chapter  XII
13 Pages

The Testing of Intelligence

Like standardized and objective measures of attainment, modern tests of intelligence were developed out of traditional procedures by psychologists familiar with the psycho-physical experiments of the nineteenth century and interested in the discovery of ways of giving consistent and unprejudiced descriptions of the ability of pupils who came from a wide variety of homes. In the case of tests of intelligence even more lively debate has been directed to the nature of the ability under examination than in the case of measures of arithmetic, reading or written expression. Reminiscent of the older viewpoint is the fact that the word 'intelligence' itself is still used by some writers indiscriminantly in the two senses of inherited or innate capacity and actual or present ability. Conducive also to its formulation was the careful statistical analysis of results obtained from the use of intelligence tests over the same decades. It has been suggested that group tests lay an undesirable emphasis upon speed.