The idea that intelligence can be measured by a number – your IQ – is incorrect, according to a new study that has been done by researchers at the University of Western Ontario.
There were 100,000 participants subjected to 12 cognitive studies. A small part of them had a brain scan made.
“When we looked at the data, we discovered that the whole concept is a myth,” said lead researcher Adrian Owen. “The IQ can not be used to measure general intelligence.”
The study identified three factors fixed, namely reasoning, short-term memory and verbal abilities.Today it is often an IQ test done to measure intelligence.
The researchers in the journal New Scientist and on Discovery.com advertise their research. They took into account several thousand participants, but eventually signed up more than 100,000 people. It was the largest study to date intelligence.
The scientists were in some cases a brain scan. “If IQ is in the brain is we should be able to find a scan. But there is no area of the brain that is responsible for the so-called IQ. There are three completely different networks that respond: verbal abilities, abilities to reason and abilities that deal with short-term memory.These networks are located in different parts of the brain, “explained Owen.
The aging process has such a detrimental effect on reasoning and short-term memory, but leave intact verbal abilities. Smoking has a negative impact on verbal abilities and short-term memory, but let abilities to reason alone.
People who play computer games scored moreover “significantly better” on reasoning and short-term memory.
The study also showed that products on the market to improve brain function is not effective. “People who train their brains score on the three points are not better than people who do not do brain training.
People can still participate in the study: cambridgebrainsciences.com / theIQchallenge . Owen hopes that eventually more than a million people will cooperate in the study.