How Does A Simple IQ Test Measure The Complex Human Intelligence?


Intelligence is a little understood concept like love. While we all know intuitively if a person is intelligent or not, yet it is very difficult to define intelligence in precise words. A distinguished panel of experts defined intelligence as the individual's ability to understand complex ideas, to adapt effectively to the environment, to learn from experience, to engage in various forms of reasoning to overcome obstacles by careful thoughts.

However, most of the experts have their own definition of intelligence. Goleman, one of the international experts on “Emotional Intelligence”, believes that intelligence means how successful a person would be in school and in various kind of jobs, or how will they get along with others. Yet, it is impossible to measure such ability in a person as it is hard to measure how one would get along with others. Still some people believe that emotional intelligence is most important for the success of the person. It is said “A high IQ makes a person good managers while a high EQ (Emotional Intelligence Quotient) makes a person good leader”.

The quest for the true meaning of intelligence led Gardner to conclude that Intelligence is not a unitary trait. He concluded that man have multiple intelligences (MI). He identified as many as eight intelligence viz. Linguistic (syntax, phonology, semantics, pragmatics); Musical (pitch, rhythm, timbre), Logical (Mathematical number, categorization, relations); Spatial (accurate mental visualization, mental transformation of images); Bodily (kinesthetic control of one's own body, control in handling objects); Interpersonal ( awareness of others' feelings, emotions, goals, motivations); Intra-personal (awareness of one's own feelings, emotions, goals, motivations) and Naturalist( recognition and classification of objects in the environment).

Stenberg's gave another theory of multi- intelligence which he called “Triarchich theory of intelligence” where he divided the intelligence into three categories i.e. analytical (or componential); experimental or creative intelligence and practical intelligence.

Thus even after centuries of research, we have yet to arrive at the common definition of intelligence. When we don't have even a common definition of intelligence, what is the relevance of the IQ tests which are so popular in all countries that a common man identifies intelligence with IQ test score?

The IQ Test

Despite of the existence of numerous definitions of intelligence, there is only one common method to measure intelligence that is accepted worldwide viz. Intelligent Quotient (IQ) test. It is also called “Binet and Simon Test” that was published in 1905. This test has withstood the test of time even after a century. The IQ test continues to be the only universally accepted method of measuring human intelligence.

IQ tests do not measure the absolute intelligence of a person but they measure the person's intelligence in respect of the other person. The average IQ score is taken as 100. The higher than 100 score indicates that he person is more intelligent than the average person and less than 100 score indicate below average intelligence.

These IQ tests have become extremely popular over the years and almost universally applied for selection of the graduates and postgraduate students by the examinations like SAT or GRE. In most of the countries similar tests are conducted for college and university admissions. Even for selection of the candidates for jobs, often the IQ score is the quickest and most important criterion for selection.

The reason why IQ scores are such a universally accepted criterion for deciding the suitability of a person for a job or a higher course of study is not without any basis. There have been several studies which have confirmed that the people with high IQ score have much better chances of success in life. For example in an study conducted in 1925 by Lewis Terman followed the lives of the people who had IQ of 130 or more to find the relationship between the high intelligence and occupational success and social adjustment. The study established that on the average, the people with higher IQ have earned more degrees, attained higher occupational success and salaries, experienced better personal and social adjustments and found to be healthier at each age than the average adult.

However no psychologist or scientist could ever explain how such a simple test which can be completed within few minutes, can so easily measure the intelligence of the person which is such a complex trait of human personality? How can one' ability to remember words, solve mathematical problems, fill in the blanks or reading comprehension skill has anything to do with the person's ability to make friends, get along with people, provide leadership, adjust to social environment and succeed in life?

Defining Human Intelligence using the concept of Science of Soul

It is stated in ancient Indian and western philosophies that the physical self (body and mind) is the material manifestation of the imperceptible self of the person (soul). The soul is the source of all the “known” aspects of the human personality like, love, emotion, intelligence, habits etc which can be felt by all of us but can't be measured. However the signature of the soul (like the DNA) is coded into all the physical aspects of the person which can be understood only by the soul of another person. Hence if a person is intelligent he can identify the soul and hence the mind of the other person through his external manifestation like action, face or speech.

It means that if you read an article, you actually understand the mind of the writer? If you see the face of the person, you know automatically if the person is truthful or a fraud, honest or dishonest, sad or happy? Intelligence, therefore, means how accurately you identify another person by knowing only little “known” aspects of him like his body movements, his gestures or his walking style? Therefore, intelligence can be defined as

Intelligence is the ability of (the soul of) an individual to understand(the soul of) another entity from one or few physical manifestation of the entity like face, signature, writings, texture of the skin, voice, walking style. .

How IQ Tests Test Your Intelligence?

The IQ tests are often divided into different categories like quantitative test, verbal ability and analytical tests. Each test measures the intelligence of the person. A typical quantitative test question may be as following.


Q. Please answer the following question as YES or NO

Ram has only forty-eight dollars. Can he buy a bicycle that costs one hundred twenty dollars if he borrows fifty-seven dollars from Tom and fifteen dollars from Harry?


The above problem is a simple problem for the students of mathematics, which may be solved even by a child. You have to simply find out if (48 +57+ 15) is more than 120 or not. If the amount is 120 or more, John can buy the bicycle otherwise he can't. As we see here that the sum is 120 so Ram can buy the bicycle hence the answer is YES.

However, if you type this simple question to any computer, it simply can't tell you whether the answer is Yes or No.

Why even the best computer in the world can't solve these simple problems which even a small child of ten years can do?

The answer is simple because the computer does not have soul so it can't understand the mind of the person who framed the problem.

We are able to understand the problem because after reading this problem we are able to understand the mind of the person who has prepared this question. We understand his mind when he framed this question? Therefore, we “understood” the problem and provided the “right” answer i.e. the answer that was there in his mind. Thus what we are reality doing by answering this question is that we are understanding the mind and logic of the person and discovering the same answer by using the same logic which was in the mind of the person who framed the question.


Let us now take another example that is prepared by me.

Q. Identify the missing number?

2, 5, ? , 17

(a) 9

(b) 10

(C) 11

(d) 12


Now when I framed this question, I had a “sequence” in my mind. These numbers forms a sequence and the nth number of the sequence is n2 + 1 where n is the serial no of the term. However, when you wanted to answer this question, you have no idea, who I am; neither you know how I think and what logic was in my mind when I framed this question. Yet by reading the numbers, if you are intelligent, you can understand the logic in my mind through my external manifestation (the number series) and discover the same logic that was there in my mind. Therefore, if you (like me) have concluded that the missing number is 10 then you got the right answer.

Intelligence is the Proof of Soul

Therefore, it is evident that intelligence is the trait of only living creatures as only living creatures can have soul that connects them to the other beings of the universe. Even the most powerful computers of the world can't have even the intelligence of a child. Intelligence of a person is synonymous to the soul of the person and the body and mind are the external manifestation of the soul. It is from the body or the actions of the body that we (our soul) are able to understand the unseen “self” (soul) of others and know their mind that is unknown to the senses. This explanation of intelligence can explain all types of the human intelligence like emotional intelligence, multiple intelligence, linguistic intelligence etc that are discovered by the different psychologists and scientists over a period of time.


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