IQ test: Why it can be especially important in childhood

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IQ test: Why it can be especially important in childhood

How intelligent is my child? This question probably occupies many parents. Especially if there is reason to suspect that their offspring might be highly or less gifted, the IQ test provides reliable information.

What is an IQ test?

IQ is the abbreviation for "intelligence quotient". The IQ test is used to assess intellectual ability. In principle, the results are only compared within the same age group in childhood.

A score of 100 percentage points is considered to be average intelligence, with a deviation of 10 points up or down within the tolerance range. Above 130 percentage points is considered highly gifted, and below 70 percentage points is considered less gifted.

However, an IQ test is always subject to external influences such as the child's form on the day and willingness to cooperate, which is why the result only provides an orientation. Moreover, no test exists that covers all areas of human intelligence. Nevertheless, the IQ test is an important and reliable diagnostic tool to detect deviations.

Why are IQ tests important for children?

The IQ test reflects your child's current level of learning and development. The earlier upward or downward deviations are detected, the faster the home and school environment can react. For example, if highly gifted children are not supported appropriately, this can be reflected by Behavioral problems or social withdrawal.

The same applies if a child has a below-average IQ and is therefore overtaxed at school. If the child does not receive individual support, this can strong self-doubt and trigger fears of failure. This in turn leads to complete self-abandonment at school, social withdrawal or aggression.

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What are the types of IQ tests?

Even though the name may incorrectly suggest it, there is no "one" IQ test. There are different test formats, which are either aimed at the recording of general intelligence or at sub-areas.

General intelligence

The general intelligence test refers to the general factor of intelligence; conceived by the British psychologist Charles Spearman. It includes, for example, number-connection tests and matrix tests.

Binet-Simon test

The Binet-Simon test, developed in 1905 by the French psychologists Alfred Binet and Théodore Simonforms the basis of the modern intelligence tests used today. It comprises individual tasks of various types (so-called subtests) with an increasing degree of difficulty.

Crystallized (crystalline) and fluid intelligence

This IQ test differentiates between innate (fluid) intelligence and intelligence acquired over the course of life (crystalline). The concept goes back to the British-American psychologist Raymond Bernard Cattell back.

Multi-factor concepts

Multifactor concepts encompass various subcomponents of intelligence. These include:

Short tests

IQ short tests are used primarily when a quick estimate of intelligence is required. This is the case, for example, in the suspected diagnosis of degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease.

Preparation for IQ tests for children: 7 tips

You want to have your child take an IQ test and wonder if and how you can prepare for it? Here are a few suggestions.

1. serenity

The idea that their own intelligence is being judged puts children under massive pressure. After all, no one wants to be stamped "stupid," to use a colloquial expression. Depending on the age of the child, you shouldn't even mention the goal of the test, but instead convey the procedure in a playful way: "You'll get lots of exciting puzzles."

2. getting to know each other

An IQ test for children is usually performed by a child psychologist. Before the test takes place, it is essential to have a meeting to get to know each other. Only when an atmosphere of sympathy and Trust If there is a good atmosphere, a child can approach the test items without bias.

3. value freedom

The IQ test says nothing about your child's worth. Make your child aware that your future affection is in no way related to the result. The less pressure that is built up, the more impartial your child will be about the test.

4. playful preparation with learning games

The tasks of IQ tests are secret. This makes sense: If your child could find concrete tasks and the corresponding solutions online, the result would be falsified. Of course, you can play learning games to prepare your child for the test, such as continuing number sequences or retelling picture stories. Memory games such as packing a suitcase are also ideal as preparation.

5. the question of why

To prepare for your child's IQ test, you should have a clear goal in mind. Why are you having the test done in the first place? Possible questions could be:

  • Which type of school is suitable for my child?
  • Is there a giftedness or Learning Disability before? Can existing problems at school be traced back to this?
  • In which areas does my child need more support?
  • Should my child skip or repeat the grade?

6. motivation

Motivate your child to participate in the IQ test. This can be done, for example, by making the tasks palatable: "You like to draw so much and think up such beautiful stories. Would you show that to Dr. XY on Thursday?" Whether you title the IQ test directly as such depends on the age of the child. For elementary school students, the last not meaningful.

7. open communication with older children

By teenage years at the latest, you will no longer be able to deceive your child about the purpose of the test. So teenagers should be involved in deciding whether to take an IQ test: "I can see that you're not doing well at school. But only if we know what's going on can we help you properly."

5 factors that influence IQ scores in children.

Although an IQ test provides orientation, the result is subject to numerous external influences. Let's take a look together at what needs to be considered, especially for children.

1. daily form

You're not at your best every day either. The same applies to your child. If you have chosen a day for the test on which your child feels unwell or is in a bad mood, this can have a massive impact on the test result. The same applies in the opposite case: if your child is particularly cheerful and motivated, he or she will probably do better than on average days.

2. willingness to cooperate

If your child does not actually want to take the IQ test, the reluctance will be reflected in the result. In order to obtain a meaningful result, it is important that your child cooperates voluntarily. Please do not force your child to take the test, but make an appointment for a later date if necessary.

3. fears and pressure to perform

Some children put themselves under enormous pressure and want to be the best in everything. The Fear, failing the IQ test and disappointing parents can leave children feeling paralyzed and unable to complete tasks even though they would be cognitively capable of doing so.

4. sympathy

If your child does not like the psychologist or educator administering the test, it may negatively affect the result. The same is true vice versa. Sympathy on both sides has a motivating effect. That's why it's so important to have a meeting to get to know each other.

5. past experience

Has your child been in the Past bad experiences with educators, psychologists or testing procedures, this can also have a negative impact on the test result.

Learning coaching for better learning

If the IQ test shows that your child does indeed suffer from Learning Difficulties suffers, learning coaching can provide relief. Within the framework of the coaching format, which is specially tailored to children, learning blockades are solved and the fun of learning is conveyed anew. The aim is to Promote intrinsic motivation of the child and to give him new self-confidence.

Also you as a parent can join the Learning Coach to provide your child with the best possible support. Here, the focus is not on a specific school subject. Learning coaching is a holistic concept that focuses on the individuality of each child.

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7 myths and misconceptions about IQ tests for children

There are a number of myths and misconceptions surrounding IQ tests for children. We have summarized the most common misconceptions for you:

1. the IQ test makes a statement for the whole life

It may be, but it doesn't have to be. In the 1920s, scientists began observing 1500 children classified as highly gifted into old age. Over the years, the intellectual difference to their peers became smaller and smaller.

2. children with high IQ have it easier in life

Not necessarily. Intelligence alone is neither for professional success nor for private happiness. Many other factors play a role here that cannot be measured with an IQ test.

3. the IQ test measures how empathic a person is

No, that is wrong. A high IQ has nothing to do with empathy. Even a child who is highly gifted in mathematics or language can be underdeveloped in the social-emotional area. In order to emotional intelligence the EQ test is used.

4. an IQ test is always useful

Quite the opposite. Sometimes conducting it can even do harm, as such a test triggers psychological stress. An IQ test is not something that should be done simply out of parental curiosity. There must be concrete reasons.

5. children with high IQ outperform their peers in all domains

This statement is also not true. It is much more common for giftedness to manifest itself in individual areas, e.g. language, mathematics, art or music.

6. an IQ test is often requested by particularly ambitious parents

In practice, this is not true. Much more often, the child's behavior gives reason to conduct an appropriate test, according to the experts from the education and social enterprise CJD.

7. good performance gives rise to IQ test

If the child writes exceptionally good grades, this does not necessarily indicate giftedness. With intensive learning and diligence, academic success can also be achieved, which is not synonymous with giftedness.

IQ tests for children to analyze strengths and weaknesses

As already explained, there are several sub-areas of intelligence. Thus, it is quite possible that a linguistically gifted child has deficits in the mathematical area. An IQ test can help to identify the individual strengths and weaknesses so that individually tailored support can be provided.

Conclusion: IQ tests for children to promote mental potential

An IQ test provides parents with information about their child's current level of cognitive development. The test result can be used to promote existing strengths in a targeted manner. The first step is to make the child enjoy learning (again) so that he or she can reach his or her full potential. Potential can exploit.

Our free e-book "The 10 best tips for fun and success in learning" support. The 10 tried and tested tricks of the well-known memory trainer Markus Hofmann have already convinced many children and parents.


The 10 best tips for 
Fun and success in learning

In our free e-book you get 10 tried and tested tipsthat will help you to support your child in learning in the best possible way.
Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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