Alfred Binet Essay 1

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Alfred Binet

Alfred Binet was a french psychologist who was born in 1857 and died in 1911. He is the inventor of the first usable intelligence test, which is known today as the IQ test. His main goal was to indentify students who needed special attention in when it came to learning. With the help of his collaborator,Theodore Simon, he published the last revision of his intelligence scale right before his death in 1911. Further refinements of the scale were published after his death, but they are all known as IQ tests.

He was the only child and was born into a well educated family, his mother an artist and his father was physician. His parents divorced at a young age and he moved to Paris with his mother. He attended law school, and planned on going to medical after earning his degree but later decided that he was more interested in psychology. He became somewhat of a self-taught psychologist by reading books by Charles Darwin, Alexander Bain, and others.

In 1894, he conducted one of the first psychological studies into chess, to study the cognitive facilities. He hypothesized that chess depends upon the qualities of psychology in visual memory but after studying chess masters, it was concluded that memory was only the part of cognition in the game process. The line of psychological chess research was later followed up during the 1950s by Reuben Fine and later by Adriaan de Groot.

After attending law school and earning his degree in 1878, he got his first formal job at a neurological clinic where he began as a researcher and later became promoted to the director of the lab, until he died in 1911. He became fascinated with the ideas of John Stuart Mill, who believed that the operations of intelligence could be explained by the laws of associationism. He eventually realized that there was many limitations behind this theory but his ideas continued to influence Binet's work. Binet later became strongly influenced by Jean Charcot's experimenting...
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