picture construction test
11 yrs and above
Not used on mentally retarded persons
Vineland Social MaturityScale
Edgar A Doll , 1935
Assess the social competence / maturity of
individuals from birth to 25 yrs and above.
A J Malin – Indian version , Nagpur Child
birth – 15 yrs
8 domains , 89 items
Gives information on social age from which
social quotient could be calculated.
Semi structured informal atmosphere
Having mother along with the child.
+ - if a particular behaviour has emerged
- if it has not emerged.
General self help ability
Self help eating
Self help dressing
Tests Verbal Component Performance Component
WISC Yes Yes
MISIC Yes Yes
SFB No Yes
RPM No Yes
ICD 10 Classification
IQ 50 -69
Mild Mental Retardation.
Severe Mental Retardation.
Wechsler’s IQ Classification
IQ 90 – 109
Above Average Intelligence.
IQ 130 and above
Very Superior Intelligence.
In the case of students with an IQ of <85 it is
preferable that a revised curriculum is
followed with the help of a resource person.
In the case of students with 90 and above IQ
points and still showing a discrepancy
between capability and achievement scores
further investigations need to be done.
This could be followed up with a
Possible reasons for poor school
1. Specific Learning Disability.
2. English as a Second Language issues (ESL).
3. ADHD/ ADD issues.
4. Emotional Disturbance.
IQ tests are used as screening measures to
understand the capability of the individual.
In order to get authentic results it is advisable
that the test must be conducted by a trained
Principal, teachers, parents and the student
need to understand the purpose of
undergoing an evaluation.