Academics in the UK claim their research shows that men are more intelligent than women. A study to be published later this year in the British Journal of Psychology says that men are on average five points ahead on IQ tests…
Their research was based on IQ tests given to 80,000 people and a further study of 20,000 students.
Can you believe that, in this day and age, serious academics still have faith in the concept of a so-called Intelligence Quotient?
The human brain is the product of millions of years of evolution, it has approximately 1,000,000,000,000,000 synaptic connections, and is the most complex structure in the known universe. We have yet to come up with even a satisfactory definition of its most intriguing emergent property, consciousness, let alone an explanation for it. The human mind is capable of totally amazing things, like working out how to create fire, bake a cake, or write the latest Harry Potter novel; it can experience love, hatred, joy, boredom, and a thousand other emotions; it can solve problems, create music, learn from experience, and imagine things that aren't there. Not one of us (brain surgeons excluded) has the faintest idea what it is like to be inside another person's head.
And these people think they can measure our intelligence with a single number.
I heard one of them trying to justify the concept of IQ on the radio earlier this week. He explained that a number of indicators of intelligence were factored into IQ scores, such as verbal reasoning and spacial co-ordination (a skill not uncommon in gibbons, I understand). His main justification went something along the lines of, these tests are scientific because all the other IQ scientists use them (I didn't catch his exact words, because I was too busy shouting at the radio at the time). You could use similar reasoning to prove that god must exist because so many people go to church.
The fact that men's and women's IQ scores differ tells us far more about the validity of IQ tests than it does about the relative intelligence of the sexes.