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What Intelligence Tests Miss


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About the Author

Keith E. Stanovich is professor of human development and applied psychology, University of Toronto. He is author of How to Think Straight about Psychology and The Robot's Rebellion: Finding Meaning in the Age of Darwin, among other books.


Stanovich (human development & applied psychology, Univ. of Toronto; How To Think Straight About Psychology) argues that IQ tests measure cognitive efficiency but not the degree to which subjects make rational decisions. He explains that individuals with high IQs are as likely as others to go for quick, easy answers, adopt beliefs that preclude rational thinking, or be unaware of the rules of chance and probability-a concept Stanovich terms dysrationalia. In a weak first chapter, he introduces someone he thinks may be dysrational, President George W. Bush, whose IQ has been estimated to be around 120 but whose supporters have said he is "dogmatic" and "incurious." But readers should persist; the rest of the book is worthwhile and better supported. This is an important book for much the same reason that Daniel Goleman's best-selling Emotional Intelligence has proven so useful: it is based on sound evidence and allows for better prediction and education for success. This engaging and accessible book is highly recommended for most public and academic libraries.-Mary Ann Hughes, Shelton, WA Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

"A compelling argument....What Intelligence Tests Miss illuminates the actions of everyone who affects our lives."-Scientific American * Scientific American *

"An original, well-supported, and brilliantly tied together book that reveals the misunderstood relationship between IQ, intelligence, and rationality."-David Over, Durham University, Psychology Department

-- David Over
"In this compellingly readable book Keith Stanovich explains the bold claim that the notions of rationality and intelligence must be distinguished sharply and studied separately. His proposal would deeply change both the field of intelligence testing and the study of individual decision making-and he may well succeed."-Daniel Kahneman, Princeton University, Nobel Laureate in Economics -- Daniel Kahneman
"In this brilliant and entertaining book, Keith Stanovich shows that intelligence tests, though they have their uses, fail to assess the key components of rational thought and action."-P. N. Johnson-Laird, author of How We Reason -- P. N. Johnson-Laird
"Professor Stanovich has an unparalleled ability to synthesize results from diverse domains of cognitive science in a lively way that is tremendously useful to us non-specialists. This book is not about emotional or multiple intelligence; it's about intelligence in its most important practical dimensions."-E. D. Hirsch, Jr., author of The Knowledge Deficit and The Schools We Need -- E. D. Hirsch, Jr.

"In this smart and rational book, Keith Stanovich explains the difference between intelligence and rationality. Stanovich, one of psychology's wisest writers about intelligence, also shows that IQ tests do not measure the full scope of mental ability because they fail to assess rational thought, which is central to happiness and fulfillment. This book is essential reading for anyone who wants to know what makes us truly smart-and why smart people often behave irrationally."-Carol Tavris, Ph.D., coauthor of Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) : Why we justify foolish beliefs, bad decisions, and hurtful acts -- Carol Tavris, Ph.D.

"In this dazzling synthesis about how well and poorly people think and why, Keith Stanovich drives a wedge between intelligence and rationality. This book demonstrates compellingly how rationality is more than intelligence and how those who are intelligent can be dismayingly irrational."-David Perkins, author of The Eureka Effect -- David Perkins
"Written for the intelligent lay reader as well as the scholar, the book is clear and lively. Scholars will find material on the intelligence-rationality relationship particularly valuable, and research psychologists should take seriously Stanovich's case for developing a standardized rationality quotient (RQ) test. . . . Essential."-B. J. Lovett, Choice -- B. J. Lovett * Choice *
Winner of the 2010 Grawemeyer Award in Education, given by the University of Louisville -- Grawemeyer Award in Education * University of Louisville *
Chosen as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2009 by Choice Magazine * Choice *
Chosen as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2009 by Choice Magazine * Choice *

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