High-range I.Q. scores by year

© January 2017 Paul Cooijmans

This table shows the combined performance on a number of high-range intelligence tests, by year. For each test, the median score by year was determined (in protonorms) as well as the number of scores in each year. Across the tests, the weighted median protonorm and the total number of scores were computed for each year. For information, the I.Q. corresponding to that protonorm is given.

Year# scrs.Prot.I.Q.Graph (I.Q. - 125)
1995 18 353 130 *****
1996 81 380 134 *********
1997 38 391 136 ***********
1998 48 410 139 **************
1999 89 433 143 ******************
2000 56 427 142 *****************
2001 136 420 141 ****************
2002 776 327 126 *
2003 256 387 135 **********
2004 397 372 133 ********
2005 196 402 138 *************
2006 93 440 145 ********************
2007 94 395 137 ************
2008 82 433 143 ******************
2009 83 415 140 ***************
2010 101 384 135 **********
2011 88 413 140 ***************
2012 94 404 138 *************
2013 103 367 132 *******
2014 158 394 137 ************
2015 174 380 134 *********
2016 165 415 140 ***************

Considerations

In 1995, the first tests were made available, it was hard to find candidates, and there were very few high scores. It started from zero, and no one knew about the tests initially. In the following years the tests became known in a wider circle, and more people took them, including some high scorers. Most candidates were from outside the Netherlands.

In 1997, the Glia Society was founded, and people started taking the tests purposely to qualify, resulting in higher scores. Also, in the following years the tests were published on the Internet which made them easier to find by people specifically interested in hard tests.

In 2000, the number of test submissions stayed lower than it could have been as test scoring was stopped for some months.

In 2001, the web site GliaWeb High-Range Intelligence Tests started, and it became possible to take tests via e-mail (until then, everything had been done by regular mail). This resulted in more test submissions.

In 2002, the Qoymans Multiple-Choice tests came, which appeared easy (online and multiple-choice) and were mostly free, resulting in very many submissions, but of a low median score level, with little or mostly no usable information reported by the candidates, who in many cases took the tests rather carelessly, which also resulted in lower reliability and validity (those statistics depend not only on the test but also on the conscientiousness of the candidates). Over the next two years the Q.M.C. wave kept going but in a more controlled way, with fewer submissions, higher median scores, and higher quality on the whole.

2005 was a transitional year; during the first half the tests were free, and many submissions came in with relatively lower scores on average. Then, a high fee was asked for the first time — about € 20 to 25 except for Glia Society members — and fewer submissions came in. The median score went up again, compared to the three previous years.

In 2006 and later, the number of submissions stayed fairly low because of the high fee (except for Glia Society members who could take the tests for free) and the median scores returned to the level of the period 1998-2001.

As an aside, it can be noted that the maximum in sun spot activity of 2001 does not seem to have depressed performance on the tests. There is a theory by A. L. Chizhevsky and S. E. Ertel that such a maximum depresses culturally positive behaviour like creativity in art and science (which peak within plus or minus one year from a solar minimum) while it promotes disasters like revolutions, mass migrations, wars, upheavals and so on (which peak within plus or minus one year from a maximum).

Actually, the solar minimum of 2008 and most of 2009, and low solar activity in the few years before that, do go with higher scores, and in 2002 scores were very low indeed, but that can be explained much better as done in the above paragraphs (unless one includes those worldly causes with the influence of the sun). Nevertheless it is interesting to stay alert. The new solar cycle appears to have got going late 2009, early 2010, and apparently reached a, be it weak, peak late 2013 and in 2014.

Tests included in this report

The use and counting of tests for this report differs from that in other places, such as for instance the Order of Thoth. One difference is that, of course, personality tests are not included; another difference is that a "test" here is defined by its "year taken" information, and not by a mere score. The latter makes a difference for compound tests, wherein only the constituent subtests have "year taken" information, and not the compound tests themselves (the subtests may have been taken in different years, so the "year taken" information is stored at subtest level).