Wednesday, November 6, 2013

“What if I’m not Smart Enough for College?”

The experience showed me how easily students believe that they are not smart enough for college. It happened with my pen-friend who was thinking that he is very stupid after talking computer programming class because all his classmates was able to write a code since they were eleven. It happened with a foreign language learner who understands nothing and afraid to speak as he gets criticized all the time. The same thing with nursing student who is suppressed by kink terminology that his peers understand more quickly.

These situations happen because not everyone has the same level of knowledge and not because some student is not intelligent enough. In real world, there is always being a difference in learning habits, studying techniques, motivation, and self-confidence. Students cannot see individual benefit, they just see the aggregate. The scope states I was weak, but it didn’t tell me the reasons why. 

Student’s Problem with IQ
Many students worry about their IQ, as they think it is not high enough to achieve success in particular discipline. So, they begin torturing themselves by questions like, "what university should I go to if my IQ is so low?"

They receive feedback from the collected factors of intelligence, previous level of knowledge and habits which tells students that they are weak. Because of these factors, they blame their IQ.

I do not agree with this opinion. First of all, the faith people put into multiple intelligence test for students is doubtful and dangerous. Secondly, even if you can find some truths in numbers, believing that it can influence on your success is bad for your self-confidence.

My first observation connected with how people usually interpret IQ tests. The first issue is that statistics is not intuitive subject and so it is easy to make logical conclusion but it can be not the right one. The mistake that people make is that they believe IQ tests can measure an inherent intelligence, not connected with your previous experiences and knowledge. However, it is not true. Most multiple intelligence test for students evaluates both fluid intelligence and crystallized one. Fluid intelligence reflects the ability of individual to solve particular tasks. However, crystallized intelligence, which reflects only your previous level of knowledge, is added on many tests. 

Self-confidence and self-expectations are also the factors that cannot be eliminated from the test. The fact is when you prime someone with a belief of bad performance on the test, they actually do even worse. Their inherent skills stay the same, while they temporary lose their confidence and perform accordingly.
I do not consider that IQ tests are useless. But people that are unfamiliar and untrained in statistics often receive the result that is far more power than it deserves. If I graded 97% on a phycology test, I cannot say that my Psychology Quotient is 97. That would be not very smart. Why then you must hold up your IQ score as if they are more a part of who you are?