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Are IQ tests still relevant and a useful indicator of anything...or absolutely nothing?

Clinical psychologist at Rhodes University Prof Ann Edwards says IQ or intelligence quotient tests are still used extensively and test numerous cognitive abilities in people.

Certainly, they have a huge role to play if done properly.

Prof Ann Edwards, clinical psychologist

They play a valuable role in both diagnosis and decisions around the appropriate placement of people in schools and jobs.

She says some old school IQ tests used to test only one limited kind of intellect - such as reasoning ability in visio-perceptual function - but more comprehensive ones test a far broader range.

She says these would include verbal functions, memory ability, and many other functions.

These can certainly be very predictive but with a big proviso that they be used appropriately - and be interpreted properly.

Prof Ann Edwards, clinical psychologist

She says one of the main reasons these tests have received criticism is that they are not interpreted properly.

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This article first appeared on CapeTalk : IQ tests are useful (if they are interpreted properly)

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