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  1. #41
    insert random title here Randomnity's Avatar
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    Coming late since I missed this thread earlier - I'm most of the way through a PhD in medical research/biology and most of my peers are bright-normal, not a ton of people who approach genius level (although there are a few exceptional people, like in most educated fields). I don't know anyone's IQ of course (or my own) but I'd guess most are in the 1-2 SD above normal range, so a fairly bright crew but nothing too crazy, and I doubt I'd be able to pick someone of average IQ apart from the others. The people who do best tend to be the ones who are hard working, persistent, patient, and logical in the sense that they can design experiments effectively to answer the questions they've come up with (hopefully useful questions). The clearly super clever ones do well too but only if they're good at following through with all their crazy ideas.

    The people who struggle most are the ones who don't seem to understand scientific thinking (why do we do things certain ways?) or similarly, can't get the hang of designing/carrying out experiments i.e. you don't just do arbitrary experiments because that's how the last person did it! think what do we want to learn - what's the hypothesis? what do we need to do to test this hypothesis, while using reliable techniques and good controls, to get results we can trust? It's not so much straight IQ as it is a way of thinking; most people drawn to science tend to come naturally to that way of thinking, but those who don't can have trouble. Psych is a bit different from hard science, but probably a lot of these things still apply if you're doing experimental psych.

    edit: oh yeah and also writing skills are incredibly important overall, and a major contributor towards success as measured by publications.

    From what I know of you @Glycerine I don't think you'd have any problems at all as far as intelligence goes. It's hard to know without actually doing it how well you'll do in research anyway, and more importantly how much you'll like it - that's what the Masters is for.
    -end of thread-

  2. #42
    Glycerine
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    @Randomnity:

    Thanks for your insights. I just don't have much work or research experience so I guess I was under the false assumption that one had to be a super brainiac to excel in academia. From what I am getting from this thread, it's more a matter of motivation and drive that predicts success (which I think pretty much lines up with what the current research says).

    If taking a Research Methods class is any indicator, I found it rather easy but stress-inducing (my partner was smart but he didn't know what to do so I carried most of the weight in conceptualizing the experiment and analyzing the results).

  3. #43
    Senior Member Habba's Avatar
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    I also have a high IQ (higher than 95% of population, measured by Mensa) and it was an advantage at the school. Also a disadvantage. See, I never studied for any exams. I did do my homework since I'm against rule breaking in general, but the moment they became optional and unregulated, I got real lazy. I usually got pretty good grades, but at times I have hard time when rigorous work is needed. I used to shine in math, but once it became arduous, I got in problems. I've now been about 10 years at the college, and I haven't finished my master's degree yet (recommendation is 5 years). It's not that it would be difficult, I just can't get myself to work on it. Being an ISTJ, I tend to focus my time and energy on things that have practical outcomes. Scientific research and objective truth just ain't my thing.

    I've ready couple of books by Daniel Goleman, he's a forespeaker for Emotional Intelligence. According to him, it's probably the best indicator for person's success. At least far better indicator that IQ. Emotional Intelligence is all about understanding and controlling your moods, motivations and primal reactions.
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  4. #44
    Glycerine
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    it's all good. I have been told I probably have a much higher IQ than the tests indicate because I technically have "brain damage" which makes things fuzzy on top of major anxiety issues (I second guess myself too much and read way too much into things so I bomb when there is a pressure to perform in a test setting but tend to excel otherwise). I zoned out for most of my classes, crammed for tests, and shocked the teachers/profs that I actually did well (even though I was depressed and was recovering from major reconstructive surgery).

  5. #45
    this is my winter song EJCC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glycerine View Post
    So if a person falls within the average range of IQ, would they still be able to excel in higher level positions or would he or she be setting himself or herself up for failure?

    For example, I have always dreamed of getting a PhD in psychology but I am pretty sure that I would test well into the average range of IQ. I can grasp complex concepts easily and apply them to other areas quite readily but "abstract pattern recognition" seems to be a weakness of mine (which most IQ tests and assessments seem to measure).
    Insert standard comments about the reliability, or lack thereof, of IQ as a concept, here.

    To answer your question though -- in my experience, there are two types of successful students: those to whom the material comes easily, and those who study/work very hard.

    Also in my experience, the most mediocre people in the working world are the people who don't care about improving, and/or ignore or dismiss constructive criticism. Intelligence isn't always correlated with that.

    (No idea what my IQ is. I was never tested for anything, and my schools never did gifted programs. I would expect myself to be on the higher end of average, but I doubt I'd get into Mensa.)


    Edit: Whoops, didn't see this:
    Quote Originally Posted by Glycerine View Post
    it's all good. I have been told I probably have a much higher IQ than the tests indicate because I technically have "brain damage" which makes things fuzzy on top of major anxiety issues (I second guess myself too much and read way too much into things so I bomb when there is a pressure to perform in a test setting but tend to excel otherwise). I zoned out for most of my classes, crammed for tests, and shocked the teachers/profs that I actually did well (even though I was depressed and was recovering from major reconstructive surgery).
    Ah, ok! Sorry for the unnecessary reply.
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  6. #46
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    I also have a high IQ (higher than 95% of population, measured by Mensa) and it was an advantage at the school. Also a disadvantage. See, I never studied for any exams. I did do my homework since I'm against rule breaking in general, but the moment they became optional and unregulated, I got real lazy. I usually got pretty good grades, but at times I have hard time when rigorous work is needed. I used to shine in math, but once it became arduous, I got in problems. I've now been about 10 years at the college, and I haven't finished my master's degree yet (recommendation is 5 years). It's not that it would be difficult, I just can't get myself to work on it. Being an ISTJ, I tend to focus my time and energy on things that have practical outcomes. Scientific research and objective truth just ain't my thing.
    I have to say I am somewhat similar in this respect (even though I did finish my masterĀ“s with top grades). Moreoever, while I do understand scientific thinking, I donĀ“t fully trust a whole lot of statistical work being done in the medical and social sciences when the aim is looking for statistical significe.
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  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    I have to say I am somewhat similar in this respect (even though I did finish my masterĀ“s with top grades). Moreoever, while I do understand scientific thinking, I donĀ“t fully trust a whole lot of statistical work being done in the medical and social sciences when the aim is looking for statistical significe.
    I too got away with the whole "I don't have to work hard or study for anything" disposition. That is until law school. But I've gotten over the learned laziness of being very smart.

    Luckily my job requires me to do what I love, talking to people. I have a very hard time putting effort into things that bore me.

  8. #48
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    If you want to know if you are good at something, then look at whether or not you're good at it. I could have a 160 IQ or one that's closer to 100 and it wouldn't change the fact that I just am not that good at mechanical things. Also, I don't care if my IQ is 90 or 100, you're not going to tell me I'm not a good programmer, mathematician, scientist/engineer, etc. There are trends related to IQ, but at the end of the day they are just observations of past realities and guides to get you going. Once you know what you're trying to do, then you should look at your ability to do said thing, and if something is lacking, then you should see if there is something you can do to better yourself in that arena. Yes, it's good to play to your strengths, and you may even go farther if you have natural ability in addition to drive and ambition, but at the end of the day it's about what you want to do, and about seeing if you can find a way to do it. Obviously, you shouldn't lie to yourself, and you may need to be honest with yourself in saying you just aren't that good at something, but that should come as a result of working at it for a while and trying various ways of getting better at it, not as a result of some idiot or some test saying you're not good at it.

    That said, I have very real problems with people who lack ability but succeed because they are low, dirty, rotten, underhanded, backstabbing, unethical, self-centered, worthless shits that will do anything to get what they want. I would still have problems with these people even if they were good at what they were doing, but that's a slightly different topic. If you can honestly succeed at what you want to do, then go for it. Nothing else matters.

    There are many people with average IQ who go "very far" in life, and those with above average IQ that amount to nothing, but that doesn't mean that's the way it should be. I mean, I'm all for presenting these arguments when the goal is to prevent someone from being limited because of a number, but when you start looking at these idiot managers, product managers, execs, politicians, world leaders, etc, then you can't help but wonder if things wouldn't be better if someone better skilled (whether in general or as implied by IQ) and less greedy/self-centered replaced them. Sometimes I can't help but wonder if there isn't a significant mis-match between the way things should be and the way things are when I see those with talent get sidelined, shitted on, pushed out, or fired (because they know what they are doing, and are thus seen as a threat) and are replaced by mediocrity that will comply and do what they're told.

    I think many of the world's problems stem from people with average to mediocre ability (stepping away from IQ for a minute) displacing those who actually know what they are doing, and due to the inherent sociopathic/greedy/self-centered mindset these mediocre people have or would have needed to develop in order to get where they are.

    Being the best-skilled doesn't get you the job, or the promotion, or the raise, or the accolades, yes, but that is not the way it's supposed to be! Just because something is doesn't mean it's correct.

    Should IQ limit your options in life, given that you have the talent and drive necessary to succeed: no.
    Should people be allowed to advance simply because they have a high IQ: arguable, but no.
    Should the shitty way the world is be used as an excuse to justify having the world continue being as shitty as it is: no!

    IQ was once seen correctly enough to be a reasonable indicator of someone's aptitude, and people understood that this was simple a gauge of where you are and what you may need to work on, but then the idiots that do did as they always do and tried to use IQ as a means to direct people's lives and to limit or box people in, and now here we are. This is the problem everywhere. Anytime anything shows up that can be used positively, some idiot strolls in and twists it all until it's just the same negative worthless thing that everyone wants to get away from, or that everyone starts arguing against instead of destroying the idiot ruining it.

    Also, as for those that use the excuse that some people with a high IQ go nowhere because they lack ambition, drive or can't overcome laziness/procrastination to say that IQ doesn't matter, I call bullshit. What those cases imply is that IQ isn't all that matters, and that many other things matter as well, like having drive, ambition, and being able to put whatever talent your IQ implies to good use. And if you start saying that just because someone has a high IQ they are lazy, or if you start getting on their nerves by trying to find something they do that's stupid, then you've completely lost me, and you have said exactly nothing.
    Last edited by baccheion; 04-24-2014 at 11:15 PM.

  9. #49
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Habba View Post
    I also have a high IQ (higher than 95% of population, measured by Mensa) and it was an advantage at the school. Also a disadvantage. See, I never studied for any exams. I did do my homework since I'm against rule breaking in general, but the moment they became optional and unregulated, I got real lazy. I usually got pretty good grades, but at times I have hard time when rigorous work is needed. I used to shine in math, but once it became arduous, I got in problems. I've now been about 10 years at the college, and I haven't finished my master's degree yet (recommendation is 5 years). It's not that it would be difficult, I just can't get myself to work on it. Being an ISTJ, I tend to focus my time and energy on things that have practical outcomes. Scientific research and objective truth just ain't my thing.

    I've ready couple of books by Daniel Goleman, he's a forespeaker for Emotional Intelligence. According to him, it's probably the best indicator for person's success. At least far better indicator that IQ. Emotional Intelligence is all about understanding and controlling your moods, motivations and primal reactions.
    I don't know my IQ & don't suspect it to be unusually high. But I am very "bookish" & grasp things quickly/easily.

    I did very well in school - always at the top, even if a big fish in a little pond. But I was very lazy!!! And I was arrogant. I was scornful towards "over-achievers" who had to work hard for grades because it came easy to me. I was a good kid though & loved to learn, so I did homework & payed attention in class. I also did high quality work. The laziness & arrogance came into play with not studying, waiting til the last minute to do stuff, turning stuff in late & skipping class several days a week. Teachers looked the other way with me a lot. They indulged me because they thought I was special. I too often overheard them say this to my parents ("special", "gifted" & "smart" got thrown around a lot). Even though I was a slacker & a moody teen, I was very well-mannered & teachers also called me an "angel" & only lightly teased me about tardiness or excessive absences.

    This did not do me favors, but then, I don't know what a stricter environment would've brought. I suspect it would've led to rebellion or quitting (which is often rebellion). I was a sensitive, withdrawn, earnest & polite kid, so I imagine that they figured "tough love" was not the way to go with me. Perhaps it was for the best they indulged me, but I've had to be creative in working around "structures" in adulthood that I have trouble conforming to because I was never made to conform much. One teacher called it "working the system", which is something I got good at too (loopholes, technicalities, finding the limit of what I could get away with).

    I suppose it's not too late to learn, but the skill I've honed is not traditional work ethic, but some bizarre chaos of weirdness that manages to pay bills. Since I have little to no interest in "success", it's not that big of a problem. But sometimes I wish someone has whipped me into shape, when I delude myself into thinking I have potential to do more in life that is. I mostly skate by on "good enough" as it's still better than some people's best, and I somehow project an image of being unique ("irreplaceable") so that I come to be valued; yet some very bad behavior has been tolerated on jobs, things I'm embarrassed to admit. I've never been fired & always do quality work & meet deadlines, so I guess the other stuff is seen as the tradeoff. Yea for art departments!
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  10. #50
    The Typing Tabby grey_beard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    I have to say I am somewhat similar in this respect (even though I did finish my masterĀ“s with top grades). Moreoever, while I do understand scientific thinking, I donĀ“t fully trust a whole lot of statistical work being done in the medical and social sciences when the aim is looking for statistical significe.
    @FDG --

    LOL! I had a friend who used to work at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, in the US.
    He worked with the good people at SAS (programming company out of Cary, NC) and his job was to find statistical mistakes in other peoples' published papers in the medical field.
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