Accepting high-range mental ability tests for admission purposes

© Paul Cooijmans


Admission officers of I.Q. societies have over the years been consistently and worryingly observed to excel in their lack of psychometric expertise. This phenomenon has only worsened with the advent of the Internet, and especially with the availability of graphical foolproof "what you see is what you get" programs and site builders, which enable persons of exceedingly low ability levels to create "professional" web locations. As a result, there is now a generation of I.Q. society founders and officers who themselves are breathtakingly far from intelligent and have no idea what they are doing. To accept scores on high-range I.Q. tests for admission, the following elementary guidelines may be helpful:

  1. Insist on being provided with an integral - that is: unedited, so not manipulated, masked, or otherwise forged - copy of the score report;
  2. Read the report carefully;
  3. Locate the (most recent) statistical report for the test in question and study it to determine if the test is suitable for admission; it is important to decide this independently, and not rely on lists of accepted tests of other societies, which are mostly compiled by persons who lack the expertise needed for that;
  4. It is unsafe to accept tests in the absence of a statistical report, or with only preliminary norms;
  5. It is unsafe to accept scores from tests that allow repeated attempts;
  6. It is unsafe to accept scores very close to the test's floor, the pass level being below, at, or just above that floor;
  7. It is unsafe to accept scores on tests with low ceilings, when the pass level is at or just below the test ceiling;
  8. It is unsafe to decide about a test's or a score's suitability for admission if one lacks the required expertise;
  9. It is unsafe to decide about a test's or a score's suitability for admission if one's own I.Q. on correctly normed heterogeneous high-range tests, taken honestly, is not consistently over 140 (S.D. = 15) (mainstream tests can not be trusted at this level, and neither should one rely on a few lucky high scores after taking dozens of tests with mostly lower scores);
  10. When in doubt, the test scorer may be consulted to confirm the authenticity of the report; for that purpose, it is best to send a copy of the report to the scorer; note that in the absence of a report, such confirmation has limited value, as the report may contain information besides the score that is relevant regarding admission, and the scorer is not at liberty to reveal that information, or any contents of the report, to the admission officer, as that would violate the candidate's privacy; the full report contents must first be provided by the candidate, and confirmation is only a yes/no matter.

- [More statistics explained]

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