Three Commissions

PROCEDURE. After getting up from the chair and moving with the child to

the center of the room, say: "_Now, I want you to do something for me.

Here's a key. I want you to put it on that chair over there; then I want

you to shut (or open) that door, and then bring me the box which you see

over there_ (pointing in turn to the objects designated). _Do you

understand? Be sure to get it right. First, put the key on the chair,

> then shut_ (open) _the door, then bring me the box_ (again pointing).

_Go ahead._" Stress the words _first_ and _then_ so as to emphasize the

order in which the commissions are to be executed.

Give the commissions always in the above order. Do not repeat the

instructions again or give any further aid whatever, even by the

direction of the gaze. If the child stops or hesitates it is never

permissible to say: "_What next?_" Have the self-control to leave the

child alone with his task.

SCORING. _All three commissions must be executed and in the proper

order._ Failure may result, therefore, either from leaving out one or

more of the commands or from changing the order. The former is more

often the case.

REMARKS. Success depends first on the ability to comprehend the

commands, and secondly, on the ability to hold them in mind. It is

therefore a test of memory, though of a somewhat different kind from

that involved in repeating digits or sentences. It is an excellent test,

for it throws light on a kind of intelligence which is demanded in all

occupations and in everyday life. A more difficult test of the same type

ought to be worked out for a higher age level.

Binet originally located this test in year VI, but in 1911 changed it to

year VII. This is unfortunate, for the three Stanford investigations, as

well as the statistics of all other investigators, show conclusively

that it is easy enough for year V.