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Updated October 31, 2020

A Look Into Intelligence

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A Look Into Intelligence essay
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Intelligence can simply be defined as the capacity to acquire and apply knowledge. Everyone is born with a certain capacity of knowledge. Others may have higher IQs than others but what matters is how much knowledge one is able to acquire with maturity and improve on their intelligence. Due to the interest in the intelligence capacity in human beings, some organizations have been formed in order to bring together individuals with high IQ s to share a social platform for them to exchange of ideas and converse on various relevant issues.

Mensa is one of such Organizations, it was formed in 1946 in England by Roland Berill and Dr.Lance Ware both were lawyers. Their main aim was to appreciate people with a high IQ and offer a platform on which such people can interact regardless of race, religion and political affiliations. The organization has grown since its inception with almost 134000 members from 100 countries with more members across the world still joining. The only qualification one is required to have is an IQ score within the upper 2% of its general population which translates to an IQ of 98 and above. This is achieved by prospects taking their IQ test or taking the test from a recognized institution.

Mensa’s initiative to offer a platform where intellectuals of all walks of life, famous or non famous can get to interact is plausible however some questions have been raised criticizing it as being a discriminatory society against those people with low IQ’s. Personally I see nothing wrong with its existence since it has achieved a few milestones in the education discipline but more so I view it just like any other social club with the top IQ elites as its members.

Of the three theories of intelligence I disagree with Spearman’s theory that “intelligence is a cognitive ability can only be numerically measured and expressed”(1904) majorly because there much more to a human beings intelligence capacity other than just numerical abilities. On the other hand I agree with Gardner’s theory of “multiple intelligences” where he states that “numerical expressions of human intelligence, such as in the IQ test, are not a full and accurate depiction of people’s abilities”(2011),he goes on to propose eight more intelligences. Though I agree with him to the extent that not only numerical abilities can measure one’s intelligence I differ with some of the intelligences he has put across like verbal and musical intelligences which I think one can perfect with effort and practice. This brings me to the Triarchic theory of intelligence by Sternberg of which I agree with to a large extent. He states that “mental activity directed toward purposive adaptation to, selection and shaping of, real-world environments relevant to one’s life”( Sternberg,1985).A person can grow ones intelligence capacity through his adaptation to his environment, through experiences with time or by their own effort. Sternberg offers three factors to his theory namely: Analytical intelligence- ones ability to solve problems, Creative intelligence- ones capacity to deal with new situations using past experiences and current skills. Practical intelligence- ones ability to adapt to a changing environment.

References:

  1. Spearman, C. (1904). ” General Intelligence,” objectively determined and measured. The American Journal of Psychology, 15(2), 201-292.
  2. Gardner, H. (2011). Frames of mind: The theory of multiple intelligences. Hachette UK.
  3. Sternberg, R. J. (1985). Beyond IQ: A triarchic theory of human intelligence. CUP Archive.

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