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Genius And Near Genius

Intelligence tests have not been in use long enough to enable us to define genius
definitely in terms of I Q. The following two cases are offered as among the highest
test records of which the writer has personal knowledge. It is doubtful whether more
than one child in 10,000 goes as high as either. One case has been
reported, however, in which the I Q was not far from 200. Such a
record, if reliable, is certainly phenomenal.

_E. F. Russian boy, age 8-5; mental age 13; I Q approximately
155._ Mother is a university student apparently of very superior
intelligence. E. F. has a sister almost as remarkable as
himself. E. F. is in the sixth grade and at the head of his
class. Although about four grades advanced beyond his
chronological age he is still one grade retarded! He could
easily carry seventh-grade work. In all probability E. F. could
be made ready for college by the age of 12 years without injury
to body or mind. His mother has taken the only sensible course;
she has encouraged him without subjecting him to

E. F. was selected for the test as probably one of the brightest
children in a city of a third of a million population. He may
not be the brightest in that city, but he is one of the three or
four most intelligent the writer has found after a good deal of
searching. He is probably equaled by not more than one in
several thousand unselected children. How impatiently one waits
to see the fruit of such a budding genius!

_B. F. Son of a minister, age 7-8; mental age 12-4; I Q 160._
Vocabulary 7000 (12 years). This test was not made by the
writer, but by one of his graduate students. The record included
the _verbatim_ responses, so that it was easy to verify the
scoring. There can be no doubt as to the substantial accuracy
of the test. This I Q of 160 is the highest one in the Stanford
University records. B. F. has excellent health, normal play
interests, and is a favorite among his playfellows. Parents had
not thought of him as especially remarkable. He is only in the
third grade, and is therefore about three grades below his
mental age.

It is especially noteworthy that not one of the children we have
described with I Q above 130 has ever had any unusual amount or kind of
home instruction. In most cases the parents were not aware of their very
great superiority. Nor can we give the credit to the school or its
methods. The school has in most cases been a deterrent to their
progress, rather than a help. These children have been taught in classes
with average and inferior children, like those described in the first
part of this chapter. Their high I Q is only an index of their
extraordinary cerebral endowment. This endowment is for life. There is
not the remotest probability that any of these children will deteriorate
to the average level of intelligence with the onset of maturity. Such an
event would be no less a miracle (barring insanity) than the development
of an imbecile into a successful lawyer or physician.

Next: Is The I Q Often Misleading?

Previous: Very Superior Intelligence (i Q 120 To 140)

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