Intelligence Definition and Measurement

Topics: Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale, Psychometrics, Intelligence Pages: 7 (1997 words) Published: February 26, 2012
Intelligence Definition and Measurement
Defining and testing for intelligence is a controversial issue and has been since the first intelligence test was created and administered. Many forms of intelligence and achievement tests exist and using a particular test is a matter of preference and depending on the areas of intelligence is desired to be measured. This paper will start by critiquing the major definitions of intelligence, and determine the best definition for each chosen intelligence and achievement instruments. It will also evaluate the reliability, validity, normative procedures, and biasness of each intelligence measurement. The measurements will be compared and contrasted while also considering the ethical implications of using intelligence and achievement test in educational settings. Intelligence Definitions

Cohen and Swerdlik (2010), states that intelligence manifest itself in the following abilities: acquiring and using knowledge, logically reasoning skills, effective planning, perception, judgment making, problem solving attention, visualizing concepts, intuition, and coping, adjusting, and dealing with situations. These abilities are not a definite definition of intelligence but are merely a combination of the abilities that characterize and measure intelligence. Most of these abilities are a composite of the definitions and explanations of intelligence by others. The main contributors of defining and explaining intelligence are Francis Galton, Alfred Binet, David Wechsler, and Jean Piaget (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2010).

Galton believed that people learn only from the information that passes through the five senses. With Galton’s theory it could be said that hearing, vision, touching, tasting, and smelling are each processors of intelligence. Galton’s definition does not explain how the five senses interpret information and turning it into knowledge and abilities (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2010).

Binet, who is best known for the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scales, did not thoroughly define intelligence. Instead, he provided components of intelligence, such as “reasoning, judgment, memory, and abstraction” (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2010, p. 280). Binet also did not explain or define intelligence but instead identified characteristics of intelligence (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2010).

Wechsler is best known for the Wechsler Intelligence Scales created individuals for children and adults. Wechsler defined intelligence as “the aggregated or global capacity of the individual to act purposefully, to think rationally and to deal effectively with his environment” (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2010, p. 280). He goes on to explain that each individual’s intelligence is different and should have his or her own intellectual abilities measured with assessments that measure intelligence (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2010).

Piaget believed that one’s intelligence was a product of biological development. He believed that intelligence starts to develop in early childhood and continues to develop as the person begins to learn cognitive skills that will help him or her adapt to his or her surroundings. Piaget does not actually define or explain what intelligence is; rather he explains how it is developed (Cohen & Swerdlik, 2010). Intelligence and Achievement Measures

The two intelligence measures chosen for evaluation are the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale – Fourth Edition and the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scales, Fifth Edition. The Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale is consistent with Wechsler’s definition of intelligence. It measures intelligence through several subtests, providing measures of acting, thinking, and dealing. Each subtest measures individual’s level of intelligence with the idea in mind that each individual’s intelligence is different from each other (Wechsler, 2008). The Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scales was originally created by Binet and Theodore Simon. It was once known as the Binet-Simon and later changed to the...

References: Cohen, R. J., & Swerdlik, M. E. (2010). Psychological testing and assessment: An introduction to tests and measurement (7th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.
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