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For people with little or no knowledge of the science of human intelligence, this volume takes readers to a stage where they are able to make judgments for themselves about the key questions of human mental ability. Each chapter addresses a central scientific issue but does so in a way that is lively and completely accessible. Issues discussed include whether there are several different types of intelligence, whether intelligence differences are caused by genes or the environment, the biological basis of intelligence levels, and whether intelligence declines as we grow older.
About the Series: Combining authority with wit, accessibility, and style, Very Short Introductions offer an introduction to some of life's most interesting topics. Written by experts for the newcomer, they demonstrate the finest contemporary thinking about the central problems and issues in hundreds of key topics, from philosophy to Freud, quantum theory to Islam.
List of illustrations
A word about correlation
1. To see 'g' or not to see 'g': How many types of intelligence are there?
2. Ageing and intelligence - senility or sagacity? What happens to mental abilities as we grow older?
3. Brainy? Why are some people cleverer than others?
4. 'They **** you up your Mum and Dad': Are intelligence differences a result of genes or environments or both?
5. The (b)right man for the job: Does intelligence matter?
6. The lands of the rising IQ: Is intelligence changing generation by generation?
7. Twelve angry men: Getting experts to agree about human intelligence differences
Posted January 24, 2011
There isn't a single area of Psychology that elicits as much contention as the area of psychometrics. To a certain degree this is understandable, since no one wants to be told that she is not as bright as someone else, no matter how true or obvious it might be. However, of all brunches of Psychology, psychometrics has the greatest predictive power. Within the professional community many of the general aspects of intelligence are very well understood and appreciated. This VSI book is an excellent introduction to this fascinating field. It covers all the major aspects of the Intelligence research and gives directions for further reading. The style of the book is very accessible without being dumbed-down (this is not another one of those "For Dummies"-styled books). If you are serious about finding out more about what scientist know about intelligence, this would be an excellent starting point for you readings. Overall, this is a wonderful little book.
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