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AuthorTopic: cehck tihs out
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quote:
Originally written by Kelandon:

My main problem with intelligence tests of any kind is that a person's intelligence can change rather dramatically over time. Someone who was not strikingly intelligent at age 10 can turn into a very bright 25-year-old. Intelligence is by no means a set constant within any individual over time.
Oh, I'm quite aware of that. The genetic contribution to IQ is only around 50%, IQ is consistently positively correlated to a number of indicators of socioeconomic status, and there are several separable components of IQ tests that are known to vary in particular ways with age. As long as all that's kept in mind, though, I think tests aimed to measure general intelligence do have their uses, especially when used within a relatively homogeneous subpopulation.

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You should probably also bear in mind that since I teach SAT prep, I am significantly biased against any sort of aptitude testing. :P

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I would have assumed that way you two write.

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Nena
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I'm not sure if that was meant to be a compliment or an insult. :P

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complement ;)

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Nena
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Well then, I suppose I'm flattered. Thank you. :P

Also, Kelandon, it's somewhat mischievous to characterise IQ testing as a tool of the eugenics movement. Stanford and Binet originally envisaged their IQ test purely as a measure for the detection of learning difficulties. Sure, eugenicists were quick to jump all over this and use it in an attempt to stratify the entire population, but that doesn't imply it was designed with corrupt intentions right from the outset.

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whether or not that was the original intent that is what they are commonly used for today. When I was in kindergarten the whole class did a form of IQ test. Needless to say the children who didn't sit still or do exceptionally well were put in "special classes".

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Well, the problem of "special education" is another issue again, and I'm certainly not saying I approve of the way it's done in most schools at the moment. Most LD students perform as well or better in ordinary classes compared to a typical special-ed program, which means that basically the special classes are a way to get troublesome students out of teachers' hair.

My brother's been out of school for a long time now, but in hindsight it's pretty obvious he was both gifted and learning-disabled; he was classified as a "non-reader" at the age of 5 because he was dyslexic, and refused to waste the considerable amount of effort it took him to read on the mind-numbing Dick and Jane books that were required reading -- even though in his own time he was reading fairly detailed books on insects, dinosaurs, airplanes and all those other things that children read about.

Because he was discouraged by his experience with the education system, he didn't go to university, and spent 13 years working at a dead-end job that grew increasingly stifling for him. He's only recently returned to the education system and completed a degree, graduating with honours in ecological science.

[ Sunday, March 13, 2005 19:22: Message edited by: Thuryl ]

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Thuryl, methinks your family has an abundance of "genius" and "messed up" genes running in their half-cells.

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*digging out my Princeton Review history of the SAT*

Yes, Binet wanted to keep IQ tests to diagnosing for learning disabilities. It's really the SAT that's evil.

"[Henry Chauncey, founder of ETS] was completely convinced of the power of scientific testing to diagnose and solve the mysteries of the human mind and wanted to move far beyond the SAT. His dream was a project called the Census of Abilities that would test all Americans twice during their high-school years — not just on what the SAT measured — but on every other attribute as well. He wanted standardized tests for personality type, creativity, practical judgment, persistence, sense of humor, and even marital compatibility."

Creepy.

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One of my closest friends was born with a visual acuity of 20/200 corrected and about 20/600 without visual aid. She has a little under half the vision of most people. They often mistook her for having a learning disability because she acted and learned differently than the other children.

When they tried to put her in the special education classes she behaved badly because she was intelligent enough to know what the thought of her. She argued very well and could out wit any adult that chose to call her incapable of keeping up with her class mates.

She never looked very intelligent on paper due to her lacking vision. That was my comment about the IQ test earlier. If you spoke to her for five minutes she was clearly a child with a lot of potential. The special education system can be harmful to children they don't understand. Today she is seeking her own education in alternative settings. We have talked about it, but she doesn't want to go to "conventional schools" because of what they put her through.

Just thought I would share this, as it very close to home.

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quote:
Originally posted by Kelandon:
His dream was a project called the Census of Abilities that would test all Americans twice during their high-school years — not just on what the SAT measured — but on every other attribute as well. He wanted standardized tests for personality type, creativity, practical judgment, persistence, sense of humor, and even marital compatibility."

Creepy.

I'm not sure if it makes it more or less creepy that every second issue of an average women's magazine now has tests like those, and a fair few people take them more seriously than they ought to. :P

quote:
Originally posted by Dolphin:
She never looked very intelligent on paper due to her lacking vision. That was my comment about the IQ test earlier. If you spoke to her for five minutes she was clearly a child with a lot of potential.
I have to say something about this. To be valid, an IQ test must ALWAYS be administered on an individual basis by a qualified psychologist. Standardised fill-in-the-blanks testing is of dubious value at best.

[ Sunday, March 13, 2005 19:54: Message edited by: Thuryl ]

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Speaking of SAT, what do you guys make of the GRE, or other graduate tests?

(as an off-topic back to an old post, Kel: the original quote I scrambled is this, "Bene, cum Latine nescias, nolo manus meas in te maculare" which I got from this site.)

(The ones I know more of may not fit too much into this talk, since they are ESL-TESTs (specially the TOEFL))

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Some of those graduate level tests are great. I tested out of math and english. :P

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I understand aptitude tests. But why exactly is the SAT used in American schools. That's were itz used right?

Oh and as for intelligence it does not dramatically increase over time. Perhaps in some odd cases. But generally one's intelligence will plateau around age 20 and remain constant, declining only slightly until death. Crystalized intelligence supposedly increases with age while fluid intelligence decrease. On the same note IQ scores for somebody age 7 should not proportionally change to any large degree at following ages. IQ test would not be valid if test scores varied greatly over time which they do not.

I will add however that everybody has a reaction range for intelligence. One is born with a certain upper and lower limit for intelligence. A person may reach their full potential or not. Environmental factors obviously do influence intelligence. But the environment only determines what area of the range you will fall into.

[ Sunday, March 13, 2005 21:35: Message edited by: VCH ]

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I maintain that the entire education system is, by and large, a waste of time. Higher education may be different, I've no experience with it. I also realise that a lot of fields absolutely require formal education (such as medicine, for example), and am not referring to these.

Having given those disclaimers, I have no qualms saying that I think more often than not, formal education is, at best, very innefficient and you're generally better off bypassing it as much as possible.

Edit: Hmm, that's a lot of qualifiers. :P

[ Sunday, March 13, 2005 22:03: Message edited by: Ash Lael ]

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The SAT is used to determine how well graduating seniors compare to other graduating seniors, so the colleges have a uniform benchmark to compare prospective students. Grades and teacher recommendations mean different things in different high schools, and someone with a B average in a great school and someone with an A+ in a poor school will get vastly different scores on the SAT.

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quote:
Originally written by Drakefyre:

The SAT is used to determine how well graduating seniors compare to other graduating seniors, so the colleges have a uniform benchmark to compare prospective students. Grades and teacher recommendations mean different things in different high schools, and someone with a B average in a great school and someone with an A+ in a poor school will get vastly different scores on the SAT.
Rather than hinging everything on one test, it makes more sense to standardise the grading system using a set of fixed exams for each subject and standardising school assessed task performance against exam performance for the student cohort of a particular school.

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quote:
Originally written by Ash Lael:

I maintain that the entire education system is, by and large, a waste of time. Higher education may be different, I've no experience with it. I also realise that a lot of fields absolutely require formal education (such as medicine, for example), and am not referring to these.

Having given those disclaimers, I have no qualms saying that I think more often than not, formal education is, at best, very innefficient and you're generally better off bypassing it as much as possible.

Edit: Hmm, that's a lot of qualifiers. :P

Um, one of the reasons your nation and mine are as economically well-off as they are is because of their education systems. It may not make sense to you now, especially if you're inside it currently, but formal education systems, even through the high school level, create skilled workers.

What does "skilled" signify? I think at a basic level, it refers to the added capacity for abstract thought that enables employees to adapt to new, more complex tasks and solve more complex problems. Anyone can push a button repeatedly on an assembly line or process meat; not everyone can manage employees at a restaurant (you likely need a high school diploma for this) or even do basic filing. At some level, jobs such as these require a baseline level of analytical thinking ability.

That the quality and existence of the formal education system matters is evident if you compare the wage rates in different nations. Across the board, nations with a "comparative advantage" in unskilled labor (large numbers of uneducated people) have much greater poverty rates than those with an advantage in skilled labor. Also, consider Singapore - over the last seventy-five years or so, its economy has transitioned from being unskilled labor-based to a skilled labor- and capital-based economy, largely through its dedication to a formal education system for its populace, and as a result has witnessed tremendous benefit financially.

Believe me, I know first-hand how school sucks! :) However, there is a rhyme and reason to it.

[ Monday, March 14, 2005 06:56: Message edited by: andrew miller ]
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quote:
Originally written by VCH:
Oh and as for intelligence it does not dramatically increase over time. Perhaps in some odd cases. But generally one's intelligence will plateau around age 20 and remain constant, declining only slightly until death. Crystalized intelligence supposedly increases with age while fluid intelligence decrease. On the same note IQ scores for somebody age 7 should not proportionally change to any large degree at following ages. IQ test would not be valid if test scores varied greatly over time which they do not.
Intelligence does change over time. It may increase, decrease, or waver around a central point, but it does change. Not for everyone, not all the time, not over small periods of time, but for a sizable number of people over long periods of time, it does change.

Also, my IQ scores have varied over a 50-point range, and I'm not the only one. That's why I'm saying they are of questionable validity.

Thuryl: you're basically describing subject tests. I have mixed feelings about subject tests, because while they do have the advantage of focusing on topics that are actually taught in school, they also show more bias along ethnic, gender, and income lines than general intelligence tests. I just think there's a limit to what any sort of standardized test can tell you.

Ash: I feel that there should be certain things that are taught in school. Reading seems like a big one. Basic arithmetic. Some algebra. But I do agree that the overwhelming majority of what is done in schools through the end of high school is garbage for most people. Schools very badly need to change.

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quote:
Originally written by Ash Lael:

I maintain that the entire education system is, by and large, a waste of time. Higher education may be different, I've no experience with it. I also realise that a lot of fields absolutely require formal education (such as medicine, for example), and am not referring to these.

Having given those disclaimers, I have no qualms saying that I think more often than not, formal education is, at best, very innefficient and you're generally better off bypassing it as much as possible.

Edit: Hmm, that's a lot of qualifiers. :P

If you are stating that the learning techniques of the education system are insufficient, I agree.

If you are stating that the majority of the subject matter of the education system is purposeless, I strongly agree.

[ Monday, March 14, 2005 06:43: Message edited by: Mind ]
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quote:
Originally written by Mind:

quote:
Originally written by Ash Lael:

I maintain that the entire education system is, by and large, a waste of time. Higher education may be different, I've no experience with it. I also realise that a lot of fields absolutely require formal education (such as medicine, for example), and am not referring to these.

Having given those disclaimers, I have no qualms saying that I think more often than not, formal education is, at best, very innefficient and you're generally better off bypassing it as much as possible.

Edit: Hmm, that's a lot of qualifiers. :P

If you are stating that the learning techniques of the education system are insufficient, I agree.

If you are stating that the majority of the subject matter of the education system is purposeless, I strongly agree.

We lost a golden era when we implemented public education. A golden era when the majority of people could be convinced the Bible justified slavery, denying women even cursory legal rights was considered not only justifiable but the right thing to do, and no one got all pissy when a lack of even the most basic idea of sanitation turned anything larger than a hamlet into a literal cesspool.

Yeah, good times.

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quote:
Originally written by Bad-Ass Mother Custer:

no one got all pissy when a lack of even the most basic idea of sanitation turned anything larger than a hamlet into a literal cesspool.

And here, I thought everyone got all pissy.

[ Monday, March 14, 2005 07:12: Message edited by: Imban ]
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School does not teach us not to commit crimes or discriminate others. Society does.

[ Monday, March 14, 2005 07:23: Message edited by: Mind ]
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School does not make people more intelligent. It teaches the intelligent how to use their skills. I'm not to proud to say this but, there was a group of us who would more or less ditch school half the time. When it came to testing I did very well, so when report cards came around it showed I had retained what I was meant to learn. Some kids went every day, worked very hard, and failed half the tests.

People seem to have a certain thought process that is part of their personality. I know a guy who learns a lot, and retains information very well. He's reading constantly, but when it comes to real life he lacks all common sense. What is intelligence?, mathematical and science capability?, reading comprehension?, spelling and grammar?, problem solving?, so on and so on.

Testing well and life intelligence end up being very different things. In school we had a lot of busy work followed by tests. In high school I watched people with D average graduate with the same diploma as those with an A or B average (not including honor students in this). Grades K-12 are simply required education.

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