Perhaps, one of the most unfortunate productions in the history of psychology is the concept of IQ. While many psychologists and much of the public are quick to support the notion that IQ scores, are complete and valid measure of one’s ‘intelligence’, there are legitimate reasons to doubt such claims. Though many find it easy to cite instances of over-achievement in their personal lives, in support of deflating the value of an IQ score, the scientific community has had little regard for this. In defending IQ, explanations of over-achievement have been mundane and convenient. For example, by way of social-class.
But more recently, there has been an interest among cognitive psychologists, in the concept of intuition. There are varying definitions of intuition, but from the works of modern cognitive and behavioral scientists, and from varying philosophers of mind, one can summarize intuition as:
a sub-conscious, pre-analytical process, that allows for temporally and spatially distant information, to be associated in new permutations (models)
For example, the immediate association of a piece of broccoli with a tree. Sometimes these models are dealt with instinctively, for example, pulling your hand away from a hot stove, but may also be examined through the contrasting partner of intuition: analysis (which IQ tests are suitable measures for). While intuition was well regarded by many philosophers of mind, and considered important to problem solving and reasoning, mainstream psychology has not utilized the concept.
But despite the title of my post, I am not advocating the idea that IQ is a meaningless measure. It is usually fair-to-good predictor of success in many domains, as often backed by long-term studies. The problem with IQ, is that it is incorrectly regarded to be a sole factor in intellectual functioning and reasoning. When assuming that role, IQ is incompetent and over-hyped.